New York Agriculture & Markets Law
State Assistance Payments to Not-for-profit Conservation Organizations
§ 325-a. State assistance payments to not-for-profit conservation organizations.
1. Subject to the availability of funds, a program is hereby established for the purpose of awarding state assistance to not-for-profit conservation organizations for activities that will assist counties and municipalities with their agricultural and farmland protection efforts. To be eligible, an organization shall have at least one active farmer on their board of directors at the time of application or shall provide for the appointment of a farmer to such board of directors in a manner approved by the commissioner.
2. Awards of state assistance payments shall be made on a competitive basis through a request for proposal process which shall set forth the standards for the selection process, the required proposal format, the costs which are eligible for funding, reporting requirements, and such other provisions as the commissioner may deem necessary, proper or desirable to achieve the purposes of this section. Applications for state assistance payments must be endorsed by the agricultural and farmland protection board for the county or counties in which the funded activities would be implemented.
3. In evaluating applications, the commissioner shall give priority to activities that will assist counties and municipalities with their agricultural and farmland protection efforts by disseminating information and providing technical assistance to county and municipal governments, owners of agricultural lands and other agricultural interests.
4. Upon receipt of an application for state assistance, the commissioner shall review the request, consult with the advisory council on agriculture and, within ninety days from the receipt of a complete application, make a determination as to whether or not the application will be funded.
5. State assistance payments awarded to an applicant shall be used in a manner which does not in any way unreasonably restrict or regulate farm operations in contravention of the purposes of article twenty-five-AA of this chapter.
6. State assistance payments awarded pursuant to this section shall not exceed fifty thousand dollars to any applicant in any fiscal year, and shall not exceed five hundred thousand dollars to all applicants in any fiscal year.