Senator Hwang, Fairfield & Bridgeport State Representatives Hail Senate Passage of HB 5507 Concerning State Agency and Court Proceedings Relating to Electric Transmission Lines

May 9, 2024

HARTFORD – Tonight, the CT State Senate passed HB 5507 concurrent with House passage, a landmark Connecticut Siting Council (CSC) transparency and accountability bill, in an overwhelmingly bipartisan manner. This bill will amend a statutory provision relating to the rights of parties and intervenors in proceedings before the siting council relating to the construction of electric transmission lines.

Senator Hwang (R-28th Senate District) and Fairfield and Bridgeport legislators: Rep Steve Stafstrom (D-Bridgeport), Rep. Jennifer Leeper (D-Fairfield), Rep. Cristin McCarthy Vahey (D-Fairfield/Bridgeport), Rep. Sarah Keitt (D-Fairfield/Trumbull) worked together toward the successful passage of HB 5507. This comprehensive legislation has many features to ensure all parties and intervenors in proceedings are informed, and that all voices will be heard in Siting Council cases.

The Connecticut Siting Council plays a critical role in balancing the need for effective public utility services, affordability for consumers, and environmental protection. A key aspect of their responsibilities involves setting environmental standards for the placement, design, construction, and operation of public utility facilities to ensure the safety and well-being of residents in Connecticut. The council’s decisions hold substantial sway over the welfare of Connecticut’s populace and the makeup of nearby communities.

This bill will ensure that when utilities are submitting an electric transmission line application to the CSC, they must not only consult the municipal CEO of the city or town the project is located in, but they also must consult the municipality’s legislative body as well as the state senator and state representative of the project location as well. It also expands the ability for intervenors in CSC decisions to obtain judicial review of an order issued.

“The Fairfield/Southport and Bridgeport community has undergone a tumultuous process over the last year following the CSC docket review process and the repercussions of the recent approval of a UI plan to build large monopoles through Bridgeport and Fairfield. The lack of transparency and the disregard for intervenor rights illuminated the necessity to amend the CSC’s operations to ensure all voices are heard and all information is considered. This bill will help toward that objective,” Senator Hwang stated.

The bill now heads to Governor Lamont for signature and enactment into law.

CT Senate Republicans · Senator Hwang, Fairfield & Bridgeport State Representatives Hail Senate Passage of HB 5507