Meanwhile, Connecticut has stepped up its regulatory efforts to reduce sprawl:
New legislation establishing a Responsible Growth Task Force has been designed to help guide the state’s economic development decisions and study state land use laws, policies and programs.
The 19-member task force consists of 11 agency heads or their designees, six legislatively appointed members and two members appointed by the governor.
The agencies involved are the Office of Policy and Management, the Connecticut Housing Finance Authority, the Connecticut Development Authority, Connecticut Innovations Inc., the Commission on Culture and Tourism, the Office of Workforce Competitiveness and the departments of Agriculture, Economic and Community Development, Environmental Protection, Public Health and Transportation.
The top six legislative leaders each appoint one task force member. The governor appoints two task force members, one being a current or former chief elected official or city or town manager from a municipality with a population in excess of 25,000 and one from a municipality with a population of less than 25,000. The Office of Policy and Management secretary or his designee will serve as the chair.
Under the legislation, the task force has a deadline of Feb. 15, 2008, to identify responsible growth criteria and standards to guide the state’s future investment decisions and submit recommendations to the governor.
Effective July 1, 2009, in consultation with other agencies, the Department of Economic and Community Development is to prepare a strategic plan assessing and evaluating the economic development challenges and opportunities for Connecticut when compared with other states and the region. The plan is to also include a vision for the future.