Brian M. Maser

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E-mail: bmaser@k-plaw.com
Phone: 617.556.0007
Practice Areas: General Municipal, Employment & Labor

Attorney Brian Maser’s practice focuses on general municipal law, and public sector labor and employment law. In this capacity, he provides counsel to municipalities on labor issues, including compliance with state and federal labor statutes, such as the Fair Labor Standards Act, the Family Medical Leave Act, the Massachusetts Wage Act, and the Massachusetts Maternity Leave Act. Attorney Maser represents municipalities in labor disputes in state and federal courts, drafts and negotiates successor collective bargaining agreements, drafts and negotiates individual employment agreements, employee settlement agreements and releases, grievance and arbitration settlement documents, conducts investigations relative to employee misconduct, conducts pre-deprivation show cause hearings, advises clients with respect to municipal health insurance issues, including issues facing municipalities as a result of the passage of the Affordable Care Act, and represents municipalities before the American Arbitration Association, the Massachusetts Department of Labor Relations, the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination, the Massachusetts Civil Service Commission, and the Joint Labor Management Committee. He also has experience representing school committees in state court and in labor arbitration disputes. Attorney Maser assists clients with a variety of general municipal law issues, including issues surrounding town meetings, municipal charters and by-laws, conflict of interest, public records, the Open Meeting Law, and municipal finance.

Prior to joining the firm in 2005, Attorney Maser represented various public sector labor organizations at the state and municipal level. There, he litigated and arbitrated labor disputes before the Massachusetts Superior court, the American Arbitration Association, the then-Massachusetts Labor Relations Commission, and in state and federal courts. Attorney Maser has more than a decade of experience representing clients before the various administrative agencies that adjudicate public sector labor and employment law matters.

Representative Matters

  • Shorey v. City of Leominster, Civil Service Commission Case No. G2-12-277.
    The City bypassed the Appellant, Ms. Kimberly Shorey, for promotion to the position of Sergeant for comments she made about the then-Chief of Police and for her lackluster handling of several calls involving domestic violence. At the time of the bypass Officer Shorey was the only female member of the Leominster Police Department, had implicant the then-Chief in wrongdoing, and had three (3) discrimination charges pending at MCAD. After three (3) days of hearing, however, and despite the Appellant’s attempts to argue that the City’s stated reasons for the bypass were a pretext to continued discrimination, harassment, and retaliation, Cynthia A. Ittleman upheld the City’s reasons for bypass as being sound and sufficient.
  • Local 1839, IAFF and Town of Chelmsford, AAA# 11-020-01300-0950.
    Fire fighters employed by the Town are required to become EMTs within twelve months of their appointment.  After several veteran members of the Department allowed their EMT certifications to expire, the Fire Chief placed the fire fighters on unpaid administrative leave pending their becoming recertified. The Fire Union grieved their members’ unpaid status through the grievance steps and demanded arbitration.  At arbitration, before Tammy Brynie, Esq., the Town argued that the fire fighters were required to maintain their EMT certifications as a condition of their employment, despite the absence of any contract language setting forth such an on-going requirement, and that the requirement was clear and obvious, not only based upon the conduct of the parties relative to recertification, but the conduct of the grievants’ themselves, in their self-reporting their lapsed certifications to the Department and their letters of apology to the Fire Chief.  Arbitrator Brynie agreed, finding that the Town had just cause for taking the action it took and that, based upon the evidence presented  by the Town at arbitration, maintaining an EMT certification was a well-known, understood, and long-standing employment expectation of the Town.
  • Leominster Patrolmen’s Union and City of Leominster, AAA# 11-390-01559-12 (2013). The City terminated a patrol officer in the Police Department after an investigation found that the officer, while off-duty, uttered racial slurs towards an African-American baseball player during a minor league baseball game in New Hampshire. At arbitration, before James M. Litton, Esq., the City argued that the grievance was not arbitrable as the negotiated contract language provided that a disciplinary appeal may only be processed with the Civil Service Commission. The City offered testimony during the hearing that throughout the parties contractual arrangement, all other prior disciplinary sanctions issued by the City had been appealed, if at all, to the Civil Service Commission. Arbitrator Litton ruled in favor of the City on the arbitrability of the Union’s grievance and dismissed it as not arbitrable.
  • Tisbury Police Union and Town of Tisbury, AAA# 11-390-02148-11 (2012). The Town terminated the employment of a long-standing supervisor in the Police Department following a Department investigation that the supervisor violated various Department policies relative to his response to a domestic violence incident, evidence preservation at the scene, and properly handling a sexual assault allegation. At arbitration, despite a limited disciplinary history, the arbitrator upheld the supervisor’s termination as being for just cause.
  • Rooney v. Town of Groton, 577 F.Supp.2d 513 (2008). A Town police lieutenant brought suit against town to recover overtime compensation. On summary judgment, the District Court found that the lieutenant satisfied requirements for exemption from overtime pay as an executive employee; the lieutenant also satisfied the administrative employee exemption; and the lieutenant was not a first-responder entitled to overtime pay.

Bar & Court Admissions

  • Massachusetts Bar
  • U.S. District Court (Mass.)

Education

Suffolk University Law School
Juris Doctor, 2002

James Madison University
Bachelor of Arts, 1999