The number of farmers in the North West receiving payments from the Farm Assist Scheme has significantly increased since this time last year.
Figures given by Minister for Social Protection Eamon O'Cuiv to Labour's Spokesman on agriculture Sean Sherlock revealed that 309 farmers are currently availing of Farm Assist in the county. This is an increase from 231 in 2009 and 209 in 2008, one of the highest increases in the North West.
In Donegal 1,354 farmers utilise the scheme, 467 in Sligo, 408 in Roscommon and 401 in Cavan.
Under the scheme, which is means tested, farmers do not have to be available for work.
Nationally, the highest number of farmers drawing the payment were on the western seaboard, with Mayo having the highest pay out to 1,645.
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