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Connecticut News

Bill Would Require Public Input On Land Transfers

The Connecticut State Capitol Building in Hartford
Sage Ross

A Connecticut lawmaker is once again pushing legislation he says will prevent controversial transfers of state land to municipalities, businesses or individuals.

State Senator Kevin Witkos, R-Canton, says in past years controversial transfers of state land have been passed in the last days of a legislative session without public input. He’s proposing an amendment to the State Constitution that would require a public hearing on individual transfers and, in certain cases, a two-thirds majority vote of the legislature.

“This will certainly stop the practice of those folks that come in the last week of session and say, ‘I need a conveyance,’ and it gets thrown into a bill without a public hearing. So that practice will have to stop.”

Witkos was speaking at a hearing of the General Assembly's Government Administration and Elections Committee.  

Voters would have to approve the constitutional amendment. And in order for the question to appear on November's ballot, the bill must pass both chambers by a three-quarters majority or by a simple
majority over two consecutive years. Witkos failed to get a similar bill through that hurdle three years ago.