House Bill No. 5686

Public Act No. 00-158

An Act Concerning Membership On Community Action Boards And Designation Of Violence-Free Zones.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:

Section 1. Section 17b-886 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof:

(a) Each community action agency shall administer its program through a community action board which shall consist of not more than fifty-one and not less than fifteen members and shall be so constituted that:

(1) One-third of the members of the board are elected public officials currently holding office, or their designees, except that if the number of elected officials reasonably available and willing to serve is less than one-third of the membership of the board, membership on the board of appointive public officials may be counted in meeting such one-third requirement;

(2) At least one-third of the members of the board are persons chosen in accordance with democratic selection procedures adequate to assure that they are representative of the poor in the area served; and

(3) The remainder of the members of the board are officials or members of business, industry, labor, religious, welfare, education or other major groups and interests in the community.

(b) Each member of the board selected to represent a specific geographic area within a community shall reside in the area he represents. [No person selected under subdivision (2) or (3) of subsection (a) as a member of the board shall serve on such board for more than five consecutive years, or more than a total of ten years.]

Sec. 2. Section 17b-890 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof:

The priorities of a community action program may include, but not be limited to, component projects designed to assist participants including the elderly poor, in attaining the following objectives:

(1) To secure and retain meaningful employment;

(2) To obtain adequate education;

(3) To provide for education and care of young children;

(4) To make better use of available income;

(5) To provide and maintain adequate housing and a suitable living environment;

(6) To provide information and education on, and access to healthful nutrition;

(7) To obtain services for the prevention of and rehabilitation from drug abuse and alcoholism;

(8) To obtain emergency assistance to meet immediate and urgent individual and family needs, including the need for health services, nutritious food, housing, energy and unemployment-related assistance;

(9) To remove obstacles and solve personal and family problems which block the achievement of self-sufficiency;

(10) To achieve greater participation in the affairs of the community;

(11) To make more frequent and effective use of other programs related to the purposes of sections 17b-885 to 17b-895, inclusive; [and]

(12) To stimulate and take full advantage of capabilities for self-advancement; and

(13) To designate violence-free zones in accordance with the federal Community Services Block Grant Program (42 USC 9908), for the purpose of addressing the needs of youth through programs that support the primary role of the family, give priority to the prevention of youth problems and crime, and promote increased community coordination and collaboration. As used in this subdivision, "violence-free zone" means a geographic area within a targeted investment community, as defined in section 32-222, as amended, that has chronically high levels of crime, violence, unemployment, family dissolution and juvenile delinquency and a low rate of home ownership.

Sec. 3. This act shall take effect from its passage.

Approved May 26, 2000