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Sunday 26 February 2017

Big changes loom for farm building grants under TAMS II

Tom Pettigoe

Approvals have now issued in respect of a total of 4,285 applications  across the six measures under the TAMS II Scheme. 
Approvals have now issued in respect of a total of 4,285 applications  across the six measures under the TAMS II Scheme. 

The time given for the completion of works under TAMS II could be cut from three years to one year.

Department of Agriculture secretary general, Aidan O'Driscoll, told an Oireachtas Agriculture Committee meeting last week that changes to the required timeframe for work to be completed were being considered by his officials.

Under existing TAMS rules, farmers have three years from the date an application is grant-approved to complete all the required works.

However, TAMS II applicants might now have to fast-track work to secure grants under the scheme.

Mr O'Driscoll said the proposed tighter schedule was due to the significant time lag between approvals and the drawdown of funds under TAMS. The ICMSA has criticised any such changes.

Last year a suite of six measures were announced under the Targeted Agricultural Modernisation Scheme known as TAMS II.

The measures announced were the:

1. Young Farmers Capital Investment Scheme

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2. Dairy Equipment Scheme

3. Organic Capital Investment Scheme

4. Animal Welfare, Safety and Nutrient Storage Scheme

5. Low Emission Slurry Spreading, and the

6. Pig and Poultry Investment Scheme.

The Scheme was opened in three month tranches. The total number of applications received under Tranches 1, 2 and 3 of TAMS II was 2,952 under Tranche 1, 2212 under Tranche 2 and 1,999 under Tranche 3.

A total number of applications under the first three Tranches of the Scheme of 7,163. This represents a significant level of interest in investing in the sector.

Approvals have now issued in respect of a total of 4,285 applications  across the six measures under the TAMS II Scheme. 

The online payment claim system has been open for the submission of payment claims in relation to approved works completed in accordance with the Terms and Conditions of the Scheme since July 2016.

To date, 274 fully completed claims for payment have been received, of which 38 have been approved for payment. However, a significant number of payment claims submitted have minor issues that need to be resolved before payment can issue.

Officials from the Department of Agriculture have been in direct contact with the applicants in these cases to progress claims towards early payment.

According to the Department, the number of payment claims is expected to increase significantly over the coming weeks.

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