QUEEN’S PARK — Mike Schreiner released the following statement in response to calls from agricultural leaders and organizations across Ontario for the government to abandon Bill 97 and the Proposed Provincial Planning Statement.
“Ontario’s farmers have a clear message for the Premier: to farm, we need farmland.
Our province’s food and farming sector is a $50-billion economic powerhouse. It fuels our economy, supports rural communities, and strengthens our food security.
Ontario has some of the best farmland in North America – but it’s already in short supply.
Just five percent of our province is farmland, and under this government we’re losing 319 acres every single day.
Now, the Premier is planning to further weaken protections by allowing up to three lot severances per farm parcel in prime agricultural areas for residential, non-farm uses.
There’s clear value in our food and farming sector. We stand with the agricultural leaders across the province fighting to protect it.
I call on the Premier to walk back on Bill 97 and the proposed provincial planning statement, to permanently protect Ontario’s prime farmland, and to step up and solve the housing crisis by building affordable homes in caring, connected communities where people actually want to live.”