for the Cayuga Lake Watershed IO
June 28, 2000; amended on June 27, 2001; amended September 24, 2003)
Cayuga Lake Watershed Intermunicipal Organization (IO) was originally formed
under the aegis of the New York State Department of State through a grant to
the Town of Ledyard to bring together all municipalities in the Cayuga Lake
Watershed in order to develop, oversee, and administer a Cayuga Lake Watershed
Management Plan, which in turn allows the municipalities to access certain
relevant funding. To this end the IO member municipalities work collaboratively
and collectively across Town and County lines within the Cayuga Lake Watershed.
The cooperating municipalities share the responsibility for and benefits of the
Cayuga Lake Watershed, which is an intermunicipal resource affected by the
actions taken by and within all communities having legal jurisdiction over any
parts of the watershed.
mission of the IO is to create, modify, and implement a watershed management
plan to allow local governments within the watershed to work together for the
purposes of accessing dollars, cost savings, cost sharing, and efficiency of
activities among municipalities. This plan when completed will prioritize
water-quality problems and solutions. The IO will provide direction for the
regional planning boards and other staff, and oversee the entire project.
at the November 9, 1998, meeting of the IO
IO envisions Cayuga Lake recognized and valued by all watershed residents as
the watershed's foremost natural feature and resource, deserving of and
receiving protection via watershed-wide adoption of land-use plans that
minimize pollution and sprawl, preserve viewsheds and soils, and result in a
sustainable and diverse economy that provides satisfying employment for all
residents able to work and that contributes to regional self-sufficiency, all
in a non-discriminatory, equitable, and cooperative manner.
IO will work to promote the understanding that is vital to maintain and improve
the ecological health and beauty of the watershed and the protection and
preservation of Cayuga Lake, along with building and maintaining a productive
economy in order to sustain a healthy social environment for the people of the
Cayuga Lake Watershed. The cooperating municipalities share a number of common
the prevention of non-point source pollution of both surface and groundwaters
the remediation of existing pollution,
the preservation of open space and natural resources,
the expansion of economic activities consistent with the watershed environment,
developing programs for educating the public and public officials,
developing compatible components of their comprehensive plans and zoning and
natural resource ordinances,
exploring mutually beneficial ways of securing and sharing federal, state, and
county-agency funding for the programs that accomplish their objectives in the
sharing the costs of monitoring compliance and enforcement of regulation,
the resolution of disputes regarding development projects with intermunicipal
the resolution of disputes regarding development projects that impact
environmentally sensitive areas; and
working with federal, state, and county agencies and authorities to assure that
their activities in the watershed are compatible with the plans and programs of
the cooperating municipalities.
I. Name, geographic location, and purpose
1. Name. The name of the organization shall be the Cayuga Lake Watershed
Intermunicipal Organization, hereafter referred to as the IO. The principal
office of the IO will be located at the municipal hall of the chair of the IO
as hereafter determined by a two-thirds majority vote of the IO, a quorum being
2. Geographic location. The IO is an organization made up of representatives
from the municipalities within the Cayuga Lake Watershed, located in the Finger
Lakes Region of central New York State. The watershed is comprised of parts or
all of six counties, three of which (Cayuga, Seneca, and Tompkins) border
Cayuga Lake and three of which (Schuyler, Tioga, and Cortland) share parts of
the upper watershed area.
3. Purpose. The purpose of the IO according to the Memorandum of Understanding
establishing it is "to develop a Cayuga Lake Watershed Management Plan and
oversee and administer it in order to access available funding." To this end,
the IO operates under the following expanded statement of purpose: The purpose
of the IO is to recognize the interrelatedness of all activities within our
watershed and to collaboratively and collectively work to address issues and
problems. (see Preamble) The goal is to promote understanding that is vital to
maintain and improve the ecological health and beauty of the watershed along
with building and maintaining a productive economy and also sustain a healthy
social environment for the people of the Cayuga Lake Watershed.
is to develop a Cayuga Lake Watershed Management Plan, access funding, and
oversee and administer the plan. This includes the need to
establish watershed priorities
approve an annual work plan and budget
approve requests for funding and for endorsement of projects consistent with
provide a forum for all municipalities within the watershed to interact and
review technical and fiscal summary reports
1. Membership. Membership is open to all municipalities -- counties, towns,
villages, cities, and Indian Nations (if any) -- within the Watershed. A
representative and an alternate will be appointed by each municipality within
the Watershed to represent the municipality on the IO. The municipal
representative's term shall continue until the municipality names a replacement.
