OUR VIEW: Fighting for farmland

Farmland protection cannot be a case of no news is good news.

If residents of Central Saanich want to help preserve farmland in their community, they are going to have to stand up and ask for it.

Even if they get their wish, there is not going to be any guarantee that they won’t have to stand up again to argue for the exact same thing.

More than 30 people in a crowd of approximately 200 did just that recently, some lamenting the fact that they’ve done this all before.

That’s simply the nature of municipal and regional politics. A council or regional body can make a decision — yet after another election cycle it’s altogether possible for the issue to be raised again, debate re-opened and proposal reconsidered.

That’s the system for you, and it’s participatory.

Central Saanich residents find themselves arguing familiar points in the face of proposed future growth areas in the Keating X Road area.

Some of the land being looked at for potential commercial, industrial or residential growth has been farmed. Yet, it does not fall within the protective cover of the Agricultural Land Reserve. Conceivably, once their owners decide to retire, they could sell off the land — without any guarantee the new owners will continue to farm it. Any changes to land use would then go before local and regional politicians for a decision.

The only thing preventing (or facilitating) the politicians’ wishes is people’s attention and action. And they are standing up now to make their feelings known.

Most people at the recent meeting want to see the future growth areas go away — but what is being proposed to ensure the matter holds off for longer than a single term of office?

Oppose the FGAs all you like, but don’t forget the follow up once they’re gone. Farmland protection cannot be a case of no news is good news.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Donated sculpture in Sidney’s Beacon Park a testament to perseverance

Victoria artist Armando Barbon picked up sculpting 22 years ago

Sidney builds community resilience through neighbourhood gatherings

Meet Your Street needs residents to create gatherings, safe interactions

Greater Victoria businesses come together to help Island kids

Langford Lowe’s raises funds for youth mental health all month

‘Each step is a prayer’: Ojibwe man will walk from Hope to Saanich for Indigenous healing, reconciliation

James Taylor departs Sept. 20, returns to Saanich in five days for sacred fire

3 new deaths due to COVID-19 in B.C., 139 new cases

B.C. confirms 40 ‘historic cases,’ as well

POLL: Do you plan on allowing your children to go trick or treating this year?

This popular annual social time will look quite different this year due to COVID-19

Ferry riders say lower fares are what’s most needed to improve service

Provincial government announces findings of public engagement process

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg dies at 87

The court’s second female justice, died Friday at her home in Washington

Comox Valley protesters send message over old-growth logging

Event in downtown Courtenay was part of wider event on Friday

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Application deadline for fish harvester benefits program extended

Those financially impacted by the pandemic have until Oct. 5 to apply

VIDEO: B.C. to launch mouth-rinse COVID-19 test for kids

Test involves swishing and gargling saline in mouth and no deep-nasal swab

Most Read