Committee pushes for Bureaucracy to be reduced

Session: 2007/2008

Date: 22 May 2007

Reference: AGR 02/07

The Committee for Agriculture and Rural Development met today in Parliament Buildings.

The Committee had requested that senior officials from the Department provide a briefing on the issue of cross compliance and in particular the need for civil servants to make so many visits to farms throughout the year. Questioning of officials by Committee Members followed the briefing.

Dr William McCrea, Committee Chairperson said:

“This is a very important issue for every farmer in Northern Ireland. The level of bureaucracy has significantly increased over the past years for what, to many, is a diminishing financial return. Farmers need to spend as much time as possible earning a living instead of waiting for visitors. The Committee fully accepts that these people have a job to do but there is a real need for someone to stand back and look at the reason for so many visits. For example, why can some visits not be combined? This Committee made a start today in pushing for the bureaucracy to be reduced and it is something that we will pursue.”

The Committee will next meet on Tuesday 29 May 2007 at 2.00pm in Room 144, Parliament Buildings.

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