Dozens of people showed up at a Greater Sudbury planning committee meeting to ask for a loosening of the rules about splitting up a piece of rural or agricultural land. We have some audio of what was said on the issue at the meeting.
City councillors have opened the door to more development in the rural parts of Greater Sudbury — but not before getting an earful from dozens of residents at a Monday night meeting.
"We are a distinct community encompassing a large northern area. What are the magic words? We want change!” said Azilda resident Nicole Richer to a round of applause.
The city’s planning committee voted to allow farmland to be split up into as many as six smaller lots, but that decision still needs to pass a vote of all Sudbury city council.
The policy change will also need the OK of the provincial government, Councillor Dave Kilgour pointed out.
But Kilgour added: "I commend you for being here tonight and I'm 100 per cent behind you. Don't get me wrong on that ... [but] don't quit now."
Land owners have long complained they can't divide a farm among family members.
City councillor Evelyn Dutrisac has pushed for the changes for years.
"We don't live in a communist country, we live in a democratic country,” she said.
“And the people of our community should have a say."
The new rules for rural development would be part of Greater Sudbury's new official plan, expected to be finalized early in the new year.