Laws Protect Parks & The Public’s Use Of Parks
Waterfront parks have the most protections under the law.
When Federal Community Development Block Grant Funds were used to renovate Lake Erie Beach Park in the early 1990’s, federal laws protecting parks came into play.
Going back to Common Law, the public’s rights to public parkland has been protected. Alienation law not only addresses the sale of parkland but also the change of use.
The Public Trust Doctrine, Policy 19, Executive Law 42 and more protect the public’s rights to parkland.
On 6-12-2014, a very important public trust decision was issued by the New York State Court of Appeals in a case brought by the Pace Environmental Litigation Clinic’s good friends and allies at the Super Law Group. New York State’s highest court ruled in Capruso v. Village of Kings Point that legislatively unauthorized “non-park” uses of public parkland by municipalities are continuing wrongs that can be challenged at any time by the public or the state, and that statute of limitations and laches defenses may not be asserted by municipalities to block efforts to enjoin such violations of the Public Trust Doctrine. This ruling applies even where the municipal misuse of parkland has been ongoing for decades.
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