Houses of the Oireachtas

All parliamentary debates are now being published on our new website. The publication of debates on this website will cease in December 2018.

Go to oireachtas.ie

 Header Item Written Answers Nos. 877 - 895
 Header Item Animal Feedstuffs
 Header Item Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Applications
 Header Item Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Appeals
 Header Item Aquaculture Licences Applications
 Header Item Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Applications
 Header Item Common Agricultural Policy Reform
 Header Item Action Plan for Jobs
 Header Item Suckler Welfare Scheme Eligibility
 Header Item Dairy Equipment Scheme Applications
 Header Item Suckler Welfare Scheme Payments
 Header Item Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Payments
 Header Item Rural Environment Protection Scheme Payments
 Header Item Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Payments
 Header Item Agri-Environment Options Scheme Applications
 Header Item Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Payments
 Header Item Traffic Regulations
 Header Item Calafoirt agus Céanna
 Header Item Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Appeals

Wednesday, 16 January 2013

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 788 No. 1

First Page Previous Page Page of 124 Next Page Last Page

Written Answers Nos. 877 - 895

Animal Feedstuffs

 877. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív Information on Éamon Ó Cuív Zoom on Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney if he will provide details of the regulations prohibiting a farmer from added molasses to rolled barley in order to reduce the dust; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [1093/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney    There is no prohibition on adding molasses to a feed material (e.g. rolled barley) where the feed material is used on his/her own farm. In addition a farmer may supply, at a local level, small quantities of individual feed materials produced on his/her own farm for direct use on those farms.

  Farmers that produce feed materials on their own farms must be registered with my Department as ‘primary producers’. Primary producers must comply with the provisions of Regulation (EC) 183/2005 which lays down the requirements for feed hygiene.

  Both barley and molasses are individual feed materials. Two or more mixed feed materials is considered a compound feed and, when placed on the market, must comply with the provisions of Regulation (EC) 767/2009 and Regulation (EC) 183/2005.

Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Applications

 878. Deputy John O'Mahony Information on John O'Mahony Zoom on John O'Mahony asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney when a person (details supplied) in County Mayo will receive their disadvantaged area scheme payment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [1154/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney    As processing of the 2012 Disadvantaged Areas Scheme application has recently been finalised, payment will shortly issue to the nominated bank account.

Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Appeals

 879. Deputy Michael Healy-Rae Information on Michael Healy-Rae Zoom on Michael Healy-Rae asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney the position regarding an appeal over stocking density in respect of a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [1166/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney  The person concerned, an applicant under the 2012 Disadvantaged Areas Scheme, is one of a number, whose cases are impacted by a requirement of a minimum stocking density of 0.3 livestock units per forage hectare and who applied for and were refused derogation in this regard. The person named subsequently availed of the option to appeal to the independently chaired DAS Appeals Committee. The Committee has adjudicated on this appeal and the person concerned has been notified of the successful outcome, in writing, on 16 November 2012. Following the success of the appeal, payment issued directly to the bank account of the person named on 24 December 2012.

Aquaculture Licences Applications

 880. Deputy Tom Fleming Information on Tom Fleming Zoom on Tom Fleming asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney if he will expedite the procession of applications for aquaculture licences in Castlemaine harbour, County Kerry; if his attention has been drawn to the fact that these delays are hindering job creation and investment in this important industry; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [1206/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney    Castlemaine Harbour is designated as a Special Area of Conservation under the EU Habitats Directive and a Special Protection Area under the EU Birds Directive (Natura 2000 site).

  My Department, in conjunction with the Marine Institute and the National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) of the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, has engaged in a major programme to gather the necessary baseline data appropriate to the conservation objectives of aquaculture sites located within designated Natura areas, including Castlemaine Harbour.

  The setting of Conservation Objectives and the carrying out of an Appropriate Assessment for the purpose of ensuring compliance with the conservation objectives has been completed in respect of Castlemaine.

  The overall licensing process for Castlemaine is at an advanced stage and the public consultation stage of the licensing process has now been completed.

  My Department is currently examining all other relevant policy issues with the applications and every effort is being made to expedite the licensing process.

Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Applications

 881. Deputy Noel Coonan Information on Noel Coonan Zoom on Noel Coonan asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney when a disadvantaged area payment will be finalised in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Tipperary; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [1211/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney    While an application under the 2012 Disadvantaged Areas Scheme was received from the person named on 11 April 2012, payment has not issued as the conditions of the Scheme have not been satisfied, at this stage, in regard to inclusion of equines for the purposes of meeting the minimum stocking density requirement.

