Connecticut Seal

Substitute Senate Bill No. 1098

Public Act No. 03-269

AN ACT CONCERNING MUNICIPAL GRAND LISTS AND ASSESSMENT APPEALS, A PROPERTY TAX EXEMPTION FOR CERTAIN LEASED MOTOR VEHICLES, REVIEW OF CERTAIN MUNICIPAL CERTIFICATIONS RELATING TO PROPERTY REVALUATION AND A MUNICIPAL OPTION TO EXTEND CERTAIN PREVIOUSLY WAIVED PROPERTY TAX EXEMPTIONS AND VALIDATION OF THE ASSESSMENTS LISTS, ABSTRACTS AND DETERMINATIONS OF THE BOARDS OF ASSESSMENT APPEALS IN THE TOWNS OF WARREN AND HARTLAND.

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

Section 1. Section 12-55 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2003):

[(a) When the declarations of any town have been so received or made by the assessor or board of assessors, they shall equalize the same, if necessary, and make any assessment omitted by mistake or required by law. The assessor or board of assessors may increase or decrease the valuation of property as named in any of such declarations or in the last-preceding grand list, but, in each case of any increase in valuation of such property above the valuation, if any, stated by the person filing such declaration or in each case of any increase of valuation above the valuation of such property in the last-preceding grand list, except with respect to the valuation of any motor vehicle, they shall send written notice by mail of such increase in accordance with subsection (b) of this section, or in accordance with subsection (f) of section 12-62 in the year of a revaluation, including in such notice the valuation prior to and after such increase with respect to each parcel of real property, the valuation of which has been increased, to the last-known address of the person whose valuation is so changed. If the methodology used to determine the value of personal property for which a notice of increase is required differs from that previously used to determine the value of such property by the assessor or assessors of such town, said notice shall include a statement concerning such change, which shall indicate the current methodology and that previously used. Such notice shall also include information describing the manner in which an appeal may be filed with the board of assessment appeals. When the review of such declarations has been completed, the assessor or board of assessors shall determine the assessed valuations resulting therefrom, including, where applicable, the twenty-five per cent assessment penalty added in accordance with section 12-41. The assessor shall publish all such assessed values, together with the assessed value of all other property in the town in the grand list abstract for the assessment year commencing on the October first immediately preceding completion of such grand list. Such grand list shall also reflect the statutory exemption or exemptions to which each taxpayer is entitled. The assessor or board of assessors shall lodge the same, except as otherwise specially provided by law, in the office of the assessor, on or before the thirty-first day of January following the commencement of such assessment year, for public inspection. Such assessor or board of assessors shall take and subscribe the oath provided by law, which shall be certified by the officer administering the same and endorsed upon or attached to such grand list abstract. For the grand list of October 1, 2000, and each grand list thereafter, each assessor who signs the grand list of the town shall be certified in accordance with the provisions of section 12-40a. Any assessor or board of assessors of any town who fails to comply with any provision of this section shall be fined five dollars.

(b) The written notice of assessment increase as required in subsection (a) of this section shall be mailed no earlier than the assessment date and no later than the tenth calendar day immediately following the date on which the grand list abstract is signed and attested to by the assessor or board of assessors. If such assessment increase notice is sent later than the time period herein prescribed, such increase shall become effective on the next succeeding grand list. ]

(a) On or before the thirty-first day of January of each year, except as otherwise specifically provided by law, the assessors or board of assessors shall publish the grand list for their respective towns. Each such grand list shall contain the assessed values of all property in the town, reflecting the statutory exemption or exemptions to which each property or property owner is entitled, and including, where applicable, any assessment penalty added in accordance with section 12-41 or 12-57a for the assessment year commencing on the October first immediately preceding. The assessor or board of assessors shall lodge the grand list for public inspection, in the office of the assessor on or before said thirty-first day of January, or on or before the day otherwise specifically provided by law for the completion of such grand list. The town's assessor or board of assessors shall take and subscribe to the oath, pursuant to section 1-25, which shall be certified by the officer administering the same and endorsed upon or attached to such grand list. For the grand list of October 1, 2000, and each grand list thereafter, each assessor or member of a board of assessors who signs the grand list shall be certified in accordance with the provisions of section 12-40a.

