CHAPTER 236

DEFINITIONS AND ADMINISTRATION

Table of Contents

Sec. 13a-1. Definitions.

Secs. 13a-2 to 13a-3a. Highway Commissioner: Appointment; oath of office; powers and duties. Commuter parking facilities.

Sec. 13a-3b. Entry on private property to repair damage caused by Transportation Department operations.

Sec. 13a-4. Records. Court copies. Delegation of commissioner’s authority to sign documents.

Sec. 13a-5. Construction of roads and bridges for military purposes.

Sec. 13a-6. Reimbursement by federal government.

Sec. 13a-7. Layout, alteration, grading, discontinuance in cities and boroughs.

Sec. 13a-8. Appointment and removal of town superintendent of highways and bridges.

Sec. 13a-9. Qualifications; bond; salary.

Sec. 13a-10. Powers and duties. Bills. Account.

Sec. 13a-11. Adoption of town superintendent provisions.

Sec. 13a-12. Repair of highways in boroughs. Damages for defects.

Sec. 13a-13. Layout or repair of highways dividing towns.

Sec. 13a-13a. Establishment of alternative design standards for roads and bridges.


Sec. 13a-1. Definitions. (a) As used in this title:

(1) “Commissioner” means the Commissioner of Transportation and includes each successor in office or authority;

(2) “Highway” includes streets and roads;

(3) “Limited access state highway” means any state highway so designated under the provisions of section 13b-27; and

(4) “State highway” means a highway, bridge or appurtenance to a highway or bridge designated as part of the state highway system within the provisions of chapter 237, or a highway, bridge or appurtenance to a highway or bridge specifically included in the state highway system by general statute.

(b) Wherever in the general statutes or special acts pertaining to highways the word “town” is used, it shall include city or borough. The word “selectmen”, wherever the same occurs in the general statutes which relate to the care and maintenance of highways, shall, in relation to towns having a consolidated town and city government and bound to care for and maintain the highways in such towns, be construed to mean the board, officer or commission having charge of the care and maintenance of such highways.

(1949 Rev., S. 2116; 1958 Rev., S. 13-1; 1961, P.A. 603, S. 1; 1963, P.A. 226, S. 1, 7(a), (b); 1969, P.A. 768, S. 68; 1971, P.A. 416, S. 1; P.A. 03-115, S. 25.)

History: 1961 act replaced previous provisions; 1963 act replaced previous provisions: See title history; 1969 act substituted commissioner of transportation for state highway commissioner; 1971 act redefined “limited access highway” as one so designated under Sec. 13b-27 rather than as one “to which access is permitted only at highway intersections or other points designated by the commissioner”; P.A. 03-115 made technical changes.

Cited. 150 C. 374.

Cited. 14 CA 521.

Secs. 13a-2 to 13a-3a. Highway Commissioner: Appointment; oath of office; powers and duties. Commuter parking facilities. Sections 13a-2 to 13a-3a, inclusive, are repealed.

(1949 Rev., S. 2180–2182, 2196, 2197; November, 1949, S. 1196d; 1955, S. 1185d, 1186d, 1196d; November, 1955, S. N157; 1957, P.A. 386; 1958 Rev., S. 13-67–13-69, 13-82, 13-83, 13-92, 13-94, 13-96; 1959, P.A. 60; 1961, P.A. 160; 605, S. 3, 4; 1963, P.A. 226, S. 2, 3; February, 1965, P.A. 378, S. 1; 1967, P.A. 700; 1969, P.A. 768, S. 263.)

Sec. 13a-3b. Entry on private property to repair damage caused by Transportation Department operations. Notwithstanding any provision of any statute to the contrary, the Commissioner of Transportation or his agent, with the approval of the Claims Commissioner, may enter upon private property with the consent of the owner to restore or to repair damage on said property caused by Department of Transportation operations, provided no expenditure exceeding five thousand dollars shall be made on any property. Said Claims Commissioner may grant his approval upon the basis of affidavits filed by the Commissioner of Transportation and the property owner, or may require such further written and oral evidence as he deems necessary.

(1967, P.A. 811; 1969, P.A. 768, S. 71; P.A. 75-605, S. 23, 27; P.A. 76-435, S. 17, 82.)

