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Coveney, Simon

Tuesday, 25 March 2014

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. Nbr.


Plant Protection Products

Was asked: further to Parliamentary Question No. 326 of 4 March 2014, if he will clarify the regulations regarding experimental weather modification and chemical spraying in the skies; if he could also clarif...More Button

The Sustainable Use of Pesticides Directive’s primary aim is to reduce the risks to human health and the environment that are associated with pesticide use. The directive is designed to further enh...More Button

This S.I. prohibits the application of pesticides from aircraft (aerial spraying) except under extenuating circumstances and only after a comprehensive and exhaustive risk assessment is carried o...More Button

It should be noted that no aerial application of pesticides has occurred on farmland in Ireland since 1993. On that occasion it was deemed absolutely necessary due to extreme weather conditions w...More Button

The aerial application of plant protection products is a very specialised job and thus is only carried out by specialist contractors (none of which are based in Ireland). The aerial application w...More Button

Herd Numbers

Was asked: the reason a person (details supplied) in County Mayo has been refused a herd number; if this person can appeal this decision; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The application for an additional herd number in this case relates to lands that form part of an existing pet farm which is also registered for bovine, ovine, porcine and poultry. An inspection ca...More Button

Was asked: if an existing dormant herd number can be reactivated in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Meath; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Since no stock had been tested in the herd referred to since 14 July 2005, it became dormant on the Department’s Animal Health Computer System on 11 January 2007.

  The necessar...More Button

Agriculture Scheme Payments

Was asked: when payment of the sugar beet compensation scheme will issue to a person (details supplied) in County Cork; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

An Official of my Department has made direct contact with the person named on this issue; this is a complex situation where while the person named grew the sugar beet, he was not the Single Payment...More Button

Rural Environment Protection Scheme Payments

Was asked: the position regarding an overpayment of REP scheme payment in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Galway; when this overpayment occurred; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The person named commenced REPS 4 in June 2008 and received payments for the full six years of their contract. REPS 4 is a measure under the current 2007-13 Rural Development Programme and is subj...More Button

Was asked: 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.More Button

The person named commenced REPS 4 in October 2009 and received payments for the first five years of their contract. REPS 4 is a measure under the current 2007-13 Rural Development Programme and is...More Button

Common Agricultural Policy Reform

Was asked: the progress he is making in resolving the problem regarding the proposal to incorporate the sheep grassland payment into the single farm payment of sheep farmers as part of the new Common Agricult...More Button

In developing the shape of the new system of Direct Payments in Ireland, I have been very conscious of the needs of sheep farmers, in particular those who farm on hill and commonage land. In genera...More Button

When determining the Initial Unit Value of a farmer’s entitlements under the Basic Payment Scheme in 2015, Regulation 1307/2013 gives Member States the option to take into account any payment the...More Button

I have decided to apply this provision in Ireland as a means of safeguarding the value of the payments received under the Grassland Sheep Scheme for those farmers concerned. The Grassland Sheep S...More Button

The incorporation of the Grassland Sheep Scheme payment into the calculation of a farmer’s Initial Unit Value in 2015 will obviously result in a higher entitlement value for the farmers concerned...More Button

Over the past two years sheep numbers have stabilised and while the breeding flock declined slightly in 2013, a return to growth is expected in 2014. I was pleased to note that for the third cons...More Button

Single Payment Scheme Payments

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

A review of the land declared by the person named under the 2013 Single Payment Scheme revealed that several land parcels were over-declared. The applicant was notified accordingly by letter dated ...More Button

Was asked: the number of farmers who were paid the single farm payment in each county in 2012 or 2013, whichever year has the most up-to-date data available; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

Payments under the 2013 Single Payment Scheme begin issuing, on target, on 16 October. To date payments worth nearly €1.2 billion have issued to 122,659 applicants. An additional 631 applicants rem...More Button

Was asked: the position regarding an application under the 2013 single payment scheme and disadvantaged areas scheme in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Clare; and if he will make a statement ...More Button

A review of the lands declared by the person named under the 2013 Single Payment Scheme revealed that a number of land parcels declared contained ineligible features.

