asked the Minister for Agriculture and Food, in view of the 25 per cent increased rate of brucellosis depopulation payment offered to farmers who agreed to the depopulation of their herds between October and December 1988, if he will consider back-dating this agreement to 1 January 1988, since many of the people who co-operated with his Department will not avail of the increased grant; and if he will take into account the fact that those who did not co-operate with his Department for the first nine months of the year are benefiting from the increase.
Written Answers. - Brucellosis Grants.
The increased grants were specifically related to final stage depopulation of a limited number of herds deemed to be chronically infected with brucellosis and were confined to the period between October and December 1988.
The question of backdating the brucellosis grants has been given very full and careful consideration following the representations made, in particular by the Board of ERAD. Taking into account the immediate purpose of the increases however, and having regard especially to the tight budgetary situation facing the Government, it was not found possible to justify the retrospection of grants in this instance.