Sinn Féin spokesperson on Agriculture, Claire Kerrane TD, has called for urgent action to avoid delays in farm payments.
Deputy Kerrane has raised the issue with Minister McConalogue following confirmation that there will be delays to payments of up to a month in some cases.
Speaking this morning, Teachta Kerrane said:
“The announced change in dates for the payment of the Areas of Natural Constraint (ANC) and the Basic Income Support for Sustainability (BISS), formerly the Basic Payment Scheme, is utterly unacceptable.
“With farm input costs at an all time high, delays in critical income supports to farmers have to be avoided and they need to be paid on time in September and October, as they have been previously.
“Despite this, the Minister is insisting that because this is the first year of the new CAP, payment delays cannot be helped. These delays are going to be up to a month.
“The Minister said the Department has done everything they can around payment dates, but it is simply not good enough. Farmers cannot be expected to wait.
“I have made it clear to the Minister that more needs to be done by his Department to avoid these payment delays.
“I also raised the new satellite mapping process which is being rolled out. This will put the onus on farmers where an issue is raised by the satellite, it will be up to the farmer to take a geotag photograph and upload it to an App.
“This is going to be problematic for some Farmers and it needs to be communicated before it is rolled out in June.”