[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of Stillwater 7-21-2016 by L.L. No. 2-2016. Amendments noted where applicable.]
This chapter shall be cited and may be hereafter referred to as the "Town of Stillwater Subdivision Drainage District Law."
Through prior experience with certain previously established subdivision developments within the Town of Stillwater, and predicated upon engineering advice and legal counsel as well as input from local developers, the Town deems it desirable for the Town Planning Board to require those applicants seeking approval for any major subdivision or Planned Development District ("PDD") that meet qualifying criteria, and for such other subdivisions as may be required, an approved stormwater pollution prevention plan (SWPPP) and the construction of municipal separate storm sewer systems (MS4) infrastructure, and to request, as part of such subdivision application and approval process, that the Stillwater Town Board approve the establishment of a drainage district serving said subdivision. Further, the Town Board believes that such a requirement is in the best interest of the Town as well as the ultimate owners and occupants of premises within said subdivision and PDDs, and that establishment of a uniform procedure to be followed by subdivision developers and applicants also serves to fairly address their needs and concerns with regard to satisfaction of such requirement. For such intent and purpose, the Town Board of the Town of Stillwater deems it appropriate to adopt this local legislation mandating drainage district application and establishment as part of the subdivision and PDD application process that meet qualifying criteria pursuant to Article 12 or 12-A of the Town Law whereby the Town Board may authorize the establishment of a special district anywhere within the boundaries of the Town of Stillwater, and the Town Board may apportion the district costs among all the parcels of land within such drainage district.
The Town Planning Department and Planning Board shall henceforth require the establishment of a drainage district as a condition of the approval of any qualifying subdivision and PDD as hereinafter defined. In furtherance of said drainage district establishment, the applicant shall submit a petition and all other required district formation documents in accordance with pro forma documents provided by the Town, together with the required map, plan and report (MPR) which shall be prepared by or on behalf of the applicant and thereafter subject to review and approval by the Town's Engineer and Attorney as hereinafter provided.
For purposes of this chapter, a "qualifying subdivision" shall be a subdivision which meets one of the following criteria:
Any major subdivision requiring post-construction stormwater control practices;
Any PDD requiring post-construction stormwater control practices; and
Any other subdivision, the development of which may require an approved stormwater pollution prevention plan (SWPPP) and the construction of a significant municipal separate storm sewer systems (MS4) infrastructure. The determination of whether or not the required MS4 infrastructure is significant shall be determined by and in the sole discretion of the Town Planning Board.
The procedure to be followed in applying for and establishing the required drainage district serving the proposed qualifying subdivision and PDD shall be as follows:
As part of any subdivision application process, and prior to the approval of any site plan or subdivision grading plan or drainage system, the Town Planning Department shall make a determination as to whether or not the proposed subdivision is a qualifying subdivision as hereinabove defined. If the subdivision is not deemed to be a qualifying subdivision, the provisions of this chapter will be inapplicable and the normal subdivision review process will proceed. If, however, the subdivision is deemed to be a qualifying subdivision, the provisions of this chapter shall apply and the application for subdivision approval and drainage district establishment will proceed as hereinafter provided.
The Planning Department shall advise the applicant that the establishment of a drainage district will likely be required as a condition of approval of the proposed subdivision in order that the applicant might make an informed determination as to whether or not to proceed with the application. If the applicant indicates a desire to proceed, the Planning Department shall advise the applicant of its responsibility to prepare and submit to the Town Board a preliminary map, plan and report (MPR) describing the drainage district proposed to be established and otherwise conforming to the requirements of § 192 and other applicable provisions of Article 12-A of the Town Law, with the boundaries of said proposed drainage district to be coincident with those of the proposed subdivision. The applicant shall be additionally advised of its obligation to prepare and submit to the Town Board a New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) short environmental assessment form (EAF) describing the anticipated environmental impact of the proposed drainage infrastructure and district. The Planning Department shall also refer the subdivision application and all plans and documents to the Town Board together with the Planning Department's written determination that the proposed subdivision has been deemed to be a qualifying subdivision as herein defined.
Upon receipt of the aforesaid referral from the Planning Department and the preliminary MPR and short form EAF from the applicant, the Town Board shall direct the Engineer for the Town and the Attorney for the Town to undertake the following tasks with regard to the preparation, review and/or approval of the following documents required for formation of the drainage district:
The Attorney for the Town shall prepare a petition executed by the owner(s) of taxable real property owning at least half of the value of taxable real property within the proposed drainage district and otherwise conforming to the requirements of § 191 and other applicable provisions of Article 12 of the Town Law. The petition shall contain an express statement that the improvement(s) in the proposed drainage district shall be constructed at the expense of the petitioning owner(s) of taxable real property in the proposed district.
The Attorney and the Engineer for the Town shall review the preliminary map, plan and report submitted by the applicant and advise the applicant of any required revisions thereto. At such time as the MPR shall meet with the approval of the Town Attorney and Town Engineer, it shall be appended to the petition and submitted to the Town Board.
The Engineer and Attorney for the Town shall also review and assist the Town Board in its review, completion and action on the NYSDEC short environmental assessment form (EAF) submitted by the applicant in accordance with the applicable requirements of SEQRA.
