Ms. Karen Ferguson of NYS Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation will lead a workshop aimed at helping Non-Profits navigate the grants gateway on Tuesday, March 19th. If you plan on applying for state grants and you’re a non-profit, please plan on attending!
We are excited to announce the availability of an issue paper titled Protecting Town Roads From Snow Plowing Demands: A Checklist.
The 2019 Local Government Conference details are a click away. Join us on March 28th at Jefferson Community College!
This new book by Norah Machia provides a comprehensive description of the Tug Hill Commission and its efforts to help local governments with a variety of issues, including natural resource conservation and economic development. It offers the reader a glimpse into the work done by the commission’s leaders, staff and volunteers to build strong relationships with the people of the Tug Hill region, resulting in a successful partnership that has spanned decades.
The author also brings to life the stories of Tug Hill residents who have worked diligently to protect and develop their lands, allowing others to enjoy the richness and diversity of this 2,100-square-mile rural region in Northern New York.
Numerous back roads were traveled to seek out the people that make this part of New York State so unique, including farmers, maple syrup producers, and loggers. The author also shares the stories of life-long residents who have, among many other things, survived years of harsh winters on the Tug Hill plateau, home to the heaviest snowfall in the eastern United States.
The book is available for purchase from Amazon, Kinney Drugs, and the Tug Hill Tomorrow Land Trust’s website.
The August 2018 issue of the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation’s bimonthly magazine, Conservationist, includes a story by Tug Hill Commission Executive Director Katie Malinowski about Tug Hill. Featuring community-led conservation in the East Branch of Fish Creek and Salmon River watersheds, the article also describes the Tug Hill region and the work of the commission. The commission, created by New York State legislation in 1972 with the first meeting held in April of 1973, is unique in its grassroots approach that uses collaboration and consensus-building to achieve shared goals.
For more information about Conservationist, see https://www.dec.ny.gov/pubs/conservationist.html.
The article can also be read here.
The town of West Turin prevailed in a lawsuit brought by a landowner aggrieved by the town’s minimum maintenance road law. In the matter of Jerry Weikel v. Town of West Turin and Richard Failing decided by the Appellate Division Fourth Department on June 29th, the appeals court found that the plaintiff’s challenge to the law was untimely, and was brought well after the expiration of the statute of limitations. The matter does not, however, settle the general validity of the minimum maintenance road concept and this was not addressed by the appeals court. The decision can be viewed at:
The plaintiff had purchased property along the Bower Road in the Town of West Turin, obtained a certificate of occupancy for a seasonal dwelling 2008, and then requested the town to plow the road in 2014. The town had refused to plow the road, citing their minimum maintenance road law adopted in 1997 which designated the road maintenance regime as unplowed.
As the appeals court did not address the fundamental substance of the town’s minimum maintenance law, State legislative authority to enact such laws is still being sought. There are ten Tug Hill towns with minimum maintenance roads, and seven others have been awaiting adoption pending this decision. There are about 158 miles of minimum maintenance roads designated on Tug Hill, with 50 miles bordering State land on one side and 33 miles bordering State land on both sides. Bordering State land makes road upgrades for plowing problematic, especially in forest preserve counties such as Lewis and Oneida. It is estimated that the average cost of such upgrades and necessary maintenance equipment to make such roads plowable would be about $100,000 per mile.
Airport Land-Use Compatibility: Considering Airspace Viability at the Watertown International Airport
Learn about current operations, consider future enhancements, as well as examine community options for regional planning around the airport to help maintain it as a valuable economic, community, and regional asset.
The Jefferson County Department of Planning and the NYS Tug Hill Commission are co-sponsoring a land use training session on Thursday, June 14, 2018, 6:30 p.m. at Jefferson Community College, 1220 Coffeen St, Watertown, NY 13601.
You are strongly encouraged to RSVP by Tuesday, June 12th. Please register online here https://www.eventbrite.com/e/airport-land-use-compatibility-tickets-46613279574. You may also call Jefferson County Planning Department at (315) 785-3144 or email: email@example.com.
6:30-6:35 p.m. Welcome and Opening Remarks
6:35-8:30 p.m. Grant Sussey, Airport Manager at the Watertown International Airport, and Andy Nevin, Senior Planner for Jefferson County
If approved by your municipality, this workshop can provide two (2) hours of training to meet the NYS Municipality Training Requirement.
The commission’s annual newsletter and annual report, Headwaters, has been released. This year’s publication highlights new commission members, a large land conservation project in the Salmon River Watershed, activity in our Councils of Governments, and much more. You can also find it on our website at www.tughill.org/publications/headwaters/.
The commission recently updated its GIS Resources for Local Governments technical paper, to provide updated information on Geographic Information Systems (GIS) for municipal officials. The paper has information about map viewers, considerations about staffing, data and applications, and links to other resources.
The paper is available for download at http://www.tughill.org/publications/technical-issue-papers/, or hard copies can be request by calling the commission office toll-free at 888-785-2380.