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Substitute House Bill No. 5283

Public Act No. 18-110

AN ACT CONCERNING NEIGHBORHOOD REVITALIZATION ZONES.

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

Section 1. Section 7-601 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2018):

(a) Upon passage of a resolution pursuant to section 7-600, a neighborhood revitalization planning committee may organize to develop a strategic plan to revitalize the neighborhood. The membership of such committee shall reflect the composition of the neighborhood and include, but not be limited to, tenants and property owners, community organizations and representatives of businesses located in the neighborhood or which own property in the neighborhood. A majority of the members shall be residents of the neighborhood. The chief executive official may appoint a municipal official to the committee who shall be a voting member. The committee shall adopt bylaws which shall include a process for consensus-building decision-making. Notice of adoption of such bylaws and any amendments thereto shall be published in a newspaper having a general circulation in the municipality not more than seven days after adoption or amendment.

(b) The neighborhood revitalization planning committee shall develop a strategic plan for short-term and long-term revitalization of the neighborhood. The plan shall be designed to promote self-reliance in the neighborhood and home ownership, property management, sustainable economic development, effective relations between landlords and tenants, coordinated and comprehensive delivery of services to the neighborhood and creative leveraging of financial resources and shall build neighborhood capacity for self-empowerment. The plan shall consider provisions for obtaining funds from public and private sources. The plan shall consider provisions for property usage, neighborhood design, traditional and nontraditional financing of development, marketing and outreach, property management, utilization of municipal facilities by communities, recreation and the environment. The plan may contain an inventory of abandoned, foreclosed and deteriorated property, as defined in section 7-600, located within the revitalization zone and may analyze federal, state and local environmental, health and safety codes and regulations that impact revitalization of the neighborhood. The plan shall include recommendations for waivers of state and local environmental, health and safety codes that unreasonably jeopardize implementation of the plan, provided any waiver shall be in accordance with section 7-605 and shall not create a substantial threat to the environment, public health, safety or welfare of residents or occupants of the neighborhood. The plan may include components for public safety, education, job training, youths, the elderly and the arts and culture. The plan may contain recommendations for the establishment by the municipality of multiagency collaborative delivery teams, including code enforcement teams. The plan shall assign responsibility for implementing each aspect of the plan and may have recommendations for providing authority to the chief executive official to enter into tax agreements and to allocate municipal funds to achieve the purposes of the plan. The plan shall include a list of members and the bylaws of the committee.

(c) The neighborhood revitalization planning committee shall conduct a public hearing on the proposed strategic plan, notice of the time and place of which shall be published in a newspaper having a general circulation in the municipality at least twice at intervals of not less than two days, the first not more than fifteen days nor less than ten days and the last not less than two days prior to the day of such hearing. The proposed plan shall be submitted to the Secretary of the Office of Policy and Management for review. The secretary may submit comments on the plan to the neighborhood revitalization planning committee.

(d) The strategic plan shall be adopted in accordance with the bylaws of the neighborhood revitalization planning committee. The committee shall submit the approved strategic plan to the legislative body of the municipality for adoption by ordinance pursuant to section 7-602, as amended by this act.

(e) A municipality in which a neighborhood revitalization planning committee has been established shall: (1) Defend such neighborhood revitalization planning committee, and each member thereof, in any civil action seeking to impose liability arising out of any actual or alleged act, error or omission that occurred within the scope of such committee or member's duties or responsibilities in developing the strategic plan described in subsection (b) of this section, provided such committee or member was acting (A) within the scope of such committee or member's official capacity, (B) in accordance with such committee's bylaws and any master plan approved by the municipality, and (C) in a manner consistent with advice provided by the municipality's legal counsel; and (2) indemnify such neighborhood revitalization planning committee, and each member thereof, in the amount of any settlement or judgment obtained against such committee or member arising out of any actual or alleged act, error or omission that occurred within the scope of such committee or member's duties or responsibilities in developing the strategic plan described in subsection (b) of this section, provided the actual or alleged act, error or omission did not result from reckless, wilful or wanton misconduct on the part of such committee or member.

Sec. 2. Section 7-602 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2018):

(a) The strategic plan shall not be implemented unless approved by ordinance of the legislative body of the municipality. Such ordinance shall create a neighborhood revitalization zone committee for the neighborhood and establish the membership of the committee, provided the categories of membership shall be consistent with the categories of membership of the neighborhood revitalization planning committee and consistent with any recommendations of the neighborhood revitalization planning committee.

(b) The neighborhood revitalization zone committee shall submit a report on the implementation of the strategic plan to the chief executive official and the legislative body of the municipality and to the Secretary of the Office of Policy and Management at intervals of six months in the first year after adoption of the ordinance and annually thereafter. Any amendment to the strategic plan made subsequent to the date of enactment of the ordinance shall be adopted by the neighborhood revitalization zone committee and the municipality in accordance with the procedures set forth in subsections (c) and (d) of section 7-601, as amended by this act, and shall be submitted to the Secretary of the Office of Policy and Management for review. After the date of approval of the amendment by the legislative body of the municipality, any report required to be made pursuant to this section shall include information concerning the amendment. An amendment to a strategic plan shall be deemed to be a concept or proposal not reflected within the scope of the plan as originally adopted by ordinance of the municipality.

(c) A municipality in which a neighborhood revitalization zone committee has been created shall: (1) Defend such neighborhood revitalization zone committee, and each member thereof, in any civil action seeking to impose liability arising out of any actual or alleged act, error or omission that occurred within the scope of such committee or member's duties or responsibilities in implementing the strategic plan, provided such committee or member was acting (A) within the scope of such committee or member's official capacity, and (B) in a manner consistent with advice provided by the municipality's legal counsel; and (2) indemnify such neighborhood revitalization zone committee, and each member thereof, in the amount of any settlement or judgment obtained against such committee or member arising out of any actual or alleged act, error or omission that occurred within the scope of such committee or member's duties or responsibilities in implementing the strategic plan, provided the actual or alleged act, error or omission did not result from reckless, wilful or wanton misconduct on the part of such committee member.

Approved June 7, 2018