S T A T E O F N E W Y O R K
2013-2014 Regular Sessions
I N S E N A T E
May 16, 2013
Introduced by Sen. RITCHIE -- read twice and ordered printed, and when
printed to be committed to the Committee on Agriculture
AN ACT to amend the agriculture and markets law and the public lands
law, in relation to access to viable agricultural land for new and
THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM-
BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:
Section 1. Section 16 of the agriculture and markets law is amended by
adding a new subdivision 2-d to read as follows:
2-D. AID IN EFFORTS SUPPORTING THE SUCCESSFUL TRANSFER OF VIABLE AGRI-
CULTURAL LAND FROM EXISTING OWNERS TO NEW OWNERS AND OPERATORS, ESPE-
CIALLY BEGINNING FARMERS.
S 2. Subdivision 5 of section 309 of the agriculture and markets law,
as added by chapter 79 of the laws of 1980, is amended to read as
5. The advisory council on agriculture shall advise the commissioner
and other state agency heads on state government plans, policies and
programs affecting farming and the agricultural industry of this state
INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, ADVICE REGARDING TAX, FINANCIAL ASSIST-
ANCE AND OTHER POLICIES AND PROGRAMS THAT COULD ADDRESS THE NEEDS OF
BEGINNING FARMERS AND ISSUES RELATED TO TRANSFER OF OWNERSHIP OF FARMS.
Concerned state agencies shall be encouraged to establish a working
relationship with the council and shall fully cooperate with the council
in any requests it shall make.
S 3. Subdivision 6 of section 323 of the agriculture and markets law,
as amended by chapter 268 of the laws of 2008, is amended to read as
6. reporting biennially to the governor and the legislature regarding
the activities of the commissioner, INCLUDING EFFORTS TO ENHANCE ACCESS
TO VIABLE AGRICULTURAL LAND FOR NEW AND BEGINNING FARMERS, the types of
technical assistance rendered to county agricultural and farmland
protection boards, municipalities and not-for-profit conservation organ-
izations, and the need to protect the state's agricultural economy and
EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
[ ] is old law to be omitted.
S. 5377 2
S 4. The agriculture and markets law is amended by adding a new
section 329-a to read as follows:
S 329-A. FARMLAND AVAILABILITY INFORMATION. 1. THE DEPARTMENT SHALL
COLLECT AND COMPILE INFORMATION ABOUT PUBLIC LAND THAT IS VIABLE FOR
FARMING AND IS AVAILABLE FOR PURCHASE OR LEASE FOR FARMING AND MAKE
AVAILABLE SUCH INFORMATION, INCLUDING CONTACT INFORMATION FOR THE OFFICE
OF GENERAL SERVICES, OTHER STATE AGENCIES, MUNICIPALITIES, AND OTHER
GOVERNMENTAL ENTITIES OFFERING SUCH LAND, ON ITS INTERNET WEBSITE. THE
DEPARTMENT SHALL PROVIDE GUIDANCE AND ASSISTANCE TO THE OFFICE OF GENER-
AL SERVICES, OTHER STATE AGENCIES, MUNICIPALITIES AND OTHER GOVERNMENTAL
ORGANIZATIONS THAT REQUEST SUCH ASSISTANCE, IN IDENTIFYING LAND THAT IS
VIABLE FOR FARMING.
2. THE DEPARTMENT MAY ALSO MAKE AVAILABLE SIMILAR INFORMATION ABOUT
PRIVATE LAND AVAILABLE FOR PURCHASE OR LEASE FOR FARMING, INCLUDING
CONTACT INFORMATION FOR THE OWNERS OF SUCH LAND.
S 5. Section 2 of the public lands law is amended by adding two new
subdivisions 2-a and 2-b to read as follows:
2-A. STATE-OWNED REAL PROPERTY INVENTORY; FARMING. A. THE COMMISSIONER
OF GENERAL SERVICES IS AUTHORIZED AND DIRECTED TO DEVELOP AN INVENTORY,
IN COOPERATION WITH THE COMMISSIONER OF AGRICULTURE AND MARKETS, OF
STATE-OWNED REAL PROPERTY THAT MAY BE VIABLE FOR FARMING.
B. IF THE COMMISSIONER DETERMINES THAT ANY OF SUCH PROPERTY SHOULD BE
MADE AVAILABLE FOR PURCHASE OR LEASE FOR FARMING THEN SUCH INFORMATION
SHALL BE PROVIDED TO THE DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE AND MARKETS FOR THE
FARMLAND AVAILABILITY INFORMATION PROGRAM, PROVIDED, HOWEVER, THAT IF
THE COMMISSIONER, IN COOPERATION WITH THE COMMISSIONER OF AGRICULTURE
AND MARKETS, DETERMINES THAT ANY OF SUCH PROPERTY SHOULD BE PROTECTED
AND PRESERVED USING ARTICLE TWENTY-FIVE-AAA OF THE AGRICULTURE AND
MARKETS LAW THEN INFORMATION ABOUT SUCH PROPERTY SHALL NOT BE PROVIDED
FOR THE FARMLAND AVAILABILITY INFORMATION PROGRAM UNTIL A REVIEW OF THE
MERITS AND FEASIBILITY OF PRESERVING SUCH PROPERTY USING SUCH ARTICLE
HAS BEEN CONSIDERED.
2-B. REPORT. THE COMMISSIONER SHALL REPORT TO THE GOVERNOR AND THE
LEGISLATURE WITHIN ONE YEAR OF THE EFFECTIVE DATE OF THIS SUBDIVISION
A. THE INVENTORY OF STATE-OWNED REAL PROPERTY THAT MAY BE VIABLE FOR
FARMING CONDUCTED PURSUANT TO SUBDIVISION TWO-A OF THIS SECTION;
B. THE FEASIBILITY OF, AND BARRIERS TO, SELLING, LEASING OR USING SUCH
PROPERTY FOR FARMING;
C. THE FEASIBILITY OF USING ARTICLE TWENTY-FIVE-AAA OF AGRICULTURE AND
MARKETS LAW TO PROTECT AND PRESERVE SUCH LAND FOR FARMING WHEN SUCH LAND
IS SOLD; AND
D. ANY CONCERNS RELATED TO SELLING OR LEASING SUCH PROPERTY FOR FARM-
ING, INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, THE TYPES OF FARMING ACTIVITIES THAT
MAY BE APPROPRIATE AND THE ENVIRONMENTAL AND COMMUNITY IMPACTS OF FARM-
ING SUCH PROPERTIES.
S 6. Section 2 of the public lands law is amended by adding a new
subdivision 3-a to read as follows:
3-A. LAND VIABLE FOR FARMING; IDENTIFICATION. THE COMMISSIONER OF
GENERAL SERVICES IS AUTHORIZED AND DIRECTED, AS PART OF THE STATE-OWNED
REAL PROPERTY MANAGEMENT PROGRAM, TO WORK WITH STATE AGENCIES TO IDENTI-
FY LAND THAT MAY BE VIABLE FOR FARMING AND MAY BE MADE AVAILABLE FOR
PURCHASE OR LEASE FOR FARMING.
S 7. This act shall take effect immediately.