Date lodged: 9 June 2016
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will list those circumstances in which grants paid to grazing committees from public funds for agricultural and environmental schemes should be distributed in the first instance to individual shareholders, and what safeguards there are to ensure that public funds allocated in this way are used for the intended purposes.
Answered by: Roseanna Cunningham 21 June 2016
More information on administrative and inspection checks is available on the rural payments website: https://www.ruralpayments.org
The Scottish Government carries out a range of administrative checks that funding from our support schemes is being used correctly. These checks are in addition to those that are made when an application is submitted and assessed. Some cases may also be subject to further detailed inspection checks.
As regards to the specific safeguards in place, this would depend on the type of funding involved. For Scottish Government administered schemes such as the Agri-Environment Climate Scheme, there are a number of safeguards in place in terms of administrative and inspection checks.
The crofters (Scotland) Act 1993 does not require the immediate disbursement of funds by a grazings committee.
Common grazings regulations, which are individual to a specific common grazing, may include provisions on the disbursement of funds. Generally, common grazings regulations are made by the grazings committees themselves and are confirmed, with or without modifications, by the crofting commission.