Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Town Can't Close Road at Border

A town in Connecticut tried to close a road at the town line to prevent the road from being used for access to a major residential development in the adjoining town.  No way, said the Connecticut Supreme Court.  From the Hartford Courant:

The town of Hebron has no right under state law to close one of its roads at the town line just to cut off access to a proposed residential development in a neighboring town, the state's highest court has ruled.

In a unanimous opinion written by Chief Justice Chase T. Rogers and released Monday, the state Supreme Court determined that the Hebron Board of Selectmen exceeded its authority when it voted in 2005 to block access to Wellswood Road at the Columbia town line.

Among the reasons the selectmen had cited for closing the road was to protect it and the neighborhood from excess traffic from the proposed development in Columbia. That, however, and Hebron's stated concerns about traffic safety and determining which town will provide emergency services to the development were not sufficient reason, the justices concluded.

"We agree that Hebron has the power to build roads within the limits of the town," Rogers wrote. "That does not mean, however, that it has the power to close roads at the town border for the sole purpose of preventing residents of adjoining towns from using town streets."

H/T Matt Berger

Ben Barros

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