Agency 22: Cropland
NOTE: The names and purposes of some agencies have been revised, but not all website content has been updated to reflect these latest changes. We are working to get the names and explanatory content updated, but in the meantime you may see some inconsistencies.
The twenty-second agency in the community is the Cropland Agency. This agency forms part of the Urban Planning Bureau, whose primary objective is to ensure an optimum mix of physical facilities needed in the community.
The Land Management Agency works to facilitate the acquisition, development, and management of land. The agency manages land, easements, and utilities within the community, including farmland, roads, water, and electricity, among others. The agency provides the platform through which the community can develop and use these services and physical facilities to meet their immediate needs, overall community interests, and the environment. The community owns all the assets, including land and fixtures done by the agency.
All physical facilities and public services belong to the community. The Land Management Agency develops and manages them on behalf of the community. To do this, the agency facilitates the development and implementation of policies that guide the proper utilization of land and natural resources. The agency also collaborates with private enterprises within the community to provide other services, safeguarding their business interests as well as the public interest. The agency performs these functions with an automated system through which it interacts with participants.
The village presidents interface for the Land Management Agency, as part of their roles for the Leasing Agency. They assist participants in instances where the system is unable to meet their needs. The village presidents update the agency presidents so that the agency presidents can improve the system to better meet participants’ needs, besides setting strategy. In some instances, the agency may hire contractors to perform some of its responsibilities, which may not be easily automatable.
To achieve its overall objective, the Land Management Agency performs a number of responsibilities, either by itself (core responsibilities) or in concert with other community agencies (coordinated responsibilities).
The Land Management Agency’s core responsibilities are:
- Acquiring and developing land, easements, and other applicable utilities
- Formulating policies on the provision of public utilities and services
- Planning land utilization
Land and utilities development
The Land Management Agency surveys the available land and zones it for different uses, based on the Newvistas plan for the community, which is derived from the plat documents. The agency also facilitates the setting aside of easements, the construction of major infrastructure on community land, and the provision of water and electricity. The Land Management Agency does not provide all these services by itself. For some of the services, such as land survey and zoning, the agency may contract professionals who offer the services within or outside the community. For other services, the agency liaises with stewards offering services such as electricity generation and distribution, so that their duties can be better coordinated. For instance, the agency would facilitate the setting up of electricity supply mechanisms and infrastructure, which ensure uniformity in quality and pricing and enable producers to access the market more easily.
The Land Management Agency facilitates the process through which policies to manage land, utilities, and easements are developed. The policies’ formulation requires the input of participants, the stewards who are directly involved in production or utilization, industry best practice, as well as guidance from community bylaws and public policy. The policies formulated endeavor to protect the community through the provision of quality services and products and support stewards in their businesses. The policies are also concerned with the environment, given that the development of land, utilities, and easements directly affects the environment.
Planning land utilization
The community realizes that land, while being a passive factor of production, is a critical ingredient in the economic and social wellbeing of participants. The Land Management Agency facilitates the planning of land to maximize its economic and social value. The agency may, with the help of professionals within or outside the community, identify land for suitable purposes, such that its maximum value is generated. Land planning also enables other services to be utilized more optimally.
The Land Management Agency coordinates with other community agencies as it aims to better serve participants through proper land and related resource management. This coordination can be divided into three parts:
- Horizontal coordination (with other agencies in the Urban Planning Department)
- Vertical coordination (with other agencies in the Business Support Vertical)
- Diagonal (with other agencies beyond the vertical and department)
The Land Management Agency liaises with Agency 22 – the Public Facilities Agency during the development and operation of public facilities. The Land Management Agency identifies the areas that are most suitable for particular facilities, considering the community plan and preferred public facilities. The two agencies also coordinate as they decide how best other public facilities will be served by utilities and easements. The Land Management Agency works with Agency 24 – the Assets Management Agency as planning for land, utilities, and easements is conducted. The Land Management Agency identifies suitable land for development and equipment installation.
The Land Management Agency liaises with Agency 9 – the Capital Fund Agency to put up the down payment required to buy land. The Capital Fund advances up to 20% of the land’s value. The Land Management Agency works with Agency 5 – the Nutrition Agency to identify what can be done to the land earmarked for agriculture to enhance yield and profitability to farmers. The Land Management Agency shares this information, which is also used by Agency 2 – the Stewardships Agency as it advises farmers on where they are most likely to succeed in their business. The Land Management Agency coordinates with Agency 11 – the Bylaws Agency as it facilitates the formulation of land-utilization policies. The Land Management Agency uses bylaws to guide the formulation process, besides other stakeholders’ input. The Land Management Agency coordinates with Agency 20 – the Business Planning Agency during farmers’ business-plan writing. The Business Planning Agency uses the Land Management Agency’s information on land suitability for farming to advise farmers so that their plans stand a better chance of being supported by the Investment Bank Agency.
