S T A T E O F N E W Y O R K
S. 1459--A A. 1412--A
2011-2012 Regular Sessions
S E N A T E - A S S E M B L Y
January 7, 2011
IN SENATE -- Introduced by Sen. LAVALLE -- read twice and ordered print-
ed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Local Govern-
ment -- recommitted to the Committee on Local Government in accordance
with Senate Rule 6, sec. 8 -- committee discharged, bill amended,
ordered reprinted as amended and recommitted to said committee
IN ASSEMBLY -- Introduced by M. of A. THIELE -- read once and referred
to the Committee on Local Governments -- recommitted to the Committee
on Local Governments in accordance with Assembly Rule 3, sec. 2 --
committee discharged, bill amended, ordered reprinted as amended and
recommitted to said committee
AN ACT to amend the general municipal law, in relation to creating the
Peconic Bay regional transportation council; and providing for the
repeal of such provisions upon expiration thereof
THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM-
BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:
Section 1. Legislative findings. The legislature hereby finds that
over the past thirty years, rapid growth and development in the Peconic
Bay region of Long Island, while providing for a successful economy, has
also resulted in some unavoidable, adverse impacts that threaten the
region's future quality of life and future economic prosperity. Traffic
congestion has been one of the primary adverse impacts from such rapid
Expanding traffic congestion has resulted in deteriorating traffic
safety with increased traffic accidents and fatalities. In addition,
traffic congestion has resulted in increased trip delays, declining air
quality, adverse impacts to historic and rural resources in the region's
villages and hamlets, parking problems, adverse impacts to residential
communities and neighborhoods resulting from the diversion of traffic
from major highways and arteries to rural residential streets and roads.
EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
[ ] is old law to be omitted.
S. 1459--A 2 A. 1412--A
The region's tourist and second home industries, the cornerstone of
its prosperity, are threatened if the adverse consequences of traffic
congestion are not promptly and adequately addressed. Further, projec-
tions from the state department of transportation and local governments
indicate that there will be a continued growth in year-round population,
seasonal residents, and traffic into the foreseeable future, exacerbat-
ing an already major problem.
The legislature finds that the unique geography of the Peconic Bay
region limits the ability to expand highway capacity for motor vehicles.
The narrow forks limit the augmentation of future highway capacity in an
east-west direction. The construction of new highways is not a feasible
alternative, and the option of improving capacity on existing highways
is limited. In addition to unique geography, impacts to the region's
natural and historic resources, such as open space, farmland, watershed
areas, wetlands, and historic sites and landmarks also limit increasing
While the region's highway infrastructure is severely overburdened,
its public transit capabilities are underdeveloped. The region possesses
underutilized rail capacity with minimal service from the Long Island
Rail Road to the region.
The legislature finds that the development of new public transit
opportunities for the Peconic Bay region represents the best alternative
to address growing traffic congestion and other transportation problems.
The region possesses an existing rail infrastructure. Existing service
to the region is minimal. Further, there is no coordination between rail
service and existing bus service. The opportunity to improve service is
The region's local governments have recognized the adverse impacts
resulting from growing traffic congestion and the need to explore other
transportation options such as public transit. Independently, the
comprehensive plans of the region's towns and villages have cited traf-
fic congestion as a critical problem and have identified improved public
transit as a future goal. Towns have created task forces and commissions
to address the transportation issue.
Further, collectively, as a region, the local governments have joined
together to explore public transit options to mitigate traffic
congestion. As early as 1994, the East End Economic and Environmental
Institute, under the auspices of the East End Mayors and Supervisors
Association issued a report entitled Blue Print for Our Future which
called for improved and coordinated bus and rail service in the Peconic
In 2005, after a four-year public outreach process, the local govern-
ments of the region issued the result of its SEEDS (Sustainable East End
Development) project. This initiative also recognized the need to create
improved transportation opportunities, including selected road improve-
ments and increased and coordinated public transit.
The private sector has also recognized the need for improved regional
transportation opportunities. The Institute for Sustainable Development,
Southampton College of Long Island University, held a conference and
issued a report calling for improved transportation opportunities in the
region. Five Town Rural Transit, Inc., a private, not-for-profit corpo-
ration has also recognized the need for public transit improvements. In
2005, they unveiled a conceptual plan for an East End Shuttle providing
coordinated bus and rail service, and issued a development proposal to
further that goal.
