CHAPTER 446e
SOLID WASTE MANAGEMENT SERVICES ACT

Table of Contents

Sec. 22a-270. (Formerly Sec. 19-524cc). Tax exemption of authority, lessees and operators. Assessment and taxation of certain leased authority property.
Sec. 22a-285g. Negotiation.

      Sec. 22a-270. (Formerly Sec. 19-524cc). Tax exemption of authority, lessees and operators. Assessment and taxation of certain leased authority property. (a) The exercise of the powers granted by this chapter constitute the performance of an essential governmental function and the authority shall not be required to pay any taxes or assessments upon or in respect of a project, or any property or moneys of the authority, levied by any municipality or political subdivision or special district having taxing powers of the state, nor shall the authority be required to pay state taxes of any kind, and the authority, its projects, property and money and any bonds and notes issued under the provisions of this chapter, their transfer and the income therefrom, including revenues derived from the sale thereof, shall at all times be free from taxation of every kind by the state except for estate or succession taxes and by the municipalities and all other political subdivisions or special districts having taxing powers of the state; provided nothing herein shall prevent the authority from entering into agreements to make payments in lieu of taxes with respect to property acquired by it or by any person leasing a project from the authority or operating or managing a project on behalf of the authority and neither the authority nor its projects, properties, money or bonds and notes shall be obligated, liable or subject to lien of any kind for the enforcement, collection or payment thereof. If and to the extent the proceedings under which the bonds authorized to be issued under the provisions of this chapter so provide, the authority may agree to cooperate with the lessee or operator of a project in connection with any administrative or judicial proceedings for determining the validity or amount of such payment and may agree to appoint or designate and reserve the right in and for such lessees or operators to take all action which the authority may lawfully take in respect of such payments and all matters relating thereto, providing such lessee or operator shall bear and pay all costs and expenses of the authority thereby incurred at the request of such lessee or operator or by reason of any such action taken by such lessee or operator in behalf of the authority. Any lessee or operator of a project which has paid the amounts in lieu of taxes permitted by this section to be paid shall not be required to pay any such taxes in which a payment in lieu thereof has been made to the state or to any such municipality or other political subdivision or special district having taxing powers, any other statute to the contrary notwithstanding.

      (b) Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (a) of this section, real and personal property owned by the authority may be assessed and taxed against a lessee pursuant to chapter 203 by the municipality in which such property is located if such property is leased as of July 1, 2007, to a lessee or operator by the authority pursuant to an initial site lease entered into between the authority and a lessee on or before December 31, 1985. This subsection shall not apply to property which is: (1) The security for any bonds issued by the authority and outstanding on July 1, 2007, until the indebtedness evidenced by such bonds has been paid in full, (2) leased by the authority pursuant to a lease in effect on January 1, 2007, until after the expiration of the lease term in effect on said date, whether by execution of a new lease, by amendment of the lease or by renewal or extension of the term of such lease pursuant to an option stated therein if such amendment is entered into or such option is exercised after said date, or (3) the subject of an agreement for payments in lieu of taxes between the municipality and the authority or its lessee during any municipal fiscal year covered by such agreement. The lessee shall be liable for taxes assessed pursuant to this subsection and shall have the right to appeal the amount it is assessed in the tax year such property first becomes taxable hereunder in the same manner as a purchaser of formerly tax-exempt property under section 12-81a, with the same effect as if a conveyance to a nonexempt purchaser had been placed on the land records on the date the property first ceases to be exempt pursuant to this section. The assessor and collector of the municipality shall proceed with respect to such property in the same manner as is provided in said section 12-81a with respect to adding the property to the grand list, giving notice of the assessment to the lessee and billing the taxes due thereon to the lessee.

      (P.A. 73-459, S. 14, 26; P.A. 76-170, S. 2, 4; P.A. 07-255, S. 3.)

      History: P.A. 76-170 clarified proviso re payments in lieu of taxes and referred to amounts in lieu of taxes "permitted" rather than "required" by section; Sec. 19-524cc transferred to Sec. 22a-270 in 1983; P.A. 07-255 designated existing provisions as Subsec. (a) and added Subsec. (b) re municipal assessment and taxation of certain leased authority property, effective July 1, 2007.

