Lawmakers hope to encourage crumbling foundation loan funds

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HARTFORD  — Two Democratic Connecticut senators are hoping municipalities will create new loan programs to help homeowners cover the high cost of repairing or replacing their crumbling foundations.

Sens. Cathy Osten of Sprague and Tim Larson of East Hartford unveiled proposed legislation Friday that allows affected towns to adopt, by a local ordinance, a loan program that could be funded with municipal bonds. They liken it to how municipalities fund local road repairs.

Osten calls the draft legislation “a piece of the puzzle,” adding how lawmakers are still pushing for federal financial assistance. She hopes the loans might become grants, considering homeowners face repairs averaging $150,000 to $200,000.

Hundreds of eastern Connecticut homeowners have filed complaints about failing foundations. The problem has been traced to a concrete mix from a Willington quarry.

Senate Republican Leader Len Fasano of North Haven released the following statement regarding the press conference on the legislative proposal regarding municipal bonding and crumbling concrete foundations:

“This is an issue that Democrats and Republicans have been working on together for years. It is very surprising and extremely disappointing that Senator Osten and Senator Larson would turn crumbling foundations into a partisan issue when the solution must be based in bipartisanship. Up until today the entire effort to address crumbling foundations has been bipartisan, with Republicans and Democrats working together with state officials to explore solutions. But today we see a press conference and a news release that completely ignores that teamwork. Instead, they stood in front of cameras to take credit for working on an issue that has been a serious problem that many lawmakers on both sides of the aisle and in both chambers are working hard to address. They made this into a partisan issue, at a time when we need bipartisanship and collaboration.”

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