Dáil Éireann - Volume 393 - 15 November, 1989

Written Answers. - Portlaoise Administrative Staff.

81. Mr. Hyland asked the Minister for Agriculture and Food if his attention has been drawn to the fact that understaffing in the farm development and veterinary offices in Portlaoise, County Laois, is resulting in a deterioration of service to farms, particularly in relation to issue of certificates of approval for grant aided work; and if he will take steps to have the matter resolved.

Minister for Agriculture and Food (Mr. O'Kennedy): In view of the increased level of testing being carried out in the county, the staffing requirements of the veterinary section of the Portlaoise office are currently being reviewed. The number of administrative staff in the farm development section of the Portlaoise [554] office has not changed during the past number of years. The increased activity in farm development programmes and bovine TB testing has led to a significant increase in grant applications.

Every effort is being made to expedite payment within the available staff resources.