COMOX VALLEY – New Democrat MLA Ronna-Rae Leonard says new rules will add flexibility and increased housing options for a small secondary home in the Agricultural Land Reserve. The additional residence can be used for anything from housing extended family to an agritourism accommodation, to housing for farm labour, to a rental property for supplemental income.
“People in the Comox Valley work hard on their land to produce local food, and these farmers should have lands that work for them too,” said Ronna-Rae Leonard, MLA for Courtenay-Comox. “I’m excited to see these changes being made, creating more opportunity for farmers here and across the province to help ensure a stable supply of B.C. produce and support housing needs.”
The new rules will increase stability of local food systems by increasing economic opportunities for farm owners. These changes will also allow for a streamlined approval process in which applicants only need to apply to a local government or First Nation government, rather than the Agricultural Land Commission.
Flexible housing options permitted under the regulation include, but are not limited to:
- garden suites, guest houses or carriage suites,
- accommodation above an existing building,
- manufactured homes, and
- permitting a principal residence to be constructed in addition to a manufactured home that was formerly a principal residence.
There is no longer a requirement that additional residences must be used by the landowner or immediate family members.
This new residential flexibility is the result of an engagement process that included discussions with farmers and the greater community. The new rules will come into effect December 31, 2021.
Learn more: https://news.gov.bc.ca/24889