Planning and Development Committee

JOINT FAVORABLE REPORT

Bill No.:

HB-5729

Title:

AN ACT CONCERNING THE SALE, LEASE OR TRANSFER OF MUNICIPAL PROPERTY.

Vote Date:

3/23/2007

Vote Action:

Joint Favorable Substitute

PH Date:

1/31/2007

File No.:

SPONSORS OF BILL:

Planning & Development Committee

Rep. Taborsak 109th, Rep. Godfrey 110th, Rep. Bartlett 2nd

REASONS FOR BILL:

Create a further level of public participation and awareness in all activities performed by municipal governments, especially in regard to the sale, lease or transfer of property. The notification process will provide for notice to be published in the newspaper and signs conspicuously on the property. Only applicable to sale of real property and renewal of leases where there is no change in use.

RESPONSE FROM ADMINISTRATION/AGENCY:

None Expressed

NATURE AND SOURCES OF SUPPORT:

Thomas J. Saadi, Councilman Danbury

“The current system is no sufficient…without broad public input Council members often do not have the full story, and learn that full story only after such sales or transfers have been approved.” Homeowners who are directly affected by such changes in property ownership or use need notice and a real opportunity to comment. This will provide protection from “ill-advised city owned land sales and transfers.”

Rep. Taborsak 109th

There are no state laws that currently protect residents of a municipality from their legislative body making land use decisions without any public notice. There is a bi-partisan effort in Danbury in supporting the protection for neighborhoods and public property. PA 06-80 and HB 5729 both “subscribe to the goal of keeping the public informed and involved in local government decisions that stand to impact their neighborhoods.”

John & Kim Bothelo, Danbury

5729 would alleviate any problem with municipal property that “would be sold or used for the betterment for some wrong doing.” Personally involved in the Bear Mountain situation in the city of Danbury, and would rather see nature outside his window, not more houses. “…keeping the public informed when it comes to the sale of land for development should be mandatory”.

Patricia Weiner, Danbury

There should be trust in elected officials to not make clandestine deals with developers without public awareness. Open space is slowly disappearing, and it adds to the value and quality of life to everyone around it, and the residents should have consent over and changes in use.

Howard Tuvelle, Danbury

“…'democracy,' the 'people' have a RIGHT to be informed as to what their legislators and political governing bodies are supposedly doing on their BEHLAF! (or possibly not!)”

Pearl Turk, Danbury

Residing next to Tarrywile Park, the appreciation for areas like this is unmatched and once development occurs, that treasure is lost. 5729 protects the preservation of these areas.

Jay Weiner, Danbury

“I think that taking space without informing the citizenry is an egregious betrayal or (sic) the public trust.”

William Marcello, Danbury

HB 5729 creates another level of awareness for the public into the decision-making process of city land sales.

Barry Connell, Danbury

“This legislation seeks to provide needed transparency and public participation to the municipal land sales process. Currently, we do not have these basic protections guaranteed by state law.”

Jack & Moira Denault, Danbury

As a taxpayer there are rights that should guarantee awareness of any changes that are made to publicly owned property.

Alfonso Robinson, Danbury

“…provide greater transparency and public participation in municipal land transfers…the public should be informed of any municipal land transfer”

NATURE AND SOURCES OF OPPOSITION:

None Expressed

TESTIMONY OFFERED:

CT Conference of Municipalities

CCM understands the intent of the bill, yet it is clearly an unfunded mandate and recommends that the committee obtain a fiscal note before taking action.

Reported by: Eric C. Stroker

Date: April 2, 2007