FOI: Section 1-21j-29 (a)-(d) Procedure in response to complaint

Section 1-21j-29 (a)-(d)  Procedure in response to complaint
 

(a) The executive director or his or her designee shall order a hearing at a designated time and place for the purpose of conducting an investigation of the complaint as a contested case. The executive director or his or her designee may issue an order requiring the attendance of the complainant and all other parties at an informal conference at a designated time and place prior to the hearing. As a matter of policy, the commission shall strive to hear each contested case within thirty (30) days after the commencement of the contested case and to decide each such case within sixty (60) days after the conclusion of the hearing therein, but in no event later than one (1) year after the filing of the complaint. The commission shall give notice of the hearing in the form and manner provided in section 1-21j-34 of the Regulations of Connecticut State Agencies. Such notice shall be sent to the public agency and public agency official against whom the complaint is asserted, together with a copy of the complaint. The notice shall advise all parties that the commission may provide the opportunity for an informal conference prior to the formal hearing.

(b) Except as provided in subsection (b) of section 1-21i of the general statutes, this section or section 1-21j-34a of the Regulations of Connecticut State Agencies, the executive director or his or her designee, to the extent possible, shall schedule each contested case for hearing in the order in which it is received. To the extent possible, the executive director or his or her designee shall accord priority in the assignment for hearing of any contested case for which there is a timely written request setting forth the reasons necessitating a hearing by a date certain after which available remedies would no longer be adequate. The executive director or his or her designee shall immediately review such request together with the complaint and any other associated materials. The executive director or his or her designee shall cause the complaint to be scheduled on a priority basis if he or she believes: (1) the materials reviewed demonstrate that the complaint requires expedited treatment because of an event or circumstance on a date certain after which date available remedies would no longer be adequate; and (2) the commission is able to render a final decision by that date. A decision not to grant a priority assignment for hearing may be appealed to the commission which shall consider the matter at its next regular meeting. A decision to grant priority assignment may be appealed to either the presiding officer, who shall consider the matter at the hearing, or to the commission, which shall consider the matter at its next regular meeting. Where such priority is granted, the executive director or his or her designee shall assign the case for hearing at the earliest possible date consistent with due process of law, but in no event later than thirty (30) days after commencement of the contested case. Where such priority is granted, the executive director or his or her designee also shall assign the case for final decision at the earliest possible date consistent with due process of law, but in no event later than sixty (60) days after the conclusion of the hearing therein.

(c) When the executive director or his or her designee does not schedule a complaint pursuant to subdivision (2) of subsection (b) of section 1-21i of the general statutes because he or she has reason to believe that a complaint: (1) presents a claim beyond the commissionís jurisdiction; (2) would perpetrate an injustice; or (3) would constitute an abuse of the commissionís administrative process; and the matter is referred to the commission for summary disposition, no oral argument shall be permitted.

(d) Upon the commencement of a contested case, the executive director or his or her designee may appoint an ombudsman for that case. The ombudsman shall attempt to settle the case in whole or in part; and if the case is not settled, to limit the issues of fact and law necessary to be determined at the hearing, and to encourage stipulations which would expedite the proceedings at the hearing. In furtherance of these duties, the ombudsman may communicate ex parte with the parties or their representatives and conduct informal conferences in person or otherwise. Neither the ombudsman nor any party in a contested case shall communicate the contents of any communication made or received in the course of the ombudsman process without the express consent of all parties.





Content Last Modified on 10/19/2011 8:07:45 AM