  In order ...More Button

Was asked: the position regarding a single farm payment in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Wexford. More Button

There is no record of an application having been received in my Department from the person named.More Button

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

An application for Single Farm Payment was received from the above named on the 8 May 2013. This application was selected for inspection. As a result of that inspection five parcels were found to h...More Button

As the named person applied for more land than he held entitlements for he did not suffer a financial loss as a result of this reduction. Full payment issued for Single Farm Payment and Disadvant...More Button

Fish Quotas

Was asked: if Ireland has arranged any fishing quota swaps with Lithuania; if his attention has been drawn to any swaps that Lithuania has arranged in order to be able to access the blue whiting fishery; and ...More Button

Was asked: if the Lithuanian vessel (details supplied) has any fishing entitlements in Irish waters; if his attention has been drawn to the fact that this vessel has entered Irish waters in recent days; if he...More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 849 and 850 together. More Button

The TAC and Quota Regulation EU No. 43/2014 sets out the quotas for each stock available to Member States. In addition to the fishing opportunities allocated in the Regulation, Lithuania may ex...More Button

All fishing vessels must also comply with all EU Regulations relating to the Common Fisheries policy, including reporting of catches and respecting technical measures such as mesh size. Control ...More Button

Installation Aid Scheme Applications

Was asked: the position regarding the young farmers installation scheme payments in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Kerry; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

My Department has no record of having received an application form from the person named prior to the suspension of the Young Farmers’ Installation Scheme for new applications on 14 October 2008.More Button

The consultation paper prepared by my Department in relation to the proposed measures for inclusion in Ireland’s Rural Development programme for 2014-2020 includes a commitment to the introductio...More Button

Within the limits of the EU provisions governing the new Rural Development Programme, I will be endeavouring to ensure that as many young farmers as possible can avail of the enhanced grant schem...More Button

Agri-Environment Options Scheme Applications

Was asked: if he will expedite an agri-environment options scheme application in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Kerry. More Button

The person named was approved for participation in the Agri-Environment Options Scheme (AEOS 3) with effect from 1 May 2013. Under the EU Regulations governing the Scheme and other area-based paym...More Button

Departmental Reports

Was asked: the number of external or internal policy reports that have been handed to him but not yet published; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: when he will publish reports in his possession that have not been published to date; if he will outline in tabular form the reports involved; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 853 and 854 together.

  The unpublished reports in my Department are listed in the table for the years 2011, 2012 and 2013, since this government...More Button

Forestry Management

Was asked: if he will consider the points made in correspondence (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

My Department is aware of the work that has been carried out. The recently completed Forest Policy Review contains a number of recommendations in relation to measures to strengthen the role of wood...More Button

Agri-Environment Options Scheme Payments

Was asked: when an agri-environment options scheme and area aid 2013 payment will be issued in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Tipperary; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

The person named was approved for participation in the Agri-Environment Options Scheme with effect from 1 September 2010 and full payments have issued in respect of the 2010 and 2011 Scheme years. ...More Button

Was asked: the reason a person (details supplied) in County Limerick was informed in January that they were cleared for their AEOS payment and have not received any payment to date.More Button

The person named was approved for participation in the 2011 Agri-Environment Options Scheme with effect from the 1st  September 2011 and full entitlements have issued in respec...More Button

Was asked: when the 2013 payment under AEOS 2 will issue to a person (details supplied) in County Galway; the reason for the delay in issuing this payment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

The person named was approved for participation in the 2011 Agri-Environment Options Scheme with effect from the 1st  September 2011 and full entitlements have issued in respec...More Button

Was asked: if he will expedite an agri-environment options scheme payment in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Kerry; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The person named was approved for participation in the Agri-Environment Options Scheme (AEOS 3) with effect from 1 May 2013.More Button

Under the EU Regulations governing the Scheme and other area-based payment schemes, a comprehensive administrative check, including cross-checks with the Land Parcel Identification System, must b...More Button

Was asked: the financial provision for agri-environment schemes in 2014; the expenditure to date; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The total budget allocated for Agri Environment Schemes in 2014 is €184 million. To date in 2014 a total amount of €57.11 million has issued in respect of REPS, AEOS and Organic Schemes. More Button

Was asked: if a decision been made on the agri-environment options scheme 1 payment in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Kerry; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The person named was approved for participation in the Agri-Environment Options Scheme with effect from 1 September 2010 and full payments have issued in respect of the 2010, 2011 and 2012 Scheme y...More Button

During a 2013 inspection, the person named was found to have a non-compliance in respect of the Planting of New Hedgerow action. An appeal received from the person named was unsuccessful and the ...More Button

Was asked: the update on payments made to date under the 2013 REP scheme 4 and AEOS 1, 2 and 3; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

A total of 26,821 applicants have now received a total of €152.33m under their REPS4 contracts in respect of their 2013 payment. Of this amount 26,478 have received their full 100% payment. The rem...More Button

6,914 AEOS 1 participants have received €26.68m and 5,239 AEOS 2 participants have received €16.73m in respect of their 2013 payment. Of this amount 6,387 AEOS 1 and 4,874 AEOS 2 participants h...More Button

