Contact: Adam Joseph
September 30, 2010
HAMDEN—A new state law that takes effect tomorrow, October 1 will make Connecticut a friendlier place to do business by streamlining the environmental permitting process, cutting red tape and reducing the uncertainty often involved in economic development projects.
State Senate Majority Leader Martin Looney (D-New Haven); Senator Joseph Crisco (D-Woodbridge); state Reps. Elizabeth Esty (D-Cheshire) and Patricia Widlitz (D-Guilford); New Haven Manufacturers Association Executive Director Jerry Clupper; and Quinnipiac University officials held a news conference at the school’s new student center to highlight the changes.
The Rocky Top Student Center—which opened earlier this month—is part of Quinnipiac’s $300 million York Hill Campus construction project. The university worked with local permitting officials to complete the project on time. The new state law is designed to help projects move through the state permitting process just as quickly.
“Quinnipiac University’s new student center is a wonderful project and part of an expansion that is bringing jobs and economic activity to the area,” Senator Looney said. “We want to make sure projects like this can move along as quickly as possible, and this new permitting law will help. To businesses, time is money, so if we can speed-up the environmental review process then we can attract and retain businesses to locate and expand here in Connecticut.”
Public Act 10-158, “An Act Concerning Expedited Permitting for Economic Development,” passed the General Assembly May 5th with strong Democratic and Republican support. The new law:
“There is no understating the importance of regional planning and cooperation with regard to economic development, particularly in managing practical matters like utilities, transportation and housing infrastructure, and in the availability of a viable workforce in the first place,” Senator Crisco said. “This new law streamlines the connection between regional entities and the state Department of Economic and Community Development and can help secure federal grants through the U.S. Department of Commerce—something individual projects and local governments are poorly positioned to do.”
“Manufacturers and the business community applaud the farsightedness of this new legislation,” Clupper said. “It is a positive example of effective collaboration with legislators to create laudable goals and partnerships that, with effective implementation, will truly support our economic health, jobs and communities.”
“This new law underscores our commitment to streamlining state government and supporting business to create new jobs,” Rep. Esty said. “I know from my work with the local chambers of commerce that this is exactly the sort of real, concrete step we need to take to get people back to work in small business and manufacturing.”
“The economic future of Connecticut depends largely on the business community’s perception of the regulatory climate,” Rep. Widlitz said. “With this legislation we are sending the message that we are open for business in the State of Connecticut.”
“One of the chamber’s chief objectives is to help make Connecticut more business-friendly,” said Greater New Haven Chamber of Commerce President Anthony Rescigno. “This new statute, which shortens some timeframes in DEP’s permit process and reduces uncertainty for businesses that want to invest in our state, will certainly help achieve that goal.”
“Clean air, clean water and our natural landscape benefit not only our quality of life, but our economy,” said Environment Connecticut Program Director Christopher Phelps soon after the bill passed. “This legislation recognizes that a healthy environment and a healthy economy go hand-in-hand. It contains some reasonable steps to help improve the permitting process while maintaining the integrity of Connecticut’s environmental protections.”
(for both senators)
Legislative Office Building
Hartford, CT 06106-1591
See more news releases by Senator Williams.
See more news releases by Senator Looney.