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Mapping problems raised with DARD

by 5m Editor
11 April 2005, at 12:00am

NORTHERN IRELAND - An Ulster Farmers’ Union delegation, led by Deputy President Kenneth Sharkey has met senior DARD officials to raise farmers concerns and frustrations about the new farm mapping exercise.

Mapping problems raised with DARD - NORTHERN IRELAND - An Ulster Farmers’ Union delegation, led by Deputy President Kenneth Sharkey has met senior DARD officials to raise farmers concerns and frustrations about the new farm mapping exercise.

The UFU highlighted the need for farmers to be able to resolve their mapping queries as efficiently as possible and the need for a clear resolution, which would allow farmers to complete their 2005 IACS form and associated Field Data Sheets accurately.

Kenneth Sharkey said; “There has been a huge volume of queries from farmers about the new GIS maps, which were issued to them by DARD. These include situations where: the size or boundaries of the new field maps are in dispute, where fields are missing from the new maps; or where field sizes are recorded as 0.00 Hectares. We need to resolve this ongoing problem urgently”.

The UFU says it expects DARD to publish new guidelines next week outlining what farmers should do to resolve their farm map queries and complete with accuracy their 2005 IACS form and associated Field Data Sheet. Kenneth Sharkey said; “We look forward to seeing DARD’s new guidelines because there is a real need to sort this problem out as quickly as possible”.

The UFU has also been concerned to learn that completed IACS forms have already been returned to some applicants from Orchard House because they were not completed correctly. A key issue is that farmers have simply signed and returned the Field Data Sheet, without activating and establishing their entitlements in the relevant columns. While sympathising with farmers about the complexity of the new process, UFU President Campbell Tweed has also urged farmers to check and then double check their application, and to submit it in good time.

Source: Ulster Farmers' Union - 9th April 2005

5m Editor