An application for compensation under the cessation of turf cutting compensation scheme has been received by my Department from the individual referred to in the Deputy’s Question. With respect to 36 raised bog natural heritage area sites, the qualifying criteria for the scheme are that:
- The applicant must have had a legal interest (ownership or a turbary right (right to cut turf)) in one of these sites on 25 May 2010 and must have had the right to cut and remove turf from the property on that date;
- The applicant must have been cutting turf on the land in question during the relevant five year period up to 14 January 2014;
- The turf resource on the site has not been exhausted; and
- No turf cutting or associated activity is ongoing on the property.
The applicant was paid for Year 1 of the scheme (2014) in September 2014. I am advised that a report on an inspection of the plot of bog relevant to the application has recently been received and the application has now been processed. Consequently, the application has now been approved for payment for Year 2 (2015), Year 3 (2016), Year 4 (2017) and Year 5 (2018) of the scheme. Payment will issue to the applicant's bank account shortly.