|SAME AS||SAME AS S06484|
|COSPNSR||D'Urso, Rosenthal L, Ortiz, Thiele, Reyes, Gottfried, Griffin, Otis|
|Amd §§802, 805, 809 & 810, Exec L|
|Relates to preserving ecological integrity, wildlife and open space in the Adirondack park; strengthens land use and development provisions in the Adirondack park so as to curtail rural sprawl.|
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STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 8123--A 2019-2020 Regular Sessions IN ASSEMBLY June 3, 2019 ___________ Introduced by M. of A. ENGLEBRIGHT, D'URSO, L. ROSENTHAL, ORTIZ, THIELE -- read once and referred to the Committee on Environmental Conserva- tion -- reported and referred to the Committee on Rules -- Rules Committee discharged, bill amended, ordered reprinted as amended and recommitted to the Committee on Rules AN ACT to amend the executive law, in relation to preserving ecological integrity, wildlife and open space in the Adirondack park The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assem- bly, do enact as follows: 1 Section 1. Legislative findings and statement of purpose. When enacted 2 in nineteen hundred seventy-three, the Adirondack park land use and 3 development plan represented an historic application of natural 4 resource-based land use control and economic opportunity for the park's 5 residents and communities. For over forty years, the plan has sought to 6 insure optimum overall conservation, protection, preservation, develop- 7 ment and use of the unique scenic, aesthetic, wildlife, recreational, 8 open space, historic, ecological and natural resources of this cherished 9 area and the essential interdependence of economic and community needs 10 through balanced apportionment of land use within the park. 11 Conservation science and land use planning techniques have advanced 12 since the enactment of the plan. It is now recognized that the spatial 13 pattern of development is fully, if not more, as ecologically important 14 as its overall density. 15 Subdivision of land into large residential lots, or rural sprawl, 16 impairs ecosystem function, decreases biotic integrity, alters species 17 behavior and composition, increases human-wildlife conflicts, fragments 18 ownership, impairs cohesive land management, undermines the open space 19 character of the park, and threatens its agricultural and forestry work- 20 ing landscapes. 21 Conservation development is an approach to the design, construction 22 and stewardship of development that achieves functional protection of EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD13035-03-9A. 8123--A 2 1 natural resources, while providing social and economic benefits to human 2 communities. It requires a process that ensures thorough analysis of 3 ecological systems and environmental conditions before the developer 4 actually designs the project. This saves the preparation of detailed 5 subdivision plans, the most expensive part of design, to the end of the 6 planning process. The process provides for smaller initial costs and 7 allows for agency and public input before design funds are exhausted and 8 ensures that the developer is not committed to a design that is not 9 supported by ecological and environmental conditions. 10 The purpose of this act is to strengthen the land use and development 11 plan and its administration by incorporating modern conservation design 12 principles therein and to curtail rural sprawl. It is acknowledged that 13 each property is unique and that subdivision should be pursued in 14 accordance with ecologically-sound principles including appropriate 15 dedication and preservation of substantial open space areas in further- 16 ance of environmental protection goals and working landscapes. 17 § 2. Section 802 of the executive law is amended by adding six new 18 subdivisions 17-b, 18-a, 18-b, 18-c, 43-a and 52-a to read as follows: 19 17-b. "Conservation subdivision" means the division of any tract of 20 land into a residential subdivision of twenty-five or more lots, parcels 21 or sites in low intensity use areas, ten or more lots, parcels or sites 22 in rural use areas, and five or more lots, parcels or sites in resource 23 management areas. A subdivision involving solely lawfully existing prin- 24 cipal buildings and associated infrastructure shall not be deemed a 25 conservation subdivision. A subdivision created pursuant to paragraph c 26 of subdivision one of section eight hundred eleven of this article is 27 not a conservation subdivision. 