November 9, 2017
for a judgment declaring whether the defendant possesses
statutory authority to impose surcharges on certain of its
customers, and for other relief, brought to the Superior
Court in the judicial district of Hartford, where the court,
Hon. Susan A. Peck, judge trial referee, granted the
plaintiff's motion for summary judgment and, exercising
the powers of the Superior Court, rendered judgment thereon,
from which the defendant appealed. Affirmed.
Jeffrey J. Mirman, with whom, on the brief, was Alexa T.
Millinger, for the appellant (defendant).
K. Das, with whom were Joseph B. Schwartz and Robert E.
Kaelin, for the appellee (plaintiff).
Palmer, Robinson, D'Auria, Mullins and Vertefeuille, Js.
defendant in this declaratory judgment action, the
Metropolitan District Commission, a quasi-municipal
corporation that provides potable water to eight member and
five nonmember towns in the greater Hartford area,
appeals from the judgment rendered by the trial
court in favor of the plaintiff, the town of Glastonbury. The
plaintiff, one of the nonmember towns, brought this action,
seeking a determination by the court that, prior to 2014, the
defendant unlawfully had imposed surcharges on it and the
other nonmember towns. Thereafter, the trial court denied the
defendant's motion to strike the plaintiff's
complaint on the ground that the plaintiff was required but
failed to join the other nonmember towns as indispensable
parties. While this action was pending, the legislature
enacted No. 14-21 of the 2014 Special Acts (S.A. 14-21),
which amended the defendant's charter by authorizing the
defendant to impose a surcharge on nonmember towns in an
amount not to exceed the amount of the customer service
charge. Following the passage of S.A. 14-21, the defendant
filed a motion to dismiss, claiming that the special act was
retroactive and rendered the plaintiff's claim moot
because it answered in the affirmative the question then
pending before the court, namely, whether the defendant had
the authority to impose a surcharge on nonmember towns. The
trial court disagreed and denied the motion, concluding that
S.A. 14-21 was not retroactive, and, therefore, it remained
to be determined whether the plaintiff was entitled to relief
because the surcharges imposed prior to the passage of the
special act were unlawful. Thereafter, the parties filed
motions for summary judgment, and the trial court concluded
that the surcharges imposed on the plaintiff prior to the
passage of S.A. 14-21 were unlawful, the plaintiff's
claim was not barred by the equitable doctrine of laches, and
the plaintiff's claim was justiciable because the
plaintiff was entitled to reimbursement for the payments it
had made to the defendant on account of the unlawful
surcharges. In accordance with these conclusions, the trial
court granted the plaintiff's motion for summary judgment
and denied the defendant's motion for summary judgment.
On appeal, the defendant claims that the trial court
incorrectly determined that the plaintiff's claim was
justiciable and not rendered moot by S.A. 14-21 or barred by
the doctrine of laches.
examining the record and briefs and considering the arguments
of the parties, we are persuaded that the judgment of the
trial court should be affirmed. The issues raised by the
parties in their motions for summary judgment were resolved
properly in the thoughtful and comprehensive memorandum of
decision filed by the trial court. Because that memorandum of
decision also fully addresses the arguments raised in the
present appeal, we adopt the trial court's well reasoned
decision as a statement of the facts and the applicable law
on those issues. See Glastonbury v. Metropolitan District
Commission, Superior Court, judicial district of
Hartford, Docket No. HHD-CV-14-6049007-S (May 12, 2016)
(reprinted at 328 Conn. 326, 330, A.3d ). It would
serve no useful purpose for us to repeat that discussion
here. See, e.g., Tzovolos v. Wiseman,
300 Conn. 247, 253-54, 12 A.3d 563 (2011).
judgment is affirmed.
DISTRICT COMMISSION [*]
Court, Judicial District of Hartford File No. CV-14-6049007-S
Filed May 12, 2016
of decision on motions for summary judgment.
Defendant's motion denied; ...