Fairfield Legislators Disheartened at Veto of Affordable Housing (8-30g) Bill by Gov. Malloy

July 7, 2017

FAIRFIELD- State Reps. Brenda Kupchick (R-132) and Laura Devlin (R-134) along with State Sen. Tony Hwang (R-28) expressed extreme disappointment with announcement that Governor Malloy has vetoed the bi-partisan 8-30g Affordable Housing compromise bill, HB-6880.

The bill was a modest step towards affordable housing reform which hoped to offer towns an attainable goal of developing and reaching a moratorium.

Co-Chair of the General Assembly Housing Committee, Sen. Hwang said the reform fight will continue.

“While the governor’s action is disappointing, we are not deterred,” Sen. Hwang said. “The support for these reforms from Democrats and Republicans was overwhelming, and we will keep fighting.  Our goal continues to be a worthy one:  We want to increase housing opportunities for everyone in Connecticut and encourage a diverse and dynamic residential community that will foster economic, educational, and cultural growth.  We want to allow more local zoning and planning input in developing affordable and workforce housing projects that are compatible with community character.  The nearly 30-year-old 8-30g language needs updating. It should address the need for affordable housing in our state while providing more fairness to local communities that are often at the mercy of developers whose projects conflict with the wishes of the town zoning bodies and neighborhoods. These reforms aimed to motivate our state and municipalities toward greater access and inventory of workforce and affordable housing for Connecticut residents.  I want to express my gratitude to all stakeholders for their passion and participation in getting this bipartisan plan to the governor’s desk.”

Rep. Kupchick said, “We worked hard to draft and pass a bi-partisan compromise that received 116 votes (77%) in the House of Representatives and 30 votes (83%) in the State Senate. I call on the General Assembly to override the Governor’s veto so the voices of Fairfield citizens and state residents are heard.”

Rep. Devlin said, “For the life of me I do not understand how the Governor could veto this common sense bill which tried to provide some fairness and contemporary changes and update the 8-30g statute without undermining the Affordable Housing Act.”

Under the current 8-30g statue, towns like Fairfield had very little chance of ever achieving the high bar for a moratorium that allowed predatory developers to sidestep local zoning laws. It’s clearly been a difficult and complicated issue to work on with the majority in the legislature not in favor of any changes.

Each year the legislature has a veto session to meets to consider whether to override vetoes by the Governor. An override requires a two-thirds vote by each chamber (House & Senate) which would mean the House of Representatives would need 101 votes and the Senate would need 24 votes.