(b) Prior to taking and subscribing to the oath upon the grand list, the assessor or board of assessors shall equalize the assessments of property in the town, if necessary, and make any assessment omitted by mistake or required by law. The assessor or board of assessors may increase or decrease the valuation of any property as reflected in the last-preceding grand list, or the valuation as stated in any personal property declaration or report received pursuant to this chapter. In each case of any increase in valuation of a property above the valuation of such property in the last-preceding grand list, or the valuation, if any, stated by the person filing such declaration or report, the assessor or board of assessors shall mail a written notice of assessment increase to the last-known address of the owner of the property the valuation of which has increased. All such notices shall be subject to the provisions of subsection (c) of this section. Notwithstanding the provisions of this section, a notice of increase shall not be required in any year with respect to a registered motor vehicle the valuation of which has increased. In the year of a revaluation, the notice of increase sent in accordance with subsection (f) of section 12-62 shall be in lieu of the notice required by this section.

(c) Each notice of assessment increase sent pursuant to this section shall include: (1) The valuation prior to and after such increase; and (2) information describing the manner in which an appeal may be filed with the board of assessment appeals. If a notice of assessment increase affects the value of personal property and the assessor or board of assessors used a methodology to determine such value that differs from the methodology previously used, such notice shall include a statement concerning such change in methodology, which shall indicate the current methodology and the one that the assessor or assessors used for the valuation prior to such increase. Each such notice shall be mailed not earlier than the assessment date and not later than the tenth calendar day immediately following the date on which the assessor or board of assessors signs and attests to the grand list. If any such assessment increase notice is sent later than the time period prescribed in this subsection, such increase shall become effective on the next succeeding grand list.

Sec. 2. Section 12-64 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective from passage):

(a) All the following-mentioned property, not exempted, shall be set in the list of the town where it is situated and, except as otherwise provided by law, shall be liable to taxation at a uniform percentage of its present true and actual valuation, not exceeding one hundred per cent of such valuation, to be determined by the assessors: Dwelling houses, garages, barns, sheds, stores, shops, mills, buildings used for business, commercial, financial, manufacturing, mercantile and trading purposes, ice houses, warehouses, silos, all other buildings and structures, house lots, all other building lots and improvements thereon and thereto, agricultural lands, shellfish lands, all other lands and improvements thereon and thereto, quarries, mines, ore beds, fisheries, property in fish pounds, machinery and easements to use air space whether or not contiguous to the surface of the ground. An easement to use air space shall be an interest in real estate and may be assessed separately from the surface of the ground below it. Any interest in real estate shall be set by the assessors in the list of the person in whose name the title to such interest stands on the land records. If the interest in real estate consists of an easement to use air space, whether or not contiguous to the surface of the ground, which easement is in the form of a lease for a period of not less than fifty years, which lease is recorded in the land records of the town and provides that the lessee shall pay all taxes, said interest shall be deemed to be a separate parcel and shall be separately assessed in the name of the lessee. If the interest in real estate consists of a lease of land used for residential purposes which allows the lessee to remove any or all of the structures, buildings or other improvements on said land erected or owned by the lessee, which lease is recorded in the land records of the town and provides that the lessee shall pay all taxes with respect to such structures, buildings or other improvements, said interest shall be deemed to be a separate parcel and said structures, buildings or other improvements shall be separately assessed in the name of the lessee, provided such separate assessment shall not alter or limit in any way the enforcement of a lien on such real estate in accordance with chapter 205, for taxes with respect to such real estate including said land, structures, buildings or other improvements. For purposes of determining the applicability of the provisions of this section to any such interest in real estate, the term "lessee" shall mean any person who is a lessee or sublessee under the terms of the lease agreement in accordance with which such interest in real estate is established.

