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Ten Year Review: Shellfish Cultivation Zone Review and Redevelopment

As a part of the public outreach effort for the Ten Year Review Project the County participated in and/or conducted a total of eighteen (18) public outreach meetings during the period of January 2019 through January 2021. These meetings consisted of the Ten Year Review Advisory Group meetings and four Focus Group meetings, the Public Informational meetings that were held in each of the five East End towns. Throughout these public outreach meetings the County received comments from the various user/ interest groups that utilize and enjoy Peconic and Gardiners Bays.

As a result of the discussions and comments received during Town Informational Meetings, Focus Group Meetings and the Advisory Group meetings that took place between January 2019 to November 2019, the Department and the project consultants, Cashin Associates, P.C., were able to transpose the annotations and comments that were made on the existing Lease Program maps that were adopted in to 2009 and created a series of maps that showed the areas of concern, environmental significance, potential conflict, etc. The following Draft Public Comment and Focus Group maps, which reflect the comments that were received during the twelve (12) public outreach meetings conducted January 2019 through June 2019, were presented at the Ten Year Review Advisory Group meeting on November 20th, 2019. The purpose of the maps was to illustrate the comments that were received from the various user groups and/or stakeholders; these maps did not represent any final determinations regarding modifications and/or revisions to the Shellfish Cultivation Zone.

Draft Public Comment and Focus Groups Maps: November 20, 2019

MAP 1: Base Map

MAP 2: Environmentally Sensitive Areas

MAP 3: Recreation and Navigation Comments

MAP 4: Commercial Fisheries Comments

MAP 5: Existing Conditions; Shoreline Land Use & Existing Leases/Grants

MAP 6: Public Outreach Comments

On November 27th 2019, the six draft maps were posted online and the public was given 30 days to submit clarifications and/or additional comments on the draft maps to more adequately reflect their comment(s).

Public Comments Received on Draft Public Focus Group Maps: November 27, 2019-December 27, 2019

Please see the link below to review the comments submitted during the 30-day comment period:

Comments received – November 27, 2019 to December 27, 2019

The following Final Public Comment and Focus Group Maps were revised to incorporate the additional comments received between 11-27-19 to 12-27-19; and were presented during the Ten Year Review Advisory Group meeting that was conducted on May 28, 2020. These maps did not represent any final determinations regarding modifications and/or revisions to the Shellfish Cultivation Zone.

Final Public Comment and Focus Group Maps: May 28, 2020

MAP 1: Base Map

MAP 2: Environmentally Sensitive Areas

MAP 3: Recreation and Navigation Comments

MAP 4: Commercial Fisheries Comments

MAP 5: Existing Conditions: Shoreline Land Use & Existing Leases/Grants

MAP 6: Public Outreach Comments

MAP 7: NYSDEC Environmental Significance Ratings

During the Ten Year Review Advisory Group Meeting that was conducted on May 28th, 2020, the County presented six draft alternative Shellfish Cultivation Zone maps for consideration by the Ten Year Advisory Group and members of the public. Each map illustrated a potential alternative Shellfish Cultivation Zone which modified the existing Zone; some of which identified areas where additional restrictions may be implemented.

Draft Alternative Shellfish Cultivation Zone Maps: May 28, 2020

Draft Alternative 1 – Areas Required by ECL and “Areas Recommended for Removal” by NYSDEC Excluded:
Depicts the Base Map Cultivation Zone but excludes the areas that the NYSDEC has deemed environmentally sensitive and recommends removal from the cultivation zone.

Draft Alternative 2 – No Floating Shellfish Cages Allowed:
Depicts the Base Map Cultivation Zone but restricts the use of floating cage aquaculture systems.

Draft Alternative 3 – Restricted Floating Shellfish Cage Areas:
Depicts the Base Map Cultivation Zone but identifies certain areas where floating cage aquaculture systems will not be permitted

Draft Alternative 4 – Major Constrain Areas Excluded:
Depicts removal of areas from the Base Map Cultivation Zone with high boat traffic and intensive use by wind/kite surfing.

Draft Alternative 5 – Moderate Constraint Areas Excluded:
Depicts area described in Alternate 4 map and also includes the floating cages, sailing routes and wind/kite surfing restrictions areas of Alternate Map 3.

Draft Alternative 6 – All Public Comments/Focus Group Objection Areas Excluded:
Depicts removal of all the areas of concern displayed in Alternative Maps 1 through 5.

During the May 28th meeting the County also presented the “Possible Additions to Shellfish Cultivation Zone” map, which illustrated areas under consideration by the County for inclusion into a revised Shellfish Cultivation Zone.

Possible Additions to the Shellfish Cultivation Zone

The six draft alternative Shellfish Cultivation Zone maps, and the “Possible Additions to Shellfish Cultivation Zone” map were posted online on May 29, 2020; the public was given until June 29th (30 days) to submit comments on the alternative Shellfish Cultivation Zone maps and “Possible Additions to Shellfish Cultivation Zone” map.