S. 1459--A 3 A. 1412--A
In 2007, the state of New York provided a $300,000 grant under its
Shared Municipal Services Initiative (SMSI) program to study the feasi-
bility of the East End Shuttle concept. In addition, the Long Island
Rail Road, in conjunction with the towns of Southampton and East Hampton
initiated a pilot program in 2007-2008 to provide a rail shuttle and
connecting bus service during the reconstruction of County Road 39. This
pilot program demonstrated that the rail/bus shuttle concept could be
successful. In 2009, the "East End Transportation Study Report", funded
by the SMSI program, was completed by the Volpe National Transportation
Systems Center, U.S. Department of Transportation. The study concluded
that the East End Shuttle concept was both viable and desirable.
In summary, the problem of traffic congestion with its adverse impacts
on the local environment, economy, and quality of life has long been
recognized. Further, a multitude of local governments, regional cooper-
ative initiatives, and private initiatives have all identified improved
public transit with increased and coordinated rail and bus service as
the cornerstone for solving the problem. The concept has been at the
center of public policy discussions for more than a decade.
The next step is the full development of the East End Shuttle concept
in order to implement new transit opportunities in a timely fashion.
Currently, no governmental entity exists which can coordinate the
multitude of local governments, state government, federal government,
and other stakeholders that must participate to implement a successful
public transit initiative for the Peconic Bay region.
It is the intent of the legislature with this act to provide the
necessary governmental framework and resources that will foster the
cooperation necessary to implement a public transit proposal for the
Peconic Bay region. This legislation will give the local governments the
regional framework to develop and implement this initiative, and will
mandate the cooperation of state and federal agencies. Further, it will
provide for the involvement of all stakeholders and community members in
the development process to insure an open and comprehensive decision
S 2. The general municipal law is amended by adding a new article 5-M
to read as follows:
PECONIC BAY REGIONAL TRANSPORTATION COUNCIL
SECTION 119-AAA. DEFINITIONS.
119-BBB. PECONIC BAY REGIONAL TRANSPORTATION COUNCIL.
119-CCC. POWERS AND DUTIES OF THE COUNCIL.
119-DDD. AGENCY COOPERATION.
119-EEE. IMPLEMENTATION REPORT FOR THE TRANSPORTATION PLAN.
119-FFF. SUBMISSION TO THE LEGISLATURE.
S 119-AAA. DEFINITIONS. AS USED IN THIS ARTICLE THE FOLLOWING TERMS
SHALL HAVE THE FOLLOWING MEANINGS:
1. "PECONIC BAY REGION" MEANS THE TOWNS OF EAST HAMPTON, RIVERHEAD,
SOUTHAMPTON, AND SOUTHOLD IN THE COUNTY OF SUFFOLK.
2. "COUNTY" MEANS THE COUNTY OF SUFFOLK.
3. "MUNICIPAL CORPORATION" MEANS A TOWN OR VILLAGE IN THE PECONIC BAY
4. "STATE" MEANS THE STATE OF NEW YORK.
5. "STATE AGENCY" MEANS ANY OFFICE, DEPARTMENT, BOARD, COMMISSION,
BUREAU, DIVISION, AUTHORITY, PUBLIC BENEFIT CORPORATION, AGENCY OR
INSTRUMENTALITY OF THE STATE.
6. "TRANSPORTATION PLAN" MEANS THE PLAN OF PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION
PROJECTS FOR THE PECONIC BAY REGION PROVIDED FOR IN THE EAST END TRANS-
S. 1459--A 4 A. 1412--A
PORTATION STUDY, PREPARED BY THE VOLPE NATIONAL TRANSPORTATION SYSTEMS
CENTER, DATED NOVEMBER, TWO THOUSAND NINE.
7. "PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION PROJECT" MEANS ANY RAPID TRANSIT, RAILROAD,
OMNIBUS, MARINE TRANSPORTATION, OR OTHER PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION PROJECT.
8. "COUNCIL" MEANS THE COUNCIL CREATED PURSUANT TO SECTION ONE HUNDRED
NINETEEN-BBB OF THIS ARTICLE.
9. "GOVERNOR" MEANS THE GOVERNOR OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK.
