Treasury is responsible for providing the cash for the operation of all Town, School, Retirement Board, and Municipal Light Department functions on a timely basis. In addition, it conducts all borrowing and investing activities.
Payroll for the Town, School, and RMLD departments are all processed ‘in-house’ through this division.
The main functions of the Treasurer are prescribed in various chapters and sections of State Law. They can be found in “Laws Relating to Municipal Finance and Taxation” as published by the Department of Revenue Division of Local Services. The Treasurer is appointed by the Town Manager in accordance with Reading Home Rule Charter Section 6.4.
The Treasurer must take custody of all monies belonging to the city or town and must rigorously account for those monies. The Treasurer must determine the cash needs of a municipality and ensure that sufficient liquid assets are available to pay current obligations. All money not required to be kept liquid for purposes of distribution must be invested by the Treasurer in such a manner as to require the payment of interest on the money at the highest possible rate reasonably available, taking account of safety, liquidity, and yield
The Treasurer's responsibilities also include a major role in the issuance of municipal debt.
Only the Treasurer may pay out public money. It is the Town Accountant and a majority of the Select Board who must give the approval. For payrolls, the department head, or designee, must attest to their accuracy before the Treasurer may make payment.
Areas of the Treasure's responsibility are:
- Tax Title (MGL. c.60 s.50,54,61,62,63,76,77,79,80)
- Trust Funds (MGL c.44 s.53A)
- Payroll and Employee Benefits (MGL c.149 s.178B)
- Retirement (MGL c.32)
- Borrowing and Debt Service (MGL c.44 s.4,6,6A,7,8)
- Cash management (MGL c.41 s.35)
- Investment of Municipal Funds (MGL c.44 s.54-55A & B; MGL c29 s.38A)
NOTE: Part of the text is a complete section describing Treasurer Responsibilities and is copied in part from a manual published by the Massachusetts Collectors and Treasurer’s Association.