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Coveney, Simon

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 765 Nbr. 3


Written Answers - Harbour Charges

Was asked: if he will clarify the proposed increases in rates and charges for leisure crafts at harbours around the country; if he will reconsider the imposition of this excessive charge for the most basic of...More Button

Charges for the use of facilities at each of the six Fishery Harbour Centres are currently levied by virtue of the Fishery Harbour Centres (Rates and Charges) Order 2003. My Department has however...More Button

Charges for use of the facilities in the Fishery Harbour Centres by yachts and other pleasure craft have been introduced for the first time. This follows the provision of specialised marina facili...More Button

The new draft Order was the subject of a public consultation process that closed on 20 April last, and I am pleased to note that my Department has now received a total of 87 submissions in relation...More Button

These submissions are being given careful consideration at present, and when the examination is complete I will, if necessary, make any appropriate amendments to the new Rates and Charges Order bef...More Button

Was asked: if he will outline in tabular form the existing and newly proposed harbour fees in each of the State controlled harbour centres; the implications these changes will have; if he will consider freezi...More Button

Charges for the use of facilities at each of the six Fishery Harbour Centres are currently levied by virtue of the Fishery Harbour Centres (Rates and Charges) Order 2003. My Department has however...More Button

The new draft Order was the subject of a public consultation process that closed on 20th April last, and I am pleased to note that my Department has received a total of 87 submissions in relation t...More Button

Written Answers - Animal Welfare Legislation

Was asked: when the Animal Health and Welfare Bill 2012 is expected to be completed through the Oireachtas; the planned commencement dates for the implementation of this new legislation; if it will it be able...More Button

Was asked: if the proposed new Animal Health and Welfare Bill 2012 will impose new responsibilities on the [455]Turf Club and Horse Racing Ireland regarding the welfare of horses w...More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 400 and 405 together.More Button

In the first instance the keeper of animals is primarily responsible for their welfare. The principal statutes governing cruelty to all animals in this country, including race horses, is the Prote...More Button

The new Animal Health and Welfare Bill will consolidate and update existing legislation in the area of animal welfare. There will be provisions for powers of intervention where an animal is deemed ...More Button

Written Answers - Animal Welfare Issues

Was asked: if he is satisfied with the views of Horse Racing Ireland and the Turf Club that current legislation is silent in relation to the issue of welfare of horses while in training; and if he will make a...More Button

My Department’s responsibility, which is set down in legislation, currently extends to the welfare and protection of farmed animals only i.e. animals normally bred or kept for the production ...More Button

The principal statutes governing cruelty to all animals, including race horses, are the Protection of Animals Act 1911 and the Protection of Animals (Amendment) Act, 1965. Responsibility for enfor...More Button

The Programme for Government 2011 contains a commitment to strengthen legislation on animal cruelty and animal welfare. The main vehicle to fulfil this commitment is the new Animal Health and Welfa...More Button

Was asked: his responsibility in relation to the welfare of horses in Ireland especially those involved in the [456]horse-racing industry and if he has any role in enforcing standa...More Button

My Department’s responsibility, which is set down in legislation, currently extends to the welfare and protection of farmed animals only i.e. animals normally bred or kept for the production ...More Button

The principal statutes governing cruelty to all animals, including race horses, are the Protection of Animals Act 1911 and the Protection of Animals (Amendment) Act, 1965. Responsibility for enfor...More Button

The Programme for Government 2011 contains a commitment to strengthen legislation on animal cruelty and animal welfare. The main vehicle to fulfil this commitment is the new Animal Health and Welfa...More Button

Written Answers - Sugar Reform Compensation

Was asked: the position regarding an application for sugar beet compensation in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Wexford; when payment will be granted; and if he will make a statement on the m...More Button

An official of my Department has been in direct contact with the person named concerning the outstanding payment in respect of an element of the compensation due on foot of the Sugar Reform package...More Button

Written Answers - Direct Payment Schemes

Was asked: if he envisages any changes in the future for farmers who have their farmland, holding and entitlements leased; if he will confirm that the entitlements will go back to the original owner when the ...More Button

Under the current Single Payment regulations entitlements that are leased out with land revert to the owner on expiry of the lease for the land.More Button

