[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of Mamakating 5-2-1985 by L.L. No. 3-1985. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Subdivision of land — See Ch. 166.
The purpose of this chapter is to promote the health and safety of the residents of the Town of Mamakating by protecting the natural environment as affected by timber harvesting. The town recognizes that the timber resource is of significant value to the landowner and society in general and, like any crop, can be harvested. The town also recognizes that if timber harvesting practices are improperly carried out, they can result in significant damage to the forest environment, as well as to adjacent lands and waters. This chapter is intended to regulate those harvesting activities that can cause environmental damage, such as stream crossing, the location of landings, haul roads and skid trails; to require reclamation efforts that can limit subsequent environmental damage, such as soil erosion and sediment-laden runoff; and to utilize professional forest management expertise in the preparation and evaluation of timber harvest planning.
For the purpose of this chapter, the following definitions shall apply:
- BOARD FOOT
- A measure of lumber 12 inches by one inch by 12 inches.
- A method of harvesting where all trees two inches and over on a site are removed.
- COMMERCIAL TIMBER HARVESTING
- A timber harvesting activity that fells standing trees and/or removes downed trees, stems, tops or branches within any twelve-month period whose volume is greater than 20 standard cords of wood or 2,560 cubic feet of wood or 10,000 board feet of timber, as measured by the International One-Fourth-Inch Lag Rule.
- HAUL ROAD
- A constructed road of dirt and/or gravel utilized for moving cut trees from the point where they were loaded onto a truck to an exit from the site.
- An open or cleared area used for loading logs onto trucks or used for any general purpose such as for storing logs or for servicing equipment.
- LOGGING SLASH AND DEBRIS
- Any residue of trees or of the associated cutting left on the site after harvesting operation, including but not limited to undesirable tree trunks, tree tops and litter.
- MINIMUM STUMP DIAMETER
- The designated diameter of the stumps of trees to be cut, measured at a point 12 inches above the high ground level, which diameter of the remaining stumps can be checked after the tree is cut.
- PROFESSIONAL FORESTER
- A graduate forester from a Society of American Foresters' accredited forestry curriculum who has at least two years of experience in the field of forest management or timber product harvesting.
- RESOURCE MANAGEMENT AREAS
- Environmentally unique or sensitive areas which warrant special development consideration and protection. The definitions of the two different resource management areas are as follows:
- SELECTION CUTTING
- A method of harvesting where trees to be cut are selected and marked via some specified criteria before harvesting begins.
- SKID TRAIL
- A trail or rough road used to move a tree from the place where it was cut to a pile or landing where it is loaded onto a truck.
- STANDARD CORD
- A cut pile of wood measuring four feet by four feet by eight feet.
- A body of running water flowing continuously in a channel on the surface of the ground, except a body of running water which the Town Board or the town enforcement officer determines to be too insignificant in size to justify such classification.
- STREAM, INTERMITTENT
- A channel on the surface of the ground in which water flows intermittently, except a channel which the Town Board or the town enforcement officer determines to be too insignificant in size to justify such classification.
- A selective cutting or deadening of trees in an immature stand of trees for the purpose of upgrading the quality and/or growth of the trees left.
- TOWN ENFORCEMENT OFFICER
- The Building Inspector and, if applicable, the Deputy Building Inspector of the town, which enforcement officers may utilize the services of a professional forester as needed.
- WATER BARS
- Small humps or diversions for the purpose of erosion and sediment control built up across roads and landings which catch and divert runoff into adjacent vegetated areas and release the runoff in a nonerosive manner.
It is hereby required that a timber harvesting license be obtained from the town by the landowner desiring to conduct a commercial timber harvesting operation, as defined in § 181-2, in the Town of Mamakating on any one parcel or series of contiguous parcels in the same ownership. The harvesting plan, as approved, must be signed by the logger prior to the commencement of any timber harvesting.
A fee of $100 is to be paid by a landowner to obtain a license.
[Amended 10-4-1990 by L.L. No. 7-1990]
The application for the license shall be made to the Planning Board, which shall be known as the "Licensing Board" hereunder. If, after full review of the application and supporting documentation thereto, the Planning Board feels that the application should be granted and the license issued, it shall instruct the town enforcement official hereinabove designated to issue the license. Said license is to be subject to whatever requisites the Planning Board shall determine are necessary as hereinbelow stated.
[Added 6-6-1991 by L.L No. 2-1991]
The application of this chapter shall not be construed in any way to prohibit or to require a license for:
The clearing of land for rights-of-way for utilities, except that said clearing shall comply with accepted forest management practices and shall be approved by a professional forester.
The harvesting of trees for personal use by the landowner and his immediate family.