28 18-a. "Development envelope" means the area of land within a residen- 29 tial lot, parcel or site within which all principal buildings, guest 30 cottages, roads, driveways, and other structures and infrastructure must 31 be located. Roads and trails associated with forestry, agriculture and 32 open space recreation are allowed outside of the development envelope 33 pursuant to the open space management and stewardship plan. 34 18-b. "Ecological impact zone" means that area of a project site 35 extending six hundred sixty feet beyond the development envelope for 36 each development site and any contiguous developed sites. 37 18-c. "Ecological site analysis" means an analysis of a project site 38 that identifies important ecological systems, natural resources and 39 habitat on and adjacent to the project site and identifies areas deserv- 40 ing protection and potential development areas for house lots, roads and 41 associated infrastructure. 42 43-a. "Open space management and stewardship plan" means a plan for 43 the ownership, configuration, permanent legal protection, forestry, 44 agriculture and recreational open space uses, and management of desig- 45 nated open spaces. Open space management and stewardship plan also 46 means a plan for the ownership, configuration and management of open 47 spaces providing permanent legal protection of open spaces while allow- 48 ing for forestry, agriculture and recreation open spaces. 49 52-a. "Project site" means the land included in a project upon which 50 the applicable overall intensity guideline is calculated pursuant to 51 paragraph c of subdivision ten of section eight hundred nine of this 52 article. 53 § 3. Subparagraph 2 of paragraph f of subdivision 3 of section 805 of 54 the executive law, as amended by chapter 348 of the laws of 1973, is 55 amended to read as follows:A. 8123--A 3 1 (2) Purposes, policies and objectives. The basic purpose and objective 2 of rural use areas is to provide for and encourage those rural land uses 3 that are consistent and compatible with the relatively low tolerance of 4 the areas' natural resources and the preservation of the open spaces 5 that are essential and basic to the unique character of the park. Anoth- 6 er objective of rural use areas is to prevent strip development along 7 major travel corridors in order to enhance the aesthetic and economic 8 benefit derived from a park atmosphere along these corridors. 9 Residential development and related development and uses should occur 10 [ on large lots or] in relatively small clusters on carefully selected 11 and well designed sites. This will provide for further diversity in 12 residential and related development opportunities in the park. 13 § 4. Subparagraph 2 of paragraph g of subdivision 3 of section 805 of 14 the executive law, as amended by chapter 348 of the laws of 1973, is 15 amended to read as follows: 16 (2) Purposes, policies and objectives. The basic purposes and objec- 17 tives of resource management areas are to protect the delicate physical 18 and biological resources, encourage proper and economic management of 19 forest, agricultural and recreational resources and preserve the open 20 spaces that are essential and basic to the unique character of the park. 21 Another objective of these areas is to prevent strip development along 22 major travel corridors in order to enhance the aesthetic and economic 23 benefits derived from a park atmosphere along these corridors. 24 [ Finally, resource management areas will allow for residential] Resi- 25 dential development [ on substantial acreages or] and related development 26 and uses should occur in relatively small clusters on carefully selected 27 and well designed sites. 28 § 5. Section 809 of the executive law is amended by adding a new 29 subdivision 11-a to read as follows: 30 11-a. All conservation subdivisions shall be reviewed pursuant to this 31 subdivision. a. (1) The applicant shall submit to the agency: 32 (i) an initial ecological site analysis reviewing the natural 33 resources of the project site and adjacent lands, utilizing current 34 local and regional data and research conclusions, including identifica- 35 tion and mapping of important ecological areas; 36 (ii) preliminary on-site analysis to identify important ecological 37 areas and other site features relevant to the development consider- 38 ations; and 39 (iii) a concept plan for the project, based on the data specified in 40 clauses (i) and (ii) of this subparagraph that minimizes the area of the 41 project subject to ecological disturbance, protects important ecological 42 areas, promotes clustering such that ecological impact zones are over- 43 lapped as much as possible, takes into account existing open space and 44 ecological impact zones on adjacent properties and identifies areas for 45 development that have appropriate soils and slopes. 46 (2) The agency shall undertake an initial site visit to access natural 47 resources and site features. 