Photo by Doug Stalker
CLC’s Community Assistance Program (CAP) is a planning resource for Columbia County communities. Our staff provides assistance and resources to help local municipalities realize their own vision for conservation and appropriate development. CLC can also bring a regional perspective to land use issues that comes with working exclusively in Columbia County, and can facilitate communication with other levels of government, state regulatory authorities and funding sources.
OUR SERVICES INCLUDE:
- Assistance with comprehensive plans, and farmland and open space protection plans
- Promotion of good development models through code reviews and updates
- Planning board support for conservation development and site design reviews
- Acquisition and development assistance for public lands and trails
- Technical assistance for recreation and conservation-oriented site design
- Land use education and events, including Conservation Advisory Council Roundtable
- Grant writing and GIS mapping in support of planning and open space projects
- Assistance with consultant Requests-for-Proposals (RFP’s)
- Collection and Posting of Community Assistance News
- Collection and Posting of Community Assistance Resources
CLC provides support for open space and trail projects to many Columbia County municipalities. Our services include assistance with planning, grant proposals and grant management, mapping, public presentations, and outreach to enlist support from local, county and state government. CLC plays a major supporting role in the Harlem Valley Rail Trail extension in Columbia County, and provides ongoing support to the Kinderhook-Stuyvesant-Stockport Intermunicipal Trail project that will eventually span the northwest quadrant of the county. As part of our ongoing efforts to develop strategies that support trail development countywide, CLC convened the first Columbia County Trails Conference in April 2011 in partnership with the Hudson River Valley Greenway and other co-sponsors including the National Park Service, New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, and Parks & Trails New York.
OPEN SPACE DEVELOPMENT
Staff provide planning, mapping and fundraising assistance for municipal open space projects. For example, we created a Concept Master Plan for redevelopment of the North Bay landfill in Hudson as a recreation and natural area within walking distance of downtown Hudson, the Greenport Conservation Area and other park and recreation resources. CLC can also provide fee-based services for large projects; we are currently working with a not-for-profit organization in one community to help them upgrade their conservation area and improve outreach.
CLC regularly reviews and comments on town comprehensive plans and zoning updates and helps with workscope development, consultant Requests for Proposals (RFP’s), and funding requests. For instance, staff members are working with a diverse group of stakeholders in one town on a community-wide plan involving land conservation and public trail development with historic interpretation. CLC is also leading an effort to provide Columbia County towns with GIS mapping capacity for planning purposes.
CLC sponsors at least two training workshops annually for municipal boards, which qualify for the annual board training requirement. We work with a diverse range of partners including the Columbia and Greene County Departments of Economic Development and Tourism and Planning; the Columbia County Planning Board; the County Environmental Management Council; New York State Department of Environmental Conservation; the Hudson River Estuary Program; Hudsonia LTD; New York Rural Water Association; and many others.