The Land Management Agency works with Agency 9 – the Commercial Bank Agency during the acquisition and development of land, easements, and utilities. The Commercial Bank provides the 80% of the funds needed to buy land, with the agency already having secured 20% down payment from the Capital Fund Agency. The Commercial Bank in turn receives repayments from the rents and other income received by the developments. The Land Management Agency cooperates with Agency 18 – the QHSE Agency as it plans land-utility plans. The agency uses information from the QHSE Agency on how to best utilize land while paying attention to the environment, as well as the safety of participants.
The Land Management Agency endeavors to empower the community to properly manage the natural resources at its disposal. The agency also tries to improve physical access, while facilitating the provision of services that participants need for social and economic operations. The community does not provide the bulk of these services, instead only forming the framework through which different stakeholders can interact to synergize their operations and, in the process, afford a greater return to the participants.
 Sustainable land management is necessary to ensure that while the available land meets the current needs of the population, it is also able to guarantee long-term productive potential. Sound land management ensures that while the users derive the maximum economic and social benefit from the available land, they also safeguard the ecological support functions of the land. The Land Management Agency will strive to provide the platform on which the community can achieve this (FAO. Sustainable Land Management. 2019. 10 07 2019).
 Land resource management policies are important in that they enable a community, country or region to adequately address all aspects of land management. In the community, there will be attempts to improve the economic and social benefits of land, while rehabilitating natural resources to enable them to be more beneficial to human activity (Binswanger-Mkhize, H., R. Meizen-Dick and C. Ringler. Policies, Rights, and Institutions for Sustainable Management of Land and Water Resources1. Background Thematic report. Geneva: FAO, 2009)
 The community, as is the case with democratically led local authorities, will have its own approach to land management, with the participants’ best interests at heart. However, this is not going to be enough without participation from the other stakeholders, who will be affected by any management policies, formulated an implemented. This will necessitate a partnership between participants, stewards in agricultural production, and the Land Management Agency so that the achieve can adequately satisfy its interests (Magigi, W. “Public-Private Partnership in Land Management: A Learning Strategy for Improving Land Use Change and Transformation in Urban settlements in Tanzania.” Research on Humanities and Social Sciences 3.15 (2015): 148-157).
 Land zoning is an important element in urban development. Through zoning, there is a mechanism through which land-use rules can be enforced, besides land maintenance, and ensuring that land is used only for the intended and most suitable purpose. The community will be less encumbered in its zoning processes, given that there will only be a few considerations including residential vs commercial or industrial, natural resource protection – including wildlife, riparian and catchment areas (Steele, E. “Participation and Rules-The Functions of Zoning.” American Bar Foundation Research Journal 11.4 (1986): 704-755).
 A centralized distribution of electricity will enhance uniformity and pricing, enabling the community to price housing and other rentable property uniformly. The quality of power produced will also be uniform, in a way equalizing all parts of the community as far as access to power is concerned. However, there might be issues with efficiency and wastage due to bureaucracy, which will need a concerted effort between the Land Agency and power distributors to resolve (Momoh, J. Centralized and Distributed Generated Power Systems – A Comparison Approach. Future Grid Initiative White Paper. Washington: Power Systems Engineering Research Center, 2012).
 It is important to involve participants in land management, so that such a process will include all their special needs and be as holistic as possible. Incorporating professional viewpoints is also important, so that land use is always compatible with the environment, and optimized for maximum community gain (Kiria, E., J. Anyonga and H. Ipara. “Promoting Effective Community Participation in Land Use Planning and Management of Wildlife Conservation Areas.” Journal of Natural Sciences Research 4.2 (2014): 29-33)
 Land use policy in most parts of the world considers several aspects. These include systems of land ownership, government bureaucracy, and local land use and practices. Land policy must be tuned to accommodate these issues (Hermunen, T. “Land Use policy in Kenya – Experiences from Taita Taveta District.” University of helsinki (2004): 118 pages).
 The role of the intervention of these agencies (QHSE and Land Management) is geared towards striking a balance between environmental conservation and urban development, and other land use. The community appreciates the importance of conserving the environment, but also the need to adequately provide for those within the community, through easy access to facilities (through easements), as well as the economic and social benefits associated with land use (Burchi, S. Balancing development and environmental conservation and protection of the water resource base – the “greening” of water laws. Washington, DC: DEVELOPMENT LAW SERVICE (FAO Legal Papers 3006), 2007)