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Top soil committee terms updated to handle Mountain View County appeals

Any appeals to notices issued under the Soil Conservation Act shall be handled by the county's agricultural service board

MOUNTAIN VIEW COUNTY - The terms of reference of the county’s topsoil appeal committee have been updated regarding appeals under the provincial Soil Conservation Act.

The update came by way of motion at the recent county council meeting, held in person and on Zoom.

Chris Atchison, director of legislative services, told council the change comes following a review.

“During a recent field visit by Alberta Agriculture and Forestry, it was identified that there is a lack of clarity in the county’s existing topsoil appeal committee terms of reference relative to dealing with appeals resulting from decisions on the Soil Conservation Act,” he said. 

“As such, the recommendation was made to amend the terms of reference to provide additional clarity.”

The updated board hearing procedures section of the terms of reference states: “Per Section 14 of the Soil Conservation Act, any appeals to notices issued under the Soil Conservation Act shall be handled by the agricultural service board (ASB), not the topsoil appeal committee.”

The county’s topsoil bylaw No. 11/20 regulates the import and removal of topsoil within Mountain View County to protect agriculture viability.

Under the legislation, lands within the county may be identified by the topsoil review committee where topsoil movement will not be permitted to prevent the spread of regulated weeds, declared pests, contaminants, or for other agricultural and environmental-related reasons.

The top soil appeal committee  is made up of members at large appointed to the subdivision and development appeal board. It meets to conduct relevant business in accordance with the obligations contained in the topsoil bylaw.

The committee will continue to review appeals filed resulting from decisions of the county’s topsoil bylaw.

Dan Singleton

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