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November 28, 2013
For immediate release
Government to act on recommendations of Lands Protection Act Commissioner
Finance and Energy
Government has carefully considered the report of the Lands Protection Act Commissioner, Horace Carver, and will adopt its major recommendations in the coming months, says Premier Robert Ghiz.
“I asked Commissioner Carver to ensure the Act still met today’s needs,” said Premier Ghiz. “Over several months, he reviewed the legislation and held public meetings right across the Island to ensure everyone had a chance to be heard. His report is well done, and his recommendations are thorough. I thank him for his time and dedication to an issue that is so important to this province.”
The public meetings on the Lands Protection Act were held throughout Prince Edward Island, and were attended by about 600 people. A total of 134 written submissions were presented to the Commission.
”I thank the hundreds who attended the 15 public meetings and made written submissions over the past several month,” said Lands Protection Act Commissioner Horace Carver. “I am pleased that the Government has decided to implement the main recommendations in early 2014 and that other changes will be worked on as time goes on.”
The Commissioner’s report contains 29 recommendations. It suggests land holding limits remain the same, but that Government amend the legislation to allow landowners to exempt a percentage of non-arable land, which is land not used for growing crops, from being counted as part of their holdings. It also recommends that landowners be able to deduct a percentage of leased out land from their holdings in order to create more flexibility for crop rotation.
Other recommendations include calling on the Island Regulatory and Appeals Commission to provide simplified filing procedures for land holdings as well as further direction on red tape reduction and regulatory requirements, utility easements, transfers between family members and reporting requirements for non-profit corporations.
“Commissioner Carver’s report balances the spirit of the original Act with today’s need for flexibility and more straightforward guidelines,” said Finance, Energy and Municipal Affairs Minister Wes Sheridan. “We will table legislation in the spring to implement all five of the recommendations that impact land holding limits, and will then turn our attention toward the others.”
The full report can be found at www.gov.pe.ca/lpa.