OLR Report 2012-R-0279 describes Connecticut laws on driving under the influence (DUI) and related offenses.
Connecticut's DUI law consists primarily of two statutes, CGS §§ 14-227a and -227b. The first prohibits a person from driving (1) while “under the influence” of alcohol or drugs or (2) with an “elevated” blood alcohol content (BAC). A person is under the influence if his ability to drive is affected to an appreciable degree. The maximum allowable BAC depends on the driver's age and the type of vehicle he or she is operating.
Under the second statute, CGS § 14-227b, motorists implicitly consent to be tested for drugs or alcohol when they drive. The law establishes administrative license suspension procedures for drivers who refuse to submit to a test or whose test results indicate an elevated BAC. (These provisions are called “implied consent” and “administrative per se,” respectively.)
Drivers over age 21 have an elevated BAC if it is found to be .08% or more. Drivers operating a commercial motor vehicle (e.g., a large truck) have an elevated BAC if it is .04% or more. Under CGS § 14-227g, people younger than 21 have an elevated BAC if it is found to be .02% or more.
The laws specify evidence admissibility criteria for alcohol and drug tests. They establish criminal penalties and driver's license suspension penalties for violations.
Connecticut law also provides for a Pretrial Alcohol Education Program under which certain eligible offenders charged with DUI may successfully complete an alcohol intervention or substance abuse treatment program, as appropriate, and have the DUI charges dismissed (CGS § 54-56g).
Criminal penalties for DUI include fines, prison terms, and license suspensions (see Table 1, below). By law, the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) must impose 45-day license suspensions for drivers age 21 or older convicted of DUI. Once their licenses are reinstated, these offenders can drive only vehicles equipped with ignition interlock devices for specified periods of time.
First-time offenders can drive only interlock-equipped vehicles for one year after their license suspension ends; second-time offenders can drive only these vehicles for three years following a suspension. The law additionally requires second-time offenders, during the first year of the three-year interlock period, to drive these vehicles only to (1) work, (2) school, (3) a drug or alcohol treatment program, or (4) an interlock service center.
DMV must revoke the license of a driver convicted of DUI for a third time. By law, until January 1, 2013, a third-time offender may seek restoration of his or her license after six years. Once restored, he or she must drive only interlock-equipped vehicles for 10 years. Starting January 1, 2013, however, the law allows the (1) offender to seek restoration of his or her license after two years and (2) commissioner to restore it on the condition that the driver operate only interlock-equipped vehicles for as long as he or she drives. (After 15 years of driving these vehicles, the offender may ask that this condition be lifted, and the commissioner may do so after a hearing and for good cause.)
The law also requires use of an ignition interlock device for two years following the mandatory one-year license suspension following conviction for 2nd-degree manslaughter with a motor vehicle (CGS § 53a-56b) or 2nd -degree assault with a motor vehicle (CGS § 53a-60d). These crimes apply to drivers who cause the death or serious injury of another person, respectively, while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. The court may also order an individual arrested for DUI, 2nd-degree manslaughter with a motor vehicle, or 2nd-degree assault with a motor vehicle to operate only motor vehicles equipped with ignition interlock devices as a condition of (1) release on bail, (2) probation, or (3) granting his or her application to take part in the Pretrial Alcohol Education Program (CGS § 14-227j (b)).
Someone who holds a commercial driver's license (CDL) faces disqualification from driving a commercial motor vehicle for one year if he or she is found to have: (1) a BAC of .04% or more while driving a commercial vehicle, (2) a BAC of .08% or more while driving any other type of vehicle, (3) refused a BAC test when driving any motor vehicle, or (4) been convicted of DUI. CDL holders who commit two or more of certain offenses, including DUI, face a lifetime ban on driving commercial motor vehicles, but may get their license back if they meet certain conditions.
Police must impound for 48 hours the motor vehicle of someone arrested for DUI who was driving while his license was under suspension or revoked. The owner may reclaim the vehicle after paying towing and storage costs (CGS § 14-227h).
In addition, people found to be “persistent operating under the influence felony offenders” are subject to an increased criminal penalty.
For more information, read the full report.
- Sufficiently high financial incentives make a big difference. A $20 payment improved scores more than a $10 payment.
