FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — Livestock farmers in the Peace River and Northern Rockies regions impacted by extreme weather conditions this year are eligible to receive a tax deferral.
The Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, Lawrence MacAulay, announced the designated regions for the 2023 Livestock Tax Deferral on Monday on behalf of the Government of Canada.
The program allows livestock producers to defer a portion of their income from selling all or part of their breeding herd due to drought or excess moisture until the following tax year.
To defer income, the breeding herd must have been reduced by at least 15 per cent.
Producers may defer sales income to the first year the region is no longer prescribed if consecutive years of drought or excess moisture occur.
Usually, the list of designated regions for the program is completed in the early fall, but with the list being released earlier, the government said it would assist producers while they make difficult herd management decisions.
The government will continue to monitor conditions and add other regions if they meet the criteria, which is forage yields of less than 50 per cent of the long-term average caused by drought or excess moisture.
In a survey conducted by the PRRD vice-chair recently, most of the farmers in the region are experiencing much lower yields when compared to previous years.
Regions are identified by the government based on weather, climate and production date, as well as in consultation with industry and provinces.
Farmers in the Peace have been struggling recently due to the early drought and have expressed their concerns with the government programs available. The Shadow Minister of Agriculture also visited Fort St. John this month to speak with impacted farmers.