Files in respect of a further 767 AEOS 1 participants and 766 AEOS 2 participants remain under examination and officials within my Department are working through these to resolve any outstanding ...More Button

There are 5,963 active participants in the AEOS III Scheme. The checking process for this Scheme is well under way and I expect that payments for this Scheme will commence shortly.More Button

Agriculture Scheme Appeals

Was asked: further to Parliamentary Question No. 172 of 19 February 2014, when a decision will issue to a person (details supplied) in County Clare; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

A reply issued from my Department to the person concerned on 25 February last confirming the earlier decision. In this reply, my Department explained that, in accordance with the rules governing t...More Button

The person concerned was also informed that this decision may be appealed to the Agriculture Appeals Office, Kilminchy Court, Portlaoise, Co Laois and that any appeal must be lodged to the Agricu...More Button

Farm Inspections

Was asked: the reason arrangements were not made by his Department inspector with a person (details supplied) in County Carlow to inspect their land in 2013; the reason the inspector inspected the land withou...More Button

The 2013 Single Farm Payment Scheme application of the person named was selected for a Remote Sensing (i.e. Satellite Inspection). This inspection was carried out without the need to visit the farm...More Button

Following the RFV the applicant was notified via a Formal Notification of the possibility of penalties. While this Formal Notification did issue to the applicant it is not standard operating proc...More Button

The person named appealed in writing dated 14 February 2014. The matter was referred to the District Superintendent for re-examination. That re-examination concluded that the original findings we...More Button

The rules governing the schemes are set down in an extensive Help Sheet/Terms and conditions that issued with the application form. Officials from my Department have been in contact with the pers...More Button

Finally, maps for all eligible parcels claimed by any applicant in any given year are provided to all applicants, as part of the following year’s application process.More Button

Was asked: the reason a person (details supplied) did not receive a response nor compensation following an incident at their farm.More Button

Was asked: if he is satisfied that correct procedures were carried out by his Department in the valuation of reactor stock in respect of a person (details supplied); if the second inspector should have recour...More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 866 and 867 together.

  My Department does not have any record in relation to the first issue raised, which relates to events alleged to have occ...More Button

Farmers Charter Review

Was asked: his plans to review the charter of farmer's rights; the organisations he will engage with; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

I have recently established a Farmers’ Charter Review Group to discuss a new Charter and Action Plan for farmers to replace the Farmers Charter and Action Plan 2009-2011. The Review Group is chaire...More Button

A number of meetings of the Review Group will be held over the coming months to agree standards of service in respect of Department schemes to which the new Charter will apply. The new Charter wi...More Button

Single Payment Scheme Appeals

Was asked: further to Parliamentary Question No. 173 of 19 February 2014, when a decision will issue to a person (details supplied) in County Clare; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The results of the ground verification check have now been verified. A further stage of processing is now required to finalise the payment position for the 2013 Scheme year and previous years, if a...More Button

The person named will be notified of the final outcome of the verification process as soon as possible. In the event that the person named is dissatisfied with the outcome, the decision can be ap...More Button

Was asked: when a single farm payment appeal will be finalised in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Tipperary; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

A review of the land parcels declared by the person named under the 2013 Single Payment Scheme revealed that several of the land parcels declared by the person named contained ineligible features. ...More Button

In the event that the person named is dissatisfied with the outcome of this verification check, the decision can be appealed to the independent LPIS Appeals Committee.More Button

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

A review of the land parcels declared by the person named under the 2013 Single Payment Scheme revealed that several of the land parcels declared by the person named contained ineligible features. ...More Button

In the event that the person named is dissatisfied with the outcome of this verification check, the decision can be appealed to the independent LPIS Appeals Committee.More Button

Was asked: if a decision has been made on the review of a single farm payment over-claim in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Kerry; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

A review of the land parcels declared by the person named under the 2013 Single Payment Scheme revealed that several of the land parcels declared by the person named contained ineligible features. ...More Button

In the event that the person named is dissatisfied with the outcome of this verification check, the decision can be appealed to the independent LPIS Appeals Committee.More Button

Was asked: the number of applications finalised to date under single farm payment and disadvantaged areas scheme where eligible land issues arose; the number of applications awaiting finalisation; the number ...More Button

A total of 50,000 overclaim letters have issued, not all of which relate to financial reductions and in excess of 10,000 appeals relating to land eligibility issues have been received by my Departm...More Button

Of these, 1,600 cases have been finalised and applicants have been notified of the outcome of their appeal. 1,350 cases have been sent to the local inspectorate for land verification checks for t...More Button