The European Commission published its proposals for reform of the CAP post 2013 in October last and negotiations on those proposals are continuing. Under the proposals existing single payment enti...More Button

I will continue to consult with farming organisations and other stakeholders as the negotiations progress.More Button

Question No. 405 answered with Question No. 400.More Button

Written Answers - Fish Quota

Was asked: when he will announce the allocations for boarfish; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

In February 2012, boarfish catch limits for operators with a previous specified track record in the fishery were issued to operators which is applicable up to the end of October. Vessels without t...More Button

At the request of the Industry the fishery was closed on 15 March 2012 and it will re-open on 1 September 2012.More Button

Was asked: when he will announce the Celtic Sea fishery allocations for herring; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

In 2011 I asked the fishing industry and other interested parties to make proposals on the future management arrangements for all Irish herring fisheries. In response to my notification of the revi...More Button

Was asked: when he will announce the allocations for tuna fish; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

Under Article 12 of Regulation (EC) no 520/2007 the number of Community vessels fishing for Northern Albacore Tuna as a target species is fixed and up to 50 Irish fishing vessels may be authorised...More Button

Albacore Tuna are a high value commercial species for which Ireland has a quota of 3,896 tonnes in 2012. The migratory pattern of the Albacore Tuna is uncertain but often arrives in the waters off ...More Button

For many years no specific management arrangements for the fishery were required as the quota was under used. However in 2011, the fishery came close to the Irish coast earlier in the season and ...More Button

I am currently examining the issues arising and the submissions made and I hope to make a decision on the matter in the near future.More Button

Written Answers - Sheep Inspections

Was asked: the position regarding sheep inspections (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

My Department, in the context of delivering the Direct Payments Schemes is required to carry out annual inspections covering land eligibility and cross compliance to ensure compliance with EU regul...More Button

Eligibility checks must be carried out on 5% of applicants. These checks are carried out to verify that the actual area claimed in the application form corresponds to the area farmed by the farmer ...More Button

The rate of inspections for cross-compliance is 1% of applicants to whom the Statutory Management Requirements (SMRs) and Good Agricultural and Environmental Condition (GAEC) apply. However 3% of f...More Button

Every effort is made by officials of my Department to minimise disruption as much as possible to both the farmer and livestock on the holding in both the timing and undertaking of inspections.More Button

The value of these schemes to Irish farmers is €1.8bn annually. It is therefore incumbent on my Department to ensure that the regulatory control environment is comprehensively implemented to a...More Button

Written Answers - Agri-Environment Options Scheme

Was asked: the position regarding the agri environment option scheme 2012; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

I am actively considering the possibility of re-opening the Agri-environmental Options Scheme to allow for the submission of applications either on an amended basis from the existing scheme and/or ...More Button

The full year cost of any new scheme will have to be met in 2013 and any decision to re-open AEOS will be taken in the context of the resources available and the need to remain within the agreed ex...More Button

Written Answers - Bovine Disease Controls

Was asked: his views on correspondence (details supplied) regarding bovine TB; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

The correspondence referred to is a transcript of a recent article in the Irish Examiner dated Thursday, 26 April 2012. The article in question deals with the recent changes introduced by my Depart...More Button

With regard to the recent changes to the TB eradication programme, the article makes particular reference to the changed policy in relation to the testing of herds neighbouring a herd experiencing ...More Button

With regard to the example given in the Article, if the farmer mentioned in the article happened to be unfortunate enough to buy in infected animals from a herd which is contiguous to a high risk b...More Button

In conclusion, the policy is designed to protect farmers from buying in infected animals and to reduce both the incidence of this disease and the cost to herdowners and my Department arising from t...More Button

Written Answers - Fur Farming

Was asked: when he expects the report on the practice of fur farming to be completed; the actions he will take if the report recommends a complete ban on fur farming; and if he will make a statement on the ma...More Button

I will await the final report on the review of fur farming, which I expect to receive next week, before deciding what further steps to take.More Button

Written Answers - Pigmeat Sector

Was asked: the total cost of the pig meat recall scheme; the list of those who qualified under the scheme and the amount each applicant was paid; the way applicants were approved and the person who signed off...More Button

