Provincial Government Introduces Public Lands Modernization Amendment Act
The Public Lands Modernization (Grazing Lease and Obsolete Provisions) Amendment Actwas introduced on October 15, 2019. Bill 16 includes changes to rent and fees ranchers and cattle owners pay government for the use of public lands. If this bill is passed, a portion of revenues would be reinvested in rangeland sustainability initiatives.
Fluctuating rental rates which will be tied to the health of the industry are also proposed. The changes will be phased in over five years to allow for ranchers to adjust to new rates which have remained unchanged for 25 years. Government is proposing a flat-rate fee for the transfer of a lease in the new legislation. Amendments to the fee framework will not change recreational access to public lands for Albertans, and will not affect existing treaty rights for Indigenous Peoples.