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This entry was published on 2014-09-22
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Designation of council as conservation board
General Municipal (GMU) CHAPTER 24, ARTICLE 12-F
§ 239-y. Designation of council as conservation board. 1. As used in
this section, the following words and phrases shall have the following

a. "Open area". Any area characterized by natural scenic beauty or,
whose existing openess, natural condition or present state of use, if
preserved, would enhance the present or potential value of abutting or
surrounding development or would establish a desirable pattern of
development or would offer substantial conformance with the planning
objectives of the municipality or would maintain or enhance the
conservation of natural or scenic resources.

b. "Conservation open areas inventory". An inventory of open areas
within the municipality with each such area identified, described and
listed according to priority of acquisition or preservation.

c. "Conservation open areas map". A map or maps identifying open areas
within the municipality which are earmarked for preservation, including
but not limited to open areas that are required to be set aside out of
subdivision plats, publicly owned open areas, open areas preserved by
non-public organizations and open areas having conservation, historical
or scenic significance.

d. "Open space index". The conservation open areas inventory and
conservation open areas map after acceptance and approval by the local
legislative body.

2. The local legislative body of any city, town or village, which has
created a conservation advisory council may, by resolution, redesignate
such council as a conservation board provided such council has prepared
and submitted to the local legislative body the conservation open area
inventory and map which are accepted and approved by the local
legislative body as the open space index of the municipality.

3. General powers and duties of conservation boards. To further assist
a city, town or village in the development of sound open area planning
and assure preservation of natural and scenic resources on the local
level, a conservation board shall:

a. Review each application received by the local legislative body or
by the building department, zoning board, planning board, board of
appeals or other administrative body, which seeks approval for the use
or development of any open area listed in the open space index. The
conservation board shall submit a written report to the referral body
within forty-five days of receipt of such application. Such report shall
evaluate the proposed use or development of the open area in terms of
the open area planning objectives of the municipality and shall include
the effect of such use or development on the open space index. The
report shall make recommendations as to the most appropriate use or
development of the open area and may include preferable alternative use
proposals consistent with open areas conservation. A copy of every
report shall be filed with the legislative body;

b. Make available for public inspection at the office of the
conservation board copies of all such reports of the conservation board;

c. Notify the department of environmental conservation of its creation
within thirty days of the resolution of the legislative body;

d. Perform any duties assigned to it by resolution of the legislative

4. In addition to the foregoing a conservation board may:

a. Exercise any of the functions and responsibilities heretofore
granted to conservation advisory councils;

b. Request the assistance of the department of environmental
conservation in the preparation of any report.