A few clips from Hansard  


Last week in the Legislature I debated Minister McRae during the Budget Estimates for the Ministry of Agriculture.

Here are a few clips. The videos are from Hansard and the only editing done was to remove the long pauses between question and answers.


Time to stand up for the ALR and protect Delta farmland!  


In light of revelations that developers have options to purchase agreements on 600 acres of prime farmland in Delta, it is time for the B.C. Liberals to make it clear that the land won't be removed from the Agricultural Land Reserve.

As Agriculture Critic I have repeatedly spoken out against BC Liberal efforts to weaken the Agriculture Land Commission and strip out prime land from the ALR.

The BC Liberals must walk their talk: if they truly support the ALR, they need to make it clear that this 600 acre parcel will remain in the reserve.

The BC government has yet to take significant action to address raised by the Auditor General in a 2010 report about the ALC. The report noted that “the commission is challenged to effectively preserve agricultural land and encourage farming in British Columbia,” and has showed a disturbing pattern of excluding prime agricultural land from the reserve in the south of the province, replacing it with less fertile land in the North.

Delta North MLA Guy Gentner recently said that this is some of the best farmland in the country and if the Liberals allow it to be taken from the reserve it will strike a concrete arrow into the heart of Delta.

The Delta has already suffered from a wave of exclusions from the ALR that have undermined the ability of the community to retain its agricultural character and support farmers.

British Columbians overwhelmingly support the ALR and want the government to ensure the province maintains the ability to produce local food.

The Liberals have been speaking out of both sides of their mouths on this issue, saying they support the ALR while allowing illegal fill dumping and approving exclusions of some of the best agricultural land in the province. An unambiguous commitment to protect these 600 acres in the Delta would be a step in the right direction.

For more information, take a look at the excellent work on this issue done by Delta South MLA Vicki Huntington: http://www.vickihuntington.ca/content/bc-transportation-strategy-supports-industrial-buyout-plans-south-delta-farmland

Lana Popham, Official Opposition Critic for Agriculture and Saanich South MLA