Farmers to be exempt from PTW fees
TORONTO, ONT-Ontario farmers will be exempted from the new administrative fees for permit to take water (PTW) applications, Environment Minister Leona Dombrowsky and Agriculture and Food Minister Steve Peters said last week. Most Ontario farmers do not require a permit at all; PTWs are not required for the direct watering of livestock. Farmers who draw more than 50,000 litres of water a day do need a PTW, but they will not have to pay an administrative fee. The fee exemption applies to water takings for irrigation and frost protection for agricultural purposes including vegetable crops, fruit orchards, flowers, nurseries, tree and sod farms, tender fruit and aquaculture (fish farming). The exemption does not apply to agribusiness and food processing operations including vegetable and fruit canning, processing, pickling, and beverage manufacturing, wineries and bottled water. Administrative fees for all other PTW applications are effective April 1, 2005. The fees will cover the cost of processing, evaluating and issuing the permit.