[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of Southold 7-3-2018 by L.L. No. 7-2018. Amendments noted where applicable.]
The purpose of this Agricultural Advisory Committee is to:
Recognize the importance of agriculture and its industry as both a vital economic driver to the local economy and a mode of land use which provides the Town of Southold with both its rural and rustic character.
Assure the continued viability of farming as an industry which is important to the local economy.
Provide for the most beneficial relationship between the use of lands, buildings, and agricultural practices and to further encourage the wise use and management of the natural resources within the Town.
Provide the Town Board, Planning Board, Zoning Board of Appeals, and other relevant Town boards and committees with a conduit for recommendations from the Town's agricultural industries on the short and long term impacts of a variety of matters and questions considered by these groups.
As used in this chapter, the terms used herein are defined as follows:
- AGRICULTURAL ZONING DISTRICTS
- The Agricultural Conservation (A-C) zoning district and any residential zoning districts within the Town of Southold in which agriculture is an allowed use.
- The Southold Town Agricultural Advisory Committee.
The Committee shall be composed of nine members appointed by the Town Board, who are residents and active owners/operators of bona fide agricultural or aquaculture/mariculture farm operations within the Town of Southold.
The Town Board shall appoint one of the Committee members as Chair of the Committee.
The members appointed to the Committee shall serve for a three-year term. Upon initial formation, three members shall serve for a one-year term, three members for a two-year term and all others for a three-year term. Each year thereafter, reappointments or new appointments will be for three-year terms.
Appointments shall be from April 1 through March 31.
Committee members shall serve without compensation.
Any member who fails to attend at least half of the meetings of the Committee in a given calendar year shall be subject to removal from the Committee by a majority vote of the Committee.
The Agricultural Advisory Committee shall:
The Town Board shall refer the proposed acquisition of development rights to the Committee for review.
Review and report Committee's recommendations to the Town Board and the Planning Board as to changes in policy and rules, including but not limited to proposing revisions to the Town Code of the Town of Southold, which revisions will enhance, but not detract from, the economic viability of the agricultural industries in the Town of Southold.
Review agriculture-related site plan applications and subdivisions.
Any site plan that is related to agricultural activities shall be referred to the Agricultural Advisory Committee for review.
Any proposed subdivision of land located in an agricultural zoning district or land currently used for agriculture shall be referred to the Agricultural Advisory Committee for review.
The Committee shall present advice relating to the desirability of such proposed use or subdivision, including advice as to the nature of farming and farm resources within any proposed or established area. The Agricultural Advisory Committee shall have 45 days to respond with a recommendation(s) for the proposed action. The recommendation(s) shall be advisory only.
Review proposed zoning changes in agricultural zoning districts.
Whenever a proposed zoning, policy change or development (residential, business or industrial) affecting Town agricultural zoning districts is presented to the Town Board within or contiguous to a county agricultural district or Town agricultural zones, it shall be referred to the Agricultural Advisory Committee for review. The Agricultural Advisory Committee shall have 45 days to respond with a recommendation(s) for the action(s).
The Committee shall present advice relating to the desirability of such action, including advice as to the nature of farming and farm resources within any proposed or established area. This recommendation(s) shall include a determination as to whether the proposed action(s) will have an unreasonable adverse effect on the continuing viability of a farm enterprise or enterprises within the county or Town agricultural districts. This recommendation(s) shall be advisory only.
Review local, county, state, and federal legislation affecting the agricultural industry and report their effect to the Town Board.
Serve as a vehicle for communication between the agricultural community and the Town Board.
Perform such other duties and functions as may, from time to time, be directed by the Town Board.
Meet as determined necessary by a majority of the Committee members, but no less than once a month.
Submit to the Town Board an annual summary of the activities of the Agricultural Advisory Committee.