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In This Volume

  • 18 (1) In this section:
  • “approving body” means one or more of the following:
  • (a) a local government, a first nation government or an authority;
  • (b) a board or other agency established by a local government, a first nation government or an authority;
  • (c) a person or agency that enters into an agreement under the Local Services Act;
  • permitted non-farm use” means a non-farm use that is permitted under section 25 or 45 or the regulations.
  • (2) An approving body may approve or permit a non-farm use of agricultural land only if the non-farm use is a permitted non-farm use.
  • (3) An approving body may approve or permit a building or structure to be constructed or altered on agricultural land only if the building or structure
  • (a) is not a residential structure and will be used for a farm use or permitted non-farm use,
  • (b) is a principal residence and
    • (i) is of a size and is sited in accordance with section 20.1(1), or
    • (ii) is permitted under section 25 or 45 or the regulations,
  • (c) is an additional residence and is permitted under section 25 or 45 or the regulations, or
  • (d) is a residential structure other than a residence and
    • (i) is of a size and is sited in accordance with the regulations or as permitted under an application made in accordance with the regulations, and
    • (ii) will be used as permitted under section 25 or 45 or the regulations.
  • (4) An approving body may approve or permit a soil or fill use of agricultural land only if the soil or fill use is permitted under section 20.3, 25 or 45.
  • (5) The following persons may not approve a subdivision of land that would cause agricultural land to be subdivided unless the subdivision is permitted under section 25 or 45 or the regulations:
  • (a) an approving officer under the Land Title Act, the Local Government Act or the Strata Property Act;
  • (b) a person who exercises the powers of an approving officer under any other Act.

2018-56-10, effective February 22, 2019 (B.C. Reg. 30/2019).

CASE LAW

Partition of ALR Parcel Declined

As well as under the Partition of Property Act, R.S.B.C. 1996, c. 347 (see chapter 51 (Partition of Property Act, R.S.B.C. 1996, c. 347)), McLachlan v. Ast, 2018 BCSC 1365 was decided under ss. 6 and 18 of the Agricultural Land Commission Act and s. 10(1)(c) of the Agricultural Land Reserve Transitional Regulation, B.C. Reg. 171/2002, before the 2019 amendment of that Act, the 2019 renaming and partial replacement of that regulation, and further statutory amendments as well as repeal and replacement of the regulation, both in 2020 (see the commentary to “20.3 Soil or fill use” and the commentary to “21 Subdivision of agricultural land reserve” in this chapter). The provisions may not have changed in substance to degrees that would affect the result. Through inheritance and family dealings, the petitioner and the respondent, her uncle, came to own, respectively, a 75% and a 25% undivided interest in a 2.5-acre property located in the agricultural land reserve. The petitioner applied under the Partition of Property Act to have the property partitioned, so the respondent would receive the eastern 1/4 of the property and she would receive the remainder. The court dismissed her application, finding the proposed subdivision would create an “orphan” lot for the respondent, with potential difficulty of road and utility access. The court also declined to exercise its discretion to order partition in the absence of reasonable assurance that the subdivision would meet with Agricultural Land Commission (“ALC”) (now Provincial Agricultural Land Commission) approval. The exemption from ALC approval for certain subdivisions did not apply because at least one of the proposed parcels would be less than 1 ha (in fact, both parcels, after the proposed subdivision, would be less than 1 ha) and there would be an increase in the number of parcels of land; see s. 10(1)(c) of the former Agricultural Land Reserve Use, Subdivision and Procedure Regulation, as well as s. 10(1)(c) of the former Agricultural Land Reserve General Regulation, B.C. Reg. 171/2002. See, as well, the pre- and post-amended versions of s. 18 of the Act, requiring commission approval of a subdivision (see the commentary to “Subdivision of agricultural land reserve” in this chapter). The court also declined to order the partition because of the possibility of a claim with respect to gravel mining under approximately the eastern half of the parcel.