Agricultural Advisory Committee Terms of Reference

Role

The Agricultural Advisory Committee is an advisory Committee of Haldimand County Council. The Agricultural Advisory Committee will advise Council on matters, issues and policies pertaining to agriculture and agribusiness in Haldimand County, in order to sustain the vitality of the municipality’s economic base.

Mandate

The Agricultural Advisory Committee will ensure continued community involvement and input in the planning and implementation of various agriculture related projects and tasks within Haldimand County. The Agricultural Committee will be responsible for the ongoing monitoring of agriculture projects and tasks to ensure that progress towards the vision and goals of the Haldimand County Economic Development Strategic Plan are being achieved. Such project topics may include:

  • Nutrient Management;
  • Agricultural Related Land Use Policies;
  • Alternative Energy Resources;
  • Agri-tourism;
  • Value Added Agriculture;
  • Agricultural Infrastructure and Construction;
  • Agricultural Education;
  • Specialty Crops;
  • Future Employment in Agriculture; and
  • Local and Global Selling of Agricultural Products
  • Gas Well Issues, and
  • Any other Emerging Agricultural Issues

Committee Composition

The Agricultural Advisory Committee should be capped at 9 members who live, farm or work within Haldimand County and fulfill the following criteria for membership. Invitations will be sent to the following organizations to choose a voting representative to sit as a member of the Haldimand County Agricultural Advisory Committee;

  • A Haldimand County Council Representative;
  • Two representatives from the Haldimand Federation of Agriculture;
  • Two representatives from the Christian Farmers Association;
  • A representative from the Agri-business community at large; and
  • Various local farmers including youth with different farming backgrounds from one another and those previously on the Committee (example one of Beef, Dairy, Chicken, Hog, Crops or Agri-tourism Farmers).

A Haldimand County Planning and Economic Development Department staff member will sit on the Agricultural Committee as a non-voting member and assist with administrative organization. Also, a representative from the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and
Rural Affairs would be requested to attend meetings as a non-voting member to provide expertise.

From time to time resource staff may be invited to provide additional expertise to the Agricultural Advisory Committee (example: Haldimand County Staff – Planner, Engineer, By-Law Enforcement Officer, Tourism Operator or a Conservation Authority
Representative).

The Agricultural Advisory Committee will have a four-year term of membership to coincide with Haldimand County Council.

The Agricultural Advisory Committee will meet bimonthly or at the discretion of the
Chair/Vice Chair.

Roles and Responsibilities

At its inaugural meeting each year, the Agricultural Advisory Committee will be responsible for choosing a Chair, Vice-Chair and Sub Committee Chairs, as required from amongst the members of the Committee.

The following description outlines the roles and responsibilities of the Committee members:

Committee Members

  • Notify the Chair through County Staff in advance of their intent to be absent from a meeting.
  • Prepare for the meeting by reviewing material provided and/or consulting with stakeholders regarding issues.
  • The Chair shall act as a spokesperson to the County Staff regarding issues such as agendas, meeting minutes, and ad hoc requests.
  • The Chair shall review draft minutes prior to them proceeding to Council-In-Committee.

Economic Development County Staff

  • Schedule meetings.
  • Provide written materials and reports prior to meeting, where possible.
  • Provide a recording secretary to each scheduled meeting for the purpose of recording the minutes, which will mainly include the recording of any resolutions and the recording of attendance.
  • Provide Committee members with the County documents as required and where appropriate.
  • Mail/Email or provide a central location accessible to the Committee members for pickup of meeting packages and information.
  • Provide staff liaison resources to the Committee as directed by the Manager of Economic Development or the General Manager of Planning and Economic Development.
  • Report resolutions to County Staff within the Planning and Economic Development Department and other departments of the County.
  • Report to Haldimand County Council annually on the progress and on-going projects of the Agricultural Advisory Committee.

Haldimand County Council Liaison

  • Advise members of the Agricultural Advisory Committee on Council matters.
  • Bring Committee recommendations and motions to Council-In-Committee and Council.
  • Report back to the Agricultural Advisory Committee on feedback from Council-In-Committee or Council.
  • Council Liaison does have a vote on Agricultural Advisory Committee decisions.

Procedures

A majority of the members of the Committee shall be a quorum, and each member shall have one vote. In the case of an equality of votes by the quorum for and against the motion, then the motion will be resolved in the negative and the minutes shall so record it.

In the event that a quorum is not present within fifteen (15) minutes after the appointed time of the meeting, the name of those present will be recorded and the meeting will commence in the absence of a quorum. Notes will be taken and draft recommendations forwarded to Council-In-Committee.

In the absence of the Chair, the Vice-Chair shall conduct the meeting. If neither is present, the Committee shall appoint an Acting Chair from amongst those members present.

All requests for grants and financial assistance received by the Committee will be directed to the Manager of Economic Development or the General Manager of Planning and Economic Development. The Committee will not have any authority whatsoever to commit funds or to enter into contracts.

Any member who is absent from three consecutive meetings of the Committee without reason satisfactory to the Committee, shall forthwith cease to be a member of the Committee.

Within sixty (60) days of a vacancy, Council may appoint a member to complete requisite number of members for the remainder of the applicable term.

Council shall have power to remove any member(s) of the Agricultural Advisory Committee at
any time.

Recommendations

Recommendations of the Agricultural Advisory Committee shall be by way of written resolution, contained within the minutes of the meeting.

The Staff liaison to the Committee shall ensure that the Agricultural Advisory Committee resolution is directed to appropriate staff for review and comment via a report to Council that evaluates the Agricultural Advisory Committee’s initial recommendation.

Staff shall generally report to Council within two months of receipt of an Agricultural Advisory Committee recommendation.

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