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 Header Item Written Answers Nos. 303 - 317
 Header Item Road Improvement Schemes
 Header Item Road Improvement Schemes
 Header Item Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Payments
 Header Item Road Improvement Schemes
 Header Item Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Payments
 Header Item Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Payments
 Header Item Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Payments
 Header Item Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Payments
 Header Item Agri-Environment Options Scheme Applications
 Header Item Harbours and Piers Development
 Header Item Commonage Framework Plans
 Header Item Single Payment Scheme Payments
 Header Item Land Parcel Identification System
 Header Item Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Payments
 Header Item Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Payments

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 817 No. 1

First Page Previous Page Page of 89 Next Page Last Page

Written Answers Nos. 303 - 317

Road Improvement Schemes

 303. 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 has been on an application for a forest road grant in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Kerry; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [42992/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney The contract number (CN63551) does not refer to the person named and my Department has no record of an application from that person under the Forest Roads Scheme at the address given. If the Deputy could check the contract number with the person named or supply additional information, such as a Herd Number, my Department will deal with the matter further.

Road Improvement Schemes

 304. 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 has been made on an application for a forest road grant in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Kerry; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [42998/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney The application by the person named under the Forest Roads Scheme is with the Forestry Inspectorate for consideration and recommendation in relation to the project. This should be complete within the next few weeks and a decision on the application will be given as soon as possible thereafter.

Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Payments

 305. Deputy Áine Collins Information on Áine Collins Zoom on Áine Collins asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney when persons (details supplied) will receive a disadvantaged areas payment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [43011/13]

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 2013 Disadvantaged Areas Scheme, whose cases were impacted by the requirement to have achieved a minimum stocking density of 0.3 livestock units per forage hectare in 2011, and who applied for and were refused derogation in this regard. The person named subsequently appealed unsuccessfully to the independently chaired DAS Appeals Committee who advised of the option to pursue the matter with the Office of the Ombudsman.

Road Improvement Schemes

 306. 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 has been made on an application for a forest road grant in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Kerry; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [43012/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney The application by the person named under the Forest Roads Scheme is with the Forestry Inspectorate for consideration and recommendation in relation to the project. This should be complete within the next few weeks and a decision on the application will be given as soon as possible thereafter.

Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Payments

 307. 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 farm payment; the reason for the delay; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [43018/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney The person named submitted a Single Farm Payment/Disadvantaged Areas Scheme application on 14 May 2013. EU Regulations governing the administration of these schemes require that full and comprehensive administrative checks, including in some cases on-farm inspections, be completed before any payments issue. The application of the person named was selected for a ground eligibility/cross compliance inspection. This inspection has been completed and the results are now being finalised. In the event that any queries arise officials in my Department will shortly be in contact with the person named.

Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Payments

 308. Deputy Michael P. Kitt Information on Michael Kitt Zoom on Michael Kitt asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney when the remaining payments under the disadvantaged areas scheme will be paid in counties Galway and Roscommon, as well as in the other counties; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [43019/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney Payments under the 2013 Disadvantaged Areas Scheme commenced, on schedule, on 25 September and, to date, payments worth €143.3 million have issued nationally, to some 67,538 applicants, with payments continuing to issue on a twice weekly basis, with individual cases being paid as they are confirmed eligible. The details in respect of payments which have issued to farmers in Counties Galway and Roscommon to date are set out below.

County Galway

Year Numbers applied Number paid Value of payments
2013 12,320 8,030 €16,627,207


County Roscommon
Year Numbers applied Number paid Value of payments
2013 5,855 3,663 €7,848,430

Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Payments

 309. 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 areas scheme payment; the reason for the delay; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [43021/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney Payments under the 2013 Disadvantaged Areas Scheme commenced, on schedule, on 25 September and, to date, payments worth €143.3 million have issued nationally, to some 67,538 applicants, with payments continuing to issue on a twice weekly basis, with individual cases being paid as they are confirmed eligible. As processing of the 2013 Disadvantaged Areas Scheme application of the person named has recently been finalised, payment will shortly issue, directly to the nominated bank account of the person named.

Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Payments

 310. 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 areas scheme payment; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [43023/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney Payments under the 2013 Disadvantaged Areas Scheme commenced, on schedule, on 25 September and, to date, payments worth €143.3 million have issued nationally, to some 67,538 applicants, with payments continuing to issue on a twice weekly basis, with individual cases being paid as they are confirmed eligible. As processing of the 2013 Disadvantaged Areas Scheme application of the person named has recently been finalised, payment will shortly issue, directly to the nominated bank account of the person named.

Agri-Environment Options Scheme Applications

 311. 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's (details supplied), in County Mayo, agri-environment options scheme 2 capital investment receipts will be returned; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [43024/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney The receipts in respect of this AEOS 2 Scheme applicant were returned on 9 October, 2013.

Harbours and Piers Development

 312. Deputy Ciara Conway Information on Ciara Conway Zoom on Ciara Conway asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney if he will confirm that funding has been made available for a development plan (details supplied); if he will confirm the amount; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [43080/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney Abbeyside Waterfront in Dungarvan is in the ownership of the Waterford County Council and responsibility for its repair and maintenance rests with that Council in the first instance. I am happy to confirm to the Deputy that funding in the amount of €183,750 has been approved for works on the Abbeyside Waterfront Development Project under the 2013 Marine Leisure and Marine Tourism Capital Infrastructure Development Programme. The funding provided is 75% of the total cost of the project which is in accordance with the terms and conditions of the programme.

