How to Enhance Transparency in Planning Proceedings
Webinar June 23, 4 pm
Public confidence in government is low. Local leaders must find opportunities to bring the public “under the tent” as it relates to planning decisions. Simply “checking the boxes” in terms of open meetings requirements is not enough to ensure that the public understands projects and their potential impact. This session will examine best practices and inexpensive (or free) tools to ensure the public understands the impact of proposed projects and your thought process in arriving at a final decision. Please register in advance for this webinar at https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_998O8LDGQ3WQgBkvq6odxg.
SPEAKER: Matt Horn, ICMA-CM, Director of Municipal Services at the MRB Group, www.mrbgroup.com. Matt is a former city manager with a strong background in infrastructure planning, strategic development, and community engagement. He has extensive experience in municipal budgeting and finance, collaborative service delivery, comprehensive planning, downtown revitalization and economic development. His municipal consulting background includes internal process auditing, public relations assistance and guidance, and development of local government management capacity, as well as long-term strategic planning for community growth.
Justice Court Solutions for Small Towns and Villages Webinar Thursday, June 18, 2020 10:30 am to Noon
Register in advance: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_BHgunBP3RAqC5M4x6kpvhQ
There are multiple options available to municipalities for shared services in the justice courts, some of which require home rule legislation and action by the State Legislature and some which require no home rule legislation and local action only. This session will provide details on these options and share several real-life Tug Hill examples. The commission’s issue paper on the topic is good background material, available at www.tughill.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/09/Justice-Court-Consolidation-Solutions-Final.pdf.
SPEAKER: Angie Kimball, Cooperative Tug Hill Council Circuit Rider, NYS Tug Hill Commission.
Angie has served as a commission circuit rider since 2012. Prior to her work at the commission, Angie served as a town justice for Redfield for several years. She has presented on the topic at the NYS Department of State Local Government Innovation Conference and at the Rockefeller Institute for Government’s annual local government forum.
The commission is gathering resources and answers to frequently asked questions regarding the current pandemic. Please click here for more information.
The Accelerated Renewable Energy Growth and Community Benefits Act (Act) was finalized in the 2020-21 state budget adopted last week. The Act became effective immediately and sunsets December 31, 2030. Below are bullet points with some highlights of the Act. The full text of the new law is here: NYS 2020-21 Budget PART JJJ.
- Amends Public Service Law to exclude renewable energy from Article 10
- Projects in Article 10 (even at draft Public Involvement Program stage) can shift to new process if they are greater than 20 MW
- Creates the Office of Renewable Energy Siting (Office) in the Department of State to oversee new process
- Renewable energy projects greater than 25 MW and co-located storage can go through
- Uniform standards and conditions for siting design, construction and operation must be set within one year. Four public hearing will be held to gather public input.
- Applications submitted to Office must show proof of consultation with municipality. Office has 60 days to review and deem complete. If no determination in 60 days, application is deemed complete.
- Within 60 days after application is complete, Office meets with other State agencies and publishes draft permit conditions for 60-day public comment with notification to municipality and public notice.
- Projects must adhere to all local laws unless the law is found to be unreasonably burdensome. Office can override local law if unreasonably burdensome in light of Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act goals & environmental benefits
- $1000/KW for intervenor fees for local governments and community intervenors
- Amends Article 8 of Public Authorities Law to add a new Title 9-B: Clean Energy Resources and Development Program and establishes the program at NYSERDA
- New program includes identifying sites, establishing protocols (including for notification to local government), undertaking work to acquire land control and permits, running a competitive program to transfer projects to private developers, providing community incentives, etc.
- Requires Department of Public Service to complete a power grid study within nine months.
- Authorizes New York Power Authority to build identified bulk power projects identified in the DPS study that are needed to expeditiously achieve CLCPA targets.
- Public Service Commission will commence a proceeding to determine utility bill discounts or other benefits for residents of clean energy project host communities.
- Public Service Commission must complete Article 7 (transmission) reviews within 12 months of complete application.
- Amends Environmental Conservation Law to authorize DEC to use funds to implement and Endangered and Threatened Species Mitigation Plan.
- Removes the requirement that municipalities consult with NYSERDA on PILOTs made in the initial proposal
The new Tug Hill Recreation Guide is printed and available, created by a partnership among the 1000 Islands International Tourism Council, Lewis County Chamber of Commerce, Oswego County Tourism, Oneida County Tourism, Tug Hill Commission and Tug Hill Tomorrow Land Trust. The 64-page, full color guide features communities across the region and over 25 full page trail maps for non-motorized recreation on and around Tug Hill.
Copies are available from all of the aforementioned organizations
Given the most recent guidance from NYS and the CDC regarding the coronavirus, the Tug Hill Commission has made the difficult decision to cancel the annual Tug Hill Local Government Conference scheduled for Thursday, March 26. Registered attendees, exhibitors and speakers should have already received email messages from someone at the commission with information.
We are working with our speakers to gather their presentations or recordings of their presentations. While not ideal, we know many of you depend on the LGC training to meet your four-hour planning and zoning board training requirement. This year’s schedule was exceptional with many hot topics being addressed, and we want you to have this information in hand sooner rather than later. Please watch your email for more information over the next week, as well as our 2020 LGC Page and Facebook page. We will upload the presentation materials as we receive them from our speakers. Please keep in mind that presenters may not have the capability or availability to provide us their sessions, as they too may be facing a great deal of uncertainty in their work flows.
We hope you, your families, and your communities stay healthy and that this situation resolves quickly. We will miss seeing you on March 26, but know that we are only a phone call or email away. Please reach out to us at (315) 785-2380 if you have any questions.
New to local government in the Tug Hill region? Not sure exactly how staff at the Tug Hill Commission can assist? Please take a look at our updated Local Government Services brochure here!
The Northern Oneida County Council of Governments (NOCCOG) in cooperation with the NYS Tug Hill Commission seeks applicants for the position of NOCCOG Municipal Management Consultant. NOCCOG is a cooperative of 17-member local governments in the Tug Hill region providing day-to-day technical assistance through this position to its member communities. Answering to an executive committee and working as a state employee of the commission the person filling this post is expected, in addition to managing associates, to establish and maintain regular contact with member communities and to serve as the program manager. The ability to work independently and be self-motivated is critical to this position. Submit letter of interest and resume to Jean Waterbury, NYS Tug Hill Commission, 317 Washington Street, Watertown, NY 13601, email@example.com by February 21, 2020.
Read the full job description here: NOCCOG Municipal Management Consultant.