CHAPTER 319uu

HOUSING ASSISTANCE

Table of Contents

Sec. 17b-800. (Formerly Sec. 17-590). Programs for homeless individuals. Standards for shelters.

Sec. 17b-800a. Shelters and services for homeless children and families. Relief from income garnishment orders. Duties of Department of Education.

Sec. 17b-801. (Formerly Sec. 17-591). Fuel and weatherization assistance programs. Crime prevention and safety program.

Sec. 17b-802. (Formerly Sec. 17-599). Security deposit guarantee program.

Sec. 17b-803. (Formerly Sec. 17-600). Program of housing for persons suffering from AIDS. Regulations. Bond issue.

Sec. 17b-804. (Formerly Sec. 17-619). Rent bank program.

Sec. 17b-805. (Formerly Sec. 17-620). Assessment and mediation program.

Sec. 17b-806. (Formerly Sec. 17-621). Homefinders program.

Sec. 17b-807. (Formerly Sec. 17-86d). Policy re provision of emergency shelter in hotels or motels.

Sec. 17b-808. (Formerly Sec. 17-86e). Special needs benefit for emergency housing. Limitation.

Sec. 17b-809. Plan for informing landlords of rules concerning direct vendor payment of rent.

Sec. 17b-810. Direct payment of rent to landlord.

Sec. 17b-811. (Formerly Sec. 17-2f). Direct payments to landlords.

Sec. 17b-811a. Transitionary rental assistance for private housing. Regulations. Hearing.

Sec. 17b-812. (Formerly Sec. 8-345). Rental assistance for low-income families living in privately-owned rental housing. Regulations. Hearing.

Sec. 17b-812a. Modification of the rental assistance program subsidy.

Sec. 17b-813. (Formerly Sec. 8-345a). Emergency rental assistance for families eligible to participate in the temporary family assistance program.

Sec. 17b-814. (Formerly Sec. 8-346). Rental assistance for low-income families living in newly created rental housing. Pilot program. Regulations.

Sec. 17b-815. Federal Housing Choice Voucher Program. Internet publication requirements when accepting new applications.

Secs. 17b-816 to 17b-849. Reserved


Sec. 17b-800. (Formerly Sec. 17-590). Programs for homeless individuals. Standards for shelters. (a) The Commissioner of Social Services may, upon application of any public or private organization or agency, make grants, within available appropriations, to develop and maintain programs for homeless individuals including programs for emergency shelter services, transitional housing services, on-site social services for available permanent housing and for the prevention of homelessness.

(b) Each shelter receiving a grant pursuant to this section (1) shall provide decent, safe and sanitary shelter for residents of the shelter; (2) shall not suspend or expel a resident without good cause; (3) shall, in the case of a resident who is listed on the registry of sexual offenders maintained pursuant to chapter 969, provide verification of such person’s residence at the shelter to a law enforcement officer upon the request of such officer; and (4) shall provide a grievance procedure by which residents can obtain review of grievances, including grievances concerning suspension or expulsion from the shelter. No shelter serving homeless families may admit a person who is listed on the registry of sexual offenders maintained pursuant to chapter 969. The Commissioner of Social Services shall adopt regulations, in accordance with the provisions of chapter 54, establishing (A) minimum standards for shelter grievance procedures and rules concerning the suspension and expulsion of shelter residents and (B) standards for the review and approval of the operating policies of shelters receiving a grant under this section. Shelter operating policies shall establish a procedure for the release of information concerning a resident who is listed on the registry of sexual offenders maintained pursuant to chapter 969 to a law enforcement officer in accordance with this subsection.

(P.A. 83-532, S. 1, 3; P.A. 91-14; 91-20; P.A. 92-52, S. 2; P.A. 93-262, S. 1, 87; Sept. Sp. Sess. P.A. 09-7, S. 118.)

History: Sec. 17-31v transferred to Sec. 17-590 in 1991; P.A. 91-14 provided grants may be made for transitional housing services and on-site social services for available permanent housing; P.A. 91-20 added Subsec. (b) establishing standards for shelters receiving grants under this section; P.A. 92-52 amended Subsec. (a) to include programs for the prevention of homelessness; P.A. 93-262 authorized substitution of commissioner and department of social services for commissioner and department of human resources, effective July 1, 1993; Sec. 17-590 transferred to Sec. 17b-800 in 1995; Sept. Sp. Sess. P.A. 09-7 amended Subsec. (b) to add new Subdiv. (3) re verification of a registered sexual offender’s residence at the shelter to a law enforcement officer, redesignate existing Subdiv. (3) as Subdiv. (4), prohibit a shelter serving homeless families admitting a registered sexual offender and require shelter operating policies to establish a procedure for the release of information re a resident who is a registered sexual offender to a law enforcement officer, effective October 5, 2009.

Annotation to former section 17-31v:

Cited. 214 C. 256.

Annotation to present section:

Cited. 233 C. 557.

Sec. 17b-800a. Shelters and services for homeless children and families. Relief from income garnishment orders. Duties of Department of Education. (a) The Department of Social Services, in consultation with appropriate state agencies and within available appropriations, shall (1) allocate existing funding and resources to ensure the availability of homeless shelters that accept intact families or that assist families to find adequate alternative arrangements that allow the family to remain together; (2) review program eligibility requirements and other policies to ensure that unaccompanied homeless children have access, to the fullest extent practicable, to critical services that such children might otherwise have been prevented from receiving due to age or guardianship requirements; and (3) work, in accordance with state and federal law, to seek relief from income garnishment orders through the appropriate judicial authority if it is deemed appropriate to be in the best interests of children and families.

(b) The Department of Education, in consultation with appropriate departments, shall seek full utilization of the federal McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act to protect children falling into homelessness from school failure and dropping out of school and to improve access to higher education.

(P.A. 10-133, S. 4.)

History: P.A. 10-133 effective June 8, 2010.

See Sec. 4-165c re immunity of the state and its officials, employees and agents.

