25 Jan 2011
REPS/AEOS PAYMENT DELAYS UNACCEPTABLERural Development
IFA Rural Development Chairman Tom Turley has described the delays in the payout of REPS and AEOS to 25,000 farmers as unacceptable and he called on the Minister for Agriculture Brendan Smith to intervene with his Department to speed up payments.
Mr. Turley said that only 50% of REPS 4 farmers have been paid so far and none of the 9,000 AEOS farmers have received any payment yet for the number of months they were in the scheme in 2010.
IFA estimate that up to €100m is due to farmers to meet the environmental costs associated with the REPS/AEOS Plans and the payment delays are causing severe financial hardship in many cases.
Meanwhile, Mr. Turley has also called on the Minister for Agriculture to indicate a startup date for this year’s AEOS. Following the December Budget, 10,000 places are available in this year’s scheme and an early start up date for applications is vital.
“Farmers must be given sufficient time to assess the scheme so that they can find the best environmental options for their farm and to maximize payment”, he said.
Concluding, Mr. Turley said that €337m is available in 2011 for the REPS/AEOS schemes and it is vital that all payments due are now made and AEOS is opened immediately.
Contact: Niall Madigan (01) 450 1931/ 086 822 8635
Morag Devins (01) 426 0344/ 086 263 3940