AEOS payments must be fast-tracked – Connaughton

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Farmers with minor AEOS penalties have been left in limbo for weeks, according to Deputy Paul Connaughton, who said that such farmers are continuously being fobbed off with stories of software to be installed, while they are left without payments during one of the most difficult springs in recent memory.

‘A large number of farmers across the county have contacted me in recent weeks about delays to their AEOS payments.  These farmers are continually being told that their payments are held up because of a new computer system that had to be installed, many received assurances that payments would start in March and now we are into May.

‘I have raised this issue on multiple occasions with the Agriculture Minister Simon Coveney and have raised it in the Dáil also.  This delay is against the backdrop of an extremely difficult predicament for farmers, where they find themselves having to keep livestock housed due to unseasonable weather, leading to high unplanned feed costs.

‘In these circumstances, the delay in the AEOS payment is even more difficult, as is the uncertainty as to when it will be resolved and when payments will issue.  Many farmers have their payments held up because of penalties of less than three percent, which is adding to their frustration. I will continue to press Minister Coveney and staff in the Department to ensure that this problem is resolved as early as possible.’