Sec. 17b-801. (Formerly Sec. 17-591). Fuel and weatherization assistance programs. Crime prevention and safety program. (a) The Commissioner of Social Services shall administer a state-appropriated fuel assistance program to provide, within available appropriations, fuel assistance to elderly and disabled persons whose household gross income is above the income eligibility guidelines for the Connecticut energy assistance program but does not exceed two hundred per cent of federal poverty guidelines. The income eligibility guidelines for the state-appropriated fuel assistance program shall be determined, annually, by the Commissioner of Social Services, in conjunction with the Secretary of the Office of Policy and Management. In determining eligibility, the commissioner shall not consider as income Aid and Attendance pension benefits granted to a veteran, as defined under section 27-103, or the surviving spouse of such veteran. The commissioner may adopt regulations, in accordance with the provisions of chapter 54, to implement the provisions of this subsection.

(b) The commissioner shall administer a state-appropriated weatherization assistance program to provide, within available appropriations, weatherization assistance in accordance with the provisions of the state plan implementing the weatherization assistance block grant program authorized by the federal Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Act of 1981, and programs of fuel assistance and weatherization assistance with funds authorized by the federal Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Act of 1981 and by the U.S. Department of Energy in accordance with 10 CFR Part 440 promulgated under Title IV of the Energy Conservation and Production Act, as amended, and oil settlement funds in accordance with subsections (b) and (c) of section 4-28. The commissioner shall adopt regulations, in accordance with the provisions of chapter 54, (1) establishing priorities for determining which households shall receive such weatherization assistance, (2) requiring that the only criterion for determining which energy conservation measures shall be implemented pursuant to this subsection in any such dwelling unit shall be the simple payback calculated for each energy conservation measure recommended in the energy audit conducted for such unit, (3) establishing the maximum allowable payback period for such energy conservation measures, and (4) establishing conditions for the waiver of the provisions of subdivisions (1) to (3), inclusive, of this subsection in the event of emergencies. The programs provided for under this subsection shall include a program of fuel and weatherization assistance for emergency shelters for homeless individuals and victims of domestic violence. The commissioner may adopt regulations, in accordance with the provisions of chapter 54, to implement and administer the program of fuel and weatherization assistance for emergency shelters.

(c) The Commissioner of Social Services shall administer, within available appropriations, a crime prevention and safety program for residences occupied by elderly and disabled persons who are eligible for the weatherization assistance block grant program authorized by the federal Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Act of 1981 or the state-appropriated weatherization assistance program. The program shall be operated through the community action agencies and the municipal agency responsible for said low income weatherization program. The program may provide for the purchase and installation, where necessary, of devices which allow a person inside a dwelling unit to view the area outside the door, or doors with windows, locks on windows and doors, and smoke detectors. The installation of devices under this program shall be done at the time weatherization is done.

(P.A. 84-267, S. 1, 2; P.A. 85-406, S. 1, 2; 85-499, S. 1, 3; P.A. 86-177, S. 1, 2; P.A. 87-216, S. 2; P.A. 91-234, S. 2, 3; P.A. 93-262, S. 1, 87; P.A. 11-80, S. 50; P.A. 12-208, S. 10.)

History: P.A. 85-406 added Subsec. (b), requiring commissioner to administer a state-appropriated weatherization assistance program; P.A. 85-499 added Subsec. (c) re crime prevention and safety program; P.A. 86-177 added provisions in Subsec. (b) requiring commissioner to adopt regulations establishing priorities for weatherization assistance; P.A. 87-216 amended Subsec. (b) by requiring commissioner to administer federally funded fuel and weatherization assistance programs and a program of fuel and weatherization assistance for emergency shelters; Sec. 17-31w transferred to Sec. 17-591 in 1991; P.A. 91-234 revised provisions re determination of eligibility for the state-appropriated fuel assistance program in Subsec. (a); P.A. 93-262 authorized substitution of commissioner and department of social services for commissioner and department of human resources, effective July 1, 1993; Sec. 17-591 transferred to Sec. 17b-801 in 1995; (Revisor’s note: In 1997 the reference in Subsec. (a) to “Commissioner of the Department of Social Services” was replaced editorially by the Revisors with “Commissioner of Social Services” for consistency with customary statutory usage); P.A. 11-80 amended Subsec. (b) by deleting former Subdiv. (2) re requirement for energy audits and renumbering existing Subdivs. (3) to (5) as Subdivs. (2) to (4), effective July 1, 2011; P.A. 12-208 amended Subsec. (a) to add provision re income disregard for veterans’ Aid and Attendance pension benefits, effective July 1, 2012.

Cited. 233 C. 557.

Sec. 17b-802. (Formerly Sec. 17-599). Security deposit guarantee program. (a) The Commissioner of Social Services shall establish, within available appropriations, and administer a security deposit guarantee program for persons who (1) (A) are recipients of temporary family assistance, aid under the state supplement program, or state-administered general assistance, or (B) have a documented showing of financial need, and (2) (A) are residing in emergency shelters or other emergency housing, cannot remain in permanent housing due to any reason specified in subsection (a) of section 17b-808, or are served a writ, summons and complaint in a summary process action instituted pursuant to chapter 832, or (B) have a rental assistance program or federal Section 8 certificate or voucher. Under such program, the Commissioner of Social Services may provide security deposit guarantees for use by such persons in lieu of a security deposit on a rental dwelling unit. Eligible persons may receive a security deposit guarantee in an amount not to exceed the equivalent of two months’ rent on such rental unit. No person may apply for and receive a security deposit guarantee more than once in any eighteen-month period without the express authorization of the Commissioner of Social Services, except as provided in subsection (b) of this section. The Commissioner of Social Services may deny eligibility for the security deposit guarantee program to an applicant for whom the commissioner has paid two claims by landlords. The Commissioner of Social Services may establish priorities for providing security deposit guarantees to eligible persons described in subparagraphs (A) and (B) of subdivision (2) of this subsection in order to administer the program within available appropriations.