The petitioner shall thereafter execute the petition and the approved MPR and short EAF and file same with the Stillwater Town Clerk, who shall then submit such documents to the Stillwater Town Board.
The Town Board shall then send the short EAF to all involved regulating agencies for review.
The Town Board shall then adopt and enter an order reciting those matters set forth in § 193 of the Town Law, including specifying the time and place when the Town Board will meet to consider the petition and to hear all persons interested in the subject thereof concerning the same. Said notice of public hearing on the proposed drainage district establishment shall be published and posted in accordance with § 193(1)(a) of the Town Law.
There shall be full compliance with the requirements of § 193 of the Town Law, including, if required, application for permission of the State Comptroller for the establishment of the proposed drainage district.
The Town Board shall declare itself lead agency for SEQRA review and conduct the noticed public hearing on the proposed drainage district establishment and the required SEQRA environmental review.
Following the noticed public hearing, the Town Board shall make a determination of SEQRA environmental significance.
Also following the noticed public hearing, the Town Board shall, by resolution, make the determinations set forth in § 193 of the Town Law and, based thereon, shall adopt an order approving or disapproving the proposed district establishment.
The Town Clerk shall, within 10 days of the adoption of the order establishing the drainage district, cause a certified copy thereof to be filed in the office of the Saratoga County Clerk and shall also cause a certified copy thereof to be filed in the office of the State Department of Audit and Control in Albany, New York.
At the applicant's option, it may either await the formation of the required drainage district before proceeding with the normal processing of the application for subdivision approval or it may, at its own discretion and risk, proceed with the subdivision approval processing by the Planning Board concurrently with the Town Board proceedings for establishment of the required drainage district. In either event, no final approval of the subdivision application, conditional or otherwise, may be rendered by or obtained from the Planning Board unless and until the required drainage district has been finally established.
Alternative procedure (Article 12-A of the New York State Town Law). An alternative procedure to be followed when applying for and establishing a required drainage district serving the proposed qualifying subdivision shall be as follows:
The developer by letter may request that the Town Board undertake the establishment of the required drainage district on its own initiative under the procedure set forth in New York State Town Law Article 12-A at the developer's cost for all required construction expenses, legal fees and engineering services involved.
Should the developer choose this alternative method of forming the required drainage district, an estimate of the legal and engineering services shall be provided to the developer and the cost thereof shall be deposited in an escrow fund with the Town to pay for the anticipated services and shall be replenished as necessary.
In addition, the developer shall provide the Town with the map, plan and report (MPR), including any required mapping or surveys, and environmental assessment form ("EAF") provided for above.
The Town Board, with the assistance of the engineers and attorneys for the Town, will utilize a procedure set forth in New York State Town Law Article 12-A to develop, consider and ultimately adopt a resolution establishing a drainage district around the proposed subdivision and, where required, subject to the approval of the New York State Comptroller.
The following fees, deposits and security, which are in addition to any such charges assessed as part of the normal subdivision and PDD application process, shall be required as part of the drainage district establishment provided for herein:
At the time of the applicant's submittal of the drainage district petition it shall be accompanied by a check payable to the Town of Stillwater in the amount of $3,000 to cover the Town's legal and administrative costs. In addition, the applicant shall be liable for the actual costs of any notice, publication and recording fees, as well as for any engineering and similar consulting fees reasonably incurred by the Town in reviewing the MPR, coordinating the environmental review process and otherwise providing needed services relating to the proposed drainage and the improvements therein. Said engineering costs shall be estimated by the Town Engineer at the time of the applicant's initial submission of the proposed MPR and short form EAF, and such estimate shall be submitted to the Town Board, which will require same to be placed in escrow by the applicant. The actual engineering costs incurred by the Town will thereafter be drawn from said escrow funds. Any balance remaining shall be refunded to the applicant, and any costs exceeding such estimate shall be billed to the applicant. At any time that anticipated costs exceed the escrow balance, the Town Board may require that the applicant make additional payment to increase the escrowed amount.
In addition to the above deposit, the Town Board shall establish an amount to be paid to the Town to be deposited in the new drainage district's account to secure the initial costs of the district, which amount is hereby set at $1,000 for each lot in the proposed subdivision, but which may be hereafter modified by resolution of the Town Board. In any event, half of such amount, together with the entirety of the deposits set forth in Subsection A of this § 89-6, must be received by the Town before the Town Board adopts a final order establishing the drainage district. The remaining half of the cost per lot shall be payable by the applicant at the time of application for a building permit for construction on said lot or upon said applicant's transfer of title to the unimproved lot to another owner, whichever shall first occur.
The costs of continued operation and maintenance of the proposed drainage district shall be borne by the ultimate owners of the parcels of property within said drainage district and shall be assessed, levied and collected on a benefit assessment basis, with said charge to appear as a special assessment charge on said property owners' annual tax bills. In order to fully inform and protect prospective purchasers of lots in the subdivision, the applicant is hereby required to disclose the existence of the drainage district and the proposed drainage district charges in any prospectus and in any marketing literature. Further, every deed of conveyance shall expressly reference the inclusion of the conveyed property in the drainage district and the individual property owner's responsibility for sharing in the special assessment charge associated therewith.