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Substitute Senate Bill No. 1076

Public Act No. 11-72

AN ACT CONCERNING RESIDENT PARTICIPATION IN THE REVITALIZATION OF PUBLIC HOUSING.

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

Section 1. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2011) (a) For purposes of this section: (1) "Disposition" means a sale, lease, transfer or other change in ownership or control; (2) "major physical transformation" means (A) any renovation, rehabilitation, revitalization or redevelopment of real property or a portion thereof for which the estimated cost exceeds fifty per cent of the estimated replacement value of such real property or portion thereof, or (B) any demolition of real property or portion thereof that results in the loss of one or more housing units; (3) "resident participation plan" means a written description of a specific and ongoing process to enable meaningful resident participation during the planning, implementation and monitoring of major physical transformation or disposition activities, beginning with the earliest stages of concept and design; (4) "signed agreement" means a resident participation plan that is signed by a housing authority, a duly elected and constituted tenant organization, the developer undertaking the major physical transformation, if any, and the entity that will own, lease or otherwise control the real property or portion thereof, if any; and (5) "authority" or "housing authority" and "real property" have the same meanings as in section 8-39 of the general statutes.

(b) Any housing authority that intends to undertake the major physical transformation or disposition of any real property or portion thereof that is owned or managed by such authority shall notify all residents of such real property of its intention as soon as practicable. Such authority shall, in conjunction with the residents of such real property and any duly elected and constituted tenant organization that represents such residents, implement a resident participation plan for such major physical transformation or disposition activities. The authority shall negotiate in good faith the provisions of such resident participation plan with such residents and tenant organization. If a duly elected and constituted tenant organization represents the residents of such real property, the authority shall make all reasonable efforts to enter into a signed agreement.

(c) A resident participation plan shall include, but is not limited to, the following:

(1) A notification to all residents explaining residents' right to organize and to participate in tenant organizations without interference from or adverse action by the authority;

(2) Provisions for regular and substantial involvement of the representatives of any duly elected and constituted tenant organization in implementing the resident participation plan;

(3) A requirement that the authority provide residents and tenant organizations with information about groups and organizations that are separate from the authority and may serve as a resource to such residents and tenant organizations on matters including housing policy and resident outreach, training, organizing and legal rights;

(4) Provisions allowing for the inclusion, at the discretion of residents, of tenant advocates or other tenant assistance providers in all resident participation activities;

(5) If applicable, identification of opportunities for residents to participate in selection panels to choose development partners and consultants, provided residents shall not comprise a majority of any selection panel;

(6) A provision requiring the authority to make all significant documents related to the major transformation or disposition activities, including copies of design plans and applications for financial assistance, available for inspection by residents at a readily accessible location;

(7) Provisions assuring opportunities for resident involvement, advice and recommendations concerning such major physical transformation or disposition activities, including, where applicable, (A) the details of the major physical transformation or disposition activities that the authority intends to undertake and the projected timeline for such activities; (B) the design of housing units, buildings, amenities and common areas, including the number, size and configuration of housing units; (C) architectural design and landscaping; (D) resident employment or the use of resident-owned businesses in such major physical transformation or disposition activities and in future property management operations; (E) future resident services, property management, security and any enrichment features affecting residents' quality of life; (F) the level of occupancy that will be maintained in advance of the major physical transformation or disposition activities; (G) new rent levels, the affordability of such new rent levels for current residents and the duration of any affordability restrictions; (H) home ownership opportunities; (I) displacement of current residents, temporary and permanent relocation plans and relocation benefits; (J) the number of housing units that will be lost due to such major physical transformation or disposition activities and any plans to replace such housing units; (K) plans, procedures and qualifications for the occupancy of units by current and new residents, including preferences, if any, for current residents, at the conclusion of such major physical transformation or disposition activities; and (L) the governance of the entity that will own, lease or otherwise control the real property or portion thereof and how such governance may affect such residents, including any changes to grievance procedures, residents' rights and residents' opportunities to participate in management decisions.

(d) No authority shall be eligible to apply for financial assistance for the major physical transformation of any real property or portion thereof from the Department of Economic and Community Development or the Connecticut Housing Finance Authority unless such authority has adopted and implemented a resident participation plan in accordance with this section. In awarding financial assistance for the major physical transformation of any real property or portion thereof, the department and authority shall, in a manner consistent with their procedures, give full consideration for preference to any application made by any authority that has entered into a signed agreement in accordance with this section.

Approved July 8, 2011