(b) In the case of any person who qualifies for a guarantee, the Commissioner of Social Services, or any local or regional nonprofit corporation or social service organization under contract with the Department of Social Services to assist in the administration of the security deposit guarantee program established pursuant to subsection (a) of this section, may execute a written agreement to pay the landlord for any damages suffered by the landlord due to the tenant’s failure to comply with such tenant’s obligations as defined in section 47a-21, provided the amount of any such payment shall not exceed the amount of the requested security deposit. Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (a) of this section, if a person who has previously received a grant for a security deposit or a security deposit guarantee becomes eligible for a subsequent security deposit guarantee within eighteen months after a claim has been paid on a prior security deposit guarantee, such person may receive a security deposit guarantee. The amount of the subsequent security deposit guarantee for which such person would otherwise have been eligible shall be reduced by (1) any amount of a previous grant which has not been returned to the department pursuant to section 47a-21, or (2) the amount of any payment made to the landlord for damages pursuant to this subsection.

(c) Any payment made pursuant to this section to any person receiving temporary family assistance, aid under the state supplement program or state-administered general assistance shall not be deducted from the amount of assistance to which the recipient would otherwise be entitled.

(d) On and after July 1, 2000, no special need or special benefit payments shall be made by the commissioner for security deposits from the temporary family assistance, state supplement, or state-administered general assistance programs.

(e) The Commissioner of Social Services may, within available appropriations, on a case-by-case basis, provide a security deposit grant to a person eligible for the security deposit guarantee program established under subsection (a) of this section, in an amount not to exceed the equivalent of one month’s rent on such rental unit, provided the commissioner determines that emergency circumstances exist which threaten the health, safety or welfare of a child who resides with such person. Such person shall not be eligible for more than one such grant without the authorization of said commissioner. Nothing in this section shall preclude the approval of such one-month security deposit grant in conjunction with a one-month security deposit guarantee.

(f) The Commissioner of Social Services may provide a security deposit grant to a person receiving such grant through any local or regional nonprofit corporation or social service organization under an existing contract with the Department of Social Services to assist in the administration of the security deposit program, but in no event shall a payment be authorized after October 1, 2000. Nothing in this section shall preclude the commissioner from entering into a contract with one or more local or regional nonprofit corporations or social service organizations for the purpose of issuing security deposit guarantees.

(g) A landlord may submit a claim for damages not later than forty-five days after the date of termination of the tenancy. Payment shall be made only for a claim that includes receipts for repairs made. No claim shall be paid for an apartment from which a tenant vacated because substandard conditions made the apartment uninhabitable, as determined by a local, state or federal regulatory agency.

(h) Any person with income exceeding one hundred fifty per cent of the federal poverty level, who is found eligible to receive a security deposit guarantee under this section and for whom the commissioner has paid a claim by a landlord, shall contribute five per cent of one month’s rent to the payment of the security deposit. The commissioner may waive such payment for good cause.

(i) The Commissioner of Social Services shall adopt regulations, in accordance with the provisions of chapter 54, to administer the program established pursuant to this section and to set eligibility criteria for the program, but may implement the program while in the process of adopting such regulations provided notice of intent to adopt the regulations is published in the Connecticut Law Journal within twenty days after implementation.

(P.A. 86-272; P.A. 87-455, S. 5, 6; P.A. 91-211; P.A. 93-262, S. 1, 87; June 18 Sp. Sess. P.A. 97-2, S. 83, 165; June Sp. Sess. P.A. 00-2, S. 24, 53; June Sp. Sess. P.A. 01-2, S. 32; June Sp. Sess. P.A. 01-9, S. 129, 131; P.A. 02-79, S. 3; P.A. 04-76, S. 25; P.A. 05-280, S. 39; June Sp. Sess. P.A. 05-3, S. 83; P.A. 11-44, S. 96; June 12 Sp. Sess. P.A. 12-1, S. 23.)

History: P.A. 87-455 amended Subsec. (a) by making persons having documented financial need who reside in emergency shelters or emergency housing eligible for grants and amended Subsec. (b) by authorizing emergency shelters under contract with department of human resources to pay security deposit to landlords; Sec. 17-31jj transferred to Sec. 17-599 in 1991; P.A. 91-211 amended Subsec. (b) to allow the commissioner to enter into a written agreement with a landlord to pay for certain damages if incurred in lieu of paying a security deposit, to require the reduction of any amount owed to the department under the program by a grant recipient from any subsequent grant provided to the recipient and to require that the issuance of grants and agreements for payment of damages in any fiscal year not exceed the amount available for the program in that fiscal year; P.A. 93-262 authorized substitution of commissioner and department of social services for commissioner and department of human resources, effective July 1, 1993; Sec. 17-599 transferred to Sec. 17b-802 in 1995; June 18 Sp. Sess. P.A. 97-2 made technical and conforming changes, effective July 1, 1997; June Sp. Sess. P.A. 00-2 amended Subsec. (a) by changing program of grants to persons residing in emergency shelters or housing to security deposit guarantee program for use in lieu of a security deposit, deleting reference to “public assistance”, inserting provision re recipients of temporary family assistance or aid under the state supplement program, adding provision re persons who cannot remain in permanent housing due to any reason specified in Subsec. (a) of Sec. 17b-808, and making conforming changes, amended Subsec. (b) by deleting provisions re payment of security deposit directly to the landlord, deleting provision re annual amounts available in program, and making conforming changes, amended Subsec. (c) by adding provision re persons receiving temporary family assistance or aid under the state supplement program, added new Subsecs. (d) to (f), inclusive, re special need or special benefit payments and security deposit grants, redesignated former Subsec. (d) as Subsec. (g) and amended said Subsec. by adding provision allowing for implementation of the program until January 1, 2002, while in the process of adopting regulations and making conforming and technical changes, effective July 1, 2000; June Sp. Sess. P.A. 01-2 amended Subsec. (a) to expand program to persons served a notice to quit in summary process action, to increase maximum amount from one to two months’ rent, to delete provision re documented showing of financial need and to require authorization for more than one guarantee in any 18-month period, amended Subsec. (b) to authorize eligibility for subsequent guarantee within 18 months after claim has been paid and to make technical changes, amended Subsec. (e) to delete provision re safety net account, to include person served a notice to quit in summary process action and to add provision re approval of grant in conjunction with guarantee and amended Subsec. (f) to add provision re contract for issuing security deposit guarantees; June Sp. Sess. P.A. 01-9 revised effective date of June Sp. Sess. P.A. 01-2 but without affecting this section; P.A. 02-79 amended Subsec. (a) by inserting Subdiv. numbers and Subpara. letters, adding Subdiv. (2)(B) to extend eligibility under the security deposit guarantee program to persons having a rental assistance program or federal Section 8 certificate or voucher, and adding provision authorizing Commissioner of Social Services to establish priorities for allocating security deposit guarantees, amended Subsec. (e) to revise provisions re eligibility for security deposit grants, and amended Subsec. (g) by changing “January 1, 2002” to “June 30, 2003”, effective July 1, 2002; P.A. 04-76 amended Subsecs. (a), (c) and (d) by deleting references to “general assistance” and making conforming changes; P.A. 05-280 amended Subsec. (a) to provide that commissioner may deny eligibility for security deposit guarantee program to an applicant who has made more than two claims in a five-year period, to add “in order to administer the program within available appropriations” and to make technical changes, effective July 1, 2005; June Sp. Sess. P.A. 05-3 amended Subsec. (a) by replacing “who has made more than two claims in a” with “for whom the commissioner has paid two or more claims by landlords during the immediately preceding” re denial of eligibility, effective July 1, 2005; P.A. 11-44 amended Subsec. (a) by replacing “notice to quit” with “writ, summons and complaint”, deleting reference to “immediately preceding five-year period” re denial of eligibility for security deposit guarantee program and making a technical change, added new Subsec. (g) re landlord’s submission of a claim for damages, added new Subsec. (h) re persons required to contribute to payment of security deposit, redesignated existing Subsec. (g) as Subsec. (i) and amended same by deleting reference to program implementation “until June 30, 2003”, effective July 1, 2011; June 12 Sp. Sess. P.A. 12-1 amended Subsecs. (b) and (f) by replacing references to emergency shelter with references to local or regional nonprofit corporation or social service organization and made a technical change in Subsec. (e), effective July 1, 2012.

