SCOPE OF THE COMPREHENSIVE PLAN
As set forth in Article 16 of the New York State Town Law, the intent of a comprehensive plan is to establish a consensus about a community’s future, prepare it for future demographic and economic changes, protect its natural and agricultural resources, and provide direction to the Town and other governmental agencies in the consideration and enactment of future land use policies and regulations. Under the State enabling statutes, land use regulations must be in accordance with a comprehensive plan. As such, land use regulations are a tool for the implementation of goals and objectives stated in a comprehensive plan.
New York State Town Law §272-a grants all towns the authority and responsibility to prepare and adopt comprehensive plans. As defined by the State statutes, a comprehensive plan is a document that presents goals, objectives, guidelines and policies for the immediate and long-range protections, enhancement, growth and development of the community. Also sometimes referred to as a master plan or land use plan, a comprehensive plan provides guidance to townleaders and helps to ensure that the needs of the community will be adequately addressed in the future.