IFA Rural Development Chairman Flor McCarthy has called on the Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney to immediately pay the 6,750 farmers who joined the AEOS 2 in 2011. They are due over
€7m in payments for the 4 months there were in the scheme last year.
Mr MrCarthy said, “The situation of delayed payments which has marred the AEOS scheme must not be repeated, and timely payment must be the objective of the Minister for vital supports such as REPS and AEOS.”
In relation to AEOS 1, the IFA Rural Development Chairman said it is totally unsatisfactory that there are still 40% of farmers due their 2011 full year payment. Also the situation where payments are held up where small penalties have arisen is totally unacceptable.
Meanwhile, Flor McCarthy has called on Minister Coveney to come forward with a meaningful AEOS 3 for the thousands of farmers who have completed their REPS 3 contracts. “It is vitally important that a scheme is put in place as farmers who were in REPS are generally low-income farmers and need the support of an agri-environment scheme.”