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      Sec. 22a-285g. Negotiation. (a) Negotiation between the committee and the applicant shall begin after appointment of the members of the committee by each municipality that received a notice under section 22a-285b or sixty days after receipt by each such municipality of the notice, whichever is earlier and shall be completed within one hundred eighty days after commencement. The applicant shall negotiate with the committee whose membership was selected by the time prescribed in section 22a-285f. After negotiations have begun, no municipality failing to appoint members to the committee within the time specified in said section 22a-285f may appoint members unless the applicant and the committee approves such appointments.

      (b) The applicant and the municipal negotiating committee may negotiate on any item, provided the provisions of this section shall not be construed to authorize the negotiation of items that would be inconsistent with or render less stringent any requirements imposed by the commissioner. The negotiation of an agreement pursuant to this section shall include, but not be limited to, discussion of the following: (1) Compensation to any person for substantial economic effects that directly result from the ash residue disposal area, as shown by a property value study conducted before and after construction of the ash residue disposal area; (2) reimbursement of reasonable costs incurred by the committee for negotiation, mediation and arbitration in an amount greater than the amount of the funds deposited pursuant to section 22a-285e; (3) screening and fencing related to the appearance of the ash residue disposal area but not affecting its design capacity; (4) operation of the ash residue disposal area, including, but not limited to, noise, dust, debris, odors and hours, but excluding design capacity; (5) traffic flows and patterns resulting from the facility; (6) site closure costs and site use after closure; (7) payments to the municipality for road repair necessitated by traffic generated by the ash residue disposal area; (8) establishment of a greenbelt buffer around the site for safety and aesthetics, taking into account the site's proximity to residential areas; (9) purchase of fire fighting equipment necessary at the site; (10) payments to the municipality for actual police or fire costs; (11) funding of a municipal site monitoring program; and (12) a compensation plan for the municipality in which the ash residue disposal area is located. In no event shall total compensation for the negotiated items in subdivisions (1) to (12), inclusive, of this section to the municipality in which such disposal area is located be less than the equivalent of five dollars for each ton of ash to be deposited in an ash residue disposal area. Any negotiated agreement approved or arbitration award issued under this section shall contain provisions for resolving disputes in compliance with the terms of such agreement or award.

      (c) Either party may petition the council in writing to determine if a proposal may be negotiated, provided such petition is submitted not more than ten days after the proposal is offered. The council shall conduct a public hearing on the proposal and issue a decision within fourteen days of the close of the hearing. The Commissioner of Environmental Protection shall comment on the proposal. Pending the council's decision, negotiation may continue on any proposal, including the proposal that is the subject of the petition.

      (d) Negotiating sessions may be conducted with the assistance of a mediator if mediation is approved by the applicant and the committee. The applicant or committee may request a mediator at any time during the negotiation. A mediator shall encourage voluntary settlement by the applicant and committee but shall not compel a settlement. The applicant and the committee shall each pay one-half of the cost of mediation. The council shall appoint a mediator if the applicant and the committee do not agree on the selection of a mediator. The cost of the mediator to be paid by the committee shall be divided equally among the municipalities with membership on the committee.

      (e) Failure of the applicant or committee to participate in negotiating sessions constitutes default. Failure to participate shall not be construed to be default if such failure is for good cause or because further negotiations cannot reasonably be expected to result in a settlement. Either party may petition the council for a determination as to whether a situation constitutes default. The council shall conduct a hearing on the matter. If no committee members have been appointed by the time prescribed in section 22a-285f, the committee shall be deemed to have defaulted. If the committee defaults, (1) the authority may continue to seek any required permits and shall not be required to continue to negotiate or arbitrate; (2) the site shall not be required to comply with any planning or zoning provision adopted by the municipality in which it is located under chapter 124 or 126 or any special act, and (3) the council may make provisions for the defaulting municipality regarding items specified in subsection (b) of this section. If the applicant defaults, the council shall not issue an arbitration award.

