Requires the office of parks, recreation and historic preservation to preserve and maintain state historic sites that are closed for more than a month.
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the parks, recreation and historic preservation law, in relation to the maintenance and preservation of state historic sites
PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF THE BILL: To ensure that the state's historic sites and their associated collections are cared for according to best practices during a period of extended public closure
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS: The parks, recreation and historical preservation law is amended by adding a new section 14.11 which will outline a series of best practices that must be followed should any, of the state's historic sites be closed for longer than 6 months. The bill explains that state historic sites, as nationally recognized historic treasures, shall be subject to the highest standards of care, custody and control to assure their preservation for future generations. During the process of determining the viability of the office maintaining a historic site open to the public, the commissioner shall produce a written outline of alternative actions that include, but are not limited to, the establishment of a non-profit group that would contract with the office to maintain the historic site following the agency's established criteria. The written report shall also include an economic impact statement on any proposed closing of the site for a period of longer than 6 months. The written outline and economic impact statement shall be made available to the public as well as to the Governor and both houses of the legislature. Following publication of the outline and impact statement, a public comment period of no less than 30 days shall be implemented along with at least one public hearing on the proposed actions, If both the commissioner and the state board for historic preservation determine, after public comment, that a state historic site shall be closed to the public and not fully maintained for a period to exceed the normal seasonal limit or 6 months, the commissioner shall adhere to the standards of the united states Secretary of the Interior for the mothballing of historic buildings. The Secretary of the Interior's standards for the mothballing of historic buildings are the established and acknowledged standards for historic site and building preservation and focus on the steps needed to properly deactivate a historic property for an extended period of time. The standards require the appointment of a preservation specialist to assess the specific needs of the structure and to develop an effective mothballing program.
JUSTIFICATION: The legislature has found that the state has long acted on the recognition that the historical, archeological, architectural
and cultural heritage of the state as represented in state historic sites are among the most important environmental assets of the state and should be carefully maintained and preserved for future generations.
Beginning in 1850 at Washington's Headquarters in Newburgh, which is the nation's first publicly acquired historic site, the state has invested millions of dollars in the acquisition, preservation, and public accessibility of 35 nationally recognized historic sites. Closing such sites for any extended amount of time can and will put into peril the very existence of the site itself and, without proper techniques implemented, will lead to potentially devastating damage.
LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: 2009-10: Senate - Reported and Committed to Finance Assembly - Amended and Recommitted to Ways & Means
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: None.
EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect immediately.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 2393 2011-2012 Regular Sessions IN SENATE January 19, 2011 ___________Introduced by Sens. SERRANO, PARKER -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Cultural Affairs, Tourism, Parks and Recreation AN ACT to amend the parks, recreation and historic preservation law, in relation to the maintenance and preservation of state historic sites THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. Legislative finding. The legislature hereby finds that the state has long acted on the recognition that the historical, archeologi- cal, architectural and cultural heritage of the state as represented in state historic sites are amongst the most important environmental assets of the state and that they should be carefully maintained and preserved for future generations. S 2. The parks, recreation and historic preservation law is amended by adding a new section 14.11 to read as follows: S 14.11 MAINTENANCE AND PRESERVATION OF STATE HISTORIC SITES. 1. STATE HISTORIC SITES SHALL BE SUBJECT TO THE HIGHEST STANDARDS OF CARE, CUSTODY AND CONTROL TO ASSURE THEIR PRESERVATION FOR FUTURE GENERATIONS. FOR THE PURPOSES OF THIS SECTION, "MOTHBALLING" SHALL MEAN THE PROCESS OF TEMPORARILY CLOSING A HISTORIC STRUCTURE THAT INVOLVES CONTROLLING THE LONG-TERM DETERIORATION OF THE BUILDING WHILE IT IS UNOCCUPIED AS WELL AS FINDING METHODS TO PROTECT IT FROM SUDDEN LOSS BY FIRE OR VANDALISM; AND "SEASONAL" SHALL MEAN A PERIOD OF TIME NOT TO EXCEED SIX MONTHS IN ANY GIVEN YEAR. 2. DURING THE PROCESS OF DETERMINING THE VIABILITY OF THE OFFICE MAIN- TAINING A HISTORIC SITE OPEN TO THE PUBLIC, THE COMMISSIONER SHALL PRODUCE A WRITTEN OUTLINE OF ALTERNATIVE ACTIONS THAT INCLUDE, BUT ARE NOT LIMITED TO THE PREPARATION OF A REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS FOR THE ESTAB- LISHMENT OF A NON-PROFIT GROUP THAT WOULD CONTRACT WITH THE OFFICE TO MAINTAIN THE HISTORIC SITE FOLLOWING THE AGENCY'S ESTABLISHED CRITERIA AND BEST PRACTICES AND AN ECONOMIC IMPACT STATEMENT ON THE PROPOSEDEXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD00298-01-1 S. 2393 2
CLOSING OF THE SITE. THIS OUTLINE AND ECONOMIC IMPACT STATEMENT WILL BE MADE AVAILABLE TO THE PUBLIC AND A COPY SHALL BE DELIVERED TO THE GOVER- NOR, THE SPEAKER OF THE ASSEMBLY AND THE TEMPORARY PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE, AND THE CHAIRS OF THE ASSEMBLY COMMITTEE ON TOURISM, PARKS, ARTS AND SPORTS DEVELOPMENT AND THE SENATE COMMITTEE ON CULTURAL AFFAIRS, TOURISM, PARKS AND RECREATION. FOLLOWING THE PUBLICATION OF THE OUTLINE OF ALTERNATIVE ACTIONS, A PUBLIC COMMENT PERIOD OF NO LESS THAN THIRTY DAYS SHALL BE IMPLEMENTED FOLLOWED BY AT LEAST ONE PUBLIC HEARING ON THE PROPOSED ACTIONS BY THE AGENCY. 