NDP’s two-year crusade against farmers devastates B.C’s agricultural industry: B.C. Liberals

Ian Paton
Ian Paton

TWO years into Premier John Horgan and the NDP’s mandate, B.C. farmers are no better off. In fact, they are struggling more than ever to keep their operations viable thanks to the NDP’s damaging legislation and increased costs to doing business, say the B.C. Liberals.

They say that the Premier has let his activist Agriculture Minister Lana Popham put forward Bills 15 and 52, which have stripped farmers of their rights and given the government more control than ever over agricultural land and the livelihoods of those who work on it.

“In passing these destructive bills, the message that the NDP has driven home to B.C. farmers is clear: we value your land, not you,” says B.C. Liberal Agriculture Co-Critic Ian Paton, MLA for Delta South.

Bill 52 limits the size of houses that farmers are allowed to build on their land and forces farmers to receive the approval of the Agricultural Land Commission (ALC) to construct any additional structures. Bill 15 removes a farmer’s right to apply to the ALC for exclusions on their own land, which directly contradicts the intentions of the Agricultural Minister in 1973 when the ALC was created, note the B.C. Liberals.

Linda Larson

B.C. Liberal Agricultural Co-Critic Linda Larson, MLA for Boundary-Similkameen, says Popham’s goal is to wrest control of agricultural land out of the hands of farmers and into the hands of the NDP.

“Although the NDP claim to be advancing the agricultural industry in British Columbia, what they have created over the last two years resembles something closer to medieval feudalism, where the rulers control the land and simply allow the farmers to work on it. It’s unfair to those who are just trying to make a living and keep their farms in the family for future generations to run,” says Larson.

Paton still lives on the farm that has been in his family for generations and is devastated to see the impact that the NDP’s policies have had on B.C. farming communities.

“John Horgan’s new taxes have made it more expensive than ever to be a farmer,” says Paton. “Farmers are being forced to cope with the triple-whammy effect of an increased minimum wage, a hike to the carbon tax, and a new Employer Health Tax— not to mention more stringent enforcement of ALC rules around agri-tourism events which help keep them afloat.”

Paton and Larson note all of this has been done without the appropriate amount of consultation that the industry deserves.

11 COMMENTS

  1. Farmers are unfair to their workers they make big bucks and have huge houses they pay no taxes on the land and farm workers should get at least 20 dollars an hour for the work they do and are not paid overtime. gready

    • I’d really love to see these big bucks your talking about. I’m having to shut down my farm because it’s costing us more to farm than we get as income.

      Where exactly are you getting your information from? The comic strips in bubble gum packs?

    • What rock do you live under ? And how dare you comment when you have no idea what you’re talking about . Most farmers are barely hanging on and many have to work elsewhere and still farm just to pay the bills . Orchardists cant get people to pick their fruit no matter how much they pay. Go put your head back in the sand and this time breath .

    • Boy, that is a crock, some farmers may have that, but they also have huge expenses, and in many cases have to hire workers they have to train, and who can cost more in damaged equipment than they actually make for the farmer in help.

  2. The majority of farms are family farms not big corporations. Farms vary vastly in size. Corporate farms usually automate as much as possible in order to reduce labour costs and can get capital loans more readily than farmers that work their land, improving it for crops or animals (horses, cows, poultry, etc) to flourish.

    To sustain non commercial farming farmers often have multiple family members work with them and are just as likely to hold down an outside job in the “off season” to support the farm.

    If you figure farming is super easy, just rakes in money hand over fist, you must be smoking a lot of legal cannabis just like the folks that wrote and passed bills 52 and 15.

  3. Audrey Howe. What a bunch of crap. You have no idea what you were talking about. Wake up or quit lying.

  4. This farmer operates at a loss and one of us has had to work off farm to feed the family. There are very few farms in BC making any more than a basic living. There is nothing extra after paying insurance,property taxes, wages and fuel all of which has gone up every year.

  5. What is Audrey Howes credibility to comment? Such a statement is usually made by an uninformed person who follows the media spin and gains a false confidence by doing so!

  6. Not as extreme as Stalin starving the Ukrainians but the end objective is the same: Drive the farmers off the land so the government can take over. Make no mistake Horgan’s socialism is a threat to our democratic way of life.

    • Do you have a farm Audrey Howe..are you NDP..are you a socialist?? My ancestors were farmers ..loggers..working with their hands..If the farmers have money, it just means they worked for it unlike some sitting in the provincial government..

  7. not only that if my modular burns i will be homeless because they will not allow my hobby as a breeder to be considered agriculture so i would not be allowed to rebuild or by a new home. This is horribly wrong. Then they are trying to tax our wells

Comments are closed.