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(a) General provisions.
(1) Except as provided below, within sixty (60) calendar days after a community board's receipt of a complete application referred by the Department of City Planning, the Board of Standards and Appeals or the Commission, the community board shall hold a public hearing and adopt and submit as provided herein a written recommendation concerning such application. For purposes of this paragraph (1), a community board shall be deemed to have received an application nine (9) calendar days after the date of certification. The Department of City Planning shall transmit a certified application to the community board, making it available to the community board within (8) days from the date of certification.
(2) Where the negative vote of the community board was adopted without a public hearing, without a quorum or at a meeting conducted after its 60-day period for review, such non-complying negative vote shall not serve the purpose of Section 197-d(b)(2) of the Charter. The Commission may note the noncompliance and any other deficiency in compliance with this chapter in its report.
(b) Waivers of hearings and recommendations.
(1) Leases. In the case of a proposed lease of property of the City which in the judgment of the community board does not involve a substantial land use interest, such board may waive the holding of a public hearing and preparation of a written recommendation. In such case the community board shall submit to the Department a written waiver of its right to hold a public hearing and to submit recommendations to the City Planning Commission and affected Borough President. When a written waiver of the community board's right to hold a hearing and submit a recommendation is received by the Department of City Planning the community board's period of review shall be deemed ended and the Borough President's time period begun.
(2) Franchises. In the case of Request for Proposal or other solicitation for a franchise which in the judgment of the community board does not involve a substantial land use interest, such community board may submit a written waiver to the Commission of the right to hold a public hearing and the preparation of a written recommendation.
(c) Notice of hearing. Notice of the time, place and subject of a public hearing to be held by a community board on an application shall be given as follows:
(1) by publication in The City Record for the five (5) days of publication immediately preceding and including the date of the public hearing;
(2) by publication in the Comprehensive City Planning Calendar distributed not less than five (5) calendar days prior to the date of public hearing;
(3) to the applicant ten (10) days prior to the date of hearing (with such notice also forwarded to the Department of City Planning);
(4) for all actions that result in acquisition of property by the City, other than by lease, whether by condemnation or otherwise, the applicant shall notify the owner or owners of the property in question by mail to the last known address of such owner or owners, as shown on the City's tax records, not later than five (5) days prior to the date of hearing. An affidavit attesting to the mailing and a copy of the notice shall be submitted to the Department of City Planning prior to the Commission's public hearing;
(5) Community boards are also encouraged to publicize hearings by publication in local newspapers, posting notices in prominent locations, and other appropriate means.
(d) Conduct of public hearing.
(1) Location. A community board public hearing shall be held at a convenient place of public assembly chosen by the board and located within its community district. If in the community board's judgment there is no suitable and convenient place within the community district, the hearing shall be held at a centrally located place of public assembly within the borough. This provision is not intended to affect the requirement of Section 2800(h) of the Charterstating a community board's obligation to meet at least monthly (except during July and August) within its district.
(2) General character. Hearings shall be legislative type hearings, without sworn testimony or strict rules of evidence. Only members of a community board and persons expressly authorized by the chairperson may question a speaker. All persons appearing and wishing to speak shall be given the opportunity to speak. A community board hearing shall be conducted in accordance with by-laws adopted by the community board.
(3) Quorum. A public hearing shall require a quorum of 20% of the appointed members of the community board, but in no event fewer than seven such members. The minutes of a meeting at which a public hearing was held shall include a record of the individual members present.
(4) Record. The record of a public hearing shall consist of but not be limited to a list of speaker's names and affiliations (if any), a notation of each speaker's own indication, on a form provided for that purpose, of support or opposition to the application, and any exhibits or written statements offered by speakers.
(e) Public attendance at meetings of a community board or its committees. The public may attend all meetings of a community board or its committee at which an application for an action subject to this Chapter is to be considered or acted upon in a preliminary or final manner. A community board may close a meeting or committee meeting to the public only as provided in the New York State Open Meetings Law (Public Officers Law, §§ 100 – 111).
(f) Recommendations and waivers.
(1) Quorum. The adoption of a community board recommendation, or the waiver of a public hearing and recommendation by a community board, shall require a quorum of a majority of the appointed members of the board. The minutes of a meeting at which a recommendation or waiver was adopted shall record the individual members present.
(2) Vote. The adoption of a community board recommendation or the waiver of a public hearing and recommendation shall be by a public vote which results in approval by a majority of the appointed members present during the presence of a quorum, at a duly called meeting. The vote shall be taken in accordance with the by-laws of the community board.
(3) Content. A community board recommendation shall be in writing via a form provided by the Department of City Planning and shall include a description of the application, the time and place of the public hearing on the application, the time and place of the meeting at which the recommendation was adopted and the vote by which the recommendation was adopted. The community board may include in its submission the reasons for the vote and any conditions attached to its vote. The community board may state that its conditional approval shall be considered a negative recommendation for purposes of Section 197-d(b)(2) of the Charterif conditions that it considers essential to minimize land use or environmental impacts are not adopted by the Commission. The City Planning Commission shall give consideration only to those conditions which are related to land use and environmental aspects of the application.
(4) Submission. A community board shall submit its recommendation or waiver promptly after adoption, to the Commission, to the Borough President, to the applicant and, in the case of an application referred to two or more community boards and a borough board, to such borough board. If a community board fails to act within the time limits for review the application shall be deemed referred to the next level of review at the completion of the community board's time period.
(g) Requests for review of action not in a community district. A community board or borough board may obtain the filed application and supporting documents for any action subject to ULURP which is not located within the district boundaries of such community board or borough board. Such community board or borough board may request review of such applications by writing, either to the Calendar Office of the Commission, or requesting through the Department's website, and it shall state the basis for the board's judgment that the application may significantly affect the welfare of the district or borough served by such board. Thereafter, the community board or borough board may schedule a public hearing on the application, such hearing and notice thereof to be in conformance with 62 RCNY §§ 2-03(c), 2-03(d), 2-05(c) and 2-05(d) and may submit a written recommendation to the Commission. The Commission may receive such recommendation at any time prior to its final action on the application; however, it shall have no authority to extend the review period defined in Section 197-c of the Charter nor shall a review by a second community board pursuant to this subparagraph (g) require that the application be reviewed by the borough board. A Borough President may similarly obtain a filed application and supporting documents for and request review of any action subject to ULURP which is not located within the boundaries of the borough.
(Amended City Record 3/21/2018, eff. 4/20/2018)