10. Commission Structure and Operation
10.1 Functions of the Commission
The Pine Barrens Protection Act, in ECL Section 57-0119(6), establishes the Commission's areas of authority. These include, in part, the authority to:
10.2 Future Commission efforts and staffing
To date, the Commission has been staffed and supported by a cross section of personnel representing various disciplines, skill levels and technical emphasis. The support of these agencies and organizations is gratefully acknowledged by the Commission. A special expression of thanks is given to the Suffolk County Water Authority for providing a steady commitment of personnel on loan to the Commission during the planning period.
Upon final ratification of this Plan, the Commission will remain a permanent, functioning government entity. It will seek to ensure compliance with the provisions of the Pine Barrens Protection Act and strive to facilitate full implementation of this Plan.
This spectrum of responsibilities will include:
While the specification of precise budgets must necessarily remain a yearly effort, the areas of discipline which these ongoing responsibilities require can be addressed. These areas do not necessarily correspond to staff members, and responsibilities may be shared across such members. Areas of expertise which would be most utilized, either through in house staff or by associated outside personnel, include:
The Commission recognizes that it must accomplish its statutory mission in a manner which is both effective and efficient. It further recognizes that this dual criteria must be applied and adhered to permanently, and not simply initially, nor only on the pages of this document.
Towards this end, this Plan proposes that the Commission's year by year staffing levels, as well as the suite of skills encompassed by the staff, be concentrated upon the specific functions specified in this section, with additional duties added as future circumstances specifically warrant. It further proposes that these staffing decisions be made upon a year by year basis, perhaps as part of a two to three year business plan.
This approach ensures that the Commission, staff, working Councils and committees always have specific, tangible and achievable goals, each with an associated near term deadline.
Additionally, the Commission recognizes that effectiveness and efficiency are best blended by a combination of permanent, professional staff, dedicated to the goals of this Act and directly responsible to the Commission, and a close working relationship with other agency staff, elected officials, citizen and professional organizations, property owners, resource managers, and all interested and affected individuals. Many of the necessary mechanisms for this ongoing work have been already established through the planning period.