The Terms and Conditions governing the Scheme require, inter alia  , that in order for equines to be eligible, they must be confirmed as being in a registered breeding enterprise and meet certain qualifying criteria. The person concerned has already been advised directly by my Department of the outstanding matters in regard to stocking density. Once it has been established that this requirement has been satisfied, the application concerned can be further processed with a view to payment.

Common Agricultural Policy Reform

 882. Deputy Michael Healy-Rae Information on Michael Healy-Rae Zoom on Michael Healy-Rae asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney further to the cuts in farm schemes, his views on the fact that the flat rate proposal would destroy the viability of many active farmers who cannot handle payment cuts of 30% to 40%; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [1269/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney  One of my key concerns as regards the CAP reform proposals arises in relation to the distribution of direct payments within Member States. As the Deputy is aware, the Commission proposal is to gradually move towards a system of uniform per hectare payments, or flat rates, by 2019, in each Member State or region of a Member State. While I recognise that we cannot continue to base our payments on outdated historic production references, I nevertheless have major difficulties with the pace and extent of convergence contained in the Commission’s proposal.

Under a national flat rate system as proposed by the Commission, the impact on Irish farmers would be significant - around 76,000 would gain an average of 86% on their current payments, while around 57,000 would lose an average of 33%. These are average percentages, and some of the gains and losses would be far larger than this. This would have undesirable consequences at a time when Ireland is trying to encourage sustainable intensification in the agri-food sector, as we strive to achieve the objectives in the Food Harvest 2020 strategy.

I have accordingly been pressing for the maximum possible flexibility to be given to Member States to design payment models that suit their own farming conditions. I also want a more gradual, back-loaded transition process. The ‘approximation’ approach, by which all payments could gradually move towards, but not fully to, the average, is one alternative that I believe should be considered in this regard. The Commission’s “pragmatic” proposal for redistribution between Member States is, in effect, an approximation approach and provides a useful precedent. Modelling in my Department suggests that the application of this system to the distribution of funds between farmers in Ireland would lead to much smaller gains and losses to individual farmers than a flat rate system. However the precise level of transfers depends on the details of the methodology used.

I have been very active in seeking allies for this position and I have been making significant progress, particularly with a group of Member States with somewhat similar concerns. It should also be understood that a number of Member States have already adopted flat rate systems or are evolving towards them and have no difficulty with the idea of flat rate payments. However, I am confident that, following our efforts, there is recognition of the difficulties that the Commission proposal poses for some Member States, such as ourselves.

Action Plan for Jobs

 883. Deputy Dara Calleary Information on Dara Calleary Zoom on Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney the 2012 targets set for his Department for implementation of the Jobs Action Plan; if he will report on the attainment or otherwise of these targets; the reason targets were not met; the steps he is taking within his Department to create new jobs; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [1275/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney    The 2012 Action Plan for Jobs included 17 Action which have specific reference to the agri-food and fisheries sectors. Section 7.4- Agri-food Production, pages 82-86 of attached link sets out these actions in full detail:

http://www.enterprise.gov.ie/Publications/Action_Plan_for_Jobs_2012_PDF_1_19MB_.pdf  

  With the exception of one area, all of these targets set were met, or are being met on an ongoing basis. The target date of end December 2012 for the determination of the deep-sea organic salmon aquaculture licence, action 7.4.8, was not achieved. This application is still under active consideration and the decision will be made when the analysis is completed on the large number of submissions/objections which were received on foot of the statutory public consultation which ended on 13 December last.

  My Department has completed its submission to Government on proposed actions to be taken in 2013 by this organisation and relevant state bodies to confront the current employment situation. However, the Deputy will be aware that is primarily the private sector which creates jobs and the function of Government is primarily aimed at improving competitiveness and stimulating investment.

  Question No. 884 answered with Question No. 865.

Suckler Welfare Scheme Eligibility

 885. Deputy Pat Deering Information on Patrick Deering Zoom on Patrick Deering asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney if he will increase the number of suckler cows eligible for premium payments from the reduced number of twenty announced in Budget 2013 to allow commercial farmers to benefit from the scheme. [1367/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney  As part of the changes made to some schemes implemented by my Department for 2013, I allocated €10 million in 2013, financed from unspent Single Farm Payment Funds, for a new support programme for suckler beef farmers to participate in a new Beef Data Programme. This programme will assist farmers in improving the genetic quality of Irish cattle and will maintain the data flow into ICBF in order to build further knowledge and more rapid progress in breeding and ultimately in profitability for farmers. The exact details and requirements of the proposed Beef Data Programme are still under consideration. Full details of the Programme will be announced in the coming weeks.

