Wednesday, 13 January 2016
Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine
Agriculture Scheme Payments
I propose to take Questions Nos. 320 and 428 together.
The 2014 Single Farm Payment/Disadvantaged Areas scheme application of the person named was initially selected for a Remote Sensing inspection. A subsequent field visit, to verify the position on the ground, identified discrepancies between the area declared and the area determined resulting in an over-declaration in area of greater than 50%. This resulted in no payment being due under the 2014 Single Payment Scheme and the application of an administrative fine to be offset against any future EU payments. The person named was notified of this decision on 27 April 2015.
As payment had already issued in respect of 2014, based on the results of the initial Remote Sensing inspection, my Department was required to recoup the amount of the payment issued from payments due under the REPS and the Beef Data Schemes.
The administrative fine to be applied in 2015 was calculated and the amount of €3,950.10 was deducted from the total amount of €9,036.04 due under the 2015 Direct Payments Scheme.
The person named sought a review of the decision in respect of the 2014 inspection. This review process included a re-inspection of the lands being claimed. The outcome of this review was to uphold the original decision. The person named was notified of this outcome on 20 July 2015. The person named submitted an appeal to the independent Agriculture Appeals Office, the outcome of which was to disallow that appeal. The person named was notified of this decision by the Agriculture Appeals Office on 8 December 2015. The person named was also notified that if they believed they had not been treated fairly by that Office it is open to them to raise the matter with the Office of the Ombudsman, 18 Lower Leeson St., Dublin 2.
An official from my Department will contact the person named to outline the above.
An application under the ‘Old Young Farmer’ category of the 2015 National Reserve was received from the person named. This application has been fully processed and payment on the allocation from the National Reserve issued to the person named on the 21December 2015.
An application under the 2015 Basic Payment/Areas of Natural Constraint Schemes was received from the person named on 12 May 2015. Processing of the application under both schemes is complete and payments have issued to the nominated bank account of the person named.
My Department received a Transfer of Entitlement Allocation Right and Reference Value application from the persons named to transfer allocations and values by change of registration of herd number from the second person named to both persons named. The Basic Payment Scheme application had been submitted in the name of the second person before the herd number was changed on 30 June 2015 into joint names held by both persons named. In the circumstances it was necessary for my Department to align both applications to reflect the change to the herd number so that processing could proceed. This work has now been completed, and payment will issue as soon as possible.