Table of Contents
WHEREAS, the Puerto Rican and Hispanic population of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts forms an identifiable and significant community in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts; and
WHEREAS, this sector of our population is a severely disadvantaged minority group whose problems are compounded by a limiting language barrier, causing them to suffer special disadvantages; and
WHEREAS, this minority group has special problems in the areas of employment opportunities, economic development, education, health, welfare, housing, human rights, and other services; and WHEREAS, the needs of this minority group must be assessed and addressed in a unique manner; and
WHEREAS, this administration acknowledges the United States Civil Rights Commission's Report to the United States Congress as valid documentation which reflects certain of the needs and priorities of the Puerto Rican and Hispanic residents of the Commonwealth; and
WHEREAS, a Governor's Advisory Council on Puerto Rican and Hispanic Affairs should be organized to provide input which will help the Commonwealth deal consistently and effectively with the problems confronting the Puerto Rican and Hispanic communities of the Commonwealth.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Michael S. Dukakis, by virtue of the authority vested in me as supreme executive magistrate, do hereby order the establishment of a council to be called the Governor's Advisory Council on Puerto Rican and Hispanic Affairs.
A. The Governor's Advisory Council on Puerto Rican and Hispanic Affairs ("Council") shall consist of eleven members as follows:
1. Three of the members shall be selected from among residents of cities and towns within the Western Region as indicated on the attached map, being cities and towns generally west of the town of Sturbridge, in the Central Region.
2. Three of the members shall be selected from among residents of cities and towns within the Central Region as indicated on the attached map, being cities and towns generally east of the town of Brimfield in the Western Region and west of the city of Newton in the Eastern Region.
3. Three of the members shall be selected from among residents of cities and towns within the Eastern Region as indicated on the attached map, being cities and towns generally east of the town of Weston in the Central Region.
4. Two of the members shall serve at-large, and may reside in any region established by this order.
B. The members of the Council shall be appointed by the Governor after consultation with recognized groups, any formal organization or coalition that is fairly representative of such recognized groups, and individuals serving the Puerto Rican and Hispanic population of the Commonwealth.
C. The Governor shall from time-to-time designate one of the members of the Council as chairperson.
D. Members of the Council shall serve terms co-terminous with that of the Governor and may be removed by him at any time.
E. Vacancies in the membership of the Council shall be filled by the Governor in accordance with the regional and at-large appointment requirements of this order.
II. Purpose and Responsibilities of the Council
A. The central purpose and function of the Council shall be to provide input which will help the Governor and other persons in the Executive Branch deal more consistently, effectively, and efficiently with problems confronting the disadvantaged Puerto Rican and Hispanic population of the Commonwealth. To perform this central task the Council may:
1. Divide itself into task forces which will identify, study, examine, research, and analyze areas of concern to the target population, including employment opportunity and affirmative action, education, health, housing, welfare, economic development, human rights, migrant worker problems, and other problems generally affecting the economic and social well being of such population.
2. Review and analyze legislation, regulations, and policies regarding minority rights as they relate to Puerto Ricans and Hispanics.
3. Conduct a review of the purposes and functions of state agencies that provide funds and services which have a particular impact on the target population, with a view toward determining whether or not significant improvements can be made in the delivery systems for such funds and services.
4. Hold Council or task force meetings anywhere in the Commonwealth.
5. Report its findings and recommendation's to the Governor from time to time, and prepare an annual report.
6. Prepare and publish By-Laws or other internal operating procedures which shall govern the operation of the Council.
III. Placement of Council
The Council shall be placed under the jurisdiction of the Secretary of the Executive Office of Communities and Development, who shall provide the Council with such supportive services and technical assistance as the resources available to him may allow. A liaison with the Governor's office will also be established.
IV. Interagency Cooperation
In order to fulfill its responsibilities, the Council may request the advice and counsel of state departments, offices, commissions, or other agencies of the state, including the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination. Each office, agency, or department contacted should cooperate fully with the Council and provide such information concerning matters properly within the jurisdiction of the Council as the Council may request.
V. Governor's Task Force on Spanish Speaking Americans
Executive Order No. 69, dated December 8, 1969, which created the Governor's Task Force on Spanish Speaking Americans contains provisions that are materially inconsistent with the purpose and responsibilities of the Council created herein, and is, therefore, declared to no longer be in force.
Given at the Executive Chamber in Boston this 1st day of August in the year of our Lord, one thousand nine hundred and seventy-seven and of the Independence of the United States the two hundred first.
Michael S. Dukakis
Commonwealth of Massachusetts
Secretary of the Commonwealth