OLR Bill Analysis

sHB 6235

AN ACT CREATING A STATE-WIDE TASK FORCE TO ADDRESS BLIGHT AND CONCERNING NOTICE OF FINES, PENALTIES, COSTS OR FEES FOR CITATIONS ISSUED UNDER MUNICIPAL ORDINANCES.

SUMMARY:

This bill limits a person's ability to contest a municipal default judgment by claiming notice of the citation was not received. The bill makes it a presumption that notice of a municipal citation was received if notice is sent to a person's last known address, as listed in the tax collector's records. By law, a municipality must send notice of the allegations; any fines, penalties, costs, or fees (“fine”); and the right to a hearing to a person cited for an ordinance violation. If a person does not respond to the notice within the 10-day period for contesting fines, a default judgment may be entered against him or her.

The bill also creates a 15-member task force to study procedural problems in addressing blight at the municipal level. The task force must draft model municipal blight ordinances and propose legislation to help municipalities address blight more effectively.

EFFECTIVE DATE: October 1, 2013, except the formation of the task force, which is effective upon passage.

TASK FORCE

The task force consists of the following 15 members:

1. the Planning and Development Committee chairpersons and ranking members or their designees;

2. two appointed by the House speaker, one of whom must represent residential tenants;

3. two appointed by the Senate president pro tempore, one of whom must represent residential landlords;

4. one appointed by the House majority leader, who must represent the Connecticut Conference of Municipalities;

5. one appointed by the Senate majority leader, who must represent the International Council of Shopping Centers;

6. one appointed by the House minority leader, who must represent the Connecticut Business and Industry Association;

7. one appointed by the Senate minority leader, who must represent the Connecticut Council of Small Towns;

8. one legislator appointed by the Planning and Development Committee chairs, who represents a municipality with a population of at least 100,000 (i.e., Bridgeport, Hartford, New Haven, Stamford, or Waterbury);

9. the chief state's attorney or his or her designee; and

10. the president and chief executive officer of Connecticut Main Street Center or his or her designee.

The appointing authorities must make their appointments within 30 days after the bill's passage and fill any vacancies. The House speaker and Senate president pro tempore must select the chairpersons of the task force from among the task force members. The co-chairpersons must schedule its first meeting within 60 days after the bill's passage. The administrative staff of the Planning and Development Committee must serve as the administrative staff of the task force.

The task force must submit a report on its findings and recommendations to the Planning and Development Committee by February 5, 2014. It terminates on that date or the date it submits its report, whichever is later.

COMMITTEE ACTION

Planning and Development Committee

Joint Favorable Substitute

Yea

19

Nay

0

(04/01/2013)