Commonage Framework Plans

 313. 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 if he will implement the proposals contained within the Joint Committee on Agriculture, Food and the Marine Review of Commonage Lands and Framework Management Plans report; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [43084/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney The report of the Oireachtas Joint Committee on Agriculture is a valuable contribution to the ongoing debate regarding the issues surrounding commonage lands, the views of the various stakeholders having being sought and considered by the Committee. As I have indicated previously, while it is generally accepted that this is a very complex matter and requires a very detailed action plan to cover the various issues, I intend in the near future to set out proposals on how these matters will be progressed. My firm intention is that the process will be fully inclusive and that all stakeholders, particularly farmers and their representatives will be central to the process. It is only by adopting this approach that the desired result can be achieved.

With regard to the specific recommendations of the Committee contained in their Report, I can confirm that these will be included among the range of issues to be addressed in the process that will shortly be commenced by my Department - it very clear that matters to be resolved are very wide ranging and complex; it is self-evident that the process required to adequately address these must be fully inclusive and focused. To this end, I am determined, as indicated, to convene a broad group of all relevant stakeholders, charged with comprehensively addressing the range of issues.

Commonage lands form an important part of the farming enterprises of many farmers, particularly along the West Coast. They also form an important part of the local environment from the point of view of bio-diversity, wildlife, amenities and economic returns e.g. tourism. However, there is a substantial risk of land abandonment as under-grazing becomes more of a problem. Under-grazing leads to an increase in ineligible land under Direct Aid and Agri-Environment Schemes and leads to risk of financial corrections being imposed by EU Commission. It is vital, therefore, to maintain the commonages in GAEC (Good Agricultural and Environmental Condition), or where there is under-grazing, to return the habitat to GAEC.

Following the successful completion of the negotiations on CAP reform under the Irish Presidency on 26 June 2013, I launched a consultation process with all relevant stakeholders to ascertain their views on the most appropriate application of the Direct Payment Regulation. The final date for submissions on the Consultative Paper is 20th September. The agreement provides that where there is marginal land the applicant or applicants must graze that land if he or she is to satisfy the eligibility criteria to be deemed an active farmer for the purposes of benefiting from payment under the Direct Payment Scheme. As most of the commonage land declared in Ireland can only be maintained by grazing, this matter will also have to be dealt with in the context of maintaining commonages in Ireland.

Taking all of these matters into account, it is my stated aim is to ensure that a practical solution is reached, which will ensure that the current farmers actively farming these lands are protected; that the land is maintained or returned to GAEC and that the requirements of the governing EU Regulations are met. In my view, this can best be achieved by working with the farmers directly managing the lands, relevant State Agencies, the farming organisations and all other interested stakeholders. I have no doubt that work undertaken by the Oireachtas Joint Committee on Agriculture will greatly assist in this matter.

Single Payment Scheme Payments

 314. Deputy Derek Keating Information on Derek Keating Zoom on Derek Keating asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney if the single farm payment has ceased in respect of those companies or businesses which were found to have contributed to the horsemeat scandal.  [43098/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney Penalties under the Single Farm Payment, leading to reduced payments, can result from failure to adhere to both the EU and National scheme requirements, including rules relating to cross compliance. These detailed rules are set out in the scheme Terms and Conditions which are available on my Department’s website. Offences which may to taken into consideration to reduce or eliminate part or all SFP payments relate solely to actions which contravene these terms and conditions; other offences cannot be taken into consideration.

Land Parcel Identification System

 315. Deputy Derek Keating Information on Derek Keating Zoom on Derek Keating asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney the number of farmers that had penalties imposed on them following a land eligibility inspection in County Tipperary in 2012. [43101/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney Officials in my Department are collating the data requested by the Deputy and will forward it directly to the Deputy as soon as it is available.

Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Payments

 316. 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 disadvantaged areas scheme payment will issue in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Galway; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [43108/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney Payments under the 2013 Disadvantaged Areas Scheme commenced, on schedule, on 25 September and, to date, payments worth €143.3 million have issued nationally, to some 67,538 applicants, with payments continuing to issue on a twice weekly basis, with individual cases being paid as they are confirmed eligible. As processing of the 2013 Disadvantaged Areas Scheme application of the person named has recently been finalised, payment will shortly issue, directly to the nominated bank account of the person named.

Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Payments

 317. 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 under the disadvantaged areas scheme will issue in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Galway; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [43110/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney Payments under the 2013 Disadvantaged Areas Scheme commenced, on schedule, on 25 September and, to date, payments worth €143.3 million have issued nationally, to some 67,538 applicants, with payments continuing to issue on a twice weekly basis, with individual cases being paid as they are confirmed eligible. As processing of the 2013 Disadvantaged Areas Scheme application of the person named has recently been finalised, payment will shortly issue, directly to the nominated bank account of the person named.


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