Deputy Charlie McConalogue
Fianna Fáil Agriculture Spokesperson and TD Charlie McConalogue has hit out at the Government for the length of time it is taking to make payments to farmers affected by the flash floods in Donegal last August.
In the aftermath of the flooding, Minister Michael Creed announced a compensation scheme for farmers; however, not one payment has been made to date, according to Deputy McConalogue.
Deputy McConalogue said: “The floods which hit in August were unprecedented, and left many farms on the Inishowen peninsula extensively damaged. Large swathes of land were submerged, and the subsequent wet weather has meant that many of these farms are still completely waterlogged.
He added that the Department of Agriculture subsequently opened up a compensation scheme and despite the fact that the closing date for applications was the end of September, not one farmer has received payment.
This is an extremely serious situation given the scale of the devastation caused. Many of those who applied for funding are reliant on their farm income and are now facing into Christmas with a vastly reduced revenue stream. This is a deeply stressful situation for them and their families," he said.
He added that he has already contacted the department and have sought assurances from Minister Creed that these payments will be made without delay.
“The fact that some farmers have been excluded from the scheme is completely unacceptable. I have been in touch with a number of farmers who lost grain and potato crops and who have been told that they are not eligible to apply for compensation. This is ridiculous. These farmers are reliant on their crops and have been left with no support. Their exclusion from the scheme is deeply unfair and I will be continuing to press their case with the minister," the agricultural spokesperson for the Fianna Fáil party said.
He added that the terms and conditions of the current scheme must be amended to ensure that some form of support is made available to these farmers.
"The flash flooding which occurred in August caught the majority of farmers by surprise and farmers should not be penalised for these freak events. No farmer should be left behind and Minister Creed must show some compassion and provide compensation for those whose livelihoods have been impacted,” he said.
If you have a story or want to send a photo or video to us please contact the Donegal Live editorial team any time. To contact Donegal Democrat and Donegal People's Press, email email@example.com To contact Donegal Post, email firstname.lastname@example.org To contact Inish Times, email email@example.com.
Subscribe or register today to discover more from DonegalLive.ie
Buy the e-paper of the Donegal Democrat, Donegal People's Press, Donegal Post and Inish Times here for instant access to Donegal's premier news titles.
Keep up with the latest news from Donegal with our daily newsletter featuring the most important stories of the day delivered to your inbox every evening at 5pm.