In accordance with EU legislation, the responsibility to place safe food on the market rests with the food business operator and therefore the consequences of a failure to meet that requirement als...More Button

Over a period of three years, my Department conducted a comprehensive, detailed and exhaustive examination of all claims submitted in respect of losses arising from the product recall. This involve...More Button

In processing the submitted claims, my Department was cognisant of the fact that there were some losses incurred by the industry in respect of which it was unable to offer any assistance. Generally...More Button

Total expenditure on the PRS amounted to €138m comprising: €102m for primary and secondary product (€97m for primary and secondary material plus €5m for rendering); €30m fo...More Button

A list of company beneficiaries and the aid amount received by each by way of a contribution to costs arising from the pigmeat recall is being made available separately to the Deputy.More Button

Mindful of the effects of dioxin contamination on Ireland’s reputation as a source of quality food products, I am satisfied that the scheme was successful in mitigating the potentially delete...More Button

Written Answers - Waste Disposal

Was asked: the action he has taken regarding the disposal of waste from a site at (details supplied) in County Carlow relevant to the dioxin crisis of 2008; if his Department will fund the disposal; if he is ...More Button

The recycling plant at Ballybrommell, Fenagh, Co. Carlow was closed at the time of discovery of the dioxin incident and restrictions placed on the contaminated feed. Consent was given in November ...More Button

The disposal of contaminated feed is the responsibility of the Feed Business Operator involved, as provided by Article 20 of Regulation (EC) No. 178/2002 and Annex II of Regulation (EC) No. 183/2005.More Button

With regard to the letter of 13 May 2011 referenced in the question, I am not in a position to comment on communications between third parties.More Button

Written Answers - Single Payment Scheme

Was asked: the position regarding single farm payment in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Kilkenny; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

My Department is currently reviewing the 2007 and 2008 Single Payment status of the person named in light of further documentation recently furnished to my Department by the Deputy. This informatio...More Button

Was asked: the reason a person (details supplied) in County Galway did not receive their single farm payment for 2010 or 2011; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

My Department has no record of receiving a 2010 or 2011 Single Payment/Disadvantaged Area application from the person named. All pre-printed Single Payment applications issued by my Department cont...More Button

Records held by my Department indicate that a pre-printed 2010 SPS application form was sent to the person named on 2 April 2010, my Department did not issue a pre printed SPS application in 2011 a...More Button

Written Answers - Regulatory Impact Assessments

Was asked: the number and description of any regulatory impact assessments that have been undertaken by his Department on legislation or proposed legislation since 9 March 2011; the stage in the legislative /...More Button

The table below sets out the details in relation to Regulatory Impact Analysis (RIA) in my Department since the 9th March 2011:More Button

Written Answers - Grassland Sheep Scheme

Was asked: the reason a person (details supplied) in County Galway did not receive their ewe grant in 2011; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

An application under the 2011 Grassland Sheep Scheme was received from the person named on the 4 May 2011. On processing the application, it was discovered that the person named failed to submit a ...More Button

Written Answers - Dairy Equipment Scheme

Was asked: the position regarding an application for a dairy equipment grant in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Cork; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

The persons concerned submitted an application for grant-aid under the Dairy Equipment Scheme during the course of the tranche under that Scheme which closed on 31 January 2012. The tranche concern...More Button

Written Answers - Milk Quota

Was asked: the position regarding an extra milk quota in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Limerick; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

The allocation of milk quota from the National Reserve is granted on the basis of recommendations from the Milk Quota Appeals Tribunal. The Tribunal recently examined the named person’s appli...More Button

The named person submitted an appeal to this decision. The Tribunal reviewed his case in January and it was decided to uphold the original recommendation in this case. The named person was informed...More Button

An official from my Department will contact the named person and advise him of the options available to him.More Button

Written Answers - Common Agricultural Policy

Was asked: his views on the fact that the Irish Cattle and Sheep Farmers Association are warning farmers that they could see the price increases over the last number of years being eroded under the impact of ...More Button

One of the proposals in the CAP reform package currently under negotiation is to move away from direct payments based on individual farm historic production references to a system based on uniform ...More Button

Extensive modelling conducted by my Department shows that the application of a national flat rate of payment per hectare would result in average gains of 86% for some 76,000 Irish farmers and avera...More Button

