Temporary Farm Worker Housing (TFWH) aims to address the labour requirements of the agriculture industry, while protecting the agricultural land base from increased non-farm use. TFWH permits bonafide farm operations to provide housing for farm labour on a temporary basis through a Temporary Use Permit (TUP). A TUP for TFWH is eligible for up to three years, with the possibility of extending the permit for an additional three years. The TFWH must be fully decommissioned once:
- The principal use of the lot ceases to be agriculture, for example by the loss of farm status; or
- The TUP expires.
TFWH is permitted on A-zoned properties that are classified as a ‘Farm’ under the BC Assessment Act. Applicants must demonstrate the need for TFWH based on agricultural operations. The need for TFWH is demonstrated through a Professional Agrologists report or proof of enrollment in a federal migrant worker program, such as the Seasonal Agricultural Worker Program.
TFWH is issued through the Temporary Use Permit (TUP) process. Properties located in the Agricultural Land Reserve (ALR), that do not meet the requirements for an additional residence in the Agricultural Land Reserve Use Regulation (section 34.1), require approval from the Agricultural Land Commission for a Non-Adhering Residential Use application (NARU) before the TUP can be approved. Properties that are not located in the ALR do not require approval from the ALC.
The Temporary Farm Worker Housing Policy can be found here.
Basic Eligibility Criteria
- All or part of the parcel on which the TFWH will be located is in an A Zone;
- All or part of the parcel on which the TFWH will be located is classified as a ‘Farm’ under the BC Assessment Act; and
- There is demonstrated need for Temporary Farm Worker Housing.
- The minimum size of the farm operation on which the TFWH can be located is 4 ha (consideration may be given to smaller farms in limited circumstances, if the need for farm worker accommodation, as well as an overall net benefit for farming is demonstrated);
- The TFWH must not negatively impact other farms or neighbouring properties; and
- Siting and placement of the TFWH must minimize the residential impacts on agricultural land.