2. Voting rights. Each municipality that has signed a Municipal Memorandum of
Agreement, and is current with respect to dues payment, shall have one vote. If
a representative is representing more than one municipality, that person will
have only one vote.
3. Quorum. Six voting members constitute a quorum. A simple majority is
necessary to pass any motion or resolution.
4. Non-voting members. In order to ensure ongoing public participation, any
interested organization or individual may apply for non-voting membership. Once
accepted, such representatives may participate in discussions and serve on
1. Administration. There shall be the following administrative components:
Administrative Center (Center). The Administrative Center of the IO will be
located in the municipality of the chair of the IO. The Center will be
responsible for the following:
Provide normal facilities, services, and staff as required for operations of
Develop and execute appropriate agreements with other parties for coordinating
and implementing all projects approved under the grants, subject to approval of
the IO or the Board of Directors acting at the direction of the IO.
Assure legal compliance with the terms of the grants and agreements.
Submit all bills for payment to the chair’s governing body for review and
payment, in accordance with the purchasing and procurement policies of the town.
Staff Director. Subject to the authority of the Executive Committee and the
policies of the IO, the chair of the IO or designee will provide executive
leadership for the Center. This person's responsibilities shall include:
Serving as Secretary to the Executive Committee and the IO
Preparing agendas and minutes of Executive Committee and IO and other related
Serving as ex-officio member of the Technical Advisory Committee
Coordinating the development of plans, budgets, and proposals
Coordinating and facilitating interactions among and between all interested
Identifying funding sources to support the IO program
Chair. The IO shall elect a chair annually from among its voting members. The
Chair shall preside at all meetings of the IO and the IO Executive Committee
and work closely with administrative staff to set agendas. The Chair or his/her
delegee shall be the official spokesperson for the IO. An individual can serve
as Chair for a maximum of three consecutive terms at a time.
Vice Chair. The IO shall elect a vice chair annually from among its voting
members. The Vice chair shall assist the Chair and, in the absence of the
Chair, act as Chair.
3. Executive Committee (ExCom)
Membership. The Executive Committee shall be composed of at least 4 IO members.
At least 3 of the ExCom members shall come from the three waterfront counties.
The Chair of the IO and one representative each from each of the IO Standing
Committees shall be members of the ExCom. The Chair of the IO shall be the
Chair of the ExCom. The ExCom will annually elect a vice chair, to assist the
Chair and act as Chair in the absence of the Chair.
Term. ExCom members shall be appointed for a one-year term at the last meeting
of the IO each year to take office the next January 1.
Powers and Duties. It is understood that the members of the Board are appointed
to represent the interests of the watershed as a whole and not the special
interests of the represented party. The ExCom shall conduct business on behalf
of the membership of the IO between meetings of the IO, and shall inform the
membership periodically of important matters.
specifically, the ExCom shall:
implement the annual work plan and budget
approve requests for funding consistent with the established priorities
review technical and fiscal summary reports
review the performance of the staff and Center
recommend changes in workplan, priorities, staffing, budget, organizational
structure, bylaws, policies, etc., to the IO for action
receive regular reports from the Committees and ensure that these reports are
shared with IO members in a timely fashion.
carry our the policies adopted by the IO
Quorum. The quorum shall be two thirds of the ExCom membership. Actions shall
require a simple majority of the full ExCom membership.
Meetings. The ExCom shall meet as often as necessary to meet deadlines and deal
with the business of the IO.
