Sask. canola board tightens membership rules

Saskatchewan canola growers who want to vote or run for elected office with the Saskatchewan Canola Development Commission will have to meet tighter requirements to do so.

SCDC board chairman Kelvin Meadows on Friday announced the provincial government has approved changes to the Canola Development Plan Regulations on matters of farmer eligibility.

“Registered producers” with the SCDC will now be defined as those who have paid levies in the last two years for which a refund was not requested, said Meadows, who farms near Moose Jaw.

“As well, only registered producers will now be eligible to be nominated to hold elected office as a member of the commission’s board, or be eligible to vote at SCDC annual general meetings,” he said in the SCDC’s release Friday.

SCDC has already made its annual call for nominations to its board for 2009. Those nominations close at noon, Oct. 17, 2008.

Thus, Meadows said, it’s important that “in light of the regulation changes that those producers seeking a board nomination are aware that they must now be a registered producer, as defined by the amended regulations, in order to seek a nomination.”

Saskatchewan canola growers can expect to see more regulatory changes in the next few months dealing with levy administration, the commission said. Details of those changes will be a topic at the commission’s next annual general meeting in Saskatoon on Jan. 14 before they’re finalized or approved.

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