Section 166B. There shall be within the executive office of health and human services an advisory committee on chaplains in state institutions, hereinafter called the committee. The committee shall consist of at least three chaplains, representative of Catholic, Jewish and Protestant faith groups, a representative of other faith groups who may make application based on the size of the constituency of such groups related to the population of such groups in state institutions, the secretary of the executive office of health and human services or his designee, a representative of the superintendents of state institutions, and two members at large, all to be appointed by the governor. The chaplain members of the committee shall be recommended to the governor by their respective governing bodies. Members of the committee shall be appointed for terms of three years and a chairman shall be designated by the governor. The committee shall meet at least four times a year. Special meetings may be called at the request of the chairman, the secretary of the executive office of health and human services, or a majority of the members of the committee.
The committee shall be responsible for maintaining consistent communication between religious bodies and departments of the commonwealth making use of services of chaplains and when necessary shall propose appropriate legislation to provide for and regulate the services of chaplains in the institutions of the commonwealth.
No provision of this section shall be construed as lessening the authority of any judicatory executive whose tradition requires that he be ultimately responsible for establishing criteria for appointment or actually appointing chaplains who would then be accepted for service in state institutions or regions.