Finally, 90 cases have been forwarded to the Agriculture Appeals Committee on receipt of appeals from the applicants concerned. The committee has not as yet adjudicated on these appeals.More Button

Land Transfers

Was asked: if a farmer transfers land with entitlements to his son this year will the entitlements be lost on the land transferred as it will not have been farmed by the same farmer in 2013, 2014 and 2015; an...More Button

If the father transfers some or all of a holding, including the land, to his son by way of gift the son will “step into the shoes” of the father. He will benefit from the allocation right establish...More Button

Animal Welfare

Was asked: if he will consider an outright ban on the use of animals in circuses here; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Conditions under which circus animals are kept and managed come under the scope of the Animal Health and Welfare Act 2013. I do not intend to interfere with the use of animals in circuses, provided...More Button

Alternative Farm Enterprises

Was asked: if the new research proposals announcement apply to projects in the agricultural bioenergy field.More Button

Investments in research under the FIRM, Stimulus and CoFoRD competitive funding programmes operated by my Department are primarily focused on areas prioritised under the National Research Prioritis...More Button

Ministerial Meetings

Was asked: if he will meet a person (details supplied).More Button

The person concerned might contact my office with a view to arranging a meeting with an Assistant Secretary of my Department along with one of my advisers.More Button

Departmental Meetings

Was asked: the number of times his Department received requests by Philanthropy Ireland to meet in 2011, 2012 and 2013; the number of times his Department met with Philanthropy Ireland in those years; and if ...More Button

Neither I nor my Department’s officials have had any requests for or meetings with the named company or their representatives.More Button

Farm Retirement Scheme Applications

Was asked: the number of farmers that have availed of the early retirement scheme.More Button

The number of farmers that have availed of the Early Retirement Schemes (ERS) are as follows:

More Button

Single Payment Scheme Eligibility

Was asked: the number of farmers availing of the early retirement scheme that have, as a result, lost their entitlements to single farm payment.More Button

No farmer who availed of the Early Retirement Scheme lost their Single Farm Payment entitlements. As all farmers who availed of this scheme had to retire from active farming they had three options...More Button

Harbours and Piers Funding

Was asked: if he has received an application from Sligo County Council for funding for vessel access and harbour-pier repairs at Rosses Point, County Sligo, under the 2014 fishery harbour and coastal infrastr...More Button

Rosses Point is in the ownership of Sligo County Council and responsibility for its development, repair and maintenance rests with the Local Authority in the first instance.More Button

As part of the Governments response to the storm damage wreaked on our publicly owned piers, harbours, my Department invited 15 Coastal Local Authorities to apply for funding under a once off Sto...More Button

Sligo County Council did submit an application for funding for works at Rosses Point under this programme. However, the application for Rosses Point did not meet with the qualifying criteria and ...More Button

It has also been brought to the Council’s attention that the project at Rosses Point may be considered for funding if re-submitted under the Department’s Marine Leisure and Coastal Infrastructure...More Button

Was asked: if he will prioritise funding for dredging the harbour in Dunmore East; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

I am pleased to inform the Deputy that on 20 of March I announced funding of €4 million for dredging works at Dunmore East Fishery Harbour Centre under the 2014 Fishery Harbour and Coastal Infrast...More Button

Bord na gCon Inspections

Was asked: the number of on course dope tests carried out by officers of Bord na gCon in each of the years 2011, 2012 and 2013; the number of tests found positive for prohibited-banned substances in each of t...More Button

The control and administration of greyhound racing, including the matters referred to by the Deputy, are a matter for Bord na gCon. More Button

The Control Committee and the Control Appeals Committee of Bord na gCon were established under the Greyhound Industry (Control Committee and Control Appeal Committee) Regulations 2007 (S.I. Numb...More Button

Samples are tested for prohibited substances in the National Greyhound Laboratory at Bord na gCon headquarters in Limerick. When a sample is declared positive by the National Greyhound Laborator...More Button

I understand from Bord na gCon that in all, total of 4807, 6893 and 7307 on-course samples tests were carried out for prohibited substance in the years 2011, 2012 and 2013, respectively. There ...More Button

Of the 45 positive tests in 2011 - 41 were published by the Control Committee (although not all published in that year), 3 were dismissed in favour of the owner and 1 was appealed to the Control ...More Button

Of the 56 positive cases in 2012 - 8 were published by the Control Committee (although not all published in that year), 9 will be published shortly, 20 were found in favour of the owner, and 19 a...More Button