- Incentives are more effective when framed as losses. It was better to give the student the trophy or money and tell him or her that he or she would lose it if the score didn’t improve.
- Younger students respond better than older ones to nonfinancial incentives (trophies), boys respond to incentives better than girls, and rewards worked better for math than reading tests.
- Delayed rewards have no effect. Performance didn’t change when students were told they would get their reward a month after the test.
- Students who received incentives continued to perform better on subsequent tests than those who did not, even when the rewards were discontinued.
- treats criminal history information differently for different applicants or employees based on race or national origin or
- uses a neutral policy that (a) excludes all applicants based on criminal conduct but disproportionately impacts some individuals who are protected by federal anti-discrimination laws and (b) is not job related or consistent with a business necessity.
OLR Report 2012-R-0289 explains the procedures in a juvenile delinquency case.
A child age 17 or under may be convicted as “delinquent” for violating most state or federal laws. The adjudication results from either the child's admission to allegations or the court's finding of guilt following a trial in juvenile court.
When a child is arrested for committing an alleged delinquent act, he or she may either be released or sent to detention. If sent to detention, the child has the right to a hearing on the next business day. A child may only be kept in detention after the hearing in limited circumstances. A child remanded to detention must have another hearing to re-evaluate the detention within 15 days.
A delinquency case may either be handled nonjudicially (outside of the courtroom) or judicially. In order to qualify for nonjudicial handling, among other things, the alleged act must not be a felony, the child must not have any previous delinquency convictions, and the child must admit to the allegations. At most, nonjudicial handling may result in probation for up to six months.
When a delinquency case is handled judicially, there is typically an initial plea hearing (arraignment), followed by a pretrial conference, and then either a trial or a plea canvass and dispositional hearing. If a child pleads guilty to a delinquent act or is found guilty as the result of a trial, he or she may be committed to the Department of Children and Families (DCF) for up to 18 months (or up to four years for a serious juvenile offense).
When a child allegedly commits a felony, the case is either transferred to adult court automatically or may be transferred at the prosecutor's discretion, depending on the seriousness of the alleged act.
Typically, when a case is transferred to adult court, the child may be tried as a youthful offender (YO). Adjudication as a YO is not a criminal conviction, and thus the child can later truthfully deny having a criminal record based on the transferred charges. If the case does not qualify for YO handling, the case is transferred to the adult criminal docket. The child then stands trial and is sentenced, if convicted, as if he or she is an adult.
The law designates approximately 50 felonies, including murder, first- degree assault, and first degree burglary as serious juvenile offenses (SJOs). The penalties for SJO offenses are harsher than those for juvenile delinquency convictions and can result in up to four years in DCF commitment.
When a child reaches age 18, he or she may petition to have his or her police and juvenile court records erased. Provided the child meets certain criteria, the records are erased and, as a result, the child has no documented criminal history.
For more information, read the full report.
OLR Report 2012-R-0307 describes possible funding sources for on-site electric generation for public schools.
Possible funding sources include the zero- and low-emission renewable energy credit (ZREC and LREC) programs, under which electric companies must enter into long-term contracts with customers who install renewable on-site generation. Public schools are eligible to participate in these programs and at least one school submitted an application in the first round of the ZREC program.
The Clean Energy Finance and Investment Authority (CEFIA) has several programs that could support generation projects at schools, including its Clean Energy Communities and Combined Heat and Power (CHP) programs. CEFIA is also developing a renewable energy and efficient energy finance program, which should begin operating by November 2012.
PA 12-148 requires the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) to establish a grant and loan pilot program to support on-site electricity generation. The program will pay for the infrastructure needed to support the generation equipment but not for the equipment itself.
On-site generation equipment is generally not eligible for reimbursement under the school construction grant program if it is installed by itself, but may be eligible if the equipment is part of a new school or the expansion or renovation of an existing school.
As described in OLR Report 2012-R-0178, municipalities can also develop on-site renewable generation for their facilities, including schools, using performance contracting, under which a private party often provides the financing.
For more information, read the full report.
