Legislation: New York Invasive Species Council
Citation and link to full text: Consolidated Laws of New York State, Article 9, Title 17
Responsible agency and link to landing page: New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYS DEC)
Related regulations: 6 CRR-NY 575
Advisory body and link to landing page: New York Invasive Species Council Advisory Committee
Roles of legislation and related regulations: The New York Invasive Species Council statute tasked the Council with, among other things, generating a report placing known invasive species (plants and animals, terrestrial and aquatic) into three categories: recommended for prohibition, recommended for regulation, and not recommended for prohibition or regulation. The Prohibited and Regulated Invasive Species Rule which enacts these recommendations (see citation and link above) was finalized on September 10, 2014 and went into effect March 10, 2015.
Key definition(s): The New York Invasive Species Council is a statutorily authorized council of leaders (or their designees) of nine state agencies that addresses invasive species issues in New York State.
The New York State Invasive Species Advisory Council is a statutorily authorized advisory council assembled by the Commissioners of NYS DEC and the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets (NYS DAM). It membership must include representation from several defined stakeholder sectors.
A prohibited invasive species is a species that poses a clear risk to New York’s economy, ecological well-being, and/or human health.
A regulated invasives species is an invasive species that has the potential to cause significant harm to New York’s economy, ecological well-being, and/or human health, and can be effectively contained through regulatory programs.
Introduction in a free living state for a plant species means introduction of the species to a public land or a land connected to a public land, to a natural area, or to a public water or water body connected to a public water.
Prohibited plant species, woody plants only (see regulation link above for full list):
|Morrow’s bush honeysuckle
|Tatarian bush honeysuckle
|Japanese angelica tree
|Bell’s bush honeysuckle
Lonicera x bella
|Amur cork tree
Frangula alnus syn. Rhamnus frangula
|Gray florist’s willow
|Amur bush honeysuckle
Regulated plant species, woody plants only (see regulation link above for full list):
|Japanese virgin’s bower
- Possession of a prohibited invasive species with the intent to sell, import, purchase, transport, or introduce
- Sale, importation, purchase, transportation, introduction or propagation of any prohibited invasive species
- Introduction of a regulated invasive species in a free-living state, or introduction in such a way that the person knew or should have known would result in introduction in a free-living state
- Sale of a regulated invasive species without a tag in 14-point bold font saying “Invasive Species – Harmful to the Environment,” and without providing customers with information about alternatives and about care of the regulated species to prevent spread
Exemptions: Incidental/accidental possession is exempted. Possession or transport related to the control or management of invasive species is exempted. Possession or transport with the intent to identify the species and dispose of it is exempted. NYS DAM may issue permits allowing prohibited acts for the purposes of disposal, control, research or education. Activity undertaken to comply with a permit or compliance order issued by NYS DAM or USDA is exempt. Use of wetland species in a vegetation treatment unit at a wastewater treatment permit under a permit issued prior to adoption of the Invasive Species Rule is exempted.
Cultivar exemptions: NYS DEC may allow prohibited actions for cultivars of prohibited and regulated species if it determines that a) the species primarily reproduces sexually, and b) the cultivar is either completely sterile or is demonstrated through demographic modeling of being incapable of establishing expanding populations outside of cultivation, and c) the cultivar does not revert to the invasive traits of the parent species over time. NYS DEC publishes exemption decisions in the State Register and Environmental Notice Bulletin. They are also online here.
Process for species selection/addition: The New York Invasive Species Council developed an invasive plant ranking form that was used to evaluate plants for invasiveness or likely invasiveness in the state. The rankings were primarily done by participants in the state’s Partnerships for Regional Invasive Species Management (PRISMs). The plants that are listed in the rule are those that were ranked “Very High” or “High” (numeric score ≥ 70). Listing as prohibited vs. regulated does not exactly follow ranking score (i.e. certain species ranked “very high” are regulated, not prohibited). It is likely that economic factors and regionality played a role in these decisions. A complete list of assessments and rankings is online here.
Any person may petition NYS DEC to add or remove a species from the rule. To add a species, NYS DEC or Council members would evaluate the species and rank it using the criteria set out in the ranking form. Petitioners are encouraged to provide information that would contribute to the evaluation including basic background information, potential consequences of introduction and spread, and likelihood of introduction and spread. The NYS DEC Commissioner, in consultation with NYS DAM, makes determinations to add species as prohibited or restricted. A grace period may be allowed for species in trade for new listings. The process for removal is similar, but the petitioner would have to provide new information countering the findings of the original assessment. NYS DEC, in consultation with NYS DAM, can only remove a species if it no longer meets the criteria set forth in the rule, which mirror the evaluation criteria.
Photo Credit: Photo: Michael Scialdone, under Creative Commons license, via flickr.com