‘Impossible’ for farmers to complete GLAS watercourse fencing requirement

Calls have been made for a concession on some of the fencing requirements under the GLAS scheme.

Under the terms and conditions of the first phase of GLAS, farmers who have watercourses must have them fenced off by the end of March.

IFA Rural Development Chairman Flor McCarthy said that this condition must be waived as the recent flooding is making it impossible for farmers to complete this task.

“It is likely that in many areas the floods will not have subsided by the end of March,” he said.

McCarthy says the date to complete this task under GLAS should be extended to the end of May.

Farmers participating in the first tranche of GLAS are committed to completing a number of important actions in their applications.

Under the current Terms and Conditions by March 31, 2016, the following actions must be dealt with if you have them in your application:

  • Bird Boxes, Bat Boxes, Sand/Box For Bees
  • Fencing Watercourses
  • Planting A Grove Of Native Trees

Rejection letters

IFA Rural Development Chairman Flor McCarthy has called on the Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney to immediately intervene with his Department which is currently sending out rejection letters to 2,500 farmers for the second phase of GLAS.

Flor McCarthy said it is unacceptable that these farmers are being told that they are ineligible for GLAS as they are Tier 3 farmers. In many instances these farmers have put in significant GLAS plans and have paid their Planner to draw these plans up.

He said that Minister Coveney must allow these farmers into the scheme. By refusing to allow these farmers into the scheme, the Minister has backtracked on a commitment that he made at Budget time that at least 13,000 farmers would be allowed into the scheme.