3. IF IT HAS BEEN DETERMINED BOTH BY THE COMMISSIONER AND THE BOARD THAT A STATE HISTORIC SITE SHALL BE CLOSED TO THE PUBLIC AND NOT FULLY MAINTAINED FOR A PERIOD TO EXCEED THE NORMAL SEASONAL LIMIT PREVIOUSLY IN PLACE, THE COMMISSIONER SHALL ADHERE TO THE STANDARDS OF THE UNITED STATES SECRETARY OF THE INTERIOR FOR THE MOTHBALLING OF HISTORIC BUILD- INGS. SUCH SECRETARY'S STANDARDS FOR HISTORIC PRESERVATION ARE THE ESTABLISHED AND ACKNOWLEDGED STANDARDS FOR HISTORIC SITE AND BUILDING PRESERVATION THROUGHOUT THE NATION. SUCH STANDARDS FOR THE MOTHBALLING OF HISTORIC BUILDINGS FOCUS ON THE STEPS NEEDED TO PROPERLY DEACTIVATE A HISTORIC PROPERTY FOR AN EXTENDED PERIOD OF TIME NOT TO EXCEED TEN YEARS AND REQUIRE CONTINUED LIMITED MONITORING AND MAINTENANCE BY PROFESSIONAL STAFF. THE STANDARDS FOR THE MOTHBALLING OF HISTORIC BUILDINGS REQUIRE THE APPOINTMENT OF A PRESERVATION SPECIALIST TO ASSESS THE SPECIFIC NEEDS OF THE STRUCTURE AND TO DEVELOP AN EFFECTIVE MOTHBALLING PROGRAM. 4. ACTIONS TAKEN IN THE EVENT OF THE CLOSING OF A SPECIFIC STATE HISTORIC SITE SHALL INCLUDE, BUT NOT BE LIMITED TO, THE FOLLOWING: (A) THE PREPARATION OF A CONDITION ASSESSMENT REPORT OF THE BUILDING OR SITE BY A PRESERVATION SPECIALIST, A COPY OF WHICH SHALL BE DELIVERED TO THE GOVERNOR, THE SPEAKER OF THE ASSEMBLY AND THE TEMPORARY PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE, AND THE CHAIRS OF THE ASSEMBLY COMMITTEE ON TOURISM, PARKS, ARTS AND SPORTS DEVELOPMENT AND THE SENATE COMMITTEE ON CULTURAL AFFAIRS, TOURISM, PARKS AND RECREATION; (B) STRUCTURAL STABILIZATION OF THE BUILDING, BASED ON THE RECOMMENDA- TIONS OF THE CONDITION ASSESSMENT; (C) EXTERMINATION OR CONTROL OF PESTS, INCLUDING RODENTS AND INSECTS. THIS SHALL INCLUDE, BUT NOT BE LIMITED TO, THE INSTALLATION OF PEST SCREENS AND THE INSPECTION OF THE BUILDING BY A LICENSED PEST CONTROL EXPERT; (D) PROTECTION OF THE EXTERIOR FROM MOISTURE PENETRATION. THIS SHALL INCLUDE AN INSPECTION OF THE BUILDING OR STRUCTURE'S ROOF, GUTTERS, DRAINS, WINDOW AND DOOR FRAMES, MASONRY, SIDING, AND PROPER DRAINAGE; (E) SECURING THE BUILDING AND ITS COMPONENT FEATURES TO REDUCE VANDAL- ISM OR BREAK-INS. THIS SHALL INCLUDE THE NOTIFICATION OF LOCAL FIRE AND POLICE DEPARTMENTS THAT THE BUILDING IS BEING MOTHBALLED, ENSURING THE PROPER INSTALLATION AND MAINTENANCE OF FIRE AND INTRUSION DETECTION SYSTEMS ARE IN PLACE THROUGHOUT THE STRUCTURE, ALONG WITH ANY EXISTING INSPECTED FIRE SUPPRESSION SYSTEMS, THE FASTENING OF ALL EXTERIOR DOORS AND WINDOWS, THE PREVENTION OF THE OVERGROWTH OF THE GROUNDS, AND THE CREATION AND IMPLEMENTATION OF A SECURITY MONITORING PLAN; (F) PROVISION OF ADEQUATE VENTILATION TO THE INTERIOR THAT IS, AT MINIMUM, TWO AIR EXCHANGES EVERY HOUR TO PREVENT MILDEW DAMAGE; (G) SECURING OR MODIFYING UTILITIES AND MECHANICAL SYSTEMS TO ENSURE NO DAMAGE TAKES PLACE DUE TO NONUSE; (H) DEVELOPMENT AND IMPLEMENTATION OF A MAINTENANCE AND MONITORING PLAN FOR PROTECTION OF THE STRUCTURE TO BE MADE AVAILABLE TO THE PUBLIC WITH A COPY SENT TO THE GOVERNOR, THE SPEAKER OF THE ASSEMBLY AND THE TEMPORARY PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE, AND THE CHAIRS OF THE ASSEMBLYS. 2393 3
COMMITTEE ON TOURISM, PARKS, ARTS AND SPORTS DEVELOPMENT AND THE SENATE COMMITTEE ON CULTURAL AFFAIRS, TOURISM, PARKS AND RECREATION; (I) REMOVAL, CATALOGUING OF, AND PROPER STORAGE OF ANY AND ALL HISTOR- ICAL COLLECTIONS HELD WITHIN THE STRUCTURE INCLUDING FURNITURE, ARTI- FACTS, ART WORK, TEXTILE MATERIAL, AND LIBRARY AND ARCHIVAL MATERIAL, CONSISTENT WITH ESTABLISHED BEST PRACTICES FOR THE HANDLING AND CATA- LOGUING OF SUCH HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS AND OBJECTS; AND (J) NOT LESS THAN ONCE EVERY SIX MONTHS AT A MINIMUM AN INSPECTION OF THE BUILDING SHALL BE MADE, MAINTENANCE ACTION SHALL BE TAKEN ON ANY DETERIORATION THAT IS FOUND IN SUCH INSPECTION AND A REPORT, INCLUDING PHOTOGRAPHIC DOCUMENTATION ON THE INSPECTION SHALL BE MADE AND PRESENTED TO THE GOVERNOR AND LEGISLATURE. S 3. This act shall take effect immediately.