The product of great bipartisan effort, regulatory reform with a strong focus on the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) was approved in the very last hours of the session.

Contained in HB-5208, the reforms are designed to make it easier for Connecticut companies to do business with the DEP and spark greater economic development.

CBIA appreciates the hard work of all the legislators, the Governor and the stakeholders who have contributed to the crafting of this bipartisan landmark legislation.

Also key to its passage was the involvement of many CBIA members who took the time to help formulate the legislation, meet with and contact legislators, and enlist the support of colleagues in their companies and within the overall business community.

Among other things, the legislation:

  • Establishes time frames for completing the review of permit applications
  • Creates a new program for expediting permits for projects of economic significance
  • Creates a statewide permit ombudsman and requires the designation of a business ombudsman with the Departments of Environmental Protection, Transportation and Public Health
  • Reduces permit application requirements for certain categories of facilities
  • Establishes a review of procedures for adopting general permits and recommendations for improvement
  • Sets up a new “consulting services program” within the DEP to improve compliance assistance
  • Requires statewide standards that form the basis of water permitting to be adopted as regulations rather the current DEP-only process;
  • Requires the use of various methods for reducing the impact of proposed regulations on small businesses.

This major regulatory reform legislation addresses an issue that has been consistently identified by companies and economists as a significant barrier in Connecticut’s ability to keep and attract new, high-quality jobs.

Bipartisan support for the reforms demonstrates that Connecticut wants to move forward to protect its environmental resources in a way that also places a high value on jobs and economic investment.

For more information, contact Eric Brown at 860.244.1926 or eric.brown@cbia.com.