who we are
The Farmers’ Advocacy Office has the primary goal of equipping land owners to deal in their own best interests in the negotiation of surface leases and rights of way associated with the oil and gas industry.
what you’ll find
before you sign a surface lease…
The Farmers’ Advocacy Office is finding that many surface leases do NOT comply with BC Law. Before signing surface lease documents, make sure the lease document complies with the Surface Lease Regulation B.C. Reg. 497/74.
Fund for Non-Payment of Rent by Terra Energy Corp.
A fund has been established from the Court approved sale of some of Terra Energy’s BC assets. Some assets have been sold to Crew Energy and Pavilion Energy. The Surface Rights Board tells us that Crew and Pavilion will pay the back rent related to leases that they have bought.
To assist landowners with leases which were NOT bought by Crew and Pavilion, a fund has been created, and is held by the Ministry of Natural Gas Development on behalf of the Surface Rights Board.
Landowners may make a claim for unpaid rent for surface leases to the fund. The fund is limited and will be paid out on a first come first serve basis.
February 22, 2017 Update: The Surface Rights Board has confirmed that there is still some money in the fund, though it is not clear how much longer it will last. Landowners that submitted a claim to the fund last year may re-apply to the fund when the annual rent becomes due this year. To do so, landowners would complete a new Form 1F, but need not send the supporting documentation which is already on file with the Surface Rights Board.
Be on guard for land agents with ‘questionable ethics’
Read the recent article from AlbertaFarmExpress.ca titled “Be on guard for land agents with ‘questionable ethics’”
2015 Petroleum and Natural Gas Act
Report by Rachelle Tink
Rachelle Tink, UBC student in the Bachelor of Business in Real Estate Program, and Appraisal Institute of Canada candidate, works at Aspen Grove Property Services as an appraiser during summer breaks. Rachelle prepared an assignment for a Technical Writing course, which we think is an interesting and informative read for land owners in the Peace Country.
2015 Petroleum and Natural Gas Act Report – Rachelle Tink
Enjoy the article, and be sure to contact the Farmers’ Advocacy Office at 250-782-1233 with any of your surface lease or right of way questions.
Surface Lease Taxes in Arrears?
Oct 22, 2014 We have had a number of enquiries from landowners who have received a copy of a property tax arrears notice from the BC Surveyor of Taxes, for well sites on their land. This is a concern because it may indicate that the oil and gas company is in financial trouble. Here are two facts that we have confirmed with the Surveyor of Taxes:
- The land owner will not be liable for the outstanding taxes because the asset being taxed is not a fee simple asset, it is a lease.
- There will be no collection action against rural land owners.
There is cause for concern if a company is in financial difficulty. A landowner needs to be aware in case a company abandons its operations, so that recourse can be sought through the Oil and Gas Commission’s Orphan Fund for clean-up and removal. If you have paid tax arrears or penalties this year, seek a refund from the Surveyor of Taxes at your Government Agent’s office.
This is a Public Service Notice from the Farmers’ Advocacy Office
10300-10th St., Dawson Creek, BC V1G 3T6
PSAC Completes Hydraulic Fracturing Code of Conduct
Farmers Advocacy Office staff attended community engagement sessions that led to the Petroleum Services Association of Canada completing a hydraulic fracturing code of conduct for companies in the oil and gas service sector. Learn more about the new Hydraulic Fracturing Code of Conduct.