- Total population: an average 18.6% of the general population received benefits under one of the programs for during at least one month
- Household Composition: the averages were 46.3% for female-headed households, 26% for those headed by males, and 12.3% for those headed by married couples
- Educational Attainment: adults with (1) some college education, (2) high school diplomas, and (3) no diplomas averaged 7.8%, 17.8%, and 33.1%, respectively
- Those Living In Poverty: rates decreased, from 72.1 to 64.8%, over the 2004-2007 period, and then increased to 70.7% in 2009
- Age: From 2004 to 2009, the participation rates for children increased 2.6 percentage points, from 41.3 to 43.9%; for people ages 18 to 64, it rose 4.1 points from 15.6 to 19.7%; and held steady for seniors
According to the Hartford Courant, the
OLR Report 2012-R-0231 lists the bills considered during the General Assembly's 2012 regular session and June Special Session (JSS) whose provisions were enacted under another bill number.
The provisions of many bills that die in committee or on the calendar become law after the (1) original committee incorporates them in another bill that receives a favorable report or (2) concept is adopted as an amendment and incorporated in another bill. This report includes bills whose language may have changed in the final enactment from that of the original committee bill or file, but that represent the legislature's final action on the matter taken during one of the sessions referenced above.
During the two sessions, the content or concept of 92 bills and one resolution that started as separate legislation was later incorporated in other legislation that passed. Of those, the governor vetoed two, none of which were overridden. Table 1 lists the original bills in numeric order and shows the public act that included their provisions. Table 2 lists the bills by the committee of origin.
The film, Pruitt-Igoe Myth does more than tell the story of a famous post World War II St. Louis housing project; it chronicles the social changes and public policies that turned homes into high-rise institutional structures and neighborhoods into projects. Pruitt-Igoe was a 1956 57-acre public housing project consisting of 33 11-story apartments containing 2,870 units. The project was leveled 20 years later.
Fearing others will see you as weak and indecisive
In 427 B.C., Cleon warned the Athenians that showing mercy to the rebellious Mytilenians would be a sign of weakness and encourage more rebellion. But Diodotus warned that annihilating these people would only encourage others to strengthen their cities or fight to the bitter end, thus prolonging a conflict.
Misunderstanding the causes of complex events
The ancient Romans, believing that swamp odor cause intense fever, vomiting, and weakness (i.e., malaria or mala (bad) aria (air)), got rid of the odor by draining the swamps. The solution worked and the bad air theory persisted until someone discovered that water, not odor was the culprit.
Defining issues in either-or terms
Robert McNamara believed that
Believing one theory or solution explains or solves all problems
“If any single cure-all has run rampant in
Hording or avoiding information
Because he feared his military, Saddam Hussein withheld vital information from his field commanders about the strength and location of different military units (i.e., “infomiser”). This proved fatal when the Gulf War broke out.
In the 1820, Vietnamese Emperor Gia Long’s deep distrust of foreign emissaries kept him from meeting with them and learning things about them he could have used to prevent them from dominating his country.
Assuming that everyone (maybe every life form) thinks and acts like us
Animal science professor Temple Grandin did what many animal handlers fail to do—look at things from the animal’s perspective—and saw how they could save money and time by designing structures and processes consistent with animal behavior.
Refusing to recognize or accept changes
IBM saw its market share shrink in the 1990s to smaller more dynamic computer companies because it wouldn’t recognize that things had changed. “For upper management on down, IBM employees had been lulled into complacency, believing that IBM’s dominant position simply existed as part of the natural order of things.”
More states are passing laws that make it harder for third graders to move up to fourth grade if they don’t pass a standardized reading test. Most recently
According to this USAToday article, the building industry that once created “massive communities of cookie-cutter homes, cul-de-sacs and McMansions in far-flung suburbs” is doing an about-face and building “smaller neighborhoods in and close to cities on land more likely to be near a train station than a pig farm.” In response to changing market demand, the industry is rethinking what type of housing to build and where to build it.
More and more homebuyers (especially younger millennials and older baby boomers) are favoring urban living and its amenities to traditional suburban life. They want shorter commutes and walkable, vibrant town centers with proximity to shops, parks, and schools.
