Executive Council
Municipal Affairs
November 30, 2016

Supporting Communities and the Economy

Premier Announces Enhanced Access to Crown Lands for Municipalities

In keeping with commitments set out in The Way Forward: A Vision for Sustainability and Growth in Newfoundland and Labrador the Honourable Dwight Ball, Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador, today announced a new policy for municipalities regarding lease-to-own arrangements. The new policy enables municipalities to access Crown lands within their municipal planning boundaries for economic development purposes through long-term leases with flexible payment options, including payment deferral until the development is generating revenue.

“Our government is committed to strengthening the province’s economic foundation, and this new policy will help municipalities drive new developments. Communities can acquire Crown lands over a longer term, with less risk, and without the financial burden of having to pay the full market value upfront. Municipalities will benefit from revenue collected through new developments, the Provincial Government will receive full market value for Crown lands, and residents will benefit from enhanced economic growth.”
- The Honourable Dwight Ball, Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador

Three payment options of up to 10 years will be available to municipalities for lease-to-own Crown land:

  • Varying annual payments to be negotiated;
  • 50 per cent of the market value required upfront, and 50 per cent of the market value required when the municipality starts to realize the revenue from the sale of parcels of land, or when the term of the lease expires; and
  • Payments deferred on the lease/grant until the municipality starts to realize the revenue from the sale of parcels of land, or until the term of the lease expires.

“Our government is introducing flexible payment options to give municipalities greater opportunity to acquire Crown lands, develop new commercial and residential developments, and stimulate economic activity throughout the province. We created this new approach in response to requests from municipalities, and I look forward to seeing growth in communities across the province because of it.”
- The Honourable Eddie Joyce, Minister of Municipal Affairs

The new policy and its associated terms are responsive to feedback received from Municipalities Newfoundland and Labrador, which was a key partner in bringing these enhancements forward.

“Municipalities Newfoundland and Labrador has consistently advocated for easier access to Crown lands. This initiative will see Crown lands within municipal planning areas put to good use for economic development purposes. This policy change should encourage more economic activity and growth for municipalities across the province, and we look forward to taking advantage of the new policy.”
- Karen Oldford, President of Municipalities Newfoundland and Labrador

This initiative is one of more than 50 included in The Way Forward: A Vision for Sustainability and Growth in Newfoundland and Labrador, available online at www.gov.nl.ca/pdf/the_way_forward.pdf PDF. The vision guides Provincial Government actions to achieve greater efficiency, strengthen the province’s economic foundation, enhance services, and improve outcomes to promote a healthy and prosperous province.

QUICK FACTS

  • Today the Provincial Government announced a specific market value pricing policy for municipalities for lease-to-own arrangements, where towns may lease Crown lands for economic development purposes.
  • Crown lands make up 88 per cent of the land mass of Newfoundland and Labrador and are a significant social and economic resource for the province.
  • There are as many as 100,000 inquiries annually to the Provincial Government regarding Crown lands.

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Media contacts:

Michelle Cannizzaro
Media Relations Manager
Office of the Premier
709-729-3960
michellecannizzaro@gov.nl.ca
Lynn Robinson
Media Relations Manager
Department of Municipal Affairs
709-729-5449, 691-9466
lynnrobinson@gov.nl.ca
Gail Woodfine
Communications and Public Relations
Municipalities Newfoundland and Labrador
709-753-6820, 725 1440
gwoodfine@municipalnl.ca

2016 11 30                              2:10 p.m.