Written Answers. - Grant Payments.

Michael Ring

Question:

245 Mr. Ring asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and Rural Development the reason the fifth year REP scheme plan of a person (details supplied) in County Mayo is not being accepted, in view of the fact that he has applied to get the herd number changed into his own name; when the changeover will be completed; and if the REP scheme plan can now be accepted. [7961/01]

The person named applied for his fifth year payment on 29 January 2001. Following a pre-payment compliance inspection on 22 February a number of penalties were imposed for non-compliance with the scheme conditions. Payment with the penalty amounts deducted issued to the person named on 9 March.

Paul Connaughton

Question:

246 Mr. Connaughton asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and Rural Development if he will seek a European Union derogation on parts of the farm waste management scheme where a farmer must have a minimum of 20 income units from farming to avail of grant aid; if his attention has been drawn to the concerns of many small farmers who are being omitted from the scheme; and his views on the involvement of farmers in this category in the REP scheme in the future; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7962/01]

I am at present reviewing the position of farmers with under 20 income units under the farm waste management scheme. I expect to make a decision in this regard shortly. All farmers, irrespective of income, who can comply with the terms and conditions of the REP scheme, are eligible to participate.

Michael Ring

Question:

247 Mr. Ring asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and Rural Development when a person (details supplied) in County Mayo will receive the remainder of ewe premium for 2000. [8027/01]

One of the parcels claimed by the person named in her 2000 area aid application overlaps with a parcel of land claimed by another applicant. Both herd owners have been written to with a view to resolving the problem and a response is awaited. No payments can issue until the matter has been satisfactorily resolved.

Michael Ring

Question:

248 Mr. Ring asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and Rural Development when a person (details supplied) in County Mayo will receive 1999 ewe premium and sheep headage payment. [8028/01]

Payment of the 1999 sheep headage including top-up will be made to the person named shortly. The person named has received his full entitlement under the 1999 ewe premium scheme the final instalment of which was paid on 29 February 2000.

Michael Ring

Question:

249 Mr. Ring asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and Rural Development when a person (details supplied) in County Mayo will receive a farm development grant. [8029/01]

A payment for £9,460 is issuing to the person named under the farm improvement programme.

Michael Ring

Question:

250 Mr. Ring asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and Rural Development the reason a person (details supplied) in County Mayo received a reduced payment for the REP scheme euro compensation; and when the remaining £60 will issue. [8030/01]

The person named has received the full payment to which he was entitled. The introduction of the euro in January 1999 caused a reduction of some 5% in payments under REPS. The Council of Ministers agreed to a three-year scheme of compensation for these reductions. Full compensation was paid in 2000 for reductions in payments during 1999. Compensation for reductions in payment during 2000 was at the rate of 75% and this compensation has now been paid. Arrangements for compensation for reductions in payment in 2001 have not yet been determined.

Michael Ring

Question:

251 Mr. Ring asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and Rural Development when a person (details supplied) in County Mayo will receive a REP scheme payment; and if payment can issue without further delay. [8031/01]

An application under the new REP scheme was received from the person named on 26 February 2001 and is at present being processed. A comprehensive desk check is carried out on each new application and a percentage are also chosen for an on-farm pre-payment inspection.

The protocol on direct payments to farmers sets down time limits for the processing of REPS applications and for payment once the applications are accepted. The period allowed for the processing of applications is 14 weeks if they are selected for pre-payment inspection and 12 weeks if they are not. Payment is to be made within a further month.

My Department suspended on-farm visits on 23 February in the light of the foot and mouth disease emergency. The situation is under ongoing review which will take account of developments with regard to foot and mouth disease. However, my Department must also at all times have regard to the controls needed to maintain the integrity of the scheme and to protect my Department's accreditation with the EU as a paying agency.