Environmental Conservation Law Section 71-2503
a.Any person who violates, disobeys or disregards any provision of article twenty-five shall be liable to the people of the state for a civil penalty of not to exceed ten thousand dollars for every such violation, to be assessed, after a hearing or opportunity to be heard, by the commissioner. Each violation shall be a separate and distinct violation and, in the case of a continuing violation, each day’s continuance thereof shall be deemed a separate and distinct violation. The penalty may be recovered in an action brought by the commissioner in any court of competent jurisdiction. Such civil penalty may be released or compromised by the commissioner before the matter has been referred to the attorney general; and where such matter has been referred to the attorney general, any such penalty may be released or compromised and any action commenced to recover the same may be settled and discontinued by the attorney general with the consent of the commissioner.
b.Upon determining that significant damage to the functions and benefits of tidal wetlands is occurring or is imminent as a result of any violation of article twenty-five, including but not limited to (i) activity taking place requiring a permit under article twenty-five but for which no permit has been granted or (ii) failure on the part of a permittee to adhere to permit conditions, the commissioner shall have power to direct the violator to cease and desist from violating the act. In such cases the violator shall be provided an opportunity to be heard within ten days of receipt of the notice to cease and desist.
c.Following a hearing held pursuant to § 71-1709 (Formal hearings)section 71-1709 of this article, the commissioner shall have power to direct the violator to cease and desist from violating the act and to restore the affected tidal wetland or area immediately adjacent thereto to its condition prior to the violation, insofar as that is possible within a reasonable time and under the supervision of the commissioner. Any order of the commissioner shall be enforceable in an action brought by the commissioner in any court of competent jurisdiction. Any civil penalty or order issued by the commissioner under this subdivision shall be reviewable in a proceeding under article seventy-eight of the civil practice law and rules.
2.Criminal sanctions. Any person who violates any provision of article twenty-five shall, in addition, for the first offense, be guilty of a violation punishable by a fine of not less than five hundred nor more than five thousand dollars; for a second and each subsequent offense such person shall be guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of not less than one thousand nor more than ten thousand dollars or a term of imprisonment of not less than fifteen days nor more than six months or both. In addition to or instead of these punishments, any offender shall be punishable by being ordered by the court to restore the affected tidal wetland or area immediately adjacent thereto to its condition prior to the offense, insofar as that is possible. The court shall specify a reasonable time for the completion of the restoration, which shall be effected under the supervision of the commissioner. Each offense shall be a separate and distinct offense and, in the case of a continuing offense, each day’s continuance thereof shall be deemed a separate and distinct offense.
3.The proceeds of any penalty or fine assessed under this section shall be deposited to the credit of the marine resources account of the conservation fund.
Section 71-2503 — Violation; penalties,
https://www.nysenate.gov/legislation/laws/ENV/71-2503 (updated Sep. 22, 2014; accessed Nov. 25, 2023).