Public comment sought on residences in ALR

Opportunity for folks to comment on what's happening with the Agricultural Land Reserve

The Ministry of Agriculture wants British Columbians to comment on possible guidelines for residence size and location on properties in the Agricultural Land Reserve (ALR).

The call for public comments follows the distribution of the ministry’s discussion paper to local governments and stakeholders, and is part of the process to help develop standards that could be applied by local governments across the province.

The consultation includes a survey seeking opinions on:

• Whether size and location limits should be applied to residences and their amenities in the ALR.

• The process in which the standards could be introduced.

• Feedback on the discussion paper.

The ALR is a provincial zone in which agriculture is the priority use. Although local governments regulate residence size and location limits within their boundaries, not many have specified size and placement requirements for residences specifically within the ALR.

As a result of local governments’ concerns over differences in regulations among municipalities, Metro Vancouver (formerly the Greater Vancouver Regional District) asked the agriculture minister to develop a provincial standard that local governments could use.

The survey is open to all British Columbians, but respondents are advised to familiarize themselves with the discussion paper prior to participating in the survey. To read the discussion paper and participate in the survey, visit: www.agf.gov.bc.ca.

The survey will be open until July 14, 2011. All comments will be included in the ministry’s consideration of Metro Vancouver’s request for a provincial standard.