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Guelph-Eramosa opposes creation of two under-sized farms

by Chris Daponte

BRUCEDALE - Guelph-Eramosa council has recommended Wellington County officials deny an application to sever an irregular-shaped agricultural lot into two under-sized farms.

“After a lot of soul searching, I’ve recommended a denial,” township planner Bernie Hermsen told council on Nov. 7.

Dave and Angela Hasson have applied to sever their property near the corner of County Roads 30 and 86 into two lots - the severed portion would be 26 hectares (64 acres)  and the retained portion 18 hectares (44 acres).

But councillors agreed with Hermsen, who was uneasy about approving an application that creates two new agricultural lots much smaller than the 35-hectare minimum cited in the county’s official plan.

“This is exactly what the provincial policy is trying to avoid,” said councillor Doug Breen.

He told council there are two issues: whether both lots could be considered viable farming properties and also if a house would be permitted on the severed portion.

Hermsen explained the Hassons propose a “market gardening enterprise” on the retained portion and potential purchasers Brad and Sarah Buchanan have proposed a “beef genetics business” on the severed lot.

Councillor David Wolk said  26 hectares is extremely small for a livestock operation. “It really calls into question what’s really going on here,” he said.

Hermsen said the applicants noted the Buchanans will have about 20 cows and five bulls on the property and they say the operation is exempt from the Nutrient Management Act.

Breen doubted either parcel could make money.

Council unanimously passed a resolution recommending the county’s land division committee reject the application.

However, if the county approves the application, the township has also requested that a home not be permitted on the severed lot.

 

November 18, 2011

 
 

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