Dairy Equipment Scheme Applications

 886. Deputy Dara Calleary Information on Dara Calleary Zoom on Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney ìf he will outline the status of the DEP Discussion Groups fund and if new entrants will be facilitated in 2013. [1403/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney  Last year was the final year of the three year Dairy Efficiency Programme (DEP). However, following the acknowledged and demonstrated success of Discussion Groups under that Programme in meeting the development goals for the dairy sector as set out in the Food Harvest 2020 strategy, I secured specific funding in the recent Budget of €1 million for a continuation of the Dairy Discussion Group concept within the dairy sector. Today I introduced a new follow on Programme, referred to as the Development Programme for Dairying (DPD), which will afford milk suppliers who did not take part in the earlier DEP Discussion Groups an opportunity to do so now. It will focus on developing those farmers who, as yet, do not have their own milking facilities but are committed to a career in dairying.

Suckler Welfare Scheme Payments

 887. Deputy Jim Daly Information on Jim Daly Zoom on Jim Daly asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney the position regarding farm payment suckler cow payment scheme in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Cork; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [1414/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney  The person named registered 10 animals for the Suckler Welfare Scheme in 2012 and payment in full issued on 24th   December 2012.

Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Payments

 888. Deputy Charlie McConalogue Information on Charlie McConalogue Zoom on Charlie McConalogue asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney when payment will issue to a person (details supplied) in County Donegal under the 2012 disadvantaged areas scheme; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [1415/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney    Payment under the 2012 Disadvantaged Areas Scheme has not yet issued as, at this stage, the holding concerned has not yet satisfied the Scheme minimum stocking density requirements for 2012.

  An exercise to take account of December 2012 data, which has recently become available, is currently ongoing and is scheduled to be completed before the end of January, thereby establishing the definitive position of the holding of the person named and other similarly affected scheme applicants. Should that re-validation confirm that the holding has satisfied the Scheme requirements, the case will be further processed with a view to payment issuing at the earliest possible date thereafter.

Rural Environment Protection Scheme Payments

 889. Deputy Paul J. Connaughton Information on Paul Connaughton Zoom on Paul Connaughton asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney when payment of REP scheme will issue in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Galway; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [1436/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney    The person named commenced REPS 4 in January 2008 and received payments for the first four years of their contract.

  REPS 4 is a measure under the current 2007-13 Rural Development Programme and is subject to EU Regulations which require detailed administrative checks on all applications to be completed before any payments can issue. These checks are being finalised and once successfully completed I expect 2012 payment to issue to the person named.

Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Payments

 890. Deputy Paul J. Connaughton Information on Paul Connaughton Zoom on Paul Connaughton asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney when a person (details supplied) in County Galway will receive their disadvantaged area scheme payment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [1438/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney    The application of the person named under the 2012 Disadvantaged Areas Scheme was received in my Department after the closing date for receipt of applications. It was, therefore, in the normal course ineligible under the Scheme.

  However, following submission of acceptable supporting documentation, relating to exceptional mitigating circumstances, it has been possible to accept the application. Accordingly, processing of the application has now been finalised and payment will shortly issue, directly to the nominated bank account.

Agri-Environment Options Scheme Applications

 891. Deputy Paul J. Connaughton Information on Paul Connaughton Zoom on Paul Connaughton asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney when applicants will be notified on whether or not they have been accepted into the new agri environment options scheme; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [1439/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney    Approximately 10,000 applications were received in my Department’s offices at Johnstown Castle by close of business on Friday December 7, the closing date for submission of applications under the agri-environment options scheme.

  The processing of the applications is under way in the Department and I expect that the initial recording of application details will be completed shortly. At that stage, an acknowledgement letter will issue to all applicants. Following that the detailed actions listed in each application will be recorded and all applications will be ranked and selected according to the selection criteria set out in the Terms and Conditions. This process is expected to take about three months. Letters will issue to all applicants informing them of the outcome of the selection process.

  Applicants should note that they should not undertake any actions listed in their application until approved for participation in the scheme as actions undertaken or expense incurred prior to formal approval will not be eligible for reimbursement.

Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Payments

 892. Deputy Paul J. Connaughton Information on Paul Connaughton Zoom on Paul Connaughton asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney when payment of the disadvantaged area scheme will issue in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Galway; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [1443/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney    An application under the Disadvantaged Areas Scheme was received from the person named 10 April 2012. On processing the application it was established that there was no livestock on the holding of the applicant during 2012, as required by the Terms and Conditions of the Scheme.

  The applicant sought a review on grounds of Force Majeure/Exceptional Circumstances. On review of further documentary evidence requested and received, it has been confirmed that the stocking requirements may be waived, due to exceptional circumstances. The necessary arrangements are now being made to process the application to finality, with a view to payment issuing shortly.

