New York Agriculture & Markets Law
Community Gardens Task Force
1. The commissioner may convene a community gardens task force to identify and develop ways to encourage state agencies, municipalities and private parties to establish and expand community gardens and the activities conducted by such gardens.
2. The task force shall be chaired by the commissioner, or by such officer or employee of the department as shall be designated by the commissioner. The membership of the task force may include representation from appropriate state agencies and members that represent existing community gardens, counties, cities, towns, villages, school districts, other special use districts, public authorities and cooperative extension services.
3. The commissioner, may request the assistance of state agencies to carry out the work of the task force.
4. (a) The goals of the task force may include, but are not limited to, the study, evaluation and development of recommendations:
(i) to encourage the establishment and expansion of community gardens by state agencies, municipal governments and private parties, (ii) to encourage cooperation between the activities and operations of community gardens and provision of donated food to local voluntary food assistance programs for the poor and disadvantaged, (iii) to increase the benefits that community gardens may provide to the local community in which they are located, and
(iv) to encourage cooperation with community-based organizations to increase the opportunities for seniors, those aged sixty years of age or older, to participate in community gardens.
(b) In achieving the goals of the task force, the task force may consider recommendations that:
(i) encourage the execution of conservation easements by state agencies, municipalities or private parties to establish or protect community gardens, (ii) encourage the creation of mechanisms to transfer development rights to protect community gardens or encourage the donation or lease of lands for community gardens, (iii) development of model zoning codes, local land use laws or other municipal policies that could encourage the establishment or retention of community gardens, and
(iv) any other activity to achieve the goals deemed appropriate by the task force according to the provisions of this article.