Report by Paula Antolini, February 14, 2019, 9:01AM EDT
HARTFORD — State Representative Stephen Harding (R-107) wants to ensure that all those in our local community are able to recover from the devastating storm that hit last May. He has proposed three new bills to legislative leaders that would protect homeowners in Brookfield, Bethel and Danbury who suffer property damage as a result of weather.
The first, House Bill (H.B.) 6595, would require mortgage companies to release to homeowners at least a portion of any funds they have received from an insurance company in connection with a claim for property damaged, provided that the homeowner has hired a contractor to repair the damage. Far too many residents have not been able to even start work on their property due to their mortgage company’s restrictions on the release of any portion of funds. This bill was referred to the Banking Committee.
Second, H.B. 6677, would establish a fund to provide financial assistance to homeowners who have property damage caused by a natural disaster, as declared by the National Weather Service, that is not otherwise covered under an insurance policy. This weather disaster last May brought unbelievable financial hardships to countless local residents. The State of Connecticut should be available to assist these residents during their time of need. It was referred to the Housing Committee.
Finally, H.B. 6690 would place certain requirements on insurers related to coverage of residential properties for the removal of trees from such property that have fallen onto such property due to a natural disaster. The bill has been referred to the Insurance and Real Estate Committee.
“As a homeowner and fellow Brookfield resident, I understand the challenges of having to save money for a potential emergency,” said Rep. Harding. “The upkeep of a house is expensive already, and when something happens out of your control – like devastation to your property from a storm – sometimes the funds to fix it just aren’t available. Far too many local residents were placed in this exact situation. I hope that these bills will become state law this year so that we can provide aid to our neighbors who need it the most.”
All bill proposals in the General Assembly are considered by legislative committees, and potentially brought to a public hearing, before being raised to the House and Senate for a vote. To read more about the bills that Rep. Harding has proposed or co-sponsored this session, visit his website atwww.repharding.com and click on the “Legislation” tab. If you are interested in sharing your opinion on a bill, information on how to testify at a hearing or via email is available at www.cga.ct.gov.
For more information on these bills, go to www.cga.ct.gov. In the “Quick Bill Search” bar at the bottom of the page, type in the bill number and click “Go.” For contact information on sending testimony to a specific Committee, from the homepage click the “Committees” tab at the top and then select that committee.
Rep. Harding represents the 107th district of Brookfield, Bethel and Danbury.