Environment & Energy

Division of Real Property Acquisition & Management

History

The Department of Land Management was established in 1974 by Charter Amendment.  After several title changes, the Department of Real Estate was authorized pursuant to Local Law 13 of 1979. 

In 1991, the Department of Real Estate was again reorganized and the Division of Real Estate under the Department of Law was created by Local Law 13 of 1991.  The Division was transferred to the jurisdiction of the Planning Department by Resolution No. 1119-98, Adopting Local Law No. 8-1999, a Charter Law. 

In 2006, Resolution 84-2006 amended the 2006 Operating Budget, creating the Department of Environment and Energy’s Division of Real Property Acquisition & Management.

The majority of the work performed by the Division of Real Property Acquisition & Management is driven by very short deadlines inherent in the process of selling surplus properties and purchasing farmland development rights and identified environmentally sensitive parcels on behalf of the County of Suffolk.  The sale of County owned tax default properties generates substantial revenue.  Revenue is also generated by the Redemption Unit and the Rental/Inventory Unit.

This division has the duty to provide the management, administration and day-to-day supervision of the Suffolk County Drinking Water Protection Program Open Space Acquisition Component, Farmland Acquisition Program, the Multifaceted Land Preservation Program and the Environmental Legacy Fund, which requires partnering with Towns and other municipalities for the preservation of open space, parkland, farmland and historic properties.  The division also acquires on behalf of Suffolk County hundreds of acres of land each year under the 1/4% Drinking Water Protection Program which was approved and recently extended by referendum.

Responsibilities

The Division of Real Property Acquisition & Management include acquiring, maintaining, and disposing of all County real property; providing services related to real property for the executive, administrative, and legislative areas of County government; generating revenues for the County; and controlling expenses pertaining to the maintenance of County owned property.  

The Division of Real Property Acquisition & Management generates revenue for the County in a variety of ways:

  • By selling surplus County real property at auction and direct sales to adjoining owners pursuant to Chapter 32, County Property Sales
  • By enabling and assisting prior owners to redeem property under Local Law 16‑1976 and Section 215 of New York State County Law
  • By establishing and collecting License Agreement fees from persons using tax acquired property

The Division of Real Property Acquisition & Management is also involved in all aspects from acquisition to sale of the County real property by:

  • Inspecting all of the real property acquired by tax deed
  • Inspecting the development rights of all farmlands included in the Suffolk County Farmland Preservation Program
  • Repairing habitable structures, providing the maintenance of uninhabited structures, and the demolition of unsafe structures
  • Managing the County-owned property including placement of tenants and evictions as necessary
  • The management, administration, and day-to-day supervision of the Suffolk County Drinking Water Protection Program, including maintaining the official record of land acquisitions consummated and monies expended pursuant to each of the funding components of Article XII pursuant to Local Law 26-1993
  • Appraising the County-owned property for auction, direct sale, and redemption
  • The organizing of, advertising for, and conducting of public hearings, and the formulation of findings and determinations for properties acquired pursuant to the Eminent Domain Procedure Law and the General Municipal Law
  • Handling the closings for the sales of the aforementioned properties

The Division of Real Property Acquisition & Management is also responsible for:

  • The appraisal, negotiation or condemnation, acquisition, and administration of real property acquired for highway, general municipal, and park purposes pursuant to the Eminent Domain Procedure Law
  • The appraisal, negotiation, acquisition, and administration of real property acquired by the various programs listed below
  • The provision of appraisal services for Suffolk County government
  • The provision of inventory reports for Suffolk County government
  • Conveyances to other municipalities for governmental purposes, including affordable housing purposes
  • Decreasing County expenses by initiating proceedings which reduce the assessed value of County-owned real property; expediting the transfer of real property within the County for public uses; screening of inventory to expedite its sale at auction; and expediting the auction and closing process of surplus real property
  • Assumption of a portion of the Space Management function. Valuation provided to SM either by consultant reviewed appraisals and/or market rent analysis
  • Continuation of the SAVE OPEN SPACE PROGRAM approved by the electorate in November 2004.This referendum authorized the issuance of $75 million in serial bonds to acquire lands for Open Space Preservation. This program will conclude at the end of 2007
  • Implementation of the Environmental Legacy Fund, a $50 million acquisition program to be funded over a three year period (2007-2009).  The Legacy Fund will require that the $50 million be matched with other public and private sources dedicated to protecting and preserving our open spaces, farms, parklands, and historic properties.

Programs

  • Suffolk County Open Space Preservation Program
  • Suffolk County Farmland Preservation Program
  • Suffolk County Drinking Water Protection Program and the ¼% Taxpayer Protection Plan for Water Quality Protection 
  • Suffolk County Land Preservation Partnership Program
  • Suffolk County Multifaceted Land Preservation Program
  • Suffolk County Legacy Fund 

More Information on our Open Space Preservation Programs.