Cited. 233 C. 557.

Sec. 17b-803. (Formerly Sec. 17-600). Program of housing for persons suffering from AIDS. Regulations. Bond issue. (a) The state, acting by and in the discretion of the Commissioner of Social Services, may enter into a contract with a nonprofit corporation, as defined in section 8-39, to provide financial assistance in the form of a state grant-in-aid to such corporation for the purpose of providing housing for homeless persons suffering from acquired immune deficiency syndrome or AIDS-related complex. Such financial assistance may be applied toward the cost of: (1) Planning for the development of such housing; (2) acquiring property to be used for such housing; and (3) repairing, rehabilitating or constructing such housing.

(b) The Commissioner of Social Services, in consultation with the Commissioner of Public Health, shall adopt regulations in accordance with the provisions of chapter 54 to carry out the purposes of this section.

(c) For the purposes described in subdivisions (1), (2) and (3) of subsection (a) of this section, the State Bond Commission shall have the power, from time to time, to authorize the issuance of bonds of the state in one or more series and in principal amounts not exceeding in the aggregate seven million five hundred eleven thousand two hundred eighty dollars.

(d) The proceeds of the sale of said bonds, to the extent of the amount stated in subsection (c) of this section shall be used by the Commissioner of Social Services for the purposes of subdivisions (1), (2) and (3) of subsection (a) of this section.

(e) All provisions of section 3-20, or the exercise of any right or power granted thereby which are not inconsistent with the provisions of this section, are hereby adopted and shall apply to all bonds authorized by the State Bond Commission pursuant to said sections, and temporary notes in anticipation of the money to be derived from the sale of any such bonds so authorized may be issued in accordance with said section 3-20 and from time to time renewed. Such bonds shall mature at such time or times not exceeding twenty years from their respective dates as may be provided in or pursuant to the resolution or resolutions of the State Bond Commission authorizing such bonds. None of said bonds shall be authorized except upon a finding by the State Bond Commission that there has been filed with it a request for such authorization, which is signed by or on behalf of the Secretary of the Office of Policy and Management and states such terms and conditions as said commission, in its discretion, may require. Said bonds shall be general obligations of the state and the full faith and credit of the state of Connecticut are pledged for the payment of the principal of and interest on said bonds, as the same become due, and accordingly and as part of the contract of the state with the holders of said bonds, appropriation of all amounts necessary for punctual payment of such principal and interest is hereby made, and the Treasurer shall pay such principal and interest as the same become due.

(P.A. 87-553, S. 1, 2, 4; P.A. 88-343, S. 25, 26, 32; P.A. 89-331, S. 18, 30; P.A. 90-230, S. 23, 101; 90-297, S. 9, 10, 24; June Sp. Sess. P.A. 91-4, S. 15, 25; May Sp. Sess. P.A. 92-7, S. 12, 36; P.A. 93-262, S. 1, 87; 93-381, S. 9, 39; June Sp. Sess. P.A. 93-1, S. 25, 45; P.A. 95-257, S. 12, 21, 58; 95-272, S. 9, 29; June 5 Sp. Sess. P.A. 97-1, S. 13, 20; P.A. 10-44, S. 34.)

History: P.A. 88-343 made the program permanent, broadened the powers of the commissioner and increased the bond authorization from $600,000 to $1,600,000; P.A. 89-331 increased the bond authorization to $3,350,000; P.A. 90-230 corrected an internal reference in Subsec. (d); P.A. 90-297 amended Subsec. (c) to increase the bond authorization to $3,850,000 and amended Subsec. (e) to require that requests for authorization be signed by the secretary of the office of policy and management rather than by the commissioner of human resources; Sec. 17-31kk transferred to Sec. 17-600 in 1991; June Sp. Sess. P.A. 91-4 increased the bond authorization from $3,850,000 to $6,350,000; May Sp. Sess. P.A. 92-7 amended Subsec. (c) to increase the bond authorization to $7,100,000; P.A. 93-262 authorized substitution of commissioner and department of social services for commissioner and department of human resources, effective July 1, 1993; P.A. 93-381 replaced commissioner of health services with commissioner of public health and addiction services, effective July 1, 1993; June Sp. Sess. P.A. 93-1 amended Subsec. (c) to increase bond authorization from $7,100,000 to $9,100,000, effective July 1, 1994; Sec. 17-600 transferred to Sec. 17b-803 in 1995; P.A. 95-257 replaced Commissioner and Department of Public Health and Addiction Services with Commissioner and Department of Public Health, effective July 1, 1995; P.A. 95-272 amended Subsecs. (c) and (d) to add reference to Subsec. (a)(1), effective July 1, 1995; June 5 Sp. Sess. P.A. 97-1 amended Subsec. (c) to decrease bond authorization from $9,100,000 to $8,100,000, effective July 31, 1997; P.A. 10-44 amended Subsec. (c) to decrease aggregate authorization from $8,100,000 to $7,511,280, effective July 1, 2010.

