OLR Bill Analysis

SB 673

AN ACT CONCERNING FREEDOM OF ASSOCIATION IN PUBLIC HOUSING.

SUMMARY:

This bill bars municipalities, housing authorities, nonprofit corporations, and municipal developers from prohibiting tenants from using public housing common facilities or community rooms for political activity.

The bill defines “public housing project” as a state or federally subsidized multifamily housing project operated by a housing authority, nonprofit corporation, or municipal developer. “Housing authorities” are municipal housing authorities and the Connecticut Housing Authority (see BACKGROUND). “Nonprofit corporations” are nonprofit corporations, whose articles of incorporation have been approved by the economic and community development commissioner, that construct, rehabilitate, own, or operate housing. A “municipal developer” is a municipality acting through its legislature, or, if a town meeting, its board of selectmen, that has not established a housing authority.

“Political activity” includes:

1. an event organized for a political party or candidate for elective office;

2. initiating, circulating, or signing petitions;

3. community political meetings;

4. campaigning for or against proposed referendum questions, constitutional amendments, legislation, and municipal ordinances; and

5. expressing opinions about candidates and political or social issues.

EFFECTIVE DATE: July 1, 2013

BACKGROUND

Connecticut Housing Authority

In 1995, the legislature made the state Housing Authority a successor to the Connecticut Housing Authority and a subsidiary of the Connecticut Housing Finance Authority. The Connecticut Housing Authority had statutory responsibility for managing state housing projects.

COMMITTEE ACTION

Government Administration and Elections Committee

Joint Favorable

Yea

14

Nay

0

(04/05/2013)