At a meeting with Farming Minister Jeff Rooker this afternoon, local MP Tim Farron was given assurances that the Government would look at the future of the Hill Farming Allowance post-2007 sooner than it intended to. The assurances were given following weeks of pressure from Tim in his role as Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Hill Farming.
Speaking after the meeting, Tim said:
"I am grateful to the Farming Minister for agreeing to look at the future of the Hill Farm Allowance sooner.
"It is also good that the Government recently announced that carry over the Hill Farm Allowance for a year (until 2007). However, I believe it is essential that it is carried over for a further year (until 2008) to allow time to introduce the new Upland Reward Scheme. The Hill Farm Allowance is popular, and relatively easy to administer. It would be better to carry it over for a further year than rush to a new system. Hill farmers have suffered much disruption over the last few years - they need some stability."
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