(b) Except as provided in subsection (c) of this section, any land, buildings or easement to use air rights belonging to or held in trust for the state, not used for purposes attributable to functions of the state government or any other governmental purpose but leased to a person or organization for use unrelated to any such purpose, exclusive of any such lease with respect to which a binding agreement is in effect on June 25, 1985, shall be separately assessed in the name of the lessee and [the lessee shall be required to pay property taxes applicable to the assessed value of the portion of such property subject to the interest of the lessee under the terms of the lease] subject to local taxation annually in the name of the lessee having immediate right to occupancy of such land or building, by the town wherein situated as of the assessment day next following the date of leasing pursuant to section 4b-38. If such property or any portion thereof is leased to any organization which, if the property were owned by or held in trust for such organization, would not be liable for taxes with respect to such property under any of the subdivisions of section 12-81, as amended by this act, such organization shall be entitled to exemption from property taxes as the lessee under such lease, provided such property is used exclusively for the purposes of such organization as stated in the applicable subdivision of said section 12-81 and the portion of such property so leased to such exempt organization shall be eligible for a grant in lieu of taxes pursuant to section 12-19a. Whenever the lessee of such property is required to pay property taxes to the town in which such property is situated as provided in this subsection, the assessed valuation of such property subject to the interest of the lessee shall not be included in the annual list of assessed values of state-owned real property in such town as prepared for purposes of state grants in accordance with said section 12-19a and the amount of grant to such town under said section 12-19a shall be determined without consideration of such assessed value.

(c) The provisions of subsection (b) of this section shall not be applicable to any land, building or easement belonging to or held in trust for the state of Connecticut at (1) Bradley International Airport or any other state-owned airport, and (2) any restaurant, gasoline station or other service facility or public convenience as may be deemed appropriate by the Commissioner of Transportation for state highway, mass transit, marine or aviation purposes. In the event a lessee of property, belonging to or held in trust for the state or a constituent unit of the state system of higher education, who is subject to taxation pursuant to the provisions of this subsection or pursuant to subsection (g) of section 4b-38 is delinquent in the payment of such tax, a municipal tax collector may enforce the collection of said tax by all legal means available, except for the filing of a lien on such property.

Sec. 3. Section 12-111 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2003):

(a) Any person, including any lessee of real property whose lease has been recorded as provided in section 47-19 and who is bound under the terms of a lease to pay real property taxes and any person to whom title to such property has been transferred since the assessment date, claiming to be aggrieved by the doings of the assessors of such town may appeal therefrom to the board of assessment appeals. Such appeal shall be filed, in writing, on or before February twentieth. The written appeal shall include, but is not limited to, the property owner's name, name and position of the signer, description of the property which is the subject of the appeal, name and mailing address of the party to be sent all correspondence by the board of assessment appeals, reason for the appeal, appellant's estimate of value, signature of property owner, or duly authorized agent of the property owner, and date of signature. The board shall notify each aggrieved taxpayer who filed a written appeal in the proper form and in a timely manner, no later than March first immediately following the assessment date, of the date, time and place of the appeal hearing. Such notice shall be sent no later than seven calendar days preceding the hearing date except that the board may elect not to conduct an appeal hearing for any commercial, industrial, utility or apartment property with an assessed value greater than five hundred thousand dollars. The board shall, not later than March first, notify the appellant that the board has elected not to conduct an appeal hearing. The board shall determine all such appeals and send written notification of the final determination of such appeals to each such person within one week after such determination has been made. Such written notification shall include information describing the property owner's right to appeal the determination of such board. Such board may equalize and adjust the grand list of such town and may increase or decrease the assessment of any taxable property or interest therein and may add an assessment for property omitted by the assessors which should be added thereto; and may add to the grand list the name of any person omitted by the assessors and owning taxable property in such town, placing therein all property liable to taxation which it has reason to believe is owned by such person, at the percentage of its actual valuation, as determined by the assessors in accordance with the provisions of sections 12-64, as amended by this act, and 12-71, from the best information that it can obtain, and if such property should have been included in the declaration, as required by section 12-42 or 12-43, it shall add thereto twenty-five per cent of such assessment; but, before proceeding to increase the assessment of any person or to add to the grand list the name of any person so omitted, it shall mail to such person, postage paid, at least one week before making such increase or addition, a written or printed notice addressed to such person at the town in which such person resides, to appear before such board and show cause why such increase or addition should not be made.

