Sometimes there are costs associated with doing something good for species at risk, especially when it may involve shifting your business operations to accommodate species at risk on your land. That’s why the Ministry of Natural Resources offers a number of financial incentive programs to assist land owners and farmers in their stewardship role.
Farm incentive program
The Species at Risk Farm Incentive Program promotes the protection of species at risk and habitats on privately-owned Ontario farms. While encouraging land owner action that benefits protected species, it also recognizes the need to have sustainable production and profitability. Eligible activities include:
- Controlling the spread of invasive plants
- Protecting or restoring habitats for at-risk species
- Managing erosion damage along riverbanks
- Improving pest management.
Visit OntarioSoilCrop.org for more information.
Conservation land tax incentive program
The Conservation Land Tax Incentive Program helps land owners protect Ontario’s natural heritage by encouraging private stewardship of provincially-significant conservation lands. If you own eligible land identified by MNR and wish to take part in this program, you must agree to maintain your property as conservation land and not carry out activities that would degrade, destroy or result in the loss of the site’s natural values. Eligible lands placed under this program receive 100 percent property tax relief. This incentive program:
- Is not a land acquisition program - participating land owners retain full ownership and property rights
- Only recognizes lands that are considered highly significant by the ministry (e.g. wetlands identified as ‘provincially significant’)
- Is not associated with conservation authority properties or areas
Managed forest tax incentive program
The Managed Forest Tax Incentive Program is designed to encourage stewardship on private forest land in Ontario. This incentive program is available to land owners of forested property who agree to prepare and follow a Managed Forest Plan.
Under this program, participating land owners have their property reassessed and classified as a ‘managed forest’ and taxed at 25 percent of the municipal tax rate set for residential properties.
Eligible lands must:
- have at least four hectares (9.88 acres) of forest on one municipal property roll number
- have a minimum number of trees on each hectare
Learn the basics
The Endangered Species Act offers flexibility tools that try to balance species protection and human activity.
Often the best source of local information on species at risk is your nearest ministry office. Call with your questions or concerns.