Of the 51 laboratory positive cases in 2013 , 7 cases were published by the Control Committee in January 2014, 11 are awaiting imminent publication, 2 cases were dismissed in favour of the owner ...More Button

I understand from Bord na gCon that the number of published details of positive findings in the years 2011, 2012 and 2013 years was 31, 30 and 0, respectively. However, 17 cases were published in...More Button

On a general point, I have commissioned an independent review of certain matters in relation to Bord na gCon, which will include an assessment of the regulatory framework. I will be considering a...More Button

Farm Retirement Scheme Eligibility

Was asked: if farmers who are in receipt of payments under the farm early retirement scheme, and who have leased their farm and their entitlements under this scheme, will retain their entitlements after 2014;...More Button

Any farmer who was entitled to receive a direct payment in 2013 (Single Payment, Grassland Sheep Scheme, Burren Life Scheme, Beef Data Scheme) is automatically eligible to receive an allocation of ...More Button

Farmers who joined the Early Retirement Scheme undertook to cease farming definitively. Where such farmers have leased out their entire holding and all entitlements for a period which includes 2...More Button

As a consequence, these 100% lessors will neither be eligible to establish entitlements in their own right, nor can they enter into a PCC to transfer entitlements to the lessee. The value of such...More Button

The value of such leased entitlements will be lost to both lessor and lessee unless the entitlements in question are transferred permanently by sale or gift before 15 May 2014 to a person who hol...More Button

Agriculture Scheme Eligibility

Was asked: the position regarding those who have leased land with entitlements for the years 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015 in relation to those entitlements for the new Common Agricultural Policy programme; and i...More Button

Any farmer who was entitled to receive a direct payment in 2013 (Single Payment, Grassland Sheep Scheme, Burren Life Scheme, Beef Data Scheme) is automatically eligible to receive an allocation of ...More Button

The value of entitlements that will be allocated to a farmer in 2015 will be based on a percentage of the value of entitlements (and where relevant the payment received in 2014 under the Grasslan...More Button

A lessor and lessee may wish to carry forward an existing lease into the new Basic Payment Scheme and may do so by way of a Private Contract Clause. However, to enter into such an agreement, the ...More Button

A difficulty arises where lessors have leased out their entire holding and all entitlements for a period which includes 2013 and consequently do not have an automatic ‘allocation right’. In most ...More Button

The value of such leased entitlements will be lost to both lessor and lessee unless the entitlements in question are transferred permanently by sale or gift before 15 May 2014 to a person who hol...More Button

Single Payment Scheme Administration

Was asked: further to Parliamentary Question No. 541 of 11 February 2014, when the information promised will be provided; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The data requested by the Deputy in relation to monetary amount of penalties imposed each year on farmers since the Single Farm Payment was introduced is set out in tabular form below.

More Button

Was asked: if he will review the decision to roll the sheep grassland payment into the new single farm payment in view of the fact that the benefit of the grassland scheme will be lost through the approximati...More Button

In developing the shape of the new system of Direct Payments in Ireland, I have been very conscious of the needs of sheep farmers, in particular those who farm on hill and commonage land. In genera...More Button

The Grassland Sheep Scheme is based on Article 68 of the current EU Regulation 73/2009 which governs direct payments in the form of the Single Payment Scheme. As of the 1 January 2015 that Regula...More Button

When determining the Initial Unit Value of a farmer’s entitlements under the Basic Payment Scheme in 2015, Regulation 1307/2009 gives Member States the option to take into account any payment the...More Button

I have decided to apply this provision in Ireland as a means of safeguarding the value of the payments received under the Grassland Sheep Scheme for those farmers concerned. The Grassland Sheep S...More Button

The incorporation of the Grassland Sheep Scheme payment into the calculation of a farmer’s Initial Unit Value in 2015 will obviously result in a higher entitlement value for the farmers concerned...More Button

The incorporation of the Grassland Sheep Scheme payment into the calculation of a farmer’s Initial Unit Value in 2015 will not affect the Linear Cut to the value of existing single payment scheme...More Button

Over the past two years sheep numbers have stabilised and while the breeding flock declined slightly in 2013, a return to growth is expected in 2014. I was pleased to note that for the third cons...More Button

Equine Industry

Was asked: if a change is proposed in respect of equines under Pillar 1 of the Common Agricultural Policy, including whether the farming of equines will be eligible under all the definitions of an active farm...More Button

To participate in the Basic Payment Scheme and related schemes a person must be an ‘active farmer’ as defined in the Direct Payment Regulation. Only persons who fulfil one of the following can be c...More Button

Single Payment Scheme Applications

Was asked: if a decision has been made on the review of a single farm payment over-claim in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Kerry; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