S 119-BBB. PECONIC BAY REGIONAL TRANSPORTATION COUNCIL. 1. THERE IS
HEREBY CREATED THE PECONIC BAY REGIONAL TRANSPORTATION COUNCIL. SUCH
COUNCIL SHALL CONSIST OF EIGHTEEN VOTING MEMBERS: ONE MEMBER TO BE
APPOINTED BY THE GOVERNOR WHO WILL SERVE AT THE PLEASURE OF THE GOVER-
NOR, AND THIRTEEN EX OFFICIO MEMBERS WHO ARE THE COUNTY EXECUTIVE OF THE
COUNTY OF SUFFOLK, THE FOUR TOWN SUPERVISORS FROM THE PECONIC BAY
REGION, TWO VILLAGE MAYORS TO BE APPOINTED BY THE EAST END VILLAGE OFFI-
CIALS ASSOCIATION, THE UNITED STATES CONGRESSMAN REPRESENTING THE PECON-
IC BAY REGION, THE STATE SENATOR REPRESENTING THE PECONIC BAY REGION,
THE TWO STATE ASSEMBLY MEMBERS REPRESENTING THE PECONIC BAY REGION, AND
THE TWO COUNTY LEGISLATORS REPRESENTING THE PECONIC BAY REGION, AND FOUR
CITIZEN MEMBERS WITH AN INTEREST IN TRANSPORTATION AND PUBLIC TRANSIT TO
BE APPOINTED BY THE TOWN BOARD OF EACH TOWN IN THE PECONIC BAY REGION.
EACH TOWN SHALL HAVE ONE APPOINTMENT. EACH EX OFFICIO MEMBER MAY
APPOINT A DESIGNATED REPRESENTATIVE, BY OFFICIAL AUTHORITY FILED WITH
THE COUNCIL, TO EXERCISE HIS OR HER POWERS AND PERFORM HIS OR HER
DUTIES, INCLUDING THE RIGHT TO VOTE ON MATTERS BEFORE THE COUNCIL.
2. THE COUNCIL SHALL ELECT ONE OF ITS MEMBERS AS CHAIRPERSON. ELEVEN
MEMBERS SHALL CONSTITUTE A QUORUM FOR THE TRANSACTION OF ANY BUSINESS OR
THE EXERCISE OF ANY POWER OR FUNCTION OF THE COUNCIL. AN AFFIRMATIVE
VOTE OF TEN OR MORE MEMBERS SHALL BE REQUIRED TO PASS A RESOLUTION OR
OTHERWISE EXERCISE ANY FUNCTIONS OR POWERS OF THE COUNCIL.
S 119-CCC. POWERS AND DUTIES OF THE COUNCIL. THE COUNCIL SHALL HAVE
THE FOLLOWING POWERS:
1. TO MAKE BY-LAWS FOR THE REGULATION AND MANAGEMENT OF ITS AFFAIRS;
2. TO ESTABLISH A CITIZEN ADVISORY COMMITTEE TO ASSIST IT WITH ITS
DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES;
3. TO ESTABLISH A TECHNICAL ADVISORY COMMITTEE TO ASSIST IT WITH ITS
DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES;
4. TO DEVELOP AN IMPLEMENTATION REPORT FOR THE TRANSPORTATION PLAN,
WITH THE ADVICE OF THE ADVISORY COMMITTEES;
5. TO UTILIZE TO THE EXTENT PRACTICABLE, THE STATE AND FACILITIES OF
EXISTING STATE AND LOCAL AGENCIES;
6. TO MAKE AND EXECUTE CONTRACTS AND ALL OTHER INSTRUMENTS NECESSARY
OR CONVENIENT FOR THE EXERCISE OF ITS POWERS AND DUTIES UNDER THIS ARTI-
7. TO SUE AND BE SUED;
8. TO APPOINT AN EXECUTIVE OFFICER, OFFICERS, AGENTS, EMPLOYEES, AND
PRESCRIBE THEIR DUTIES AND QUALIFICATIONS;
9. TO HOLD HEARINGS IN THE EXERCISE OF ITS POWERS, FUNCTIONS, AND
DUTIES AS PROVIDED FOR BY THIS ARTICLE;
10. TO CONTRACT FOR PROFESSIONAL AND TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE AND ADVICE;
11. TO CONTRACT FOR AND ACCEPT ANY ASSISTANCE, INCLUDING BUT NOT