48 (3) The agency shall provide for a public comment period and hold a 49 public meeting on public notice, regarding the initial data and concept 50 plan. 51 (4) The agency shall specify to the applicant any additional study of 52 the project site necessary to complete a final ecological site analysis 53 and specify any other information requirements relevant to the develop- 54 ment considerations. The ecological site analysis, as detailed in para- 55 graph b of this subdivision, shall be submitted to the agency for 56 approval.A. 8123--A 4 1 (5) The applicant shall thereafter prepare the subdivision plan, which 2 shall include parcel boundaries and development envelopes, location of 3 open space and the draft open space management and stewardship plan. All 4 plans shall be based upon the approved ecological site analysis and 5 other site resources relevant to the development considerations. Upon 6 submission of these plans, as accepted by the agency, the application 7 review process governed by subdivisions two, three, four, five and six 8 of this section shall commence. The agency may request additional infor- 9 mation regarding the proposed subdivision plan and the open space 10 management and stewardship plan and may require revisions to the plans 11 before deeming the application complete. 12 (6) No conservation subdivision shall be approved unless (i) the find- 13 ings required by subdivision ten of this section are made, and (ii) 14 ownership, configuration, protection, compatible uses and management of 15 the designated open space is based on the ecological site analysis, and 16 is included in the open space management and stewardship plan and incor- 17 porated in permit conditions. 18 (7) The agency may provide by regulation for a variance from specific 19 conservation development requirements if it determines that such 20 requirements would cause an undue economic hardship and are not required 21 to protect the ecological resources of the project site. 22 (8) The agency shall have a standing to enforce by appropriate civil 23 action any permit condition, deed restriction, covenant, easement or 24 other permanent means of protecting open space. 25 b. The ecological site analysis shall address the following consider- 26 ations: 27 (1) identification of important ecological and sensitive areas of the 28 project site including, but not limited to, habitat, wetlands, flood- 29 plains, natural drainage ways and steep slope areas; 30 (2) the terrestrial and aquatic wildlife inhabiting, breeding on, 31 migrating across, traversing or otherwise using the project site; 32 (3) corridors, including ridgelines and riparian zones, providing 33 means by which wildlife may travel to adjacent or contiguous areas 34 providing habitat, breeding or spawning areas or meeting other needs; 35 (4) vegetative buffers on the shorelines of lakes, ponds, rivers and 36 streams and protection and preservation of vernal pools and riparian 37 areas; 38 (5) large intact forest tracts for protection of wildlife habitat and 39 biodiversity, especially for protection of species native to or other- 40 wise requiring such tracts; for watershed preservation and for miti- 41 gation of climate change, while allowing forestry, agriculture and 42 recreation uses; 43 (6) minimizing the creation of man-made and hardened edges between 44 forested tracts, roads and other open areas and the length of roads and 45 driveways; 46 (7) the size, configuration and proposed uses of the project site to 47 be preserved by permanent legal means, while allowing for recreation, 48 forestry and agriculture uses on dedicated open spaces. 49 c. Designated open space shall be, to the greatest extent possible: 50 (1) located outside the boundaries of all lots, parcels or sites for 51 the development and designed to protect the ecology and open space of 52 the park; and 53 (2) configured applying these design factors: 54 (i) include the important ecological areas of the property, based on 55 the approved ecological site analysis;A. 8123--A 5 1 (ii) provide connectivity to any neighboring areas of open space, 2 other protected areas, working forests and agriculture; 3 (iii) not be divided by subdivision roads, driveways or other perma- 4 nent man-made fragmenting features; 5 (iv) create one large, contiguous area rather than many small areas. 6 If large areas are not feasible, than a few smaller, important ecologi- 7 cal areas of the site may be protected if connected by corridors 8 comprised of natural landcover with widths of no less than three hundred 9 thirty feet; and 10 (v) minimize edge-to-area ratio of the open space and make it as 11 uniform as possible. 