A review of the land parcels declared by the person named under the 2013 Single Payment Scheme revealed that several of the land parcels declared by the person named contained ineligible features. ...More Button

In the event that the person named is dissatisfied with the outcome of this verification check, the decision can be appealed to the independent LPIS Appeals Committee.More Button

Inland Fisheries

Was asked: regarding his reassurances that his engineering division and the Irish Marine Institute were investigating the disaster that overtook a fish farm (details supplied) in County Cork more than six wee...More Button

Was asked: if he will provide information on the number of mortalities collected and stored in formic acid on barges in enclosed ensiling tanks after the disaster that overtook a fish farm (details supplied) ...More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 883 and 884 together.

  My Department’s Engineering Division together with the Marine Institute carried out a preliminary onsite examination of t...More Button

Aquaculture Licence Applications

Was asked: if he will make available copies of the Norwegian Standard for Containment Systems NS94152009 which the environmental impact statement for the Galway Bay fish farm states will be adhered to in that...More Button

An application by Bord Iascaigh Mhara (BIM) for an aquaculture licence for the cultivation of finfish near Inis Oirr in Galway Bay was received by my Department in 2012. The application and its ac...More Button

The assessment process will take full account of all national and EU legislative requirements and will reflect the full engineering, scientific, environmental, legal and public policy aspects of ...More Button

There is always a strict separation between my Ministerial role as decision maker in respect of aquaculture licence applications and my Ministerial duty to promote the sustainable development of ...More Button

As the application is under active consideration as part of the statutory process it would not be appropriate for me to comment further at this time.More Button

Was asked: if an appropriate assessment has been set for aquaculture licence applications for Donegal Bay SAC; when he expects licence applications to be processed; and if he will make a statement on the matt...More Button

The Appropriate Assessment in respect of Donegal Bay has been completed by the Marine Institute.

  My Department is currently examining the general licensing issues that arise fo...More Button

Suckler Welfare Scheme Extension

Was asked: his plans to pursue a suckler cow annual premium, specifically for farmers on the western seaboard; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

As part of the budget process for this year, I announced an investment package worth up to €40 million to suckler beef farmers in 2014. Among the measures in the investment package are €23 million ...More Button

Beef Industry

Was asked: his views on the ICSA's call for a regulator to be appointed for the beef sector; his views that a regulator would go a long way in redressing the imbalance which currently exists in the anti-compe...More Button

I am aware of the statement made by the Irish Cattle and Sheep Farmers Association (ICSA) to the Joint Committee on Agriculture, Food and the Marine on 4 March 2014. Matters related to regulation ...More Button

My Department monitors the kill figures from Irish meat plants and I note that that slaughtering of bull beef in the first 11 weeks of 2014 (up to the week ending 16 March) stood at almost 65,000...More Button

In relation to the current difficulties between farmers and processors, the Deputy will appreciate that ultimately questions of price and market specification are matters to be determined between...More Button

The relationship between processors and farmers is an interdependent one. Ultimately, it is the responsibility of both sides working together to manage the type and volume of cattle being brought...More Button

Was asked: his views on the fact that in a week there were no buyers in the marts for Holstein-Jersey crosses calves, farmers have paid up to €10 per head for buyers to take the calves from them.More Button

As the Deputy will be aware questions of price are matters to be determined between the purchasers and the sellers of cattle and it is neither appropriate nor possible for me to intervene directly ...More Button

I am aware that the issue of cross-breeding in dairy herds has been growing in popularity and is proven to provide cows with high economic value. The downside of this is that the male calves have...More Button

Rural Development Programme Funding

Was asked: his views that cattle and sheep farmers must be prioritised with regard to Pillar 2 funding allocation, which will be distributed as part of the next rural development programme; and if he will mak...More Button

As the Deputy will be aware, to support the beef sector I recently announced the operational details of an investment package worth up to €40m to beef farmers in 2014. Among the measures in this in...More Button

Was asked: if there are any grants or schemes available to farmers who intend to build sheds within the next 12 months; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

The recent consultation paper prepared by my Department in relation to Ireland’s Rural Development Programme for 2014-2020 includes a commitment to the introduction of new grants for investments in...More Button

I would hope to be able to include further details in relation to these grants in the Rural Development Programme itself when it is finalised in the near future. EU Commission approval for the ...More Button

Ministerial Staff

Was asked: the number of civil servants engaged in constituency work on his behalf; and the salaries, accommodation costs and expenses involved or associated with these duties.More Button

