OFFICE OF FISCAL ANALYSIS

Legislative Office Building, Room 5200

Hartford, CT 06106 (860) 240-0200

http: //www. cga. ct. gov/ofa

sHB-6540

AN ACT CONCERNING HIGHWAY SAFETY, STATE FACILITY TRAFFIC AUTHORITIES, MUNICIPAL BUILDING DEMOLITION, STATE TRAFFIC COMMISSION CERTIFICATES, AT GRADE CROSSINGS, THE NAMING OF ROADS AND BRIDGES IN HONOR OR IN MEMORY OF PERSONS AND ORGANIZATIONS, AND A TRAIN STATION IN NIANTIC.

As Amended by House "A" (LCO 8387)

House Calendar No. : 241

OFA Fiscal Note

State Impact:

Agency Affected

Fund-Effect

FY 12 $

FY 13 $

Department of Transportation

TF - One-time

66,000

None

Judicial Dept.

GF - Potential Revenue Gain

Less than $100,000

Less than $100,000

Note: TF=Transportation Fund; GF=General Fund

Municipal Impact: None

Explanation

A section by section fiscal impact is presented below.

Section 1 has no fiscal impact because it codifies the statute to current practice.

Sections 2 through 8 allow various state agencies to install stop signs or other traffic related signs upon approval from the State Traffic Commission (STC) and will not result in additional cost to the commission.

Section 9 allows the Department of Transportation (DOT) to demolish buildings without required municipal permits and will result in project cost savings from efficiencies realized by speeding up the process. Currently DOT under local ordinances has to wait 180 days before a municipality grants the demolition permit.

Section 10 has no fiscal impact because it codifies the statute to current practice and federal regulations.

Section 11 has no fiscal impact as it clarifies length of an oversize vehicle being towed rather than the towing vehicle.

Section 12 of the bill subjects drivers who park on a limited access highway where a safety inspection site is operated in order to avoid the inspection to a fine of $250 to $500 for a first offense and $500 to $1,000 for each subsequent offense, and will result in a potential revenue gain to the General Fund of less than $25,000. The estimate assumes that the establishment of a fine for this offense will increase the likelihood that an estimated 50 offenders annually would be prosecuted and receive harsher penalties than under current law. 1

Section 13 of the bill subjects a person driving a vehicle under a forged oversize or overweight permit to a minimum fine of $25,000, and will result in potential revenue to the General Fund of less than $75,000. The estimate assumes that the establishment of a fine for this offense will increase the likelihood that an estimated 10 offenders annually would be prosecuted and receive harsher penalties than under current law. 2

Sections 14 and 15 exempt developments of certain size and type from the review by the State Traffic Commission (STC) and is not anticipated to have a fiscal impact.

Section 16 has no fiscal impact as it requires the DOT to attend a public hearing concerning the safety and condition of an at-grade railroad crossing when petitioned.

Sections 17, 42, 56 and 58 are technical in nature and do not result in any fiscal impact.

Section 18 allows a sign that "doubles the fines" to be posted at the beginning of a municipal road construction zone. To the extent that imposed fines are doubled for committing an offense in these construction zones, a potential revenue gain to the municipality and the General Fund and/or Special Transportation Fund would result.

Section 19 specifies two different fines to be assessed for the failure to remove accumulated snow and ice from an operator's noncommercial motor vehicle. The first fine of $75 will be imposed to an operator of a noncommercial motor vehicle who fails to remove accumulated snow and ice that does not pose a threat to persons or property. The second fine of $200 to $1,000 will be imposed on any person who doesn't remove accumulated ice and snow which becomes dislodged from the vehicle and causes personal injury or property damage.

In light of the amount of revenue generated under a broader statute currently3, it is anticipated that this new fine would generate a minimal revenue gain. Since the bill does not include this new fine amongst fines, fees and surcharges4 that must be deposited into the Special Transportation Fund5, any revenues generated under the bill would be deposited into the General Fund. Police enforcement could be accommodated within the normal course of police officers' duties at no increased cost.

Section 56 changes the effective date of PA 10-182 from December 31, 2013 to October 1, 2011. This change is technical in nature in order to implement provisions in section 19 on noncommercial motorists effective October 1, 2011. It keeps the original December 31, 2013 effective date for commercial motorists the same as PA 10-182.

Sections 20 – 22, 32 and 34 – 41 will result in a cost to DOT of approximately $18,000 in FY 12 to install signs that name various bridges and roads.

Sections 31, 33, 49, 50, 52, 53, 54 and 55 will result in a cost of $48,000 in FY 12 to DOT to install tourist informational signs for specific items of interest.

Section 34 requires the DOT to conduct a study of the feasibility of establishing a train station in Niantic and would not result in additional cost to the agency.

Section 43 removes the requirement that DOT adopt regulations before it can expend $7. 5 million in General Obligation (GO) bonds for grants-in-aid to commercial rail fright lines. This will accelerate the debt service impact of the bonds on the General Fund to the degree that it allows DOT to expend the bond funds more quickly than it otherwise would have.

Section 57 has no fiscal impact because it conforms statute to current practice and regulations.

House 'A' strikes the original bill and results in the fiscal impact stated above.

The Out Years

The annualized ongoing fiscal impact identified above would continue into the future subject to inflation.

The preceding Fiscal Impact statement is prepared for the benefit of the members of the General Assembly, solely for the purposes of information, summarization and explanation and does not represent the intent of the General Assembly or either chamber thereof for any purpose. In general, fiscal impacts are based upon a variety of informational sources, including the analyst's professional knowledge. Whenever applicable, agency data is consulted as part of the analysis, however final products do not necessarily reflect an assessment from any specific department.

1 In 2010, zero convictions were made for this offense, as it was not specified in statute.

2 In 2010, 11 fines were issued for forgery, totaling $10,200 in revenue collected.

3 In FY 08, revenue in the amount of $62,682 were generated under CGS 14-271(b), Operating with an Unsecured Load. The amount due for such a violation is $177.

4 CGS 13b-59(g)

5 In accordance with CGS 13b-59(d) and 13b-61(b)(4)