Sec. 17b-804. (Formerly Sec. 17-619). Rent bank program. (a) The Commissioner of Social Services shall establish and administer a rent bank program of grants to ensure housing for families whose income does not exceed sixty per cent of the median income in the state, including those receiving temporary family assistance, who are either at risk of becoming homeless or in imminent danger of eviction or foreclosure.

(b) To be eligible for assistance under this section, a family shall (1) document, as appropriate, loss of income or increase in expenses including, but not limited to, loss of employment, medical disability or emergency, loss or delay in receipt of other benefits, natural or man-made disaster, substantial and permanent change in household composition and any other condition which the commissioner determines constitutes a severe hardship and is not likely to recur and (2) participate in the assessment and mediation program established under section 17b-805.

(c) No family shall receive financial assistance under this section in excess of one thousand two hundred dollars during any eighteen consecutive months.

(d) The commissioner may adopt regulations in accordance with chapter 54 to determine eligibility standards for grants under this section and to carry out the purposes of this section.

(P.A. 90-257, S. 4, 17; P.A. 93-262, S. 1, 87; June 18 Sp. Sess. P.A. 97-2, S. 84, 165; P.A. 03-25, S. 1.)

History: P.A. 93-262 authorized substitution of commissioner and department of social services for commissioner and department of human resources, effective July 1, 1993; Sec. 17-619 transferred to Sec. 17b-804 in 1995; June 18 Sp. Sess. P.A. 97-2 replaced references to aid to families with dependent children with temporary family assistance and made technical changes, effective July 1, 1997; P.A. 03-25 eliminated references to “loans” and “repayment”, deleted former Subsec. (c) re repayment terms for financial assistance under program and redesignated existing Subsecs. (d) and (e) as Subsecs. (c) and (d).

Sec. 17b-805. (Formerly Sec. 17-620). Assessment and mediation program. (a) The Commissioner of Social Services shall establish and administer an assessment and mediation program for families at risk of becoming homeless or in imminent danger of eviction or foreclosure whose income does not exceed sixty per cent of the median income in the state.

(b) After evaluation of the causes of the risk of becoming homeless or the imminent danger of eviction or foreclosure and after attempting mediation, the commissioner shall assist eligible participants with application to appropriate resources.

(c) No family shall be eligible for grants under the rent bank program established under section 17b-804 without prior referral to the assessment and mediation program.

(d) The commissioner may enter into regional contracts with local or regional nonprofit corporations or social service organizations having expertise in landlord-tenant mediation to implement the program established under this section.

(e) The Commissioner of Social Services may adopt regulations in accordance with chapter 54 to carry out the purposes of this section.

(P.A. 90-257, S. 3, 17; P.A. 93-262, S. 48, 87; P.A. 03-25, S. 2.)

History: P.A. 93-262 replaced references to commissioners of income maintenance and human resources with commissioner of social services, effective July 1, 1993; Sec. 17-620 transferred to Sec. 17b-805 in 1995; P.A. 03-25 amended Subsec. (c) to eliminate reference to “loans”.

Sec. 17b-806. (Formerly Sec. 17-621). Homefinders program. (a) The Commissioner of Social Services shall establish and administer a homefinders program, which includes participation by housing authorities, to assist families including recipients of temporary family assistance who are homeless or in imminent danger of eviction or foreclosure. The commissioner shall administer the program within available appropriations.

(b) The Commissioner of Social Services may adopt regulations in accordance with chapter 54 to carry out the purposes of this section.

(P.A. 90-257, S. 5, 17; June Sp. Sess. P.A. 91-8, S. 53, 63; P.A. 93-262, S. 1, 87; June 18 Sp. Sess. P.A. 97-2, S. 85, 165.)

History: June Sp. Sess. P.A. 91-8 amended Subsec. (a) to require that program be administered within available appropriations; P.A. 93-262 authorized substitution of commissioner and department of social services for commissioner and department of human resources, effective July 1, 1993; Sec. 17-621 transferred to Sec. 17b-806 in 1995; June 18 Sp. Sess. P.A. 97-2 replaced a reference to aid to families with dependent children with temporary family assistance, effective July 1, 1997.

Sec. 17b-807. (Formerly Sec. 17-86d). Policy re provision of emergency shelter in hotels or motels. No state funds appropriated for a special needs benefit for emergency housing for recipients of payments under the temporary family assistance program or state-administered general assistance shall be used to pay the costs of emergency shelter in hotels or motels except in cases of natural or man-made disasters or other catastrophic events.

(P.A. 90-257, S. 1, 17; June 18 Sp. Sess. P.A. 97-2, S. 86, 165.)

History: Sec. 17-86d transferred to Sec. 17b-807 in 1995; June Sp. Sess. P.A. 97-2 replaced a reference to aid to families with dependent children with temporary family assistance and made technical and conforming changes, effective July 1, 1997.

