SESSION 2: 10:45 AM - 12:00 Noon
Ag Districts and Ag Assessments
New York State Department of Ag & Markets, Jeffrey Kehoe
Is your Town Planning for Agriculture? Agricultural Districts Law (AML 25AA) extends various protections to farmers from unreasonably restrictive local laws. This session will highlight common myths related to Right to Farm Laws, other agricultural protections, and funding opportunities for municipalities to accommodate emerging agricultural interests.
Municipality Website Do's and Don'ts
Association of Towns, Katie Hodgdon
Municipal websites are now the norm rather than the exception, and the proliferation of using municipal websites has led to many questions regarding requirements and best practices. Can the town require the clerk to maintain the website? Is the village required to post the meeting agenda before the meeting occurs? This course will cover the laws and requirements governing municipal websites, including which officials have control over the website, what information is required to be included on the website, and how local governments should balance the website with other forms of media, including social media.
A Primer on Enacting Local Legislation and Conducting Referenda
NY Conference of Mayors, Wade Beltramo
Local governments have extensive authority under the Municipal Home Rule Law to adopt local legislation relating to the government, protection, order, conduct, safety, health, and well-being of persons and property within their municipal boundaries. There are limitations to this authority, however, and courts will not hesitate to invalidate local laws that are enacted improperly. This session will provide an overview of how municipalities establish policy by adopting local laws and other types of local legislation.
Economic Development for Rural Communities
MRB Group, Matt Horn and Diana Smith
This session will highlight discussions from MRB Group’s Leadership Roundtables held with local governments in smaller communities. Many participants are surprised at how much influence they have in creating a thriving local economy. Frequent questions include: What is Economic Development? Who has a role? How can we have an impact? Can we afford to fund Economic Development activities? Where do we begin?
SEQR Hot Topics
Wendel Companies, Andrew Reilly & Leanne Voit
While SEQR is sometimes seen as a burdensome requirement for municipal actions, it can actually be used to make projects BETTER! Based on 40+ years of experience and thousands of projects, this presentation will focus on some of the important and controversial SEQR issues that arise frequently with today’s projects.
Special Use Permits
New York State Department of State
Some uses require additional review and should be granted permission only if the application meets certain conditions. These special uses include gas stations, dog kennels, and uses with drive-through windows. The special use permit is also used for development in environmentally sensitive zones with overlays such as for wetlands, steep slopes, and along scenic ridgelines. Scenarios in which the special use permit tool is most helpful will be discussed, along with rules local boards must follow for reviewing and approving applications for special use permits.
Court Clerk Class