County Planning Agencies’ Oversight of Local Land Use Decisions

July 22, 2020

New York is a “home rule” state, which means that zoning and other land use decisions typically are made at the village, town, or city level, as the case may be.

Section 239-m of the General Municipal Law (GML), however, requires a referral to, and a subsequent recommendation by, the local county planning commission for certain local land use actions that might affect the interests of other jurisdictions. A local board’s failure to make a required referral can have devastating consequences, including its decision being deemed void and unenforceable.

This column discusses the key elements of GML §239-m, the way it works in practice in various New York counties, and how courts have addressed the law.

Reprinted with permission from New York Law Journal, Wednesday, July 22, 2020, Vol 264 – No. 15.

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  • Related Practice Areas: Land Use & Municipal
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