System glitch could delay GLAS payments for 25pc of applicants
Thousands of farmers could have GLAS payments delayed again this year because of problems with the Department of Agriculture’s online application system.
Difficulties have been identified with up to 25pc of commonages, planners in the west claim.
Commonage management plans (CMPs) must be drawn up by October 31 if applicants with shareholdings on these lands are to qualify for GLAS payments.
The Irish Natura and Hill Farmers Association (INHFA) has called on the Department to extend the October 31 GLAS applications deadline as a result of the ongoing problems.
A number of planners who contacted the Farming Independent claimed that some commonages were not listed on the online system, others had landowners’ names missing, while some commonages could not be opened.
The Department has admitted in a circular issued to planners recently that commonages were missing from the GLAS system.
“A very small number of commonages remain to be linked to the online system and are not yet available. This work will be completed shortly,” the Department stated.
Despite this admission, the circular insisted that a CMP had to be submitted for each commonage before 2017 payments could be issued to GLAS participants. In response to queries regarding commonages and GLAS applications, the Department confirmed that non-completion of CMPs by October 31 will result in payment delays.