Commonage farmers who joined either GLAS 1 or GLAS 2 made a commitment to participate in a commonage management plan. As part of their GLAS contract these farmers are required to have reached their minimum stocking level by the end of 2016. To do this, it is obvious that these farmers must know what the minimum stock requirement is. To achieve this and to facilitate the release of the the GLAS payment for 2016 the commonage advisor must prepare and submit an Interim Commonage Management Plan.
This plan will set out the minimum stock numbers that must be held by each GLAS participant by the end of 2016. The other issues relating to maximum stock numbers and management issues such as burning, dumping, seasonal patterns of grazing, invasive species and supplementary feeding will be decided by the full set of GLAS participants (including GLAS 3 applicants) in 2017.
The interim plan must be signed by each GLAS participant and submitted by the end of October 2016. If this is done the GLAS payment for 2016 will follow within 4- 6 weeks. If the form is not submitted no GLAS payments will issue to any of the participants. If an individual farmer fails to sign the form then no payment will be made to that farmer in 2016.
Due to the very short period of time available, this is going to be very difficult for advisors to manage. The closing date is only 13 days away, it is impossible for us or for most other advisors to visit each farmer individually to get the interim plan signed. For this reason we are inviting farmers to come into the office to sign up to their plan. The office will be open until 8:00 pm each evening from tomorrow Wednesday October 19th until Thursday October 28th. The office will be closed on Monday October 24th to allow us to hold a clinic in Peacockes Hotel in Maam Cross.
Fergal Monaghan and Thady O Brien will be in Peacockes from 11:00 am until 9:00 pm. Unfortunately due to time constraints if you are unable to attend in Peacockes then you will have to come into Claregalway. Whether you meet us in Maam or at our offices please try to come in early in the day as we anticipate significant queues in the evenings. Payment for the Commonage Management Plan is now due. The amount outstanding must be settled before the interim plan can be signed.
P.S. There is no need to book an appointment nor do you need to bring anything with you.
The link below will allow you to see a copy of the letter sent by the Dept. of Agriculture to individual advisors informing them of what is now required.