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Tug Hill Commission conference aims to help educate local officials

Posted 1/6/23

Local government officials across Jefferson, Lewis, Oneida, and Oswego counties and beyond can now register for the Tug Hill Commission’s 32nd annual Local Government Conference.

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Tug Hill Commission conference aims to help educate local officials

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VERONA — Local government officials across Jefferson, Lewis, Oneida, and Oswego counties and beyond can now register for the Tug Hill Commission’s 32nd annual Local Government Conference to be held at the Turning Stone Conference Center, 5218 Patrick Road.

Registration and session information for both the Thursday, April 6, full day of training and for the Wednesday, April 5, half-day of specialized sessions related to drones, are now available on the commission’s website at www.tughill.org/lgc2023/.

The conference typically draws more than 600 attendees and over 25 exhibitors, and provides training and networking opportunities for town supervisors, village mayors, town and village board members, clerks, planning and zoning board members, highway superintendents, assessors, and other government officials.

Registrations can be completed on-line with credit card payment, or through the mail with a check, the announcement said.

The conference fee for Thursday, April 6, is $85 — and includes a full day of training, breakfast and lunch — if postmarked by March 3, and the fee for Wednesday, April 5, is $75 — and includes drone session and reception — if postmarked by March 3. The fee for both days is $150 if postmarked by March 3. Certificates of attendance will be provided to all attendees.

The first concurrent session topics are:

• Policies and procedures for managing your local government;

• Fire department-based ambulance service;

• Public meeting and hearing procedures;

• Zoning Board of Appeals review of variances; asset management; and

• The fiscal responsibilities of municipal clerks.

The second session topics are:

•Best practices in administering ARPA funds;

• Updates from the New York State Office of Cannabis Management;

• SEQR basics;

• Article 78 proceedings;

• New York State permitting for highways; and

• Employee knowledge transfer.

Topics right after lunch are:

• State and federal founding resources;

• First amendment audits;

• Site and subdivision plans;

• Zoning and siting large solar facilities;

• Federal Emergency Management Agency grants; and

• The do’s and don’ts of municipal websites.

The last sessions of the day will discuss open meetings law; lake effect and lightning update from SUNY Oswego; hot button land use issues; Q&A for planning and zoning, the basics of a good road; and a potluck panel for clerks.

The assessor’s day-long track will cover a variety of different topics that are not used daily but are important to understand. They will include correction of errors, legal notices, seller’s concessions, and the assessor’s annual report.

During the special three-hour afternoon Unmanned Aerial Systems (Drones): Transforming Work, Play, and Economies session on Wednesday, April 5, participants will be provided with a more-than-basic understanding of what drones are, the applicable rules and regulations for flying them, and how they are benefiting local governments.

Drones are transforming the area’s economy and providing solutions to the challenges faced by government, as well as providing opportunities for commerce, hobbyists, and our youth. Try your hand at flying a mini-drone and enter a free drawing to win your very own drone.

The Tug Hill Commission is a small, non-regulatory state agency charged with “helping local governments and citizens shape the future of the Tug Hill region.”

The Tug Hill region includes 41 towns and 18 villages in portions of Jefferson, Lewis, Oneida and Oswego counties.

The commission provides technical assistance to local governments, economic development organizations, and other local groups in land use planning, community development, and natural resource management.

The commission also provides skill development and information for local officials through workshops and issue papers on various topics.

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