Legislative Conference

2020 NYSAC Legislative Conference
1/27-1/29, The Desmond Hotel Albany, NY

NYSAC’s 2020 Legislative Conference included a lineup of great speakers, networking opportunities, extensive educational session, and our traditional Taste of New York event. Our cutting edge workshops keep county leaders ahead of the curve on emerging local issues. 

Workshop List
Plenary Sessions and Keynote Presentations
Special Events

           Click on "BOOK NOW", Enter Dates, and enter GROUP CODE "COU

If you are not a county official, click HERE for your registration options.

View photos from the 2019 Legislative Conference

2020 Legislative Conference Workshops:

Criminal Justice Reform I: Bail & Discovery Reform
On January 1, 2020, counties began implementing the state’s sweeping criminal justice reforms. This includes changes to the bail system, which will lower pre-trial incarceration rates, and will also increase other public safety service needs within the sheriff and probation departments. Additionally, new discovery rules are changing the way DAs prepare for trial. Presentations will cover county implementation requirements, current and future challenges, and initial impact to county operations. (Monday, 1/27, 2-3:15pm)
Reforming the New York Early Intervention System & State Fiscal Agent                         
Early Intervention is the state-mandated program that improves and enhances the development of a child with developmental delays, special needs, or other concerns. This session will provide an update from state officials on proposed budget changes related to the Early Intervention program, as well as recent administrative reforms underway.  (Monday, 1/27, 2-3:15pm)
Public Sector Labor Relations
Participants will learn about the unique labor/management relationships existing in county government as established under State law. Topics of this session will include requirements of the Civil Service Law, the Taylor Law, the operations and responsibilities of the Public Employment Relations Board (PERB), and procedures mandated under other relevant state statutes. This session is one of the core course requirements under the County Government Institute. (4 credits).  (Monday, 1/27,  2-3:15pm)
New Tools for Source Water Protection in NYS
Protecting drinking water is a high priority for New Yorkers. Amid rising public interest in emerging contaminates, New York State is launching an initiative to provide counties with resources and tools to proactively protect their drinking water sources. Attend this workshop to learn about state guidance and staff support available for your community to develop and implement a drinking water source protection plan.  (Monday, 1/27,  2-3:15pm)
Keeping County Roads on a Low-Salt Diet
Counties rely on road salt for roadway safety, but using too much can negatively impact drinking water supplies, vehicles, and county budgets. Attend this workshop to learn about the innovative ways counties are tracking and reducing their road salt use.  (Monday, 1/27, 2-3:15pm)
Criminal Justice Reform II:
RTA & Innovative Ideas for Repurposing Your Jail

On October 1, 2019, 17-year-old youth in NYS were no longer treated as adults in the criminal justice system. This cohort is now being treated the same as 16-year-olds as we begin the second year of implementing Raise the Age. Join us for an update on RTA implementation. The second portion of this workshop will cover innovative ways for repurposing your jail given projected declines in inmate population.  (Monday, 1/27, 3:45-5pm)
Putting the 2020 Census Count into Context
The U.S. Constitution calls for a decennial census to count every person living in the United States of America, and to use that count to determine representation in the House of Representatives. The Census is also used to determine the distribution of billions of dollars in federal funds to local communities. This session will address how counties can help promote the 2020 count.  (Monday, 1/27, 3:45pm-5pm)
Building Consensus in a Political Environment:
Understanding Dispute Resolution

County leaders are often confronted with the need to settle political differences so that the greater interests of the public can be served. During this session, county leaders will learn skills and techniques to help manage and resolve political conflicts. This is an interactive session, where participants will be grouped with other county officials to jointly work on real issues facing your county so that practical application of the techniques can be demonstrated. This session will be led by the NYS Dispute Resolution Association. (County Government Institute Core Requirement –4 credits)  (Monday, 1/27, 3:45pm-5pm)
Partnerships for County Success:
Using Telemedicine to Improve Care and Save Tax Dollars

An innovative new public-private partnership designed to improve the quality and accessibility of health care for Medicaid patients in Rensselaer County could be replicated elsewhere. The partnership brings together a telemedicine provider, an HMO, County DSS and 9-1-1 services into a virtual app that allows patients to connect with emergency medical providers 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Learn how “ER Anywhere” allows Medicaid patients to consult with emergency medical providers to discuss treatment, to triage any acute medical issue or connect to 9-1-1 if it is deemed necessary. The program provides quick access to medical professionals for patients, while reducing the number of unnecessary emergency room visits.  (Monday, 1/27, 3:45 – 5:00pm)
Assessing and Healing: 
The Causes and Damage Inflicted by the Opioid Epidemic