I have been pressing for the maximum possible flexibility to be given to Member States to design payment models that suit their own farming conditions, and to adopt a more gradual, back-loaded tran...More Button

I would like to have the possibility of putting a limit on the amount any farmer could lose in any redistribution. This would be consistent with the Commission’s desire to achieve a more leve...More Button

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. However, it sho...More Button

The negotiation process on CAP is a complex and difficult one, but all of my efforts are focused on achieving the best possible outcome for Ireland. These efforts will be continued over the coming ...More Button

Written Answers - Circus Animals

Was asked: if he will provide details of animals by species, imported into Ireland for use in circuses here in each of the past three years; their countries of origin; from whom they were acquired; the powers...More Button

The movement of circuses within the EU is governed by Commission Regulation (EC) No 1739/2005 of 21 October 2005 which lays down animal health requirements for the movement of circus animals and an...More Button

Inspections of circuses come within the remit of the local authorities and the information sought by the Deputy in this regard is not available to me.More Button

The main statutes governing cruelty to all animals, including circus animals, are the Protection of Animals Act 1911 and the Protection of Animals (Amendment) Act, 1965. Responsibility for enforci...More Button

Written Answers - Artisan Food Sector

Was asked: the supports available for Artisan food producers; if he has a strategic plan to develop their indigenous product on the national and international market. More Button

The potential of the artisan food sector was identified in the Food Harvest 2020 report, our blueprint for “smart, green growth” of the food industry.More Button

To build on the success of the artisan sector, the Report recommends that my Department works in conjunction with Bord Bia, Teagasc and other Departments and agencies to encourage an entrepreneuria...More Button

A range of services and supports are available to Artisan food producers from national and local development agencies.More Button

Some specific targeted supports are the Bord Bia Vantage suite of services for small speciality food business www.bordbiavantage.ie including advice on markets, routes to market, market tren...More Button

On foot of the recommendations in Food Harvest, Bord Bia, Enterprise Ireland and Teagasc recently combined to establish a new Programme to accelerate the development of export led Food Start Up com...More Button

My own Department is funding the 2011/2012 UCC Diploma in Specialty Food Production and together with Bord Bia is currently running a series of Regional Food Showcases in conjunction with national ...More Button

The Rural Development Programme of the CAP provides support for small scale artisan food businesses at an early stage of product development to enable the marketing and promotion of their specialit...More Button

My Department recently lodged an application with the European Commission to seek EU recognition of the unique characteristics of the Waterford Blaa for registration as a Protected Geographical Ind...More Button

Written Answers - Appointments to State Boards

Was asked: the appointments made by him to State boards under the remit of his Department since March 2011 that were advertised; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

Since March 2011 vacancies on the Boards of the State Bodies that fall under my Department’s remit are listed on my Department’s website and expressions of interest sought. In the case...More Button

There have been a number of appointments to State Boards during my tenure and the details of these are outlined in the accompanying table:More Button

Written Answers - Aquaculture Licences

Was asked: further to Parliamentary Question No. 204 of 7 March 2012, the progress that has been made on the issue of a licence for mussel farming (details supplied) in County Kerry; and if he will make a sta...More Button

The application referred to is in respect of a site located within Kenmare Bay which is designated as a Special Area of Conservation under the EU Habitats Directive (Natura 2000 site).More Button

All applications in ‘Natura’ areas are required to be appropriately assessed for the purpose of environmental compliance with the EU Birds and Habitats Directives. My Department, in conjunct...More Button

Addressing the issue of aquaculture licensing in Natura 2000 areas is a key priority for my Department and you can be assured that every effort continues to be made to expedite the determination of...More Button

Written Answers - Public Sector Staff

Was asked: if a review of the recruitment moratorium pertaining to Teagasc, the Agriculture and Food Development Authority will be undertaken in order to ensure the Authority can continue to build upon its re...More Button

Teagasc operates as a separate non commercial semi state body under the aegis of the Department. It is a matter for Teagasc to prioritise activities in the delivery of its programmes and services a...More Button

In common with other public bodies, Teagasc, has had to contribute to planned staff reductions in line with Government policy to create a smaller, more efficient and integrated public service. This...More Button