Traffic Regulations

 893. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan Information on Thomas P. Broughan Zoom on Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney if he will undertake a full public consultation with residents and business people in Howth, County Dublin, on his proposals to introduce car parking charges in Howth which local residents and businesses fear could have a devastating effect on the marine and leisure tourism sectors and the local economy in general; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [1462/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney    My intention to introduce pay parking at Howth Fishery Harbour Centre has been widely known for some time. The introduction of parking charges at Howth Fishery Harbour Centre was originally examined in great detail in 2007 in the context of a proposed Howth Traffic and Parking Management Plan, in conjunction with Fingal County Council. There was widespread public consultation at that time but that project did not subsequently proceed. All of the various views expressed and submissions made at the time by local businesses and other interests are still on file and I am well aware of their concerns.

  More recently, I have received correspondence from a variety of interested parties. My officials have had discussions with Fingal Council and with an Gárda Síochána in relation to the introduction of pay parking and other related matters at the Fishery Harbour Centre, and my Department’s engineers have met some of the Harbour’s business tenants individually in relation to their specific concerns about new traffic management and road markings etc.

  As I have said previously, Howth is one of 6 Fishery Harbour Centres operated by the State each of whose primary purpose is to provide facilities and services for the fishing industry and fisheries-related activities.

  In parallel with fishing-related enhancements, there have been a number of developments at the Fishery Harbours in recent years that underpin their expanding use for leisure and marine tourism, as well as other maritime enterprises.

  In the current economic climate, it is essential that all of the State’s enterprises pay their way, and the State must necessarily be fully committed to maximising the return on its investment.

  At the same time, all income generated by the Fishery Harbour Centres goes back into a ring-fenced Fishery Harbour Centres Fund which is used exclusively for the operating and management costs of the Fishery Harbours.

  The additional revenues to be generated from pay parking at Howth Fishery Harbour Centre, which I expect will be substantial when fully operational, will be re-invested in facilities and enhancements that would not otherwise have been possible given the current financial constraints.

  I believe these improvements can only be of benefit to the marine and leisure tourism sectors and local economies in general.

Calafoirt agus Céanna

 894. D'fhiafraigh Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív Information on Éamon Ó Cuív Zoom on Éamon Ó Cuív den Aire Talmhaíochta, Bia agus Mara Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney  an bhfuil sé i gceist aige deontas de €150,000 a chur ar fáil do Chomhairle Contae na Gaillimhe mar atá iarrtha acu le hobair riachtanach a dhéanamh ar Ché Inis Oírr faoin gClár do Chalafoirt Iascaigh agus Bunstruchtúr Cósta; agus an ndéanfaidh sé ráiteas ina thaobh. [1463/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney  Faoi úinéireacht Chomhairle Chontae na Gaillimhe atá Cé Inis Oírr agus ise atá freagrach as í a réiteach agus a chothabháil.

Chuir mo Roinnse maoiniú ar fáil blianta roimhe seo faoi Chlár Forbartha Caipitil Infreastruchtúir Cósta agus Chuanta Iascaigh na Roinne d’fhorbairt ar scála beag agus do réiteach calafort, céanna agus fánán faoi úinéireacht na nÚdarás Áitiúil agus faoi réir dóthain maoinithe ón Státchiste a bheith ar fáil. I gcomhthéacs Chlár 2013, atá á bhreithniú faoi láthair, thug mé cuireadh le déanaí d’Údaráis Áitiúla atá lonnaithe ar an gcósta, Comhairle Chontae na Gaillimhe ina measc, iarratais a chur isteach, in ord tosaíochta, ar thionscadail a cháilíonn.

Tá roinnt tionscadal, lena n-áirítear ceann maidir le hoibreacha ag Cé Inis Oírr, curtha ar aghaidh ag Comhairle Chontae na Gaillimhe anois. Tabharfaidh mo Roinn breithniú iomlán ar an iarratas seo faoi théarmaí an Chláir agus bunaithe ar mhaoiniú Státchiste a bheith ar fáil agus ar thosaíochtaí náisiúnta tríd is tríd.

Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Appeals

 895. Deputy Brendan Griffin Information on Brendan Griffin Zoom on Brendan Griffin asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney if a decision made by the disadvantage area appeals committee will be reviewed in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Kerry; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [1529/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney    The person named is one of a number of applicants under the 2012 Disadvantaged Areas Scheme, whose cases are impacted by the requirement of a minimum stocking density of 0.3 livestock units per forage hectare and who applied for and were refused derogation in this regard.

  The person named subsequently availed of the option to appeal to the independently chaired DAS Appeals Committee. The Committee has adjudicated on this appeal and the person concerned has been notified of the unsuccessful outcome, in writing, on 13 December 2012.


Last Updated: 28/04/2020 19:44:25 First Page Previous Page Page of 124 Next Page Last Page