The opioid epidemic continues to inflict pain and suffering throughout our communities. Counties are on the frontline trying to triage the crisis with our service providers, including County Health, Mental Health, DSS, Sheriffs, District Attorneys and Public Defenders. Join our panel of experts that will discuss how counties determine the causes and damage of this crisis and the steps counties have taken to heal our communities.   (Monday, 1/27, 3:45 – 5:00pm)
State Budget Review
The State Budget continues to face fiscal challenges with a projected deficit of at least $4 billion in 2021. The new legislative majority will be entering its second legislative year and will be managing a shorter calendar to accommodate election changes enacted in 2019. This session will review the Governor’s plan for addressing the deficit and implementing any new initiatives in the coming year.  (Tuesday, 1/28, 10:45am – Noon)
Audiences, Messages, and Channels:
Communicating Your County’s Story

County leaders face a unique communication challenge: a myriad of issues and opportunities to convey, diverse audiences, and a shifting media landscape. And yet effective communication remains vitally important to the success of county programs and services. In this workshop, you’ll learn techniques to develop a cohesive communications strategy, effectively make your point, and stay connected with your community.  (Tuesday, 1/28, 10:45am – Noon)
What “Climate Leadership” Means for Your County
Preparations for implementing the landmark NYS Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act (CLCPA) are already underway. How will the country’s most ambitious climate targets impact your county? Attend this workshop to unpack New York’s new climate law.  (Tuesday, 1/28, 10:45-12pm)
Innovative Ways to Connect with Constituents 
As the technology and demographics within our counties change, it is important to find new ways to engage and support residents. This session will highlight the innovative ways that Nassau County engages with diverse constituencies, including the County Executive’s Book Club, millennial chat series, and the Nassau C.A.R.E.S. smartphone app.  (Tuesday, 1/28, 10:45-12pm)
Hemp: A Budding Industry in NYS
New York’s farmers are cultivating the multi-million-dollar hemp market. This versatile cash crop is used in the manufacture of more than 25,000 products, ranging from clothing and food to building materials and pharmaceuticals. Attend this workshop to learn more about the laws, regulations, and opportunities surrounding cannabidiol (CBD) and hemp-related products.  (Tuesday, 1/28, 10:45-12pm)
Strategies for Recruitment:
Tackling a Shortage of Volunteer EMS & Firefighter Personnel

From rural to suburban, a shortage of volunteer firefighters and EMS personnel is affecting counties across New York State. Join us for a county perspective on successful projects to recruit and retain a volunteer firefighter and EMS workforce. Our panelists will cover unique ways in which counties have been tackling this problem.  (Tuesday, 1/28, 2-3:15pm)
Using Your Ethical Compass:
Ethics Laws and Local Government

This session will provide an overview of the codes of conduct and legal requirements of county elected and appointed officials under state and local ethics laws, policies and procedures. The session will describe state and local laws governing gifts and inducements, conflicts of interest, financial disclosure requirements, operations of county ethics boards and other areas relating to integrity in government. This session is one of the core course requirements of the County Government Institute (4 credits awarded).  (Tuesday, 1/28, 2-3:15pm)
Recycling After China’s Ban: Where Are We Now?
China began implementing import policies in 2017–often referred to collectively as National Sword–that restrict the importation of recyclables. Many localities in the U.S. have experienced more than a 1,000% increase in their recycling costs since this time. Attend this workshop to learn about the continued impact in NYS and what state resources and policies are being considered to provide relief.  (Tuesday, 1/28, 2-3:15pm)
How Counties are Saving Money on Health Insurance
Health insurance is one of the fastest growing expenses facing counties and local governments. This session will focus on strategies for saving money on county health insurance, including aggregating stop loss coverage, shopping for a PBM, carving out fertility services, and separating Medicare-eligible retirees from active employee plans.  (Tuesday, 1/28, 2-3:15pm)
Connecting the Dots: Building Community Wealth to End Hunger 
Food security is multi-dimensional in nature and encompasses four main components: availability, access, utilization, and stability. It is also affected by human, social, financial, and natural capital. In this moderated discussion, panelists will share policies and other strategies to build wealth equity with the goal of ending hunger. (Tuesday, 1/28,  2-3:15pm)

