Judiciary Committee

JOINT FAVORABLE REPORT

Bill No.:

HB-5639

Title:

AN ACT CONCERNING CONNECTICUT'S LEADERSHIP IN CORPORATION AND BUSINESS LAW.

Vote Date:

3/28/2016

Vote Action:

Joint Favorable Substitute

PH Date:

3/23/2016

File No.:

SPONSORS OF BILL:

Judiciary Committee

Representative William Tong

REASONS FOR BILL:

Currently, over fifty percent of corporations and over sixty percent of Fortune 500 companies are incorporated in Delaware. This bill follows the work of the Commission on Connecticut's Leadership in Corporation and Business Law and seeks to reform Connecticut business law to make it more attractive to incorporate and do business in the state.

SUBSTITUTE LANGUAGE:

Adopts changes suggested by the Attorney General regarding administrative orders as well as technical corrections.

RESPONSE FROM ADMINISTRATION/AGENCY:

Judicial Branch has technical and implementation concerns pertaining to the Connecticut Rapid Arbitration Act and welcomes the opportunity to address these issues with the committee. The Branch does not believe it is necessary to create the “Connecticut Center for Commercial Claims” in Sec. 113 because the branch is already committed to promoting the speedy and efficient determination of commercial cases and has been exploring ways to enhance the complex litigation docket.

Attorney General George Jepsen requested substitute language in Sec. 82(b) of the bill since his office does not issue administrative orders.

NATURE AND SOURCES OF SUPPORT:

Connecticut Bar Association, Thomas J. Welsh addressed section 112 of the bill relating to an amendment to Article 4A of the Uniform Commercial Code, which relates to funds transfers. As a result of recent amendments to federal law, revisions are needed to Connecticut statutes to govern portions of funds transfers that are not governed by federal law. The proposed bill creates a more nuanced approach that assures that every portion of these transactions will have applicable law to govern them in the event of a dispute.

Connecticut Legal Services, Steven Eppler-Epstein, Executive Director testified in favor of assessing a $25 fee per party per day for cases pending before the Connecticut Center for Commercial Claims and dedicating those fees to funding legal services. He testified to the funding challenges faced by legal services, saying that despite reducing staff and services by over twenty percent they are still facing a deficit of almost $2 million. He testified to the importance of legal services for low income individuals who need help with housing, government benefits and domestic violence

Connecticut Chiropractic Association, Richard Duenas testified in favor of sec. 9 of the bill but suggested adding chiropractic, naturopathy and advanced practice registered nurses. He believes that all independent health care providers should be able to establish business relations with each other to better deliver health care services.

NATURE AND SOURCES OF OPPOSITION:

Houston Putnam Lowry opposes the fee for establishing a “business session” of the Superior Court because it would be excessive and punitive. He also has no idea how the Judicial Branch will be able to propose 30 judges to handle commercial matters. While the “Connecticut Rapid Arbitration Act” is opt-in, very few people will opt-in and it should be stripped form the bill. He then suggested an alternate bill.

Reported by: Adam Skowera

Date: April 13, 2016