(b) If an extension is granted to any assessor or board of assessors pursuant to section 12-117, as amended by this act, the date by which a taxpayer shall be required to submit a written request for appeal to the board of assessment appeals shall be extended to March twentieth and said board shall conduct hearings regarding such requests during the month of April. The board shall send notification to the taxpayer of the time and date of an appeal hearing at least seven calendar days preceding the hearing date, but no later than the first day of April. If the board elects not to hear an appeal for commercial, industrial, utility or apartment property described in subsection (a) of this section, the board shall notify the taxpayer of such decision no later than the first day of April.

Sec. 4. Section 12-117 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2003):

(a) [(1)] The period prescribed by law for the completion of the duties of any assessor, board of assessors or board of assessment appeals may, for due cause shown, be extended by the chief executive officer of the town for a period not exceeding one month, and in the case of the board of assessment appeals in any town in the assessment year immediately following completion of a revaluation of all real property in such town and adjustment of the assessment list for such assessment year accordingly, such period may be extended by said chief executive officer for a period not exceeding two months. Not later than two weeks after granting an extension as provided under [subdivision (1) or (2) of] this subsection, the chief executive officer shall send written notice of the extension to the Secretary of the Office of Policy and Management. [If an extension is granted to any assessor or board of assessors, the date by which a taxpayer shall be required to submit a written request for appeal to the board of assessment appeals shall be extended to March twentieth and said board shall conduct hearings regarding such requests during the month of April. The board shall send notification to the taxpayer of the time and date of an appeal hearing at least seven calendar days preceding the hearing date, but no later than the first day of April. If the board elects not to hear an appeal in accordance with the provisions of section 12-111 it shall notify the taxpayer of such decision no later than the first day of April. (2) In addition to the extensions provided under subdivision (1) of this subsection, the period prescribed by law for the completion of the duties of any assessor, board of assessors or board of assessment appeals in any town subject to the provisions of section 7-344 which fails to adopt its budget in the time prescribed shall be extended by the chief executive officer for a period not exceeding three months, provided the assessor or board notifies the chief executive officer of the need for such extension. The date by which a taxpayer shall be required to submit a written request for appeal to the board of assessment appeals shall be extended for a three-month period and said board shall conduct hearings regarding such requests during the month following the end of the extended period for requests for appeals under this subdivision. The board shall send notification to the taxpayer of the time and date of an appeal hearing at least seven calendar days preceding the hearing date, but no later than the first day of the month in which the hearing is to be held. If the board elects not to hear an appeal in accordance with the provisions of section 12-111 it shall notify the taxpayer of such decision. All provisions of said section 12-111, other than the extension of the filing and notification dates as provided in subdivisions (1) and (2) of this subsection, shall be applicable to such appeals. If an extension is granted to any board of assessment appeals, the time period within which a taxpayer may appeal from the decision of such board and the time within which the assessor or board of assessors shall transmit a report of such grand list to the Secretary of the Office of Policy and Management shall be extended for a like period. ]

(b) If, in the opinion of the board of assessment appeals and the chief executive officer, the number of appeals pending before such board is such as to preclude fair and equitable consideration of such appeals within the time restriction prescribed [herein] in this section, the Secretary of the Office of Policy and Management may, upon the request in writing of the board of assessment appeals approved by the chief executive officer, setting forth such opinion, authorize the assessors to assess all real estate according to the grand list in effect immediately prior to the grand list from which such appeals are taken, subject only to transfers of ownership, additions for new construction and reductions for demolitions. The grand list from which such appeals are taken shall then become the grand list for the assessment day next ensuing, subject only to such adjustments as are authorized by the board of assessment appeals, unless the town has, in the intervening time period, completed a revaluation of all real property in accordance with section 12-62.