Improving Data Collection and Collaboration
Between the Field and Office

Join us for an overview of how web and mobile GIS can improve access to data from the field and office. GIS applications can assist owners of stormwater conveyance systems in tracking potential sources of discharge pollutants, manage historic records, manage system operation and maintenance, track identity and mitigate illicit connections.  Learn how Putnam County implemented GIS processes to provide one overall mapping and maintenance tracking system that satisfies mapping and reporting requirements of the permit program.  (Tuesday, 1/28, 3:45-5pm)

Liquidity Management and Maximizing Your County’s Interest Income
County officials will offer current best practices in maximizing interest income. As the Federal Reserve Board adjusts interest rates, you’ll want to hear how this affects you ability to manage your funds locally. (Tuesday, 1/28, 3:45-5pm)

Resilient Infrastructure:
A Sustainable Response to a Changing Climate

Over the last decade, every county in NYS has been impacted by severe storms, flooding, or hurricanes that have tested the resiliency of local infrastructure. To confront the new reality of extreme weather, counties will need to make unprecedented investments in flood control and other measures to protect local infrastructure. Learn how counties are preparing for a changing climate and what state resources are available to help. (Tuesday, 1/28, 3:45-5pm)
Joint Intercounty Breakfast: A Batty Experience
Join us for an insightful presentation from the New York State labs as they work to determine if the silver hair bat rabies virus is more pathogenic than other bat rabies viruses and understand the impact of white nose syndrome (WNS) in rabies virus maintenance and its impact on indigenous bat populations. We will also be joined by prevention and remediation experts Hudson Valley Wildlife Solutions, LLC, who specialize in protecting property while also building safe homes for the bats they work with. (Wednesday, 1/29, 8:00am-9:00am)
NYS Emergency Management Certification and Training Program

The NYS Emergency Management Certification and Training (EMC&T) Program supports Governor Cuomo’s strategy of creating unified emergency management training for County Chief Executives and other emergency management stakeholders. The NYS Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services (DHSES) has worked with the local emergency management community to develop standardized curriculum for three theirs of training aimed at: County Chief Executives (Tier 1), County Emergency Managers (Tier 2) and other local public officials within Counties (Tier 3). County Chief Executives and County Emergency Managers must complete the training (to include annual refresher training) for DHSES grant eligibility purposes. The training covers all facets of emergency management, including disaster preparedness, response and recovery. It also outlines the legal authorities and responsibilities related to emergency management in NYS. DHSES is partnering with NYSAC to deliver this training.  (Wednesday, 1/29, 9:30am-2:00pm)

2020 Legislative Conference Plenary Sessions and Keynote Presentations:



2020 Legislative Conference Special Events:


2020 Legislative Conference Agenda (subject to change):

Monday, 1/27
8:30am-5:30pm    Registration
9:30am-11:00am  NYSAC Standing Cmts. (Track I)
                                       Public Employee Relations
                                       Children with Special Needs            
                                       Agriculture & Rural Affairs
                                       Taxation & Finance
                                       Public Health and Mental Health
                                       Transportation & Public Works
11:30am-1:00pm NYSAC Standing Cmts. (Track II)
                                        Economic Development, Environment, and Energy
                                        Medicaid & Human Services
                                        Native American Affairs
                                        Public Safety
                                        Intergovernmental Relations
1:00pm-2:00pm NYSAC Luncheon
Special Guest:
Hon. Thomas DiNapoli
NYS Comptroller (Invited)
1:00pm-5:00pm Exhibits Open
2:00pm-3:15pm Workshop Session I
2:00pm-3:15pm NYSAC Climate Resiliency Cmt
3:45pm-5:00pm Resolutions Committee Meeting
3:45pm-5:00pm Workshop Session II

6:00pm-8:00pm Taste of New York!
A reception featuring NYS food
and beverages to celebrate the bounty of New York! (ticket required)

Special Guest:
Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul
Tuesday, 1/28
7:30am-8:45am    General Breakfast
7:30a.m-9:00am   Board Chairs Assocation Breakfast Meeting

9:00am-10:15am  Opening Plenary Session                                                             
                                  Special Guest:
                                  Joseph Pfeifer
                                  Chief of Counterterrorism and
                                  Emergency Preparedness, FDNY
                                  Sponsored by NYSTEC
10:45am-Noon      Workshop Session III
Noon-1:30pm        NYSAC Business Meeting Part I
                               Legislative Luncheon
                               Special Guest:
                               Hon. Letitia James
                               NYS Attorney General

