Senator Zeldin Announces Signing of Bill to Authorize Resident Curator Program at Parks and Historic Sites in New York
New Law Allows Private Investors to Rehabilitate Vacant and Deteriorated State Buildings
ALBANY—Senator Lee Zeldin (R, C, I—Shirley) announced today that his bill to authorize the Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation to establish a Resident Curator Program has been signed into law.
The Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation (OPRHP) owns several buildings in parks and historic sites within New York State. Many of these buildings are left unoccupied for two main reasons, including not serving a purpose to the site, or having been severely deteriorated to a point where significant investment in time and money would be required to rehabilitate the building. However, given the location of these buildings, they are not permitted to be transferred through the usual methods available to State agencies.
This bill, S.4757A, establishes a Resident Curator Program that aims to attract private investors though a competitive bidding process. The private investors will be responsible for rehabilitating these properties at their own expense. These investors would receive a long-term lease, for up to 40 years, and are subject to all State laws, regulations and requirements. After the lease is up, ownership and the benefits of the rehabilitated structure will remain with the OPRHP.
“This bill creates an innovative program to rehabilitate and use vacant and deteriorated buildings,” said Senator Zeldin. “This will allow the Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation to focus their limited capital funds on other priorities.”
“Programs like these are already established in other states, such as Maryland and Massachusetts,” Senator Zeldin continued. “I’m proud to have sponsored this legislation to allow for implementation in New York State.”
The Resident Curator Program will be launched within three New York State Parks on Long Island: Cold Spring Harbor State Park, Heckscher State Park and Hither Hills State Park.
The bill was sponsored in the Assembly by Assemblyman Margaret Markey. This law will become effective immediately.
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