By a vote of 23 to 20, the state's Judiciary Committee voted on Monday to eliminate the statute of limitations in civil cases involving child sexual abuse.
The committee sent the bill, on a 23-20 vote, to the House of Representatives for further action.
The proposal is a direct result of the case involving the late Dr. George Reardon. He died in 1998, but in 2007 a worker renovating his former West Hartford home found thousands of slides and hundreds of movie reels of child pornography. Nearly 150 lawsuits have been filed against St. Francis Hospital in Hartford, where Reardon worked.
The current law in Connecticut requires that a child sex abuse victim file a civil suit by age 48 - 30 years after turning 18.
Some lawmakers said the law is already generous and people should be protected from unfair accusations. The bill was amended to include restrictions for filing such lawsuits.
The Legislature and Gov. M. Jodi Rell have to approve the bill before it becomes law.
The Judiciary Committee also approved a law that keeps sexting a serious crime, but it would have less serious consequences on young people in some kind of romantic relationship.