Planning Permission May Be Needed to Avail of Farm Business Improvement Scheme, Warns Committee

Session: Session currently unavailable

Date: 15 November 2016

Reference: AERA 06/16/17

The Assembly’s Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (AERA) Committee has highlighted that farmers may need to ensure that planning permission is in place or that they have already applied for the necessary permissions to avail of the new Farm Business Improvement Scheme (FSIB) Tier Two.

The Committee became aware of the possible pitfall after a briefing from the Department on the FBIS, which could affect those applying under Tier Two of the Scheme for grants between £30K - £250K.

Speaking after the briefing Committee Chairperson Linda Dillon MLA said: “The new Farm Business Improvement Scheme (Tier Two) is an excellent opportunity for local farmers to improve the competitiveness and sustainability of their farms and agricultural businesses. However, as with all schemes, the paperwork can be complicated and the Committee is concerned that many could lose out at the final hurdle if they fail to ensure the correct planning permissions are in place. This obviously only applies to those applications that need planning permission.”

Ms Dillon concluded: “At this stage there are only two tranches of the Tier Two Scheme, the first is open now and will close Spring 2017 and the second will open Autumn 2017. As far as the Committee is aware there are no further tranches planned so it is crucial that all those that are eligible apply early and ensure that they meet the full criteria. We would urge all would be applicants to access the information on criteria and on how to apply on the Department’s website.”

ENDS

Notes to Editor:

Further information on the Farm Business Improvement Scheme (FBIS) can be found on the Department OF Agriculture. Environment and Rural Affairs website  

Committee Membership.

Ms Linda Dillon MLA (Chairperson)

Ms Caoimhe Archibald MLA (Deputy Chairperson)

Mr Sydney Anderson MLA

Mr Maurice Bradley MLA

Mr David Ford MLA

Mr William Irwin MLA

Mr Patsy McGlone MLA 

Mr Harold McKee MLA

Mr Oliver McMullan MLA

Mr Edwin Poots MLA

Mr Robin Swann MLA

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