      (f) Any item resolved shall be included in a written negotiated agreement and submitted to the council for a determination of compliance with state law. Any item determined to violate state law shall be renegotiated and submitted to the council within thirty days of the determination. The Commissioner of Environmental Protection shall comment on the agreement. The agreement shall be binding if approved by the applicant and the legislative body of the host municipality.

      (g) If agreement on any issue is not reached within one hundred eighty days of the beginning of negotiations between the applicant and the committee under subsection (a) of this section or an agreement approved by the council is not approved by the applicant or the legislative body of the municipality in which the ash residue disposal area is located, the applicant may submit the matter to the council for arbitration. The items specified in subsection (b) of this section shall be subject to arbitration.

      (h) Not more than sixty days after a request for arbitration is submitted to the council by the applicant pursuant to subsection (g) of this section, the parties shall submit their final offers. A final offer of the committee shall be approved by the chief elected official of each municipality in which the ash residue disposal area is located. Failure by either party to submit a final offer shall constitute a default under subsection (e) of this section. A final offer may include issues subject to arbitration and offered in negotiation but shall not include items to which the parties have agreed. The applicant or the committee shall not submit for arbitration any issue or proposal that was not presented during the negotiation process unless both parties agree to the submittal. Not more than thirty days after the last day for submitting final offers, the council shall conduct a hearing at which the parties shall explain or present supporting arguments for their final offers. Negotiation may continue during arbitration.

      (i) Not more than sixty days after accepting final offers, the council shall, by majority vote, issue an arbitration award. The council shall adopt without modification the final offer of either party. Nothing in this section shall preclude the parties from entering into an agreement after final offers have been submitted and prior to the issuance of an award.

      (j) Not more than fifteen days after the date of an arbitration award made under this section, either party may appeal the award to the superior court for the judicial district of Hartford. The superior court may affirm or deny the award or enter an order modifying the award. Any appeal shall have precedence over all other civil actions in respect to the order of trial, except as provided in sections 52-191 to 52-192, inclusive.

      (k) The filing fee for an application for proceedings under this section shall be the same as the filing fee for an application for a certificate for environmental capability and public need under section 16-50l.

      (l) No sooner than five years after the ash residue disposal area begins operation, any of the items specified in subsection (a) of this section may be renegotiated if either the applicant or an affected municipality petitions the council for renegotiation and demonstrates to the satisfaction of the council substantial change in circumstances sufficient to justify such renegotiation. The council shall render a decision on such petition within one hundred eighty days of receipt or at a time stated in the initial agreement between the applicant and the affected municipalities.

      (m) Nothing in sections 16-50j, 22a-208b and 22a-285 to 22a-285k, inclusive, shall be construed as limiting the authority of the Commissioner of Environmental Protection to impose conditions or other requirements on the construction, operation, closure or postclosure care of an ash residue disposal area, and the conditions and requirements of the commissioner shall supersede any provision of a negotiated or arbitrated agreement between an applicant and an affected municipality which is inconsistent with or less stringent than any condition or requirement of the commissioner.

      (P.A. 88-230, S. 1, 12; P.A. 89-384, S. 9, 15; P.A. 90-98, S. 1, 2; P.A. 93-142, S. 4, 7, 8; P.A. 95-220, S. 4-6; P.A. 07-217, S. 114.)

      History: (Revisor's note: P.A. 88-230 authorized substitution of "judicial district of Hartford" for "judicial district of Hartford-New Britain" in public and special acts of the 1989 session, effective September 1, 1991); P.A. 90-98 changed the effective date of P.A. 88-230 from September 1, 1991, to September 1, 1993; P.A. 93-142 changed the effective date of P.A. 88-230 from September 1, 1993, to September 1, 1996, effective June 14, 1993; P.A. 95-220 changed the effective date of P.A. 88-230 from September 1, 1996, to September 1, 1998, effective July 1, 1995; P.A. 07-217 made technical changes in Subsec. (h), effective July 12, 2007.

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