New York Agriculture & Markets Law
Establishment of Animal Response Teams
1. The commissioner is hereby authorized to establish state and county animal response teams to support the prevention of, preparedness for, response to, and recovery from emergencies and disasters affecting animals in New York state. The commissioner may appoint qualified volunteers to such teams which may include appropriate state agency and specialty personnel and such other personnel and volunteers he or she deems appropriate. For purposes of this section, “qualified volunteer” shall mean a person who does not receive compensation for his or her services, who is an active member of an animal response team and has either been activated by directive of the commissioner or is acting in an official capacity of the animal response team pursuant to guidelines from the commissioner.
2. The commissioner shall be responsible for training such teams established pursuant to this section to ensure response during emergencies and disasters.
3. Individuals appointed to an animal response team shall be deemed volunteer state employees for purposes of section seventeen of the public officers law and section three of the workers’ compensation law.
4. The commissioner shall promulgate rules and regulations relating to the formation, training, appointing and activation of state and county animal response teams established pursuant to this article, and is authorized to solicit and accept funds from any public or private source to help carry out the provisions of this article. Provided, however, that the commissioner shall consult with state and local emergency personnel relative to the activation of such animal response teams.