Sask. leaseholders given incentive to buy crown land

Saskatchewan has announced another incentive program as it tries to sell agricultural crown land.

This program is being described as “targeted” because it is aimed at current leaseholders of cultivated or formerly cultivated land and offers them a 10 percent incentive until March 31, 2018.

Lessees aren’t obligated to buy, but if they don’t they will see a 45 percent premium tacked on to their formula rental rate. There was a 15 percent premium in 2016 and 30 percent premium this year.

The program is only being offered to the 1,100 people whose leases are subject to the premium.

This includes an estimated 300,000 acres out of the more than six million acres under agricultural lease.

“This focused incentive program supports our government’s consistent approach to putting land in the hands of producers in cases where there is no higher public good from an ecological, environmental, heritage or economic perspective,” Agriculture Minister Lyle Stewart said in a news release.

The program will not include land used by grazing co-operatives or the former federal pastures, even if they contain cultivated or formerly cultivated land.

Other land previously deemed ineligible for purchase will remain that way.

Contact karen.briere@producer.com

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