2:00pm-3:30pm     Workshop Session IV
2:00pm-3:30pm     County Executives Association
2:00pm-3:30pm     County Administrators Association
3:45pm-5:00pm     Afternoon Plenary Session
                               Special Guest:
                               Janine Driver
                               CEO, The Body Language Institute

                               Sponsored by the NYSAC Women’s Leadership Council
3:45pm-5:00pm     Workshop Session V
8:00am-9:00am     General Breakfast
8:00am-9:00am    Joint Intercounty Breakfast
                              Topic: A Batty Experience
                              NYS Labs, Hudson Valley Wildlife Solutions

9:00am-9:30am    NYSAC Business Meeting:
                              Part II: Resolutions
9:30am-3:00pm    NYS Emergency Management
                              Certification Training

                              Sponsored by AT&T
                              ~County Advocacy in State Capitol~



Workshop PowerPoint Presentations Presented at the 2019 Legislative Conference:
Conference Program PDF
View Plenary Session Recording: Hemp and the Legalization of Marijuana in New York State

View State Budg
et Review Session Recording

View photos from the 2019 Legislative Conference


  2020 Legislative Conference Sponsors & Exhibitors

Women's Leadership Council Sponsor

Taste of NY Reception Sponsor

Corporate Sponsors

Platinum Sponsors
Absolute Auctions & Realty, Inc.
Maser Consulting P.A.
ProAct, Inc.
Roemer Wallens Gold & Mineaux
Special Event Sponsors
Alera Group
Auctions International Inc.
Barton & Loguidice
Desmond Hotel Albany
FirstNet Built with AT&T
LaBella Associates
Napoli Shkolnik PLLC
PKF O'Connor Davies
Securus Monitoring Solutions
Gold Sponsors
All paid dba GovPayNet
Drescher & Malecki, LLP
Election Systems & Software
Good Energy
Motorola Solutions, Inc.
OpenGov Inc.
Siemens Smart Infrastructure
Silver Sponsors
Arthur J. Gallagher & Co.
BCA Architects & Engineers
C&S Companies
Emergent BioSolutions
Fiscal Advisors & Marketing, Inc.
Glens Falls National Bank
James McGuinness & Assoc
LexisNexis Payment Solutions
McFarland-Johnson, Inc.
MRB Group
Nationwide Retirement Solutions
Park Strategies LLC
Sano-Rubin Construction Services
Taurus Advisory Group
United Concierge Medicine
West Group Law PLLC
Absolute Auctions & Realty, Inc.
Accelerated Information Systems
Alera Group
Ameresco, Inc.
Auctions International Inc.
Bonadio Group
C.T. Male Associates
Capital Region BOCES Shared Services
CFG Health Systems, LLC
CHA Consulting Inc.
Collar City Auctions Realty & Mgmt, Inc.
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Dominion Voting Systems
Election Systems & Software
Empire Bonding & Insurance Co.
Enterprise Fleet Management
FirstNet Built with AT&T
Fort Orange Press
General Code LLC
General Dynamics Information Technology
Geospatial Analytics Inc
Haylor, Freyer & Coon
Health Economics Group, Inc.
Hunt Engineers, Architects & Surveyors
LaBella Associates
Laberge Group
M.J. Engineering and Land Surveying, P.C.
Maser Consulting P.A.
McFarland-Johnson, Inc.
Motorola Solutions, Inc.
Municipal Electric and Gas Alliance, Inc.
MVP Health Care
N.K. Bhandari, Architecture & Engineering, PC
National Association of Counties
Nationwide Retirement Solutions
Napoli Shkolnik PLLC
NY Environmental Protection & Spill Compensation Fund
New York Power Authority
New York State Office of the Attorney General
NYS Comptroller's Office of Unclaimed Funds
NYS Department of Public Service
OpenGov Inc.
PKF O'Connor Davies
Premier Consulting Associates
ProAct, Inc.
Roemer Wallens Gold & Mineaux
Siemens Smart Infrastructure
Smart Watt
SMRT Architects and Engineers
Tectonic Engineering & Surveying Consultants PC
The Chazen Companies
The Cicala Law Firm PLLC
TNT Fireworks
VMC Consultants Inc.