Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - Farmers' Position, County Sligo.

asked the Minister for Agriculture if he is aware that small farmers, whose holdings lie along the Ox Mountains, County Sligo, and whose annuities range from £2 to £5, are suffering serious financial loss owing to the Government policy which involves them in the payment of heavy duties on their sheep and young cattle; and if he is prepared to have enquiries made locally with a view to affording some relief to those hardworking people, who are now so sorely pressed that they are unable to discharge their liabilities to the State, the shopkeepers and the traders.

So far as the Department are aware small holders in the area mentioned are in no worse position in regard to the duties on sheep and cattle than similarly situated small stockowners elsewhere. I am, however, having the suggestion in the Deputy's Question enquired into with a view to ascertaining whether a special need exists for Government action in the case.