History: 1969 act substituted commissioner and department of transportation for highway commissioner and department; P.A. 75-605 substituted claims commissioner for commission on claims; P.A. 76-435 made technical changes.

Sec. 13a-4. Records. Court copies. Delegation of commissioner’s authority to sign documents. Section 13a-4 is repealed.

(1949 Rev., S. 2180; 1955, S. 1185d; 1958 Rev., S. 13-67; 1961, P.A. 160; 1963, P.A. 226, S. 4; 1967, P.A. 412; 1969, P.A. 768, S. 263.)

Sec. 13a-5. Construction of roads and bridges for military purposes. The commissioner, upon request of the Federal Highway Administrator, Federal Highway Administration, Department of Transportation of the United States, may enter into agreements, subject to the limitations of section 13a-6, with the Federal Highway Administration for the making of surveys, plans, specifications and estimates for, and for the construction and maintenance of, roads and bridges necessary to provide access to military and naval reservations, to defense industries and defense industry sites and to sources of raw materials, and for replacing existing highways and highway connections shut off from public use at military and naval reservations and defense industry sites. Notwithstanding any other provisions of law, he may enter into contracts in any manner approved by said Federal Highway Administrator for the construction of any such roads or bridges, or may cause such construction and maintenance work to be performed by employees of the Department of Transportation of this state.

(1949 Rev., S. 2203; 1958 Rev., S. 13-89; 1963, P.A. 226, S. 5; 1969, P.A. 768, S. 73; P.A. 77-5.)

History: 1963 act replaced previous provisions: See title history; 1969 act substituted federal Department of Transportation for federal Department of Commerce and state department of transportation for highway department; P.A. 77-5 substituted federal highway administration for bureau of public roads.

See Sec. 13a-73(d) re purchase or condemnation of land for military purposes.

Cited. 150 C. 374.

Sec. 13a-6. Reimbursement by federal government. Nothing herein shall authorize the commissioner to proceed under the provisions of section 13a-5 and subsection (c) of section 13a-73 with any work pertaining to any such roads or bridges unless, under the Act of Congress or the federal grant allocating funds for such purpose, or by agreement with the government of the United States or any agency thereof, all costs and expenditures incurred in connection therewith shall be reimbursed by the government of the United States or such agency; and provided no commitments or expenditures of state funds shall be made by the commissioner except with the approval of the Governor.

(1949 Rev., S. 2205; 1958 Rev., S. 13-91; 1963, P.A. 226, S. 6.)

History: 1963 act replaced previous provisions: See title history.

Cited. 150 C. 374.

Sec. 13a-7. Layout, alteration, grading, discontinuance in cities and boroughs. In cities and boroughs whose charters do not authorize them to lay out, alter, grade and discontinue highways within their limits, the common council of cities and the warden and burgesses of boroughs may exercise such power in the same manner as selectmen of towns.

(1949 Rev., S. 2140; 1958 Rev., S. 13-24; 1963, P.A. 226, S. 7 (c).)

History: 1963 act replaced previous provisions: See title history.

Grant in charter to common council of power over highways, not a repeal of powers of court. 25 C. 46. Notice to “owner” of mortgaged land means notice to mortgagor. 45 C. 303. Cited. 150 C. 374. Under former statute (Sec. 13-25), selectmen deriving authority from section to approve a road plan not a body exercising the powers of a planning commission under Sec. 8-26a. 153 C. 194.

Cited. 6 CS 5.

Sec. 13a-8. Appointment and removal of town superintendent of highways and bridges. Any town adopting the provisions of sections 13a-8 to 13a-11, inclusive, may appoint a superintendent of highways and bridges. Within thirty days after the adoption of said sections by any town having a board of finance, and triennially thereafter, such board of finance, at a meeting called and held by it, shall, by a majority vote, nominate to the selectmen of such town two or more persons for the office of superintendent of highways and bridges. The selectmen shall, within ten days from the date of such nomination, from the list of nominees, appoint a superintendent of highways and bridges for such town to hold office for three years from the first Monday of October next succeeding his appointment. Within thirty days after the adoption of said sections by any town not having a board of finance, and triennially thereafter, the selectmen shall appoint a superintendent of highways and bridges for such town to hold office for three years from the first Monday of October next succeeding his appointment. The superintendent of highways and bridges may be removed from office by the selectmen on charges preferred by a majority vote of the board of finance or by the selectmen where no board of finance exists, after notice to such superintendent and hearing upon such charges. In case of the removal of such superintendent from office, a successor for the unexpired portion of the term may be appointed by the selectmen or by the selectmen on nomination of the board of finance in the manner hereinbefore provided.

