Sinn Féin ABC Councillor Catherine Seeley has welcomed the announcement that Sinn Féin will be hosting an Agriculture and Rural Road Show, with Michelle O’Neill MLA (Minister of Agriculture).
The events will take place across the north over January and February, including an event in Rathfriland Community Centre on Thursday January 29 at 7.30pm.
The meetings which will be attended by the Minister, as well as senior DARD Officials and Sinn Féin’s agriculture spokespeople, will provide farmers and rural dwellers the opportunity to engage directly with policy makers.
Councillor Seeley said, “Sinn Féin is facilitating this road show as a result of important decisions which were taken by the Minister Michelle O’Neill last year, particularly regarding CAP reform and the new Rural Development Programme.
“Despite the helpful communication which the Minister and her Department has available to farmers, there is still some uncertainty about how these welcome changes to Single Farm Payments will affect farmers, particularly regarding the definition of an ‘active farmer’,” Councillor Seeley added.
“There is also much interest amongst the farming and rural communities about the new schemes which the Minister has developed, such as the new Rural Development Programme, the Young Farmers Scheme and the Farm Business Improvement Schemes so it will be extremely beneficial to have the Minister in attendance who can directly answer any questions which people may have.”
Councillor Seeley concluded: “This meeting in Rathfriland will provide the perfect opportunity for farmers and rural dwellers to learn more about what grants may be available to them in the time ahead.
“I would therefore encourage people to attend their local event or one of the other many venues across the north.”
The public meetings will take place in the following venue:
· Rathfriland Community Centre, Co. Down – Thur 29th January at 7.30pm.