Minutes. The ExCom shall ensure that its minutes are distributed to all IO
members within 10 days of each meeting.
1. Membership on committees. Every IO Committee shall have at least three
members, and at least one shall be a voting IO member. Committees can have both
voting and non-voting IO members as well as non-IO members as appropriate.
However, the committee representative to the ExCom shall only be a voting IO
2. Chair. Each committee may elect its own Chair.
3. Duties. Every IO Committee shall keep a record of its meetings and
activities and report regularly to the ExCom. All actions of committees shall
be recommendatory only, unless otherwise specified. More specifics are given in
the following subsections, which address specific committees.
Membership. This committee shall have at least 11 members (as specified in the
MoU establishing the IO) who bring water-quality-related expertise relevant to
the Cayuga Lake Watershed. It is desirable that they have experience and
interest in Cayuga Lake and its drainage area. Membership will likely be drawn
from local, state, and federal agencies, non-profit organizations specializing
in land-use matters and water issues, and local citizen-interest groups or
individuals, and academia. Members shall include representatives of county
Water Quality Coordinating Committees, Natural Resources Conservation Service,
Soil and Water Conservation Districts, New York State Department of
Environmental Conservation, and the US Geological Survey.
to help establish a draft watershed characterization report
to recommend watershed priorities
to evaluate project applications seeking IO endorsement and recommend
prioritization to the IO
to make recommendations to the IO on requests for funding
to review, evaluate and annually report on projects to the IO
to review any other projects and activities requested by the IO for technical
to make other recommendations to the IO
to help develop the Cayuga Lake Management Plan and serve in an advisory
capacity in the implementation of the Management Plan
Organization. The TAC shall initially be coordinated by the Genessee/Finger
Lakes Regional Planning Council.
and Outreach Committee
Membership. This committee shall have 5 members.
keep the public informed about the activities of the IO [see also Article VII,
set up public participation meetings for the general public
identify issues that the public should be aware of and bring them to public
solicit public input as requested by the IO
Membership. This committee shall have 5 voting members of the IO.
recommend to the Board the amount of annual dues assessment to be paid by IO
assist the IO Chair and the staff director in preparing an annual budget
review budgets for IO committees and IO projects
seek funding sources, in conjunction with staff, for various projects approved
by the IO and/or Board
Membership. This committee shall have at least 5 voting members of the IO.
working to maintain representation by all eligible municipalities, such as
notifying municipalities when terms expire
reviewing and making recommendations to the IO on non-voting member applications
preparing a slate of officers for election (IO Chair and Vice Chair)
Membership. This committee shall have 5 voting IO members.
reviewing staffing needs and performance annually
making staffing recommendations to the IO Board of Directors
performing other administrative oversight as assigned by the ExCom.
agriculture is such an important land use in the Watershed, providing economic,
social, and open-space benefits as well as potential runoff problems, a
committee representing diverse agricultural perspectives can help the IO in its
Membership. This committee shall have at least seven members, including one
each representing conventional agriculture, organic agriculture, large-scale
agriculture, small-scale agriculture, and at least one voting IO member. An
effort shall be made to have to proportional geographic representation as well
as representation of the diversity of agricultural crops. It is desirable that
the Soil and Water Conservation Districts, the Natural Resources Conservation
Service, and Cornell Cooperative Extension have non-voting membership on the
Committee. The Committee shall elect its own chair. The Committee shall be
represented on the ExCom by a voting IO member.
identify agricultural issues related to the watershed, including economic and
make recommendations to the IO on ways to address agricultural issues
review relevant management plan implementation projects and make
recommendations to the IO
Technical Committee based on AgCom's agricultural expertise.
review, evaluate and report on Committee projects at least annually
review any other projects and activities requested by the IO
serve in an advisory role in the implementation of the Management Plan
recruit AgCom nominees and present slate directly to IO for approval
Membership. This committee shall have at least 5 members, of which at least one
shall be a voting IO member; most shall be non-voting members of the IO.
