Enacts the "bird-friendly building council act" to establish a council to promote the use of bird-friendly building materials and design features in buildings; research the magnitude of problems facing birds colliding with buildings; identify existing and emerging products, technologies and concepts to reduce or eliminate bird mortality from building collisions; and develop public awareness.
STATE OF NEW YORK
Cal. No. 307
2019-2020 Regular Sessions
January 9, 2019
Introduced by Sens. HOYLMAN, CARLUCCI, HARCKHAM, KAPLAN, KRUEGER, SERRA-
NO -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed
to the Committee on Environmental Conservation -- reported favorably
from said committee, ordered to first and second report, ordered to a
third reading, amended and ordered reprinted, retaining its place in
the order of third reading -- passed by Senate and delivered to the
Assembly, recalled, vote reconsidered, restored to third reading,
amended and ordered reprinted, retaining its place in the order of
AN ACT to amend the environmental conservation law, in relation to
enacting the "bird-friendly building council act"
The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assem-bly, do enact as follows:
1 Section 1. Short title. This act shall be known and may be cited as
2 the "bird-friendly building council act".
3 § 2. Legislative findings. The legislature finds that:
4 (a) a federal multi-agency report issued in 2009, entitled "The State
5 of the Birds, United States of America", provides the most comprehensive
6 assessment to date on the status of bird populations;
7 (b) the multi-agency report concludes that nearly one-third of this
8 nation's 800 bird species are endangered, threatened or in significant
10 (c) daytime and nighttime collisions with man-made structures is the
11 most significant quantifiable cause of avian mortality and is increasing
12 with adverse effects being seen at a population level with estimates
13 ranging from several hundred million to one billion birds dying from
14 collisions annually in the United States;
15 (d) not only are birds beautiful, interesting and fascinating crea-
16 tures that are eagerly welcomed by millions of Americans into their
EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
 is old law to be omitted.
S. 25--B 2
1 backyards every year, but birds also have significant positive impacts
2 on the economies of the United States and New York state;
3 (e) the United States Fish and Wildlife Service has reported that
4 birdwatchers contribute thirty-six billion dollars annually to the econ-
5 omy, and birds naturally provide billions of dollars worth of pest
6 control, benefitting farmers, forestry owners and consumers alike;
7 (f) bird-safe design features can be incorporated into new
8 construction and major renovation projects at no to minimal extra cost;
9 and existing buildings may be made bird-safe through the use of simple,
10 relatively low-cost adaptations;
11 (g) these design features have already been implemented in buildings
12 constructed and renovated both in New York state and throughout the
14 (h) numerous municipalities and political subdivisions throughout the
15 country have developed guidelines and standards promoting bird-friendly
16 building design; and
17 (i) under the aegis of the department of environmental conservation
18 there is merit and value to the establishment of a bird-friendly build-
19 ing council whose mission is to undertake a comprehensive analysis and
20 develop a set of recommended responses to this significant wildlife
22 § 3. The environmental conservation law is amended by adding a new
23 section 3-0121 to read as follows:
24 § 3-0121. Bird-friendly building council.
25 1. a. There is hereby established in the department a bird-friendly
26 building council. Such council shall be composed of fifteen members,
27 which shall include the commissioner or his or her designee, who shall
28 be the chair of the council, and fourteen members to be appointed as
29 follows: six members appointed by the commissioner; three members
30 appointed by the temporary president of the senate; one member appointed
31 by the minority leader of the senate; three members appointed by the
32 speaker of the assembly; and one member appointed by the minority leader
33 of the assembly. In addition, the commissioner of general services or
34 his or her designee shall serve as an ex-officio member of the council.
35 The members of the council shall, to the extent practicable, include
36 persons representing the following interests: wildlife conservation
37 organizations, state and federal wildlife agencies, architects, land-
38 scape architects, window manufacturers and distributors, commercial
39 building managers, and academia. The membership of the council shall be
40 broadly representative of the geographic areas of the state.
41 b. Such council shall develop rules, regulations and procedures as
42 necessary for it to effectively administer the council's responsibil-
43 ities pursuant to this section. Such council shall also promote public
44 awareness of this issue and consult with any entity including other
45 sustainable building design organizations to carry out the provisions of
46 this section.
47 c. The members of the council shall receive no compensation for their
48 services but shall be allowed their actual and necessary expenses
49 incurred in the performance of their duties pursuant to this section.
50 2. The bird-friendly building council shall conduct a study that shall
51 include, but not be limited to, the following:
52 a. assess and quantify the extent and magnitude of the problem state-
53 wide caused by diurnal and nocturnal birds colliding with buildings.
54 This effort shall identify those species most commonly killed during
55 daytime collisions, those species more commonly killed during nighttime
S. 25--B 3
1 collisions and shall include an assessment on species at risk due to
2 rarity and endangerment;
3 b. recommend criteria and guidelines for identifying existing build-
4 ings which pose a danger to bird species due to the threat of colli-
6 c. identify existing and emerging products, technologies, strategies
7 and concepts which can reduce or eliminate bird mortality from building
9 d. identify potential funding sources, for the retrofitting and/or
10 replacement of windows of existing buildings which pose a threat to
11 birds and the implementation of other mitigation strategies;
12 e. support research to better understand particular aspects of the
13 building-bird collision issue; and
14 f. in cooperation with the department and the office of general
15 services, develop a set of recommendations governing bird-friendly
16 building designs which include features, materials, technologies, strat-
17 egies, and concepts to reduce, minimize, and/or eliminate bird mortality
18 involving building collisions.
19 3. Such council may request, and is authorized to receive, any infor-
20 mation from any state agency that is relevant and material to the
21 completion of such study. Such information received by such council
22 shall be subject to the same requirements for confidentiality and limi-
23 tations on use, if any, as are applicable to such state agency's use of
24 such information.
25 4. Within eighteen months of the effective date of this section the
26 council shall submit such study to the governor, the temporary president
27 of the senate, and the speaker of the assembly. Such study shall also be
28 posted on the department's website.
29 § 4. This act shall take effect on the first of January next succeed-
30 ing the date on which it shall have become a law.