VICTORIA - The Ministry of Agriculture is inviting public comment on developing the Agricultural Land Commission's (ALC) fee structure to support its evolution into a more self-sustaining organization.The survey seeks comments on four areas the ALC has identified as possible sources to augment its provincial funding:1. A review of existing ALC application fees, which were last increased in 2002, for exclusion, subdivision, non-farm use and utility corridor applications.2. A new service fee to support the ALC's work to ensure that criteria on conditionally approved applications are met.3. A new fee for the ALC's ongoing monitoring and site inspections of long-term approvals.4. A new fee for the ALC's oversight and administration of delegation agreements with local governments and other authorities.The funding derived from these sources is intended to provide the ALC with the ability to focus on its core mandate of encouraging farming, as well as improving compliance and enforcement activities, online resources, training for staff and commissioners and conducting targeted Agricultural Land Reserve boundary reviews.The survey provides an opportunity for British Columbians to contribute to the strengthening of the ALC. Comments can be provided at:\index.htm and will be accepted until July 8. At the end of the process, a summary of public comments will be posted on the website.The amended fee structure is the latest step in a comprehensive reform package for the ALC that began in November 2011. This package includes $1.6 million in transitional funding and legislative changes supporting the ALC's focus on its core functions of preserving farmland, encouraging farming and farming's transition to a more sustainable operating model.Contact:
Sharon DeanCommunications ManagerMinistry of Agriculture250 356-1674