12 d. (1) The minimum open space required in a conservation subdivision 13 is: 14 (i) in low intensity use areas, forty percent of the project site. If 15 the open space design reaches sixty percent, there may be allowed a ten 16 percent density bonus. If it reaches seventy percent, there may be 17 allowed a twenty percent density bonus. 18 (ii) in rural use areas, fifty-five percent of the project site. If 19 the open space design reaches seventy percent, there may be allowed a 20 ten percent density bonus. If it reaches eighty percent, there may be 21 allowed a twenty percent density bonus. 22 (iii) in resource management areas, seventy-five percent of the 23 project site. If the open space design reaches eighty-five percent, 24 there may be allowed a ten percent density bonus. If it reaches ninety 25 percent, there may be allowed a twenty percent density bonus. 26 (2) Utilization of the calculated density bonus is not guaranteed and 27 is subject to agency review. The additional principal buildings may be 28 situated on the project site, or within the same directly contiguous 29 land use area, pursuant to paragraph c of subdivision ten of this 30 section. The additional principal buildings may be allowed for use in 31 the same, but non-contiguous land use area, if within the same town. 32 This density bonus cannot be utilized in any manner except by agency 33 permit and only if all the required findings of subdivision ten of this 34 section are made for the placement of the buildings and other infras- 35 tructure. 36 § 6. Section 809 of the executive law is amended by adding three new 37 subdivisions 16, 17 and 18 to read as follows: 38 16. Nothing in this section shall be deemed to prevent the agency from 39 requiring any jurisdictional project pursuant to section eight hundred 40 ten of this article to be designed in accordance with an ecological site 41 analysis and developed pursuant to an ecological preservation and 42 stewardship plan and to provide for the preservation of a portion of the 43 project site in open space by deed restriction, easement or other legal 44 means. 45 17. In determining whether a conservation subdivision permit is 46 required pursuant to this article, the agency shall not consider any 47 lots lawfully created prior to the effective date of this subdivision. 48 Nothing in this subdivision shall affect the ability of the agency, by 49 permit or by any extension thereof, to determine a period of time by 50 which a permitted subdivision shall be deemed "in existence" as defined 51 in subdivision twenty-five of section eight hundred two of this article. 52 18. Nothing in this section shall be construed to authorize the agency 53 to require that any interest in land comprising part of a conservation 54 subdivision be conveyed to a public body or any other legal entity, 55 unless the applicant so proposes and the other legal entity agrees.A. 8123--A 6 1 § 7. Subparagraph 3 of paragraph d of subdivision 1 of section 810 of 2 the executive law, as added by chapter 348 of the laws of 1973, is 3 amended to read as follows: 4 (3) All land uses and development and all subdivisions of land involv- 5 ing [ twenty] ten or more residential lots, parcels or sites or residen- 6 tial units, whether designed for permanent, seasonal or transient use. 7 § 8. Subparagraph 3 of paragraph c of subdivision 1 of section 810 of 8 the executive law, as added by chapter 348 of the laws of 1973, is 9 amended to read as follows: 10 (3) All land uses and development and all subdivisions of land involv- 11 ing [ thirty-five] twenty-five or more residential lots, parcels or sites 12 or residential units, whether designed for permanent, seasonal or tran- 13 sient use. 14 § 9. Subparagraph 1 of paragraph b and subparagraph 1 of paragraph c 15 of subdivision 2 of section 810 of the executive law, as added by chap- 16 ter 348 of the laws of 1973, are amended to read as follows: 17 (1) Subdivisions of land (and all land uses and development related 18 thereto) involving [ ten] five or more but less than [ thirty-five] twen- 19 ty-five lots, parcels or sites, other than subdivisions of land involv- 20 ing mobile homes. 21 (1) Subdivisions of land (and all land uses and development related 22 thereto) involving five or more but less than [ twenty] ten lots, parcels 23 or sites, other than subdivisions of land involving mobile homes. 24 § 10. Nothing in this act shall be construed to authorize the Adiron- 25 dack park agency to require that any interest in land comprising part of 26 a conservation subdivision be conveyed to a public body or any other 27 legal entity. 28 § 11. This act shall take effect on the one hundred eightieth day 29 after it shall have become a law.