Wednesday, 25 April 2018

Questions (172)

Eamon Scanlon


172. Deputy Eamon Scanlon asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine the members of the forestry appeals committee; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [18132/18]

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Written answers (Question to Agriculture)

The Forestry Appeals Committee (FAC) was established, under the Agriculture Appeals Act, 2001, as amended, to hear appeals against decisions on forestry licences. It is based in the Agriculture Appeals Office in Portlaoise, Co. Laois. In February, I appointed Mr. Bart Brady as Chairperson of the FAC.  Mr. Brady is a former Assistant Secretary General in the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine.

In addition to Mr. Brady as Chair, the other members of the Committee are drawn from officers of the existing Agriculture Appeals Office.

The FAC is available as an appeals body to applicants or third parties who are dissatisfied with decisions made by the Department on applications for licences for afforestation, tree felling, forest road works and aerial fertilisation. It is fully operational and has already completed its first appeal hearing. The appeals process is now independent of the Department.