Department of Environmental Conservation

D E C banner

For Release: Wednesday, May 11, 2022

New York State to Hold Public Hearings on Draft Disadvantaged Communities Criteria

Two Virtual Hearings and One In-Person Hearing to be Held in May

What: The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC), in partnership with the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), will hold public hearings on May 18, May 25, and May 26, 2022, to receive input on the Draft Disadvantaged Communities Criteria (link leaves DEC website) and advance the finalization of the criteria to help guide the implementation of the State's nation-leading Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act.

New York's Climate Justice Working Group (CJWG), which consists of representatives from environmental justice groups from across the State and representatives of several State agencies, developed the draft criteria for identifying disadvantaged communities and voted to release it for public review. The State is holding a total of 11 public hearings with four in-person hearings and seven virtual hearings. All persons, organizations, corporations, and government agencies are encouraged to attend the public hearings and to submit oral or written comments.

Individuals attending in-person and virtual hearings and providing comments will be given two minutes to speak. Lengthy statements should be submitted in writing and summarized for oral presentation. If in-person hearings cannot be held due to changing COVID-19 health and safety guidelines, hearings will shift to virtual at the same date and time.


Virtual Public Hearing Long Island

Wednesday, May 18, 2022, 6 p.m. ET

Event Address: Via WebEx (link leaves DEC Website)

Call In Number: 1-518-549-0500

Event Password: DAC-2022 (32202022 from phones)

Event Number: 2346 453 2409

Virtual Public Hearing NYC

Wednesday, May 25, 2022, 12 p.m. ET

Event Address: Via WebEx (link leaves DEC website)

Call In Number: 1-518-549-0500

Event Password: DACHearing-2022 (32243275 from phones)

Event Number: 2335 967 4423

Mid-Hudson Valley Public Hearing

Thursday, May 26, 2022, 6 p.m. ET

Beulah Baptist Church  

92 Catharine St. 

Poughkeepsie, NY 12601 

Capacity of Venue: Up to 85 may attend this hearing.

Attendees are encouraged to pre-register at NYSERDA's website (link leaves DEC website).


Vehicle Parking:

  • Park in the parking lot for general attendees.
  • Handicapped spots are located closer to the entrance.

Health and Safety:

  • Non-vaccinated attendees must wear masks.
  • Disposable face masks will be available at the event.

Information for All Hearing Attendees:

Pre-registration is encouraged but not required for the hearings. Priority in speaking will be given to those who pre-register based on their place of residence for the regional hearings. Individuals can pre-register for virtual and in-person hearings at the Climate Act website (link leaves DEC website). All hearings will be professionally recorded and transcribed as part of the official record and posted on the Climate Act website (link leaves DEC website).

Members of the public who want to provide oral comment must attend either in-person or join a virtual hearing. Equal weight will be given to oral and written statements. American sign language and language interpretive services shall be made available upon written request at no charge. Requests for interpretation must be received at least 10 days before the hearing date and directed by mail to NYSDEC, Office of Communication Services, 625 Broadway, Albany, New York 12233-4500), by telephone (518-402-8044), or by email to

Written comments can be submitted through July 7, 2022 via the online public comment form (link leaves DEC website), via email to, or via U.S. Mail to Attention: Draft DAC Comments, NYS DEC, Attn. Office of Environmental Justice, 625 Broadway, 14th Floor, Albany NY 12233.

Visit the Climate Act website for more information about the draft disadvantaged communities criteria (link leaves DEC website) and for information on the Climate Justice Working Group (link leaves DEC website).

  • Contact for this Page
  • Press Office - Haley Viccaro
    625 Broadway
    Albany, NY 12233-1016
    email us
  • This Page Covers
  • Page applies to all NYS regions