Public Lands Fee Updates

Changes to Fees, Rental Rates and Surface Material Royalties

Treasury Board has approved increases to fees, surface material royalties and rental rates. As part of the 2015-2016 Alberta Budget, these changes have been adopted.

Public lands administrative fees have not been updated for approximately 30 years. Since then, the administrative costs of managing the public lands program have increased dramatically. The new fees reflect the cost of doing business, and are standardized to provide consistency across disposition types and to better reflect the costs of processing applications. Fee increases are effective April 2, 2015.

Surface material royalties are not indexed automatically to inflation and have not been adjusted, for example, to reflect market conditions since the early 1990s. Royalty increases, effective April 2, 2015, now reflect the value of this resource which has increased exponentially, along with Alberta’s population and the administrative costs of the program.

Rental rates have not changed for many years. The current rental rate will stay in effect for the time being. Leaseholders will be given a minimum of 30-day notice before any increase. Note that grazing lease and forest grazing license rental rates are not changing at this time.

Below, answers are provided to frequently asked questions. This information will be updated periodically as new questions are received. It is organized according to topic, with individual sections specific to fees, rental rates and surface material royalties.

Media and Public Questions

Media inquiries can be directed to:

  • Environment and Parks
    Communications Branch
    Tel: 780 427-8636

General questions regarding these changes can be directed to:

  • Environment and Parks
    Provincial Approvals Section
    Tel: 780 427-3570

Frequently Asked Questions about Changes to Fees, Rental Rates and Surface Material Royalties

Background

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What was approved by Treasury Board?

Treasury Board approved the increase to fees, rental rates and surface material royalties.

Do these require changes in legislation?

No. These changes are established through Ministerial Order.

Public Lands Fees

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What fees are changing?

Many of the fees associated with Public Lands dispositions are changing. This includes formal dispositions, authorizations and approvals. Examples include:

  • Application, Amendment, Assignment, Renewal
  • Public land sale, consolidation of two or more leases
  • Reinstatement of disposition, land exchange, registration of conditional surrender of a disposition, request for a public lands reservation review or general lands classification review
  • Reclamation certificate

What are the new fees?

Application for a new disposition

  • Licence of Occupation

$900

  • Recreational Miscellaneous Lease

$900

  • Pipeline Agreement

$900

  • Pipeline Installation Lease

$900

  • Right of Way Easement

$900

  • Vegetation Control Easement

$900

  • Mineral Surface Lease

$900

  • Commercial/Industrial Miscellaneous Lease

$1,800

  • Land Disposition Request

$1,050

  • Public Land Sale

$1,050

  • Public Land Exchange

$1,050

  • Surface Material Licence

$445

  • Surface Material Exploration

$525

  • Surface Material Lease

$1,100

Application for new Consultative Notation

$785

Application for an amendment or consolidation for any disposition

$400

Application for a renewal for any disposition

$400

Application for an assignment of any disposition (except grazing lease and forest grazing licence)

$3,150

Application for a permit issued pursuant to section 144 (1) (b) to the Public Lands Administration Regulation

$450

The deposit on appraisals for the sale application of public land. The deposit is applied towards the sale price of the land once the transaction is processed

$2,000

Reinstatement for any disposition

$400

Register a conditional surrender of a disposition

$400

Application for a reclamation certificate

$400

Disposition Mapping fee

  • New application plan

$125

  • Amendment plan

$50

Research, scanning and photocopying. Estimate will be provided in advance; unused amount will be refunded (Minimum charge $50, additional $50 per hour)

$50

Additional Notes:

  • Except for the disposition mapping fees, all of the fees do not apply to transactions initiated by the Government of Canada, the Government of Alberta, a municipality or an organization as defined by the Rural Utilities Act in Alberta.
  • All the fees are non-refundable, unless specifically stated.

What types of dispositions will be impacted by the new fees?

All disposition types will be impacted by the new fees. This includes industrial, commercial, recreational and agricultural dispositions. These changes are effective April 2, 2015.

What are the new fees based on?

Public lands administrative fees haven’t been updated for approximately 30 years. Since then the administrative costs of managing the public lands program has increased dramatically.

The new fees reflect the cost of doing business. The fees have also been standardized to provide consistency across disposition types and to better reflect the cost of processing the applications.

My application was submitted before April 2nd. Which fees apply

Any application that was submitted before April 2, 2015 will follow the old fee structure. Applications submitted as of April 2, 2015 will utilize the new fee structure.

