Substitute House Bill No. 5916

Public Act No. 01-75

AN ACT CONCERNING CONSIDERATION OF ENVIRONMENTAL REMEDIATION COSTS.

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

Section 1. Section 13a-76 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof:

Any person claiming to be aggrieved by the assessment of such special damages or such special benefits by the commissioner may, at any time within six months after the same has been so filed, apply to the superior court for the judicial district within which such land is situated or, if said court is not in session, to any judge thereof for a reassessment of such damages or such benefits so far as the same affect such applicant, and said court or such judge, after causing notice of the pendency of such application to be given to said commissioner, shall appoint a judge trial referee to make such reassessment of such damages or such benefits. Such trial referee, having given at least ten days' notice to the parties interested of the time and place of hearing, shall hear the applicant and said commissioner, shall view the land and take such testimony as such trial referee deems material and shall thereupon reassess such damages and benefits so far as they affect such applicant. The reassessment of such trial referee shall take into account any evidence relevant to the fair market value of the property, including evidence of required environmental remediation by the Department of Transportation. Such trial referee shall make a separate finding for remediation costs, and the property owner shall be entitled to a set-off of such costs in any pending or subsequent legal action to recover remediation costs for the property. If the amount of the reassessment of such damages awarded to any such property owner exceeds the amount of the assessment of such damages by the commissioner for such land, such trial referee shall award to such property owner such appraisal fees as such trial referee determines to be reasonable. If no appeal to the Appellate Court is filed within the time allowed by law, or if one is filed and the proceedings have terminated in a final judgment finding the amount due the landowner, the clerk shall send a certified copy of the assessment of the commissioner and of the judgment to the Comptroller, who shall, upon receipt thereof, draw [his] an order upon the Treasurer in favor of the landowner for the amount due [him] the landowner as damages. The pendency of any such application for reassessment shall not prevent or delay the layout, extension, alteration, widening, change of grade or other improvement of any such highway. As used in this section, a trial referee means a referee appointed pursuant to subdivision (1) or (2) of subsection (a) of section 52-434 and designated a trial referee pursuant to subsection (b) of said section.

Sec. 2. (NEW) In all condemnation proceedings, environmental remediation costs shall be considered in assessing fair market value.

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

Approved June 6, 2001