Department to provide more assistance to farmers hit by flooding

Farmers that were most severely affected by the recent floods are to receive further assistance from the Department of Agriculture.

The Minister for Agriculture, Simon Coveney, has introduced an emergency flood damage relief measure, which will target the small number of farmers that experienced unique and additional difficulties.

“While visiting the worst affected areas earlier this month I became aware that in addition to the loss of fodder, a small number of farmers experienced further difficulties on their farms and clearly require some additional assistance.

“To address these difficulties I have introduced an Emergency Flood Damage Relief measure,” the Minister said.

This measure will provide financial assistance to cover for example the uninsured direct costs arising where livestock was lost to the flooding.

Assistance will also be provided to cover the rental costs incurred where livestock had to be moved off farms and into alternative premises due to potential welfare issues, the Department has confirmed.

On a small number of farms where the effects of the flooding were particularly acute, damage may have been sustained to some structures and fittings.

In these cases, the Department has said that the costs incurred in repairing such damage may be eligible for support.

It is not possible to address all circumstances of flood damage to farms but the measures I have announce today will specifically target those that have borne the brunt of the flooding.

The Minister confirmed that application forms for Emergency Flood Damage Relief measure will be available on the Department’s website from today, January 28, 2016 and from the Department’s local office network.

Application forms will also be available from Teagasc offices where advisors will continue to provide one to one advice to those impacted by flooding.

On-farm visits will be undertaken by Department personnel in the case of all applications for assistance under these measures to confirm the losses incurred and or the damage sustained.

The closing date for applications will be Friday, February 12.

Over 330 applications to Fodder Aid Scheme

Over 330 farmers have applied to the Fodder Aid Scheme which closed to applications last week.

Farmers whose feed supplies were damaged by the recent floods were eligible to apply for support under this scheme.

On-farm verification will occur on these applications this week with payments processed as visits are completed, according to the Department.

In terms of assistance already provided to farmers affected by the flooding events of December 2015 and January 2016 Minister Coveney confirmed that 141 farmers had already benefited under the provisions of the Emergency Welfare scheme.

Some 380t of concentrate has been allocated to date equating in monetary terms to almost €110,000.

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