PITTSFIELD -- Gov. Deval Patrick has signed Pittsfield’s new charter -- the document that defines city government -- and now local voters will have the ultimate say on it.
State Sen. Benjamin Downing, D-Pittsfield, said Thursday that the bill, a home rule petition filed by the city’s legislative delegation, is now called Chapter 72 of the Acts of 2013.
The charter revision is now expected to go before Pittsfield voters on the Nov. 5 ballot. If approved, it will replace the current charter or governing framework for city government.
The first overhaul of the Pittsfield charter since 1932 was developed by an 11-member Charter Review Study Committee, appointed last year by the City Council and Mayor Daniel L. Bianchi. After a process that included public forums and committee meetings, the recommendations were unanimously approved by the council on May 28.
The provisions of the new charter would take effect in January 2016, following the November 2015 city elections.
The new changes include modern, clearer language throughout, especially in a section on the procedure for citizen initiative petitions and the recall of officials; a four-year term for mayor; and a provision allowing pay for School Committee members if approved by the council and mayor.