As a result, builders are moving from developing wide-open "greenfields" to compact "infill" housing in already-developed urban settings.” And the nation’s development pattern—from California to Ohio to Florida—is shifting “from the old crabgrass frontier to the new Main Street."
A 2011 study by the National Institute of Justice (Study of Deaths Following Electro Muscular Disruption (pdf, 74 pages)) concluded that there was no evidence that Tasers posed a significant risk of cardiac arrest “when deployed reasonably.”
But as the debate over the safety of Tasers continues, a new study reports that Taser shocks can lead to cardiac arrest and sudden deaths. The new report published in the scientific journal Circulation, analyzed detailed records from cases involving eight people who suffered cardiac arrest after being shocked with a Taser X26. Seven of the people in the study died; one survived.
OLR Report 2012-R-0254 explains the penalties under state law for computer hacking (accessing someone's computer without authorization).
Someone who hacks into another person's computer could be punished by a number of different crimes, depending on the circumstances. The law punishes hacking under the computer crime statutes. These crimes carry penalties ranging from a class B misdemeanor (punishable by up to six months in prison, a fine of up to $1,000, or both) to a class B felony (punishable by up to 20 years in prison, a fine of up to $15,000, or both). The law also punishes unauthorized access to a computer or computer network, with penalties ranging from a class B misdemeanor to a class D felony (punishable by up to five years in prison, a fine of up to $5,000, or both).
A number of generally applicable crimes could also apply. For example, hacking could be done to commit identity theft or larceny and it could be punished under those generally applicable crimes.
In addition to criminal penalties, the law specifically authorizes someone harmed by a computer or unauthorized use crime to bring a civil lawsuit against the perpetrator. These civil actions are in addition to any other grounds for a civil action that the injured party may have.
For more detailed information, read the full report.
OLR Report 2012-R-0249 explains what determines the price of home heating oil and why its price closely tracks that of diesel fuel when there are additives in diesel fuel and the two fuels are subject to different taxes.
The primary determinant of the price of both home heating oil and diesel fuel is the price of crude oil. Nationally, the Energy Information Administration (EIA), part of the U.S. Department of Energy, estimates that the cost of crude oil accounts for 63% of the retail price of home heating oil. The other components are refining costs (13%), distribution and marketing costs (12%), and taxes (12%). For diesel fuel, the cost of crude oil accounts for 61% of the retail price. The other components are refining costs (11%), distribution and marketing costs (16%), and taxes (12%). These proportions vary geographically.
The retail price of home heating oil closely tracks that of diesel fuel. Table 1 compares the average retail prices of the two products in New England from October 2011 through March 2012 using EIA data (Connecticut data are not readily available). During the past heating season, diesel fuel was consistently more expensive than home heating oil, but the difference was less than 5%, ranging from 6.2¢ to 16.9¢ per gallon.
For more information, including a table comparing diesel and home heating oil prices across New England, read the full report.
A controversial energy drink, named “Cocaine,” has made it back onto retailers’ shelves in
Economists, like doctors, create instruments to measure our well being. One way the economists at the U.S. Commerce Department’s Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) track our national economic health is to tally the total dollar value of all goods and services produced during a specific period and measure how much it changes compared with an earlier period. (Stay awake: this gets better.)
OLR Report 2012-R-0277 updates OLR Report 2004-R-0007 on reverse annuity mortgages and where to get one.
A reverse annuity mortgage (RAM) is a loan aimed at senior citizens who have paid off their houses but cannot afford to stay there or need extra money for home repair, long-term care, medical treatment, or other purposes. It allows a homeowner to convert into cash some of the equity he or she has built up in the home. The loan proceeds are tax-free and there are no minimum income requirements for most private RAMs. The loans are usually paid to the borrower monthly, instead of in one lump sum, and repaid when the borrower sells the home, moves out, or dies.
The Connecticut Housing Finance Authority (CHFA) offers RAMs to homeowners of single family houses or condos who are at least 70 years old if (1) at least one borrower needs long-term health care or supportive services and (2) household income does not exceed $81,000 per year. The federal Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and several private lenders also offer RAMs to qualifying homeowners.
A number of private lenders also offer reverse mortgages in Connecticut.
A fact sheet on RAMs from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is available at: http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/pubs/consumer/homes/rea13.pdf.