Legislative Authority

In Souza v. Bristol County Sheriff, the Supreme Judicial Court, in striking down the sheriff’s imposition of certain fees on inmates, found that the sheriff acted in excess of his authority and contrary to the intent of the Legislature.  In so doing, it held that, “[a] government agency or officer does not have authority to issue regulations … that conflict with or exceed the authority of the enabling statutes.”  Id. (“Where the Legislature has fully regulated a subject by statute, a government agency or officer cannot further regulate that subject by establishing a policy inconsistent with the statutory scheme.”)