Part Three: Some fixes to ALR still missing, MLA says

Credit: B.C. Government Caucus

We pick up our Agricultural Land Reserve file today, where we left off Friday, and move forward with examination of the new regulations package associated with the Agricultural Land Commission Amendment Act.

As already reported, this package required only cabinet approval, but you can count the previous Agriculture Minister among those with concerns about that.

When considering the impact in this region, Peace River North MLA Pat Pimm is more upset by what wasn’t approved than what was.

“The regulations are something you can do without having an application to the ALR. Quite frankly, I was hoping that we could get a little piece of home site severance. The way it exists today is that, if you owned your land before the ALR act was brought in, in 1973, then you can subdivide off your home site and sell the rest of your land.

“Anything after 1973 you don’t have that option,” said Pimm.

“Eventually that’s going to phase right out. I was hoping we’d fix that. We didn’t. I was also hoping we could do a little bit of subdivision for family members. That was not something that all of caucus and all of cabinet were in favour of, and certainly the NDP is not in favour of that. Politically, it wasn’t too appetizing. I wasn’t successful in getting that put through, either.

Pimm continued: “The other piece that I was hoping that we would get some success in moving on is that most farming families, 90 per cent of them work off the farm. I was hoping that we could get a little piece of the farm where they could store their trucks, say they had a logging truck or something like that. Right now, they’re storing those trucks on their farms and they’re storing them there illegally. I was hoping to be able to make it legal so that they could use it in their off months. Am I satisfied that we got it to where we need to get to? I would say no.”

Mr. Pimm also has concerns about the make-up of the government consultation group responsible for the public feedback process used to assist in formulating the regulatory package.

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