Sec. 17b-808. (Formerly Sec. 17-86e). Special needs benefit for emergency housing. Limitation. (a) The Commissioner of Social Services shall provide a special needs benefit for emergency housing to any recipient of payments under the temporary family assistance program and the optional state supplementation program who cannot remain in permanent housing because (1) a judgment has been entered against the recipient in a summary process action instituted pursuant to chapter 832, provided the action was not based on criminal activity, or a judgment has been entered against the recipient in a foreclosure action pursuant to chapter 846; (2) the recipient has left to escape domestic violence; (3) a catastrophic event, such as a fire or flood, has made the permanent housing uninhabitable or the recipient has been ordered to vacate the housing by a local code enforcement official; (4) the recipient shares an apartment with a primary tenant who is being evicted or is engaged in criminal activity; (5) the recipient was illegally locked out by a landlord and has filed a police complaint concerning such lockout; (6) the recipient has been living with a tenant who received a preliminary notice under section 47a-15 or a notice to quit because of termination of a rental agreement for lapse of time; or (7) the family has relocated because a child in the family has been found to have a level of lead in the blood equal to or greater than twenty micrograms per deciliter of blood or any other abnormal body burden of lead and the local director of health has determined, after an epidemiological investigation pursuant to section 19a-111, that the source of the lead poisoning was the residential unit in which the family resided. A person shall be eligible for the benefit under this section provided application is made to the commissioner within forty-five days of the loss of permanent housing by the recipient. On and after September 4, 1991, the benefit shall be limited to not more than one occurrence per calendar year and not more than sixty days per occurrence, except that any family receiving the benefit under this section pursuant to subdivision (7) with a child undergoing chelation treatment may receive the benefit for more than one occurrence provided the total number of days the benefit is received by the family for all occurrences is not more than eighty days in any calendar year. Any person receiving a benefit under this section shall agree to reside in any housing which was constructed, renovated or rehabilitated with state or federal financial assistance. Notwithstanding the provisions of this section, any family receiving the benefit under this section pursuant to subdivision (7) shall not be required to reside in any housing in which the paint contains a toxic level of lead as defined by the Commissioner of Public Health in regulations adopted pursuant to section 19a-111. Under the temporary family assistance program, any person not eligible for the benefit under this section shall be referred to the Department of Social Services’ program for emergency shelter services.

(b) The Commissioner of Social Services shall provide for the direct vendor payment of the rent of any recipient of payments under the temporary family assistance program and the optional state supplementation program for whom he has made a finding of mismanagement and who resides in housing where the total rent, or the recipient’s share of the total rent, does not exceed thirty per cent of the payment standard, adjusted for region and family size under such program. Any finding of mismanagement by the commissioner shall be in accordance with federal law and regulations concerning mismanagement of funds, except that the commissioner may permit a recipient for whom vendor rent payments would terminate to request an extension of vendor rent payments. Such voluntary vendor rent payments shall be discontinued upon request of the recipient. If there is a rental arrearage at the time vendor rent payments are initiated, the commissioner may deduct from the payment under the temporary family assistance program and the optional state supplementation program an amount not to exceed thirty dollars per month. Such amount shall be used to pay the back rent due, provided recoupment by the department of an overpayment shall be suspended during payment of arrearages to the landlord.

(c) Within ten days of receiving a notice to quit issued pursuant to chapter 832, a recipient of benefits under the temporary family assistance program and the optional state supplementation program shall notify the commissioner of the receipt of such notice. No person shall be denied emergency housing assistance or declared ineligible for any other benefit because of a failure to notify the commissioner.

(P.A. 90-257, S. 6, 17; P.A. 91-237, S. 1, 2; June Sp. Sess. P.A. 91-8, S. 4, 63; P.A. 92-234; May Sp. Sess. P.A. 92-16, S. 4, 89; P.A. 93-262, S. 1, 36, 87; 93-333; 93-381, S. 9, 39; 93-418, S. 29, 41; 93-435, S. 59, 95; P.A. 95-210, S. 1, 2; 95-257, S. 12, 21, 58; June 18 Sp. Sess. P.A. 97-2, S. 87, 165; P.A. 08-22, S. 1.)

History: P.A. 91-237 amended Subsec. (a) to extend eligibility for the special needs benefit to a recipient who has had a judgment entered against him in a foreclosure action; June Sp. Sess. P.A. 91-8 Subsec. (a) amended the special needs benefit for emergency housing by limiting the benefit to one occurrence per calendar year, not to exceed 80 days per occurrence and deleted provision re reduction in benefits of AFDC recipients by 25% in certain cases; P.A. 92-234 added Subsec. (a)(7) re eligibility for the special needs benefit of families relocated because a child in the family has been found to have lead poisoning; May Sp. Sess. P.A. 92-16 amended Subsec. (a) by reducing the special needs benefit for emergency housing from not more than 80 days per occurrence to not more than 60 days per occurrence; P.A. 93-262 replaced references to commissioner of income maintenance and department of human resources with references to commissioner and department of social services, respectively, effective July 1, 1993; P.A. 93-333 amended Subsec. (a) to prohibit placement of families with children with lead poisoning in housing in which the paint contains a toxic level of lead; P.A. 93-381 and 93-435 authorized substitution of commissioner and department of public health and addiction services for commissioner and department of health services, effective July 1, 1993; P.A. 93-418 made provision of direct vendor payments of rent mandatory rather than discretionary and changed the words “standard of need” to “payment standard”, effective July 1, 1993; Sec. 17-86e transferred to Sec. 17b-808 in 1995; P.A. 95-210 amended Subsec. (a) to provide that a family may receive emergency housing for more than one occurrence if a child in the family is undergoing lead chelation treatment, effective June 27, 1995; P.A. 95-257 replaced Commissioner and Department of Public Health and Addiction Services with Commissioner and Department of Public Health, effective July 1, 1995; June 18 Sp. Sess. P.A. 97-2 replaced references to aid to families with dependent children with temporary family assistance and made technical and conforming changes, effective July 1, 1997; P.A. 08-22 amended Subsec. (a)(1) by deleting provision requiring expiration of redemption period for recipient in foreclosure action to be eligible for special needs benefit.

Sec. 17b-809. Plan for informing landlords of rules concerning direct vendor payment of rent. The Commissioner of Social Services shall prepare and implement a plan for informing landlords of the department’s rules concerning the direct vendor payment of rents for recipients of temporary family assistance and state supplementation and for responding to landlord inquiries about the availability of such payments, including the circumstances under which such payments will be made and the maximum amounts of such payments.

