Tuesday, 21 March 2017

Rural Community Process

What is the Process for Becoming a Rural Community?

These are the steps that have been put in place by the Department of Environment and Local Government (DELG) to assist interested rural areas in considering and becoming a Rural Community:

1.  A letter of interest is sent to the Minister of DELG (by interested residents, the Advisory Committee of a LSD, or a town or village council).

2.  DELG staff work with those who have expressed interest as well as other community stakeholders to conduct an initial assessment of the area's population, property tax base, shared interests, potential benefits and level of public interest in forming a viable Rural Community.

3.  If the initial assessment is positive, a feasibility study petition (signed by at least 25 residents qualified to vote in their LSD) is sent to the Minister from the local interest group(s).

4.  If the Minister approves, a feasibility study is carried out by DELG staff with the involvement of each LSD Advisory Committee, town or village council (if applicable) and other community stakeholders.  The study results are submitted to the Minister.

5.  The Minister reviews the feasibility study to determine if the results are positive and if it shows there is a strong support from community leaders and residents.  He may then decide to hold a plebiscite.  

If the plebiscite results in a yes vote, the Minister may recommend to government that the LSDs, town or village (if applicable) become incorporated at a Rural Community.

If government approves, an election is held for the new Rural Community to form the first council.

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