(c) During any assessment year in which the provisions of subsection (b) of this section become applicable, the assessor or board of assessors shall, within sixty days of the date on which the Secretary of the Office of Policy and Management grants authorization, complete the grand list as required by said subsection. Each owner whose property valuation on such grand list has been increased above the valuation of such property in the last-preceding grand list shall be sent an increase notice. The notice shall be prepared in the manner prescribed in section 12-55, as amended by this act, and shall be sent not earlier than the date on which said secretary grants authorization and not later than the tenth day following the date on which the assessor completes the grand list as required by this subsection. If such increase notice is sent later than the time period prescribed in this subsection, such increase shall become effective on the next succeeding grand list. Any owner may appeal said valuation to the board of assessment appeals within thirty days of the date the notice was sent.

Sec. 5. Subdivision (53) of section 12-81 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2003, and applicable to assessment years commencing on or after October 1, 2003):

(53) (a) One [passenger] motor vehicle belonging to, leased to or held in trust for, any member of the United States armed forces, if such motor vehicle is garaged outside the state;

(b) Any person claiming the exemption provided under this subdivision for any assessment year shall, not later than the thirty-first day of December next following the date on which property tax is due in such assessment year, file with the assessor or board of assessors, in the town in which such motor vehicle is registered, written application claiming such exemption on a form approved for such purpose by such assessor or board. Notwithstanding the provisions of this chapter, any person claiming the exemption under this subdivision for a leased motor vehicle shall be entitled to a refund of the tax paid with respect to such vehicle, whether such tax was paid by the lessee or by the lessor pursuant to the terms of the lease. Upon approving such person's exemption claim, the assessor shall certify the amount of refund to which the applicant is entitled and shall notify the tax collector of such amount. The tax collector shall refer such certification to the board of selectmen in a town or to the corresponding authority in any other municipality. Upon receipt of such certification, the selectmen or such other authority shall draw an order on the Treasurer in favor of such person for the amount of refund so certified. Failure to file such application as prescribed herein with respect to any assessment year shall constitute a waiver of the right to such exemption for such assessment year.

Sec. 6. Section 12-93a of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2003, and applicable to assessment years commencing on or after October 1, 2003):

(a) Any person entitled to an exemption from property tax in accordance with any provision of subdivisions (19) to (26), inclusive, of section 12-81 who is the owner of a residential dwelling on leased land, including any such person who is a sublessee under terms of the lease, shall be entitled to claim such exemption in respect to the assessment of the dwelling for purposes of the property tax, provided (1) the dwelling is such person's principal place of residence, (2) such lease or sublease requires that such person as the lessee or sublessee, whichever is applicable, pay all property taxes related to the dwelling and (3) such lease or sublease is recorded in the land records of the town.

(b) Any person entitled to an exemption from property tax in accordance with the provisions of subdivisions (19) to (26), inclusive, of section 12-81 shall be entitled to claim such exemption with respect to the assessment of a motor vehicle that is leased by such person. Notwithstanding the provisions of this chapter, any person claiming the exemption under this section for a leased motor vehicle shall be entitled to a refund of tax paid with respect to such vehicle whether such tax was paid by the lessee or by the lessor pursuant to the terms of the lease. Such refund shall equal the amount of such person's exemption multiplied by the applicable mill rate. Any such person claiming the exemption for a leased vehicle under this subdivision for any assessment year shall, not later than the thirty-first day of December next following the assessment year during which the tax for such leased vehicle has been paid, file with the assessor or board of assessors, in the town in which such motor vehicle tax has been paid, written application claiming such exemption on a form approved for such purpose by such assessor or board. Upon approving such person's exemption claim, the assessor shall certify the amount of refund to which the applicant is entitled and shall notify the tax collector of such amount. The tax collector shall refer such certification to the board of selectmen in a town or to the corresponding authority in any other municipality. Upon receipt of such certification, the selectmen or such other authority shall draw an order on the Treasurer in favor of such person for the amount of refund so certified. Failure to file such application as prescribed in this subsection with respect to any assessment year shall constitute a waiver of the right to such exemption for such assessment year.