3 Civil Servants (2.8 FTE) are engaged in constituency work on my behalf, with a total salary cost of €188,273.75, which includes employers PRSI, pension contributions and overheads. My Department...More Button

Forestry Grants

Was asked: when a decision will issue to a person (details supplied) in County Clare; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The application by the person named was approved subject to conditions that included the removal of a plot from his application. He appealed against this part of the decision and his appeal is cur...More Button

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

I am arranging to have this matter reviewed within my Department. My officials will be in contact with the person named when this review is completed. More Button

Was asked: if consideration is being given in his Department to approving grant aid for the re-establishment of forestry plantations which were felled in the recent storms; and if he will make a statement on ...More Button

The recent storms have indeed been damaging to Irish forests particularly in the south of the country. Early indications suggest however that less than 1% of the forest area and approximately 1% of...More Button

Whilst direct financial support is not being provided to those whose forestry was destroyed in the storm, a taskforce, chaired by Mr Tom Hayes TD, Minister of State, has been established to asses...More Button

The taskforce has issued a guidance note for forest owners, laying down the steps to consider in safely harvesting and selling the fallen trees and giving advice on a range of other associated is...More Button

Teagasc forestry advisers are available to meet any forest owner in the Teagasc Office for free advice. Forest owners are also urged to get professional advice from qualified foresters to guide ...More Button

I can confirm also that any premium payments that have not yet been paid for 2014 will be paid even if these forests have been affected by this windblow event. More Button

Food Industry Development

Was asked: if he will outline the details of the discussions that took place recently with his Norwegian counterpart and Norwegian seafood companies; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The North Atlantic Seafood Forum (NASF), which recently took place in Bergen, Norway, is the world’s biggest seafood investment conference attracting more than 600 industry seafood players from 35 ...More Button

In addition to my role as speaker at the event, I met with my Norwegian counterpart at the Conference Minister Monica Maeland. We discussed issues of common interest, including the then ongoing...More Button

I was also able, along with BIM, to meet with a number of seafood companies with a view to broadening and deepening cooperation to the mutual benefit of the Norwegian and Irish seafood sectors. S...More Button

Bovine Disease Controls

Was asked: if compensation will be made available to dairy farmers who have to cull their animals with BVD disease; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: the reason no compensation is given to small herd owners for the first calf removed from a herd for BVD; if he will consider extending this compensation to the first calf in herds of fewer than 20 ...More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 894 and 901 together. More Button

The Bovine Viral Diarrhoea (BVD) eradication programme, the statutory basis for which is set out in S.I. 118 of 2014, requires that calves indicating an initial positive or inconclusive reaction ...More Button

The provision of compensation for calves culled under the compulsory phase of the BVD programme must be placed in the context of the low value of these animals, the economic benefits accruing to ...More Button

I have no plans to change the existing compensation arrangements.More Button

Was asked: in view of the stated objective of his Department in supporting artisan food producers, if he will cover the cost of additional TB and brucellosis testing imposed on farmers who sell small volumes ...More Button

Suppliers of milk for the production of pasteurised product are required to undergo an annual combined TB and brucellosis test. Herds supplying raw cows’ milk for the production of raw milk product...More Button

Was asked: the reason a person (details supplied) in County Kerry has been told they cannot sell animals at present.More Button

The trading status of the herd belonging to the person concerned was suspended on 10 March 2014 pending the resolution of a number of discrepancies which were identified in the context of a TB test...More Button

Following examination of these discrepancies by the local District Veterinary Office in consultation with the keeper, my Department is now in a position to lift the herd suspension and the DVO noti...More Button

  Question No. 901 answered with Question No. 894.More Button

Was asked: his views on correspondence (details supplied) regarding TB testing.More Button

Under EU and national TB rules, all animals on a holding, with the exception of calves under six weeks old which were born in the holding, must be subjected to tuberculin testing at twelve month in...More Button

Live Exports

Was asked: the measures has he taken to secure live export markets for sheep since he came into office; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

My Department, in co-operation with Bord Bia and the Irish embassies, continues to actively support the development of both the live export trade and the beef trade through the provision of market ...More Button

Animal Breeding Regulations

Was asked: further to Parliamentary Question No. 192 of 6 March 2014, if his attention has been drawn to the fact that greyhound owners who are against hare coursing, still have to register their greyhound fo...More Button

The ICC is subject to the general control and direction of Bord na gCon, which is the statutory body with responsibility for the improvement and development of the greyhound industry, greyhound rac...More Button

Rural Environment Protection Scheme Application Numbers

Was asked: the number of farmers who participated in REP scheme 1, REPS 2, REPS, 3, REPS 4, AEOS 1, AEOS 2, AEOS 3 broken down on a county basis; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The following tables detail the number of participants in REPS on a county basis:

