Farmland Protection Working Group


The New York State Farmland Protection Working Group (FPWG) was created as a result of Chapter 55 of the Laws of 2021. The FPWG is a coordinated effort among the New York State Departments of Agriculture and Markets and Environmental Conservation, the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, the New York State Office of Renewable Energy Siting, and the New York State Department of Public Service.  These key state agencies are convening with appointed representatives from County Agriculture and Farmland Protection Boards, as well as local government officials from across New York.

The goal of the FPWG is to consider and recommend strategies to the State on the siting process of major renewable energy facilities and to minimize the impact of siting on productive agricultural soils on working farms. The group had its initial organizational meeting on December 8, 2021 and will meet at least three times to develop and deliver its recommendations before April of 2022. 


  • New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets: Richard Ball, Commissioner
  • New York State Department of Environmental Conservation: Basil Seggos, Commissioner
    • Alternate: Katharine Petronis, Deputy Commissioner
  • New York State Office of Renewable Energy Siting: Houtan Moaveni, Executive Director
  • New York State Department of Public Service: Rory M. Christian, Chair and CEO
  • New York State Energy Research and Development Authority: Doreen Harris, President and CEO
  • Representatives from County Agriculture and Farmland Protection Boards:
    • Matilda Larson, Planner - St. Lawrence County Planning Department
    • Cassie Fedler, AFPB Chair - Washington County Board of Supervisors
    • Patrice Perry, Director - Columbia County Planning Department
    • Mary Underhill, Planner -Livingston County Planning Board
    • Matt Sousa, Chair- Steuben County AFPB
  • Local government representatives:
    • Michael A. Casale, Commissioner - Niagara County Economic Development 
    • Felipe A. Oltramari, Director - Genesee County Department of Planning
    • August Ruckdeschel, Farmland & Open Space Coordinator- Suffolk County Division of Planning and Environment
    • Darren “Hal” McCabe , Mayor – Village of Homer (Cortland County)
    • Christopher Rosenquest, Mayor – City of Plattsburgh (Clinton County)
    • Melissa M. “Missy” Hartman, Supervisor - Town of Eden (Erie County)
    • Amber Corbin, Councilperson -Town of Rush (Monroe County)
  • Agriculture and Farm Interests:
    • Julian Mangano, Della Terra Farm – Castorland (Lewis County)

Next Meeting

Information about the next meeting of the FPWG will be posted here when it is available.

Past Meeting Materials

The most recent meeting of the FPWG was held on December 8, 2021. The meeting agenda and a presentation given at the meeting are available below. A recording of the meeting is available here.

For additional materials from this or another previous meeting, please contact us.

Related Materials