Sec. 7. Subsection (a) of section 12-62k of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective from passage and applicable to certifications of exemption from the requirement to implement a revaluation made on or after April 1, 2003):

(a) There shall be a committee for the purpose of analyzing the data upon which a town bases its certification of exemption from the requirement to implement a scheduled revaluation on and after October 1, 2003, pursuant to section 12-62 together with all data that was [or should have been] considered in completing the calculations on which such exemption certification is based, and any other data the committee deems necessary. The committee shall not be required to review documentation concerning any property for which the sales price is equal to or less than two thousand dollars. The form a town uses to certify such exemption shall be prescribed by the committee, subject to approval by the Secretary of the Office of Policy and Management. Failure to complete and submit such form and documentation in a timely manner shall be deemed a waiver of the right to such exemption. Not later than three months after the date on which the [Secretary of the Office of Policy and Management] secretary receives a town's certification of exemption from such requirement, the committee shall complete its analysis and shall submit a written report of its findings to the secretary. Such report shall include the committee's opinion of the validity of the exemption certification made by the town and a recommendation regarding the secretary's action concerning such certification. Not later than five days after receiving a report of the committee's findings, the secretary shall send a written notice to the town, by certified or registered mail, validating or rescinding the town's revaluation exemption certification. The secretary shall validate the town's exemption from the requirement to implement a revaluation as of the October first of the calendar year next following, unless the committee recommends that the secretary rescind such exemption.

Sec. 8. Subsection (c) of section 12-62k of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective from passage and applicable to certifications of exemption from the requirement to implement a revaluation made on or after April 1, 2003):

(c) The committee shall establish whether or not a town complied with the requirements of section 12-62 in effecting the required calculations, and whether or not the result of such calculations supports the town's certification of exemption. The committee shall determine whether or not the assessor in performing the analyses for each property class and for all real property: (1) Excluded market sales that should have been included, (2) made adjustments to the sales prices of property that were not based on objective criteria, not documented, or not substantiated in terms of the reasons therefor, or (3) included sales that were not market sales, [or (4)] and the committee may determine if the assessor did not make necessary and appropriate adjustments to the sales prices of real property included as market sales. If the committee finds that the town or the assessor did not conform to the requirements of subsection (k) of section 12-62, and that such nonconformance materially affected the calculations on which the town based its certification of exemption from the requirement to implement a scheduled revaluation, the committee shall recommend that the secretary rescind such exemption. If the committee finds that the town or the assessor conformed to such requirements, or did not conform to such requirements but that such nonconformance did not materially affect the calculations on which such certification was based, the committee shall recommend that the secretary validate such exemption.

Sec. 9. Subsection (d) of section 12-62k of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective from passage and applicable to certifications of exemption from the requirement to implement a revaluation made on or after April 1, 2003):

(d) (1) In the event the Secretary of the Office of Policy and Management rescinds a town's revaluation exemption certification, the town shall implement a revaluation of all real property [as soon as is] on the assessment date for which the secretary rescinded such exemption, if practicable, but in no event later than the October first next following [the] said date. [on which it was scheduled to implement the revaluation for which the secretary rescinded the exemption certification. ] Any such town shall be required to implement its next subsequent revaluation for the assessment date that is four years after the assessment date for which such exemption certification [is] was rescinded and thereafter such town shall implement a revaluation in accordance with the provisions of subsection (b) of section 12-62. Any such town shall not be eligible to certify an exemption from the requirement to implement a revaluation, pursuant to section 12-62, any earlier than the date that is five years after the date on which the town certified the exemption from the requirement to implement a revaluation that the secretary rescinded.

