Tuesday, 5 March 2013

Questions (417)

Arthur Spring


417. Deputy Arthur Spring asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine further to Parliamentary Question No. 519 of 15 June 2011, the type of documents that need to be provided by a group (details supplied) to him in order that he could appoint trustees to the commonage; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [11119/13]

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Written answers (Question to Agriculture)

The commonage in question is a private trust set up in 1907 between the landlord and local trustees, for the cutting of turf and the depasturage of cattle, sheep or horses. The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine as successor to the Land Commission has no function in this private trust except as a matter of last resort. The trust deed gave the former Commission power to appoint trustees where no other trustee remains to perform this task.

In this type of private trust, before I appoint trustees under the residual powers given to me in the originating trust deed and the legislation dissolving the Land Commission, the following actions and documentation are necessary. A public meeting of beneficiaries and potential beneficiaries should be held. Notice of such meeting should be published in a local newspaper. At least three names should be nominated by the meeting in writing, such nomination to be signed by all in attendance, requesting that I appoint such persons as trustees.

Those who are nominated as trustees should swear an Affidavit stating that there are no surviving or continuing trustees and that they are willing to serve as trustee and that they intend to faithfully carry out the functions of trustee as set out in the trust deed. They should also as part of the Affidavit indemnify the Minister and Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine against the cost of any legal action that may be taken by any person as a result of the actions of the trustees.