The grant rate will be 40% up to a maximum eligible investment ceiling of €20,000, ie, a maximum grant of €8,000.
The scheme is to be financed through funds available under the old 2007-2013 Rural Development Programme.
The minister stated: “I can’t think of anything that would have a higher priority than a loved one’s life and I would appeal to the farming community to look at this scheme carefully and examine the list of eligible investment items to address the safety issues identified. It is in all our interests and responsibility to raise the level of safety on our farms. It might just be the best investment ever carried out.”
The minister said he would be bringing proposals for the new scheme to the EU for approval before the end of the week and expected to have application forms and full terms and conditions available on the department’s website over the next few days.
Health and Safety Authority chief executive Martin O’Halloran added: “I very much welcome this fund for farmers to improve safety standards on their farms.”
The closing date for receipt of applications will be January 9, 2015, and all work must be completed by farmers and a payment claim lodged with the department by August 31, 2015.