Public Comments Received on Draft Alternative Shellfish Cultivation Zone Maps and Possible Additions map: May 29, 2020 to June 29, 2020

Please see links below to review the comments submitted during the 30-day comment period:

Comments Received between: 5/29-6/5

Comments Received between: 6/6-6/12

Comments Received between: 6/13-6/19 (No Comments Received)

Comments Received between: 6/20-6/26

Comments Received between: 6/26-6/29

Alternative 7 Shellfish Cultivation Zone: September 10, 2020

Upon hearing and reviewing comments from the Advisory Group and members of the public on the six Draft Alternative Cultivation Zone maps, it was determined that an additional alternative Shellfish Cultivation Zone would be developed, which combined elements from Draft Alternative 1 and 4. This additional alternative Shellfish Cultivation Zone, Draft Alternative 7, consisted of approximately 16, 138 acres; which was a reduction of about 13,831 acres from the Shellfish Cultivation Zone that was adopted in 2009. Draft Alternative 7 was presented at the September 10, 2020 Ten Year Review Advisory Group meeting along with another map that compared Draft Alternative 7 to the 29,969 acres Shellfish Cultivation Zone that was adopted in 2009.

Draft Alternative 7 Shellfish Cultivation Zone Map

Draft Alternative 7 Cultivation Zone and 2009 Shellfish Cultivation Zone Compared Map

As requested and discussed during the May 28th Advisory Group Meeting, 10 acre lease site grids were added to the additional areas proposed for inclusion in a revised shellfish cultivation zone to better illustrate where and how many new 10-lease sites would be added to each additional area. This map was also presented during the September 10th meeting.

Proposed Additions to the Cultivation Zone Map

On October 7, 2020, the County presented to the Ten Year Review Advisory Group and members of the public Draft Alternative Map 7-1 “Revised Shellfish Cultivation Zone” and Draft Alternative Map 7-2 “Revised Aquaculture Lease Sites”. These draft alternative maps added the proposed areas show in “Proposed Additions to the Cultivation Zone Map” to the Shellfish Cultivation Zone depicted in Draft Alternative 7. Draft Alternative 7-2 “Revised Aquaculture Lease Sites’ presented the same proposed Shellfish Cultivation Zone coverage from Alternative 7- 1, however, 7-2 incorporated the grid system that illustrated where the 10-acre lease sites and oyster grant parcels were located within the proposed Shellfish Cultivation Zone. These maps were subsequently presented to the Suffolk County Council on Environmental Quality on Oct. 21, 2020.

Alternative 7-1 and 7-2: October 7, 2020

Draft Alternative 7-1 Shellfish Cultivation Zone Map

Draft Alternative 7-2 Shellfish Cultivation Zone Map

Ten Year Review Project Mapper Published: October 7, 2020

As discussed during Advisory Group meetings, the Department worked with the Department of Information Technology to develop the Ten Year Review Project Mapper. This new interactive map tool, incorporated all previous map layers that were developed and discussed up to this point in the project. This allowed the public to see how different layers compared to the 2009 Shellfish Cultivation Zone or the proposed alternative cultivation zone(s).

The following information has been incorporated into the Ten Year Review Project Map Viewer:

  • Public Comments and Focus Groups maps features
  • Draft Alternative Shellfish Cultivation Zone layers
  • Proposed Additions to the Shellfish Cultivation Zone
  • Datasets from other agencies (i.e. NYSDEC, NOAA, and USGS)
Proposed Revised Shellfish Cultivation Zone and Revised Aquaculture Lease Sites maps: November 20, 2020

Subsequent to the recommendation of the Suffolk County Council on Environmental Quality to classify the revisions to the Suffolk County Shellfish Aquaculture Lease Program, which were developed as a result of the Ten Year Review Project, be classified as a Type I Action under the provisions of Title 6 NYCRR Part 617 and Chapter 450 of the Suffolk County Code. Map 1: Revised Shellfish Cultivation Zone and Map 2: Revised Aquaculture Lease Sites Laid on Table at the December 1, 200 meeting of the Suffolk County Legislature.

Map 1: Shellfish Cultivation Zone

Map 2: Lease Sites Map

Updated Map 2 Lease Sites Map: January 25, 2021

Updates were made to Map 1: Revised Shellfish Cultivation Zone and Map 2: Revised Aquaculture Lease Sites based on feedback heard during the Public Hearing conducted during the December 15, 2021 General Legislative Meeting. The Public Hearing on the amendments to Chapter 475 of the County Code was recessed until the next meeting of the Legislature on Feb. 2, 2021.

Updated Map 2: Lease Sites Map

Approved Map 1: Revised Shellfish Cultivation Zone and Map 2: Revised Aquaculture Lease Sites - March 02, 2021

Map 1: Revised Shellfish Cultivation Zone

Map 2: Revised Aquaculture Lease Sites Map

Suffolk County Government

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