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Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Payments

Was asked: the number of farmers who received disadvantaged area scheme payments in each county in 2012 or 2013, whichever year has most up-to-date data available; and if he will make a statement on the matte...More Button

Payments under the 2013 Disadvantaged Areas Scheme begin issuing, on target, on 25 September. While there is no regulatory date by which DAS payments must commence, it is generally recognised and i...More Button

Was asked: the position regarding an area based compensation application in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Limerick.More Button

A review of the land parcels declared by the person named under the 2013 Single Payment Scheme revealed that one of the land parcels declared by the person named contained ineligible features. The...More Button

To date no appeal has been received. Payment in respect of the 2013 Disadvantaged Areas Scheme issued directly to the nominated bank account of the person named on 6 February 2014 based on the re...More Button

Beef Imports

Was asked: the total amount of Polish beef being imported for further processing in meat plants; if this beef is sold on the Irish market or re-exported; the meat processors that are importing this beef; and ...More Button

CSO figures show that 445 tonnes of beef were imported into Ireland from Poland in 2013. This figure is about 10% of the volume of beef which we exported from Ireland to Poland. Typically, beef imp...More Button

Rules on the labelling of meat and meat products are laid down in EU legislation. For beef, the current rules require compulsory origin labelling, with place of birth, rearing and slaughter speci...More Button

An annual audit of imported products is carried out in each meat plant by my Department. The audit includes physical identity, labelling and documentary checks. This includes product originating ...More Button

Checks are also conducted at retail level by the Health Service Executive (HSE), working under the aegis of the FSAI which has an overarching supervisory role in relation to labelling matters. More Button

Was asked: if he has had discussions with the Northern Ireland Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Ms Michelle O’Neill, MLA, in the past three months on the sale of cattle from this jurisdiction to...More Button

The trading of cattle between here and Northern Ireland is a function of the market and neither I nor my counterpart in the Northern Ireland Executive have any role in it, save for ensuring complia...More Button

I am of course aware that there are difficulties currently in the sale of cattle from here to Northern Ireland because of price differentials arising from constraints brought about by the labelling...More Button

While Bord Bia has repeatedly raised the issue of stocking beef from Irish born cattle slaughtered in the UK with British retailers over the years, there are no indications that their marketing p...More Button

Beef Technology Adoption Programme Payments

Was asked: the number of farmers broken down by county who were paid for participating in the beef technology scheme 2013; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

The 2013 Beef Technology Adoption Programme payment by county is outlined in tabular format below.

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Suckler Welfare Scheme Payments

Was asked: the number of farmers broken down by county who were paid for the suckler cow welfare scheme in the most recent year for which data is available; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

The following tabular statement provides details of the applicants and amounts paid by county for calves born during 2012, which was the final year of the five-year Suckler Cow Welfare Scheme.More Button

Agri-Environment Options Scheme Appeals

Was asked: if there is any delay in correcting errors and over-claims following inspections of agri-environment options scheme applicants; if there is a delay in the issuing of payments as a result; and if he...More Button

Agri–Environment Options Schemes in common with other E.U. funded schemes, are run in accordance with the relevant E.U. regulations and all applications are subject to controls, including on-farm i...More Button

Programme for Government Implementation

Was asked: if he will provide an update in tabular form of the commitments in the programme for Government that relate to his Department; and the progress that has been made in the implementation of each comm...More Button

I have provided, in the schedule beneath, the implementation update on the commitments in the 2011-2016 Programme for Government for which my Department has primary responsibility. The timeline fo...More Button

Rural Development Programme Projects

Was asked: the position regarding the 2014-2020 rural development plan; when will the necessary submission be made to the European Union Commission; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

The new Rural Development Programme 2014-2020 (RDP) will be a key support in enhancing the competitiveness of the agri-food sector, achieving more sustainable management of natural resources and en...More Button

Disadvantaged Areas Scheme

Was asked: the position regarding the review of disadvantaged areas as part of the new Common Agricultural Policy; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

There is an ongoing review at EU level of the Disadvantaged Areas Scheme (DAS). DAS (now to be known as Areas of Natural Constraint) is to be delineated by Member States using soil and climatic cri...More Button

Semi-State Bodies Remuneration

Was asked: the salaries including pensions and any other bonus-related additions, including company cars, of chief executive officers of commercial State bodies under the remit of his Department; and if he wi...More Button

It is not possible to provide this information in the required time. I will forward it to the Deputy as soon as it is available.More Button