Trees removed for site preparation for construction or land development which has been approved by the Planning Board.
Commercial timber harvesting under permit or supervision of the State Department of Environmental Conservation.
The Town Planning Board shall receive the following information from the landowner before recommending a permit for forest land improvement:
Summary. A summary of cutting operations, to include:
The total land area involved in cutting operations;
The number of trees of each species to be cut;
The range, in inches of diameter, of trees to be cut;
The total board foot volume for each species to be cut;
The total volume to be removed from the cutting area;
The average number of trees per acre to be removed;
The average number of board feet per acre to be cut; and
Landowner's statement. A statement from the landowner that each tree to be removed has been designated by a professional forester, with paint or other distinctive means, at two points so as to be readily visible by the buyer. One point shall be low enough on the tree so as to be visible on the stump after the tree is removed. Trees being removed for other than saw timber need not be marked on the stump.
Conservation practices. The proposed operation shall not adversely affect drainage or possible growth of vegetation, nor shall it contribute to soil erosion by water or wind.
Adjacent property. Trees falling on adjacent properties as a result of an improvement operation shall immediately be returned to the permittee's property; no trees shall be cut within 25 feet of any property line.
Management practices. Loading areas shall be smoothed to remove all ruts and debris. Waste materials shall be buried or removed to a point out of sight of any public road.
Hours of operation. No harvesting, cutting or sawmill operations or removal of products shall take place between the hours of 7:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m. or at any time on Sundays or legal holidays.
Expiration and extensions. The term of this permit shall be for one year. However, since forest stand improvement operations may be adversely affected or delayed by unusual circumstances of weather or other occurrences, an extension of one year shall be available on the recommendation of the Planning Board when requested by the landowner.
Standards. The Town Planning Board shall recommend that the following standards be invoked, where necessary:
Top lopping or removal of debris within 50 feet of any town road or leaving an uncut screen along such roads.
Construction of water bars to prevent or reduce erosion.
To ensure compliance of the permittee with the standards of this chapter, a performance bond (in a suitable amount) may be required.
Additional requisites. The Planning Board, with the advice of the regional forester on approved forestry practices, may make additional rules regarding the periods of operation, size of trees cut, incidental earthmoving, access roads and prevention of forest fires.
[Amended 10-4-1990 by L.L. No. 7-1990; 6-6-1991 by L.L. No. 6-1991]
It shall be the duty of the town and/or regional forester and/or the town enforcement officer to investigate all complaints made under this chapter and to take or recommend to the Planning Board and/or Planning Board Attorney appropriate legal action on all violations of this chapter.
Upon determination by said forester and/or enforcement officer that there may be a violation of any of the provisions of this chapter, he may do the following:
Direct that the act which is in violation or apparent violation cease immediately and/or direct immediate action to comply with the license and/or this chapter and any other such laws, codes, rules and regulations.
Issue a stop-work order suspending the licensee's operation for a period of up to 15 days.
Notify the licensee to appear before the Planning Board, etc.
It shall be grounds for suspending, restricting, conditioning or terminating a license or denying an application for a license that any licensee, his agent or employee or any person connected or associated with the licensee as a partner, director, officer, stockholder, general manager or person who is exercising managerial authority of or in behalf of the licensee or acting under the authority of such licensee:
Violated any provisions of this chapter or any other applicable statutes, codes, rules or regulations pertaining to the harvesting of trees for commercial use or violated any of the provisions of the license issued to the applicant.
Made any false, misleading or fraudulent statement of a material fact in the application for a license or any report or record required to be kept or filed with the Town of Mamakating.
Operates the tree harvesting in a manner so as to be detrimental to the health, welfare, safety and comfort of the residents of the Town of Mamakating.
[Amended 8-6-1987 by L.L. No. 2-1987]
When an applicant applies pursuant to the provisions of this chapter for a permit, the Licensing Board may require, in its discretion, surety for performance in a form satisfactory to it by the logger in an amount not to exceed $25,000 in order to assure compliance with the provisions of this chapter.
Upon completion of such harvesting activities and the compliance with all the provisions of this chapter, as certified by a written statement from the town enforcement officer attesting to such compliance, said security shall be returned. In the case of noncompliance with this chapter, the Licensing Board shall utilize said security or such portion thereof as may be necessary to ameliorate such noncompliance, upon notice to the logger.
Town officials, in performance of their official duties, shall be authorized to enter upon the property for purposes of reviewing an application and to determine compliance with the application as approved. Such entrance and inspection shall be initiated at reasonable times and in emergencies whenever necessary to protect the public interest. Owners, agents or operators on a property being harvested shall be responsible for allowing access to all parts of the premises.