(1949 Rev., S. 614; 1958 Rev., S. 13-54; 1963, P.A. 226, S. 8.)

History: 1963 act replaced previous provisions: See title history.

Sec. 13a-9. Qualifications; bond; salary. A superintendent of highways and bridges shall possess practical and technical qualifications for the duties of such office and shall hold no other office in the town government. The superintendent shall be bonded, in an amount fixed by the board of finance if the town has such a board, otherwise by the board of selectmen, by a reliable surety company, conditioned for the faithful discharge of the duties of such office. The premium on such bond shall be a charge against the town and shall be paid upon the requisition of such superintendent. The superintendent shall receive such salary as is fixed by the board of finance, or by the town in town meeting when there is no such board, the appropriation therefor to be made in the same manner as other appropriations are made in such town. Such salary shall be paid by the treasurer of the town out of the general funds of the town raised by taxation, upon the requisition of the superintendent, countersigned by the selectmen of the town.

(1949 Rev., S. 613; September, 1957, P.A. 11, S. 34; 1958 Rev., S. 13-53; 1963, P.A. 226, S. 9; P.A. 03-115, S. 26.)

History: 1963 act replaced previous provisions: See title history; P.A. 03-115 made technical changes.

Sec. 13a-10. Powers and duties. Bills. Account. The superintendent of highways and bridges shall possess the powers and shall perform the duties in and for such town which are conferred and imposed by law upon the selectmen for the care and maintenance of highways, bridges and sidewalks, and all provisions of the general statutes or special acts conferring powers and imposing duties upon the selectmen for the care and maintenance of highways, bridges and sidewalks and the building and opening of new highways, bridges and sidewalks in any such town shall be construed to transfer such powers and duties to such superintendent. In towns having a board of finance he shall make and submit to such board all estimates for such maintenance and repair of highways, bridges and sidewalks and the building and opening of new highways, bridges and sidewalks each year at the time and in the manner provided by law for estimates by the board of selectmen. Such superintendent shall be limited in his expenditures made and liabilities incurred during any fiscal year to the appropriations made by such board of finance and approved by the town, except in case of actual necessity involving the immediate repair of any highway, bridge or sidewalk, and then not more than one thousand dollars. All bills against the town relating to such maintenance and repair of highways, bridges and sidewalks and the building and opening of new highways, bridges and sidewalks shall be certified by such superintendent and approved by the selectmen and, when so certified and approved, shall be paid by the treasurer of the town upon the requisition of the superintendent. No bill for material furnished to the superintendent for the use of the town shall be paid until the same is certified by the person furnishing such material to the effect that the materials called for by such bill have been actually delivered to the town and for the prices therein stated. On or before the first Tuesday of September in each year, the superintendent shall make and file with the board of finance in each town having a board of finance a detailed statement of disbursements made by him during the preceding fiscal year, with vouchers therefor. Such account shall be audited by the board of finance and, when so audited, shall be filed with the selectmen, who shall incorporate the same in their annual report.

(1949 Rev., S. 613; September, 1957, P.A. 11, S. 34; 1958 Rev., S. 13-53; 1963, P.A. 226, S. 10.)

History: 1963 act replaced previous provisions: See title history.

Sec. 13a-11. Adoption of town superintendent provisions. The provisions of sections 13a-8 to 13a-11, inclusive, may be adopted, in the manner prescribed in section 9-369, at a regular or special meeting in any town. The selectmen of any town, upon the petition of five per cent of its electors, shall include in the warning of such regular or special meeting notice that the question of the approval or disapproval of said sections shall be voted upon. The designation of such question on the voting tabulator ballot shall be “Shall a town Superintendent of Highways and Bridges be appointed?”. If, upon the official determination of the result of such vote, it appears that a majority of all the votes upon said question are in approval of said question, said sections shall take effect from the date of such meeting, and a certificate of such approval signed by the town clerk shall be transmitted to the Secretary of the State, who shall record the same.