(P.A. 93-262, S. 1, 87; 93-418, S. 28, 41; 93-435, S. 59, 95; June 18 Sp. Sess. P.A. 97-2, S. 88, 165.)

History: P.A. 93-418 effective July 1, 1993 (Revisor’s note: P.A. 93-262 and 93-435 authorized substitution of commissioner and department of social services for commissioner and department of income maintenance, effective July 1, 1993); June 18 Sp. Sess. P.A. 97-2 replaced a reference to aid to families with dependent children with temporary family assistance, effective July 1, 1997.

Sec. 17b-810. Direct payment of rent to landlord. Section 17b-810 is repealed, effective October 1, 2004.

(P.A. 93-418, S. 30, 41; P.A. 04-76, S. 59.)

Sec. 17b-811. (Formerly Sec. 17-2f). Direct payments to landlords. Section 17b-811 is repealed, effective July 1, 1997.

(1969, P.A. 299, S. 1, 2; 1971, P.A. 808; 1972, P.A. 294, S. 17; P.A. 75-420, S. 4, 6; P.A. 77-614, S. 608, 610; P.A. 93-262, S. 1, 87; June 18 Sp. Sess. P.A. 97-2, S. 164, 165.)

Sec. 17b-811a. Transitionary rental assistance for private housing. Regulations. Hearing. (a) The Commissioner of Social Services shall implement and administer, within available appropriations, a program of transitionary rental assistance for private housing for persons who are employed at the time they leave the temporary family assistance program and who: (1) Have income which exceeds the payment standard under said program, or (2) are employed a minimum of twelve hours per week. The commissioner may establish a durational limit for the receipt of such assistance which shall not exceed a period of twelve months. The commissioner may establish priorities for allocating transitionary rental assistance based on whether a person is eligible pursuant to subdivision (1) or subdivision (2) of this subsection.

(b) The Commissioner of Social Services shall establish a simplified eligibility determination and application process for transitionary rental assistance. The program shall be designed to allow the provision of such assistance to commence with the first month in which the applicant is no longer receiving benefits under the temporary family assistance program.

(c) The Commissioner of Social Services shall implement policies and procedures necessary to carry out the provisions of subsections (a) and (b) of this section while in the process of adopting such policies and procedures in regulation form, provided notice of intent to adopt the regulations is published in the Connecticut Law Journal not later than twenty days after implementation. Such policies and procedures shall be valid until the time final regulations are effective.

(d) Any person aggrieved by a decision of the commissioner or the commissioner’s agent pursuant to the program under this section shall have a right to a hearing in accordance with the provisions of chapter 54.

(P.A. 99-279, S. 1, 45; P.A. 04-73, S. 1; P.A. 07-16, S. 1; P.A. 09-118, S. 2.)

History: P.A. 99-279 effective July 1, 1999; P.A. 04-73 amended Subsec. (a) to replace requirement that person be “employed at the time they exhaust time-limited benefits under the temporary family assistance program” with the requirement that person be “employed at the time they leave the temporary family assistance program”, to designate provision re income which exceeds payment standard as Subdiv. (1) and to add Subdiv. (2) requiring employment of “a minimum of twelve hours per week”, and made technical changes in Subsec. (c), effective July 1, 2004; P.A. 07-16 amended Subsec. (a) to permit commissioner to establish priorities in the allocation of transitionary rental assistance, effective May 7, 2007; P.A. 09-118 added Subsec. (d) re right to a hearing.

Sec. 17b-812. (Formerly Sec. 8-345). Rental assistance for low-income families living in privately-owned rental housing. Regulations. Hearing. (a) The Commissioner of Social Services shall implement and administer a program of rental assistance for low-income families living in privately-owned rental housing. For the purposes of this section, a low-income family is one whose income does not exceed fifty per cent of the median family income for the area of the state in which such family lives, as determined by the commissioner.

(b) Housing eligible for participation in the program shall comply with applicable state and local health, housing, building and safety codes.

(c) In addition to an element in which rental assistance certificates are made available to qualified tenants, to be used in eligible housing which such tenants are able to locate, the program may include a housing support element in which rental assistance for tenants is linked to participation by the property owner in other municipal, state or federal housing repair, rehabilitation or financing programs. The commissioner shall use rental assistance under this section so as to encourage the preservation of existing housing and the revitalization of neighborhoods or the creation of additional rental housing.

(d) The commissioner may designate a portion of the rental assistance available under the program for tenant-based and project-based supportive housing units. To the extent practicable rental assistance for supportive housing shall adhere to the requirements of the federal Housing Choice Voucher Program, 42 USC 1437f(o), relative to calculating the tenant’s share of the rent to be paid.

(e) The commissioner shall administer the program under this section to promote housing choice for certificate holders and encourage racial and economic integration. The commissioner shall establish maximum rent levels for each municipality in a manner that promotes the use of the program in all municipalities. Any certificate issued pursuant to this section may be used for housing in any municipality in the state. The commissioner shall inform certificate holders that a certificate may be used in any municipality and, to the extent practicable, the commissioner shall assist certificate holders in finding housing in the municipality of their choice.

(f) Nothing in this section shall give any person a right to continued receipt of rental assistance at any time that the program is not funded.

(g) The commissioner shall adopt regulations in accordance with the provisions of chapter 54 to carry out the purposes of this section. The regulations shall establish maximum income eligibility guidelines for such rental assistance and criteria for determining the amount of rental assistance which shall be provided to eligible families.

(h) Any person aggrieved by a decision of the commissioner or the commissioner’s agent pursuant to the program under this section shall have the right to a hearing in accordance with the provisions of chapter 54.

(P.A. 85-452, S. 1, 3; P.A. 86-384, S. 1, 2; P.A. 87-517, S. 1, 2; P.A. 91-362, S. 5; P.A. 93-262, S. 8, 87; P.A. 96-268, S. 16, 17, 34; June 18 Sp. Sess. P.A. 97-2, S. 116, 165; P.A. 05-280, S. 34; P.A. 06-7, S. 1; P.A. 09-118, S. 1.)

