Rocky Hill is asking the town council to support proposed legislation requiring local approval to open nursing homes for infirm and terminally ill prison inmates and mental patients.
Rocky Hill officials sought the legislation after the state moved to open such a facility in their town without informing them. The town has gone to court to block the home, which it contends is a thinly disguised prison.
"This bill preserves the right of your community to be heard and have input in this type of facility, and it requires that the proposed facility go before the local legislative body for approval," Rocky Hill Mayor Anthony LaRosa said in the letter.
The council considered the request Tuesday.
Councilor John "Jay" Bottalico stated his concern that the state might try to open a similar home in Newington. Town Manager John Salomone said he was unaware of any such proposal.
"We have received nothing on that at all," Salomone said.
Majority Leader Terry Borjeson, a retired state Department of Adult Probation official who has also worked with nonprofits, said the state "didn't do a good job" handling the Rocky Hill proposal. He added that the proposed law would make it impossible to site halfway houses or similar facilities in towns without permission.
"You'll never open another halfway house or group home in Connecticut if this passes," he said.
The council asked Salomone to invite the bill's sponsors -- Sen. Paul Doyle, D-Wethersfield, and Rep. Antonio Guererra, D-Rocky Hill -- to the next council meeting to explain the legislation.
Also at Tuesday's meeting, two members of the public criticized Mayor Stephen Woods for his recent comments regarding the proposed 48-lot Cedar Mountain subdivision. The development is strongly opposed by some residents.
Speaking at an event last week sponsored by the Newington Chamber of Commerce, Woods said that developer Toll Brothers was not proposing to disturb any wetlands.
Toll Brothers is seeking a wetlands permit from the conservation commission, which last month closed a lengthy public hearing on the issue. The application does not call for filling any wetlands.
Gail Budrejko said, however, that the public hearing process had raised concerns about runoff and other factors that could damage wetlands on the property, leading Toll Brothers to make last-minute changes to its application.
"It is improper for the mayor to make a public statement that the wetlands would not be disturbed while the issue is still being evaluated, and a decision has not been reached by the conservation commission," Budrejko said.
Councilor Clarke Castelle read into the record a letter from Roy Zartarian, who called Woods' comments "profoundly disturbing."
Woods could not be reached for comment Wednesday.