MMA membership includes subscriptions to The Beacon and the Massachusetts Municipal Directory. Content from The Beacon is integrated throughout this website, particularly in the News area. The MMA has ceased publication of the Municipal Advocate magazine, but articles from past issues are still available (see below).

For subscriptions, please use the convenient online ordering system below. Online ordering will redirect through Paypal, but a Paypal account is not required to place an order. You may use any major credit card for the transaction on the Paypal site.

The Beacon
The Beacon is the MMA’s monthly news publication, covering the latest legislative and other developments that affect cities and towns. The Beacon includes a calendar of events and classified advertising, among other features. A subscription is for one year (11 issues). Due to the COVID-19 emergency, the MMA has been publishing The Beacon as a PDF, available online for free. At this time, please do not order a paid subscription.
Massachusetts Finance Committee Handbook
The ATFC’s Finance Committee Handbook covers the basic roles and responsibilities of finance committee members as well as complex issues. It is designed to assist all members of finance committees and provides useful information to other local officials who are involved in municipal finance and budget matters. In October 2021, the ATFC released the Finance Committee Handbook in digital form, downloadable from the MMA website. The new edition includes many updates that reflect passage of the Municipal Modernization Act in 2016. Many local, state and business financial experts have contributed to the Finance Committee Handbook. ATFC Past President Allan Tosti serves as the managing editor, and MMA Senior Member Program Coordinator Denise Baker serves as the coordinator for the book. All ATFC members may receive a link to download the handbook for free by contacting Denise Baker at the MMA at
Handbook for Massachusetts Selectmen
The Massachusetts Select Board Association has launched a new online version of its comprehensive guide for Select Board members. The Handbook for Massachusetts Select Board Members, which covers the full range of roles and responsibilities for Select Board members as leaders of their towns, had previously been available only in print or as a PDF. The new online version, publicly available on the MMA website, has its own navigation tools and built-in search function. The content has been fully updated to reflect changes to laws and regulations, and to include emerging issues such as diversity, equity and inclusion and climate change, both of which are covered in new chapters. Click here for this comprehensive guide for the nearly 1,200 Select Board members who serve their towns across Massachusetts.
Massachusetts Municipal Directory
The Massachusetts Municipal Directory has been replaced by the Mass Municipal Data Hub on the MMA home page. The Data Hub includes information from the traditional directory plus a wide range of data related to cities and towns across Massachusetts — all searchable and sortable, and conveniently available to all. The Massachusetts Municipal Directory was last published in 2021-22, in PDF form.
MMA Best Practices Series
The MMA released its first municipal “best practices” report at its Annual Meeting in January 2016, and Volume 2 was released in January 2017. The reports describe a wide range of strategies for improving efficiency and effectiveness in the delivery of municipal services and the administration of municipal government. Topics range from municipal finance and human resources to standards for public works, economic development and environmental practices. For more information and to download the reports, visit
Municipal Advocate
The Municipal Advocate magazine presented in-depth articles about important and timely municipal issues, with an emphasis on innovative solutions and problem-solving strategies. The MMA ceased publication of the magazine in spring 2021, but back issues remain available.
An Obligation to Lead: Report of the MMA’s Municipal Opioid Addiction and Overdose Prevention Task Force
In January 2016, the MMA’s Municipal Opioid Addiction and Overdose Prevention Task Force released a 16-page report intended to help local officials take action on the escalating opioid abuse epidemic that has claimed thousands of lives in recent years and is affecting virtually every community in Massachusetts. The report outlines 10 specific opportunities for local officials to lead the fight against the public health epidemic surrounding the abuse of prescription drugs and opioids.
10 Partnership Policies to Build a Stronger Commonwealth
On behalf of the cities and towns of Massachusetts, the MMA has issued 10 Partnership Policies and is asking all of the candidates for governor and the Legislature to publicly embrace this powerful agenda. These policies cover a wide range of vital issues, reflecting the extraordinary breadth of shared responsibilities that are held by state and local leaders.

The Association of Town Finance Committees and the Massachusetts Municipal Human Resources association publish publications as well. For information, click on their Web links above.