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Parliamentary Question re: LEADER Funding under the Rural Development Programme

To ask the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government when the LEADER funding will be made available under the Rural Development Programme; the EU regulations which groups must meet to avail of funding; and if he will make a statement on the matter.

– Anthony Lawlor.

For WRITTEN answer on Tuesday, 27th January, 2015.

Ref No: 3682/15


Minister of State for the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Ann Phelan)

My Department is currently working with the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine and the European Commission to finalise the text of the Rural Development Programme with a view to commencing the LEADER Local Development Strategy selection process over the coming weeks. Notwithstanding the level of work to be done in advance of the programme becoming operational, I expect that the programme will be in a position to start selecting Local Development Strategies for implementation by mid-2015.

The two main framework regulations that those involved in the delivery of the Rural Development Programme will be required to work within are EU Regulation 1303/2013, the Common Provisions Regulation (CPR) , and EU Regulation 1305/2013 , the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) regulation. A third regulation , EU Regulation 1306/2013, details more technical requirements for the financing and management of the programme and further regulations outline the control/compliance regime for the programme .

My Department is currently preparing a set of operating rules for the delivery of the LEADER elements of the Rural Development Programme that will consider and outline all that is required in order to be compliant with all relevant regulations. The se operating rules will be available to all Local Action Groups selected to deliver the LEADER elements of the Rural Development Programme in advance of programme commencement .