(2) If the secretary determines that [such] a town's revaluation exemption certification could not have been made unless the town [intentionally] disregarded the provisions of section 12-62 [in order to subvert the requirement to implement a scheduled revaluation] or if the secretary determines that a town did not make timely and good faith efforts toward implementing a revaluation on the assessment date for which such exemption certification was rescinded, the secretary may impose a penalty against such town. A town shall be deemed to have disregarded the provisions of section 12-62 if (A) the town submits a certification of revaluation exemption containing calculations that do not satisfy the criteria for such exemption, or (B) the data upon which a town bases such certification does not support the calculations submitted in substantiation thereof. The secretary shall determine the amount of such penalty and the method by which it shall be paid, which may include subtracting such amount from any grant the payment of which the secretary certifies to the Comptroller in the fiscal year in which the penalty is imposed, or in the fiscal year next following. Prior to imposing any such penalty, the secretary, or the secretary's designee, shall hold a hearing and shall send a written notice to the town of the date, time and place thereof not later than ten business days before such hearing is scheduled. Not later than thirty days following the conclusion of such hearing, the secretary shall determine if imposition of a penalty is warranted and shall send a written notice of such determination to the town. In the event the secretary imposes a penalty, such notice shall state the amount of such penalty and the method by which it shall be paid. The secretary shall send any notice required by this [section] subdivision, by certified or registered mail. Any town aggrieved by the action of the secretary following such hearing or by the amount of the penalty imposed may appeal to the superior court for the judicial district wherein such town is located. Such appeal shall be taken not later than ten business days after the date on which the town receives the secretary's notice concerning such penalty. Any such appeal shall be privileged.

Sec. 10. (NEW) (Effective from passage and applicable to any assessment year) Whenever any person claiming the exemption from property tax under the provisions of subdivision (59), (60), (70), (72) or (74) of section 12-81 of the general statutes has failed to file a claim with the assessor or board of assessors as required in said subdivisions and has further failed to apply for an extension of time under section 12-81k of the general statutes, the municipality, upon receipt of a request from such person, may, by vote of its legislative body, grant such exemption according to criteria established by the municipality, including, but not limited to, allowing for any hardship experienced by the person which may account for the failure to claim the exemption or to file for an extension of time and whether the exemption would provide a net benefit to economic development in the municipality. No payment in lieu of tax under chapter 203 of the general statutes shall be made with regard to any property exempted from tax under this section.

Sec. 11. (Effective from passage) (a) Notwithstanding the provisions of sections 12-55, 12-62, 12-117 and 12-110 to 12-112, inclusive, of the general statutes, the assessment lists and the abstracts thereof compiled for the assessment year commencing October 1, 2002, and the actions of the assessors and the boards of assessment appeals of the towns of Warren and Hartland with respect to such assessment lists and abstracts thereof for the assessment year commencing October 1, 2002, which assessment lists and abstracts were not signed by an assessor certified in accordance with section 12-40a of the general statutes and filed by the assessors in said towns within the time period required in accordance with sections 12-55, 12-62 and 12-117 of the general statutes, and in relation to which hearings were not held by the boards of assessment appeals in said towns within the time period required in accordance with sections 12-110 to 12-112, inclusive, of the general statutes shall not, because of such omissions, be adjudged void or defective. Said assessment lists and abstracts and determinations of the boards of assessment appeals are hereby validated and made binding upon said towns and any taxes which are imposed with respect to said assessment lists and abstracts may be levied and collected, provided said assessment lists and abstracts shall be completed and filed, and said determinations of the boards of assessment appeals shall be completed, not later than June 30, 2003.

(b) A certification of compliance filed pursuant to regulations adopted under section 12-62i of the general statutes for the assessment year commencing October 1, 2002, shall be valid notwithstanding the fact that such certification was not signed by an assessor certified in accordance with section 12-40a of the general statutes, provided all other requirements of said regulations are met.

Approved July 9, 2003