Rural Payments and Inspections Directorate: Less Favoured Area Support Scheme LFASS 2010 - 2013: Explanatory Notes

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Introduction

  • The European Commission approved the Less Favoured Area Support Scheme ( LFASS) for the years 2010 - 2013 in October 2009.
  • These notes explain the detailed arrangements. Please read them carefully and keep them safe. Any further changes to LFASS arrangements will be shown on the Scotland Rural Development Programme ( SRDP) section of the Scottish Government website; and in the Integrated Administration and Control System Notes for Guidance IACS (1) each year.
  • There is no separate claim form for LFASS - the annual claim is included in the Single Application Form ( SAF) submitted in the year for which your LFASS payment is to be made.
  • If you need more information, contact your Scottish Government Rural Payments and Inspections Directorate ( SGRPID) area office. Addresses and telephone numbers are listed at Annex F.

LFASS (1) 2010

Changes and important points to note

SAF

  • If having read these Notes you decide that you would have completed your SAF 2010 differently, please read section 5 of the Notes for Guidance
    IACS (1) 2010 immediately. This explains the circumstances in which you can amend or add to your SAF 2010.
  • Each year around 1,000 people claim LFASS in their SAF, but are ineligible. This is primarily because they:
  • have less than 3 ha of eligible land; or
  • are not actively farming.

This can make setting payment rates difficult, and probably contributed to an underspend of the LFASS budget in previous years. Please take care, therefore, when you submit an LFASS claim as making a false declaration for any form of EU support can lead to the imposition of penalties.

Land and activity

  • As before, the ( IACS) cross compliance conditions will apply to LFASS. These are the Good Agricultural and Environmental Conditions ( GAEC) and Statutory Management Requirements ( SMR) in the ECIACS Regulations. (See section 9).
  • As well as having to meet the IACS cross-compliance conditions, you will only qualify for LFASS if you actively farm eligible land for at least 183 days in the qualifying year. (See sections 5 and 8).
  • Eligible land is Scottish LFA forage land to which we gave a grazing category value by 31 December 2006. You must declare the land in your SAF and only those eligible parcels that contribute to your LFASS activity should be claimed for LFASS. (See section 6).
  • The additional eligible land rule, for new applicants only, introduced under the 2007 - 2009 LFASS, has now been dropped. This means there is no longer a requirement to have received LFASS 2006 payments on at least 3 ha of the land you declare in the SAF 2010.

LFASS payments

  • To calculate any LFASS payment due from 2010, we will use stocking density, enterprise mix (cattle) uplift and ineligible dairy land values based on eligible land areas and animal numbers on certain key dates in 2009. (See section 11).
  • An animal number declaration form was sent in September 2009 to all those who had declared LFA land in their SAF 2009. We cannot process any LFASS claim without receipt of this completed return. If you did not return a completed form, please do so before 30 June 2010. If you submit your form beyond that date, any associated eligible payment may be delayed. (You can ask your SGRPID area office to send you a form now - See section 11).
  • We have increased the payment rates for the Very Fragile and Fragile areas. (See section 17).
  • As before, there will be a minimum payment of £385. (See section 17).

Releasing information about you and your payments

Since 2007, to comply with EC Rural Development ( RD) Regulations, we have released information about how much and to whom we pay LFASS. This will continue under LFASS 2010 - 2013.