Municipal Plans of Conservation and Development
Guidance for Maintaining Eligibility for Discretionary State Funding
Section 8-23 of the Connecticut General Statutes (CGS), as amended by Public Act 15-95
, sets forth required procedures by which each municipality must prepare or amend and adopt
a plan of conservation and development (POCD).
Effective July 1, 2016, any municipality that does not adopt a POCD at least once every ten years shall be ineligible for discretionary state funding unless such prohibition is expressly waived by the OPM Secretary. The 10-year clock for discretionary state funding eligibility re-sets whenever the municipal POCD is prepared or amended and adopted in accordance with CGS Section 8-23.
What is "Discretionary" State Funding?
Discretionary state funding includes any source of funding that a state agency administers through a competitive process. Examples include, but are not limited to, the Urban Action Program, Small Town Economic Assistance Program, Clean Water Fund, Drinking Water State Revolving Fund, as well as various housing, historic preservation, brownfields remediation, open space and farmland preservation programs.
Discretionary state funding does not include entitlement or formula-based programs, such as the Local Capital Improvement Program (LoCIP), Education Cost Sharing (ECS), Town Aid Road (TAR), Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PILOT) for Private Colleges, General Hospitals and State-Owned Property, the Mashantucket Pequot/Mohegan Fund, etc.
OPM maintains the official inventory of municipal POCDs in a downloadable tabular spreadsheet sorted by town name. The inventory was initially established based on OPM’s review of its files and municipal websites, and each Regional Council of Governments also reviewed the information for accuracy.
Each municipality should review its information contained in the inventory, and notify OPM of any changes at the earliest possible time.
What is the Process for Updating the Official POCD Inventory?
OPM will immediately update the Municipal POCD Inventory upon written notification (e-mail is acceptable) that a planning commission or planning and zoning commission (PC/PZC) has adopted a POCD in accordance with the requirements of CGS Section 8-23. Within 60 days of the date of POCD adoption, the PC/PZC must submit a letter to the OPM Secretary that includes:
A link to an electronic copy of the POCD on the municipality's website (hard copies will be accepted, but are not encouraged)
Certification of the POCD adoption date (e.g. PC/PZC minutes)
A description of any inconsistency between the POCD adopted by the PC/PZC and the State Plan of Conservation and Development and the reasons therefor, as is currently required under CGS Section 8-23(i)(5).
If no such letter is received within the 60-day grace period, OPM's records will revert back to the previous date of POCD adoption. Since OPM has no statutory role in the review of municipal POCDs, it is the responsibility of each municipal PC/PZC to inform OPM of its action at the earliest possible time to ensure that the information contained within the municipal POCD inventory is accurate and up-to-date.
What are the Requirements for Notifying OPM of an Outdated POCD?
Whenever a municipal PC/PZC fails to adopt a new or amended POCD within the required 10-year timeframe, CGS Section 8-23(a) requires the Chief Elected Official of the municipality to submit a Notice of Expired POCD
to the OPM Secretary and the Commissioners of Transportation, Energy and Environmental Protection, and Economic and Community Development explaining the reason(s) therefor.
- A Notice of Expired POCD is required to be submitted even if your municipality does not intend to apply for discretionary state funding during the time its POCD is expired.
What is the Process for Requesting a Waiver of the Discretionary State Funding Prohibition?
Whenever a municipal PC/PZC fails to adopt a new or amended POCD within the required 10-year timeframe, CGS Section 8-23(b) authorizes the OPM Secretary to expressly waive the discretionary state funding prohibition. Waiver requests will not be considered without a Notice of Expired POCD on file.
- A copy of the Notice of Expired POCD must be included with each application for discretionary state funding submitted to any administering state agency, until a new POCD is adopted.
- Concurrent with, or prior to, the municipality’s submittal of each application for discretionary state funding to an administering state agency, the Chief Elected Official of the municipality should submit a "Waiver Request Letter" to the OPM Secretary requesting a waiver of the discretionary state funding prohibition. A new Waiver Request Letter is required for each application for discretionary state funding.
- The OPM Secretary shall consider the information provided in each Waiver Request Letter and provide a timely written response to both the Chief Elected Official of the municipality and to the administering state agency’s point-of-contact, as to whether or not the discretionary state funding prohibition is waived for the subject application.
For further information, contact:
Assistant Division Director
Intergovernmental Policy Division