History: P.A. 86-384 extended program for one year, allowed commissioner to conduct program in more than three towns and replaced term “rent subsidies” with “rental assistance”; P.A. 87-517 amended Subsec. (a) by deleting reference to three-year pilot program, adding provisions making program applicable to elderly persons residing in state-assisted rental housing for the elderly and changing income percentage from 50% to 60%, amended Subsec. (b) by deleting provisions re towns in which pilot program is conducted, amended Subsec. (c) by deleting reference to pilot program, amended Subsec. (d) by deleting reference to pilot period, amended Subsec. (e) by adding provisions requiring regulations establishing maximum income eligibility guidelines and criteria for determining amount of assistance, and amended Subsec. (f) by deleting reference to pilot program; P.A. 91-362 inserted new Subsec. (d) to require the commissioner to administer the program to promote housing choice and encourage racial and economic integration and added new Subsec. (h) to require the commissioner to submit to the legislative committee on housing a report on the program, relettering previously existing Subsecs. as necessary; P.A. 93-262 replaced commissioner of housing with commissioner of social services and deleted Subsecs. (g) and (h) re reports to general assembly, effective July 1, 1993; Sec. 8-345 transferred to Sec. 17b-812 in 1995; P.A. 96-268 amended Subsec. (a) to change the income level threshold for a low-income family from 60% to 50% of the median family income for the area of the state in which such family lives and amended Subsec. (f) to provide that “effective November 1, 1995, the amount of assistance for elderly persons who are certificate holders shall be the difference between thirty per cent of their adjusted gross income, less a utility allowance and the base rent”, effective July 1, 1996; June 18 Sp. Sess. P.A. 97-2 eliminated references to elderly persons in the program of rental assistance, effective July 1, 1997; P.A. 05-280 added new Subsec. (d) re designating a portion of available rental assistance certificates for supportive housing units and requiring that rental assistance certificates issued for such purpose adhere to requirements of federal Housing Choice Voucher program and redesignated existing Subsecs. (d) to (f), inclusive, as new Subsecs. (e) to (g), inclusive, effective July 1, 2005; P.A. 06-7 amended Subsec. (d) by deleting references to “certificates”, effective April 21, 2006; P.A. 09-118 added Subsec. (h) re right to a hearing.

Annotations to former section 8-345:

Cited. 214 C. 256.

Sec. 17b-812a. Modification of the rental assistance program subsidy. The Commissioner of Social Services shall modify the rental assistance program subsidy for eligible recipients with earned income in order to operate the program within available appropriations. The Commissioner of Social Services shall have the authority to adopt policies or procedures to implement the provisions of this section pending the adoption of the policy or procedure in regulations, provided notice of intent to adopt regulations is published in the Connecticut Law Journal within twenty days of implementation of the policy or procedure.

(P.A. 95-351, S. 17, 30.)

History: P.A. 95-351, S. 17 effective July 1, 1995.

Sec. 17b-813. (Formerly Sec. 8-345a). Emergency rental assistance for families eligible to participate in the temporary family assistance program. The Commissioner of Social Services shall provide emergency rental assistance for families eligible for assistance under the temporary family assistance program living in hotels and motels as a component of the program for rental assistance established under section 17b-812.

(P.A. 87-455, S. 1, 6; P.A. 93-262, S. 9, 87; June 18 Sp. Sess. P.A. 97-2, S. 89, 165.)

History: P.A. 93-262 replaced commissioner of housing with commissioner of social services, effective July 1, 1993; Sec. 8-345a transferred to Sec. 17b-813 in 1995; June 18 Sp. Sess. P.A. 97-2 replaced a reference to aid to families with dependent children with temporary family assistance and made conforming changes, effective July 1, 1997.

Annotation to former section 8-345a:

Cited. 214 C. 256.

Sec. 17b-814. (Formerly Sec. 8-346). Rental assistance for low-income families living in newly created rental housing. Pilot program. Regulations. (a) The Commissioner of Social Services shall establish and implement a five-year pilot program of rental assistance for low-income families living in newly created privately-owned rental housing. For the purposes of this section, a low-income family is one whose income does not exceed sixty per cent of the area median income adjusted for family size in which such family lives, as determined by the commissioner. The commissioner shall provide such rental assistance in order to encourage the creation of additional rental housing.

(b) The state, acting by and in the discretion of the Commissioner of Social Services, may enter into a contract with the owner or developer of new rental housing to provide rental assistance linked to a specific number of units in such housing which shall be set aside for low-income families. Each contract to provide rental assistance for units set aside for occupancy by low-income families under this section shall be for a period not to exceed fifteen years and may provide that the state shall receive an equity interest in such rental housing. The commissioner shall not provide rental assistance for more than five hundred new rental housing units under the pilot program.

(c) The commissioner shall adopt regulations, in accordance with the provisions of chapter 54, to carry out the purposes of this section. Such regulations shall establish maximum income eligibility guidelines for such rental assistance and criteria for determining the amount of rental assistance which shall be provided.

(P.A. 88-187; P.A. 93-262, S. 10, 87.)

History: P.A. 93-262 replaced commissioner of housing with commissioner of social services and deleted Subsec. (d) re report to general assembly, effective July 1, 1993; Sec. 8-346 transferred to Sec. 17b-814 in 1995.

Sec. 17b-815. Federal Housing Choice Voucher Program. Internet publication requirements when accepting new applications. At least two weeks before any entity in the state that administers vouchers under the federal Housing Choice Voucher Program, 42 USC 1437f(o), opens its waiting list for the acceptance of new applications for such vouchers, such entity shall notify, in writing or by electronic mail, the operator of an Internet web site designated by the Department of Social Services, of (1) the date of the opening of such waiting list, (2) the manner in which applicants may apply, and (3) the date, if any, on which the waiting list will be closed. The operator of said web site shall make such information available, by electronic means or otherwise, to Infoline of Connecticut, other organizations and the public.

(P.A. 04-258, S. 14.)

History: P.A. 04-258 effective July 1, 2004.

Secs. 17b-816 to 17b-849. Reserved for future use.

Note: Chapter 319vv is also reserved for future use.