Duties. This committee can function as a citizen version of the Technical
Advisory Committee, providing a forum for interested and concerned citizens to:
recommend watershed priorities to the IO
review and evaluate municipal and IO projects
review and comment on any EISs for development projects within the Watershed
Membership. This committee shall have at least 3 members.
Duties. Its charge shall include:
review model zoning and natural-resource ordinances and recommend specific
sections for consideration of IO members
review state legislation relevant to IO concerns and recommend to the IO or
Board specific comments to send to state legislators
The IO and/or the ExCom may from time to time create special committees to deal
with specific topics or concerns. Special Committees shall be created by
Resolution of the IO or ExCom, which shall specify membership, purpose(s), and
duties. These special committees may be continued from year to year as
necessary or may be given a deadline by which to complete work. They shall be
advisory to the IO or ExCom, unless otherwise specified.
1. The IO shall meet at least twice a year.
2. Draft minutes shall be sent to all IO members and alternates within 10 days
of each meeting.
1. Fiscal year. The fiscal year shall be the calendar year.
2. Budget. The IO should adopt a budget each November for the following year.
3. Annual dues.
IO members shall be assessed an annual dues as recommended by the Finance
Committee, reviewed and recommended on by the ExCom, and approved by the IO as
part of the adoption of its annual budget.
Dues will be due and payable by a municipality no later than two months after
the municipality has adopted its budget.
4. Bookkeeping and audit. The ExCom annually shall appoint an outside auditor,
with the approval of the IO, at the first meeting of the year.
1. The IO may establish a Newsletter or establish and maintain a World Wide Web
page, or conduct other such communication activities as recommended by the
2. The EPPOC shall take responsibility for these activities as directed by the
IO and the ExCom.
VIII. Selection of projects.
Prior to the adoption of the Management Plan, the IO may endorse projects for
funding so long as they are consistent with watershed needs as recommended by
the TAC and as based on the Watershed Characterization.
At the first meeting each year after there is a Management Plan, the IO will
consider the Watershed needs and the recommendations of the TAC and the ExCom,
establish priorities, and issue requests for proposals to address the
high-priority identified needs.
The proposals will be reviewed by the TAC, which will make recommendations to
the ExCom, which shall also review proposed projects and approve projects for
inclusion in a work plan to be recommended to the IO for review and action.
The staff director will then prepare the annual work plan, summary budget, and
requests for funding.
IX. Rules of order (Parliamentary Authority).
1. The rules contained in the most recent edition of Robert's Rules of Order
shall govern the IO and its committees in all cases to which they apply and
when they are not superseded by State or County laws, these Bylaws, or any
agreed-upon rules otherwise adopted by the IO.
X. Open Meetings Law
1. The IO and its Committees shall be subject to the New York State Open
XI. Bylaws amendments.
1. These Bylaws may be amended as any IO meeting by a two-thirds vote of the
membership provided that the amendment(s) has (have) been made available in
writing to the IO members at least three weeks prior to the meeting. For this
purpose only a written absentee ballot from a municipal member shall be allowed.
XII. Responsibilities of voting members.
1. Responsibilities are as follows:
to participate fully in the function of the IO and contribute to the
cooperative concept embodied herein
to report back regularly to their respective municipalities on the activities
of the IO and secure feedback.
to cooperate with the administrative center and the staff director to help
ensure good performance
to carry out in a timely fashion and professionally satisfactory manner the
activities required by the Memorandum of Agreement (MoA)
1. The municipal Memorandums of Agreement (MoA) shall continue indefinitely,
but may be modified by agreement of two-thirds of the parties in writing, or
discontinued upon agreement by all parties.
2. Any IO member not concurring in a modification of the agreement may
3. Any party may withdraw from the MoA by giving 90 days advance notice to all
other members. Such withdrawal shall not relieve the withdrawing member of any
obligations, responsibilities, or commitments made by the member while a member
of the IO (for example, completion of work activities or agreed-upon funding
for IO activities).
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