(1949 Rev., S. 615; 1953, S. 244d; 1958 Rev., S. 13-55; 1963, P.A. 226, S. 11; P.A. 86-170, S. 11, 13; P.A. 11-20, S. 1.)

History: 1963 act replaced previous provisions: See title history; P.A. 86-170 required that designation on ballot label be in form of question; pursuant to P.A. 11-20, “machine” and “ballot label” were changed editorially by the Revisors to “tabulator” and “ballot”, respectively, effective May 24, 2011.

See Sec. 7-9 re petitions for vote.

Sec. 13a-12. Repair of highways in boroughs. Damages for defects. Any town having a borough within its limits shall pay to such borough such part of the moneys, collected or appropriated by such town for the repairs of highways, as is agreed upon between the selectmen of such town and an equal number of the burgesses of such borough or, in the event of their disagreement, as is fixed by the casting vote of the Commissioner of Transportation, but no person who is at the same time both a selectman and a burgess shall act in any such matter. After making such payment, such town shall not be liable to repair any highway in such borough or for any damages which occur to any person or his property by reason of any defective highway in such borough, which shall be liable therefor as towns are liable; but such town shall continue to be liable to build and repair all bridges in such borough. All moneys received by any borough for such purpose shall be expended under the direction of its warden and burgesses, who may construct and repair highways therein and make and cause to be executed all proper orders relating thereto. The warden and burgesses may, from time to time, appoint a committee who shall superintend and direct the construction, maintenance and repairs of highways in such borough and execute their orders respecting the same; and such borough shall pay such committee such compensation as such warden and burgesses from time to time determine. The provisions of this section shall not take effect in any town until they have been approved by it; and a certified copy of the warning of the meeting approving the same and of the vote of approval shall, within ten days thereafter, be filed with the Secretary of the State.

(1949 Rev., S. 2130; 1958 Rev., S. 13-14; 1959, P.A. 152, S. 37; 1963, P.A. 226, S. 12; 1969, P.A. 768, S. 74.)

History: 1959 act substituted highway commissioner for local county commissioner to cast determining vote in municipal disputes; 1963 act replaced previous provisions: See title history; 1969 act substituted commissioner of transportation for highway commissioner.

See Sec. 13a-149 re damages for injuries incurred because of defective roads or bridges.

Liability of town for defect in street in borough. 4 C. 205. Approval by town may be shown by conduct of town and borough. 65 C. 312. Borough liable before annual payment made. Id., 313. Cited. 77 C. 308. Right of agents of borough to remove obstruction from highway. 95 C. 325.

Sec. 13a-13. Layout or repair of highways dividing towns. A petition for an order for the laying out, repair, resurfacing or other improvement of any highway, which is the dividing line between two towns or adjoins the dividing line between two towns, or is located wholly within one town and land fronting thereon is located in another town, may be brought to a judge of the Superior Court by either of such towns if, in the opinion of the official or officials having charge of the repair or maintenance of highways in either of such towns, any such highway should be laid out, resurfaced or otherwise improved, and such towns are unable to agree as to whether such work should be done or as to the method of payment therefor. Such judge, after reasonable notice to all parties interested, if he finds that such highway should be laid out or such improvement should be made, shall order the layout of such highway or the making of such improvement, as the case may be, and provide in such order which of such towns shall make such layout or improvement and shall fix the proportion of the expense thereof which shall be paid by each of such towns.

(1949 Rev., S. 2142; 1958 Rev., S. 13-26; 1963, P.A. 226, S. 13.)

History: 1963 act replaced previous provisions: See title history.

Sec. 13a-13a. Establishment of alternative design standards for roads and bridges. (a) On or before January 1, 1999, the Commissioner of Transportation shall establish alternative design standards for bridges, principal and minor arterial roads, collector roads and local roads and streets.

(b) In establishing the standards required under subsection (a) of this section, the commissioner shall solicit and consider the views of chief elected officials and organizations, including, but not limited to, the Connecticut Trust for Historic Preservation, regional councils of governments, the Connecticut Council on the Arts, the Federal Highway Administration and the Rural Development Council.

(P.A. 98-118.)