LIMITED TO GIFTS, GRANTS, OR LOANS OF FUNDS, OR OF PROPERTY FROM THE
FEDERAL GOVERNMENT OR ANY AGENCY OR INSTRUMENTALITY THEREOF, OR ANY
STATE AGENCY, OR FROM ANY OTHER PUBLIC OR PRIVATE SOURCE AND TO COMPLY,
SUBJECT TO THE PROVISIONS OF THIS ARTICLE, WITH THE TERMS AND CONDITIONS
S. 1459--A 5 A. 1412--A
S 119-DDD. AGENCY COOPERATION. 1. EVERY STATE AGENCY SHALL OFFER FULL
COOPERATION TO THE COUNCIL IN CARRYING OUT THE PROVISIONS OF THIS ARTI-
2. EVERY AGENCY OF THE COUNTY AND THE MUNICIPAL CORPORATIONS SHALL
OFFER FULL COOPERATION TO THE COUNCIL IN CARRYING OUT THE PROVISIONS OF
S 119-EEE. IMPLEMENTATION REPORT FOR THE TRANSPORTATION PLAN. 1. THE
COUNCIL IS HEREBY DIRECTED TO PREPARE AN IMPLEMENTATION REPORT FOR THE
TRANSPORTATION PLAN FOR THE PECONIC BAY REGION WHICH SHALL INCLUDE:
(A) ESTABLISHMENT OF SHUTTLE TRAINS UTILIZING THE EXISTING RIGHT OF
WAY OF THE LONG ISLAND RAIL ROAD;
(B) ESTABLISHMENT AND COORDINATION OF BUS TRANSPORTATION TO COMPLEMENT
(C) A REGIONAL GOVERNANCE STRUCTURE TO OPERATE THE TRANSPORTATION
(D) ESTABLISHMENT OF PARK AND RAIL FACILITIES; AND
(E) ADDITIONAL NON-STOP TRAINS FROM NEW YORK CITY TO THE PECONIC BAY
2. THE IMPLEMENTATION REPORT SHALL BE PREPARED IN SUFFICIENT DETAIL
AND SPECIFICITY TO PERMIT THE RELEVANT GOVERNMENTAL AUTHORITIES TO
PROCEED DIRECTLY TO THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE TRANSPORTATION PLAN. THE
IMPLEMENTATION REPORT SHALL ESTABLISH A TIMETABLE FOR RECOMMENDED PUBLIC
TRANSPORTATION PROJECTS. THE IMPLEMENTATION REPORT SHALL INCLUDE A CAPI-
TAL PLAN AND BUDGET FOR ITS IMPLEMENTATION. THE IMPLEMENTATION REPORT
SHALL INCLUDE THE ASSESSMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS, PRELIMINARY ENGI-
NEERING, AND FINAL DESIGN.
3. AT LEAST FOUR PUBLIC HEARINGS, ONE IN EACH TOWN IN THE PECONIC BAY
REGION SHALL BE HELD ON THE FINAL IMPLEMENTATION PLAN.
4. A PROPOSITION TO APPROVE THE IMPLEMENTATION PLAN SHALL BE SUBMITTED
TO THE VOTERS AS A REFERENDUM IN EACH OF THE TOWNS IN THE PECONIC BAY
REGION AT THE GENERAL ELECTION TO BE HELD AT LEAST NINETY DAYS AFTER THE
COMPLETION OF THE PUBLIC HEARINGS PROVIDED FOR IN SUBDIVISION THREE OF
THIS SECTION. SUCH REFERENDUM SHALL BE DEEMED APPROVED IF IT IS APPROVED
BY A MAJORITY OF THE VOTERS VOTING ON SUCH REFERENDUM IN EACH TOWN IN
THE PECONIC BAY REGION.
S 119-FFF. SUBMISSION TO THE LEGISLATURE. UPON APPROVAL OF THE PLAN
BY REFERENDUM, SUCH APPROVED IMPLEMENTATION REPORT SHALL BE SUBMITTED TO
THE LEGISLATURE BY THE COUNCIL NO LATER THAN THIRTY DAYS AFTER SUCH
S 3. This act shall take effect immediately and shall remain in full
force and effect until December 31, 2017 when upon such date the
provisions of this act shall expire and be deemed repealed.