Do these new fees impact dispositions that are regulated by the Alberta Energy Regulator?

No. The Alberta Energy Regulator does not collect fees to process Public Lands Applications.

Rental Rates

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When will the rental rates change?

The current rental rate will stay in effect for the time being. Leaseholders will be given a minimum of 30 day notice before any increase in rental rate.

What type of dispositions will be impacted by the new rental rates?

Rental rates will change for industrial, commercial and recreational leases. A list of some of the affected disposition types is provided:

  • Easement (EZE)
  • Licence of Occupation (DLO/LOC)
  • Mineral Surface Lease (DMS/MSL)
  • Miscellaneous Lease (DML/MLL)
  • Pipeline Agreement (DPL/PLA)
  • Pipeline Installation Agreement (DPI/PIL)
  • Surface Material Lease (SML)
  • Vegetation Control Easement (VCE)

Do these changes in rental rates impact dispositions managed by the Alberta Energy Regulator?

Yes. This includes dispositions that are regulated by the Alberta Energy Regulator such as upstream oil and gas, and coal.

Are all rental rates changing?

No. Grazing lease and forest grazing licence rental rates are not changing at this time.

Why are rental rates changing?

Environment and Parks (AEP) manages many different types of leases for various purposes such as:

  • Agricultural
  • Commercial
  • Industrial
  • Personal
  • Recreational

Each disposition type has a different rental rate calculation based on disposition type, purpose and location. Some dispositions have annual rental and others have initial lump sum payments with no annual rental. These rental rates vary from $1/acre to $150/acre.

Rental rates have not changed for many years.

Surface Material Royalties, Surcharges and Security Deposits

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Why are the surface material royalty rates changing?

Since the last review, provincial population, administrative costs and resource values have increased exponentially. These changes better reflect the value of the resource.

Will the new surface material royalty rates impact my 2014 Annual Return?

No. Annual Returns (AR) and Annual Operating Reports (AOR) for surface material removed in 2014 and earlier will be based on the previous royalty rates.

In 2015, the material removed in January 1 to April 1 will be based on the previous royalty rates. The material removed April 2 to December 31 will utilize the new royalty rates.

What are the new surface material royalty rates?

Royalty Rate (per cubic yard)   

  • Gravel

$1.20

  • Combination of gravel and sand

$1.20

  • Manufacturing clay

$1.00

  • Sand

$0.70

  • Silica sand

$0.70

  • Topsoil

$0.40

  • Non-manufacturing clay

$0.20

  • Silt

$0.20

  • Marl

$0.10

  • Peat moss

$0.10

Surcharges for licences issued at public pits (per cubic yard)

  • Reclamation surcharge for pits not operated by AEP

$0.10

  • Surcharge for reclamation, management and administration of pits operated by AEP is payable in an amount established with respect to the specific pit

Varies

Security deposit for surface material lease or surface material licence

  • Cash deposits of $1,000 per acre, but not less than $250 per acre if circumstances warrant, on the approved operating areas or acceptable negotiable security in a similar amount.

Varies

Additional Notes:

  • No security is required for the removal of peat moss.
  • Paid security deposits are refundable upon the completion of reclamation requirements.

Common Invoicing Questions and Answers

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Which regulatory agency administers the financial aspects of Public Lands Act dispositions/leases?

Effective April1, 2016, Alberta Environment and Parks (AEP) will administer the collection of public land rent, fees and other charges associated with regulatory decisions issued by both the Alberta Energy Regulator and AEP. This includes:

  • Adjustments
  • Charges
  • Debt collection
  • Fees
  • GST
  • Interest charges
  • Letters of credit
  • Performance bonds
  • Refunds
  • Release of security deposits or letters of credit
  • Rent
  • Security deposits

This is an internal change between the Alberta Energy Regulator and AEP and disposition holders should not notice a significant variation in receiving invoices.

Who do I contact if I have concerns related to invoicing?

Please call 780 427-7705 or send an email to:

Please include the following information in your email or have it available when you call:

  • Disposition holder/lease holder name
  • Date of invoice in question
  • Amount of invoice in question
  • Disposition number/lease number (e.g., MSL123456, DML123456)

The following questions/concerns can be directed to:

Common invoicing questions:

  • I have not received an invoice related to my disposition/lease
  • I have questions regarding my invoice
  • I need a copy of my invoice, a statement or a notice
  • I want clarification on items on the invoice
  • I want to arrange for auto-debiting
  • I want to arrange payment on overdue accounts

 

Page Information

Updated: Jun 16, 2016