The Rural Payments Agency (RPA) has published a ‘hints and tips’ document to help farmers in England with their Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) 2016 applications.
Applicants can apply for BPS 2016 online, using the Rural Payments service, while paper BPS application forms will be available for those who need them.
This guidance, which can be viewed here, provides more information about applying in 2016 and addresses some of the questions the RPA has had from claimants on how to make their applications.e includes:
The RPA will update the document regularly in response to any new questions it receives from applicant - the updated version will be available here.
Guidance on how to apply online or on a Paper BPS application form is available here
The RPA was due to send out 25,000 BPS 2015 claim statements last week, with the remainder ‘following shortly’, a move that should go some way to ease growing concerns about the 2016 application process.
Just 6,000 claim statements had been sent in England by the start of last week, fuelling concerns even farmers who had been paid so far would face serious time pressure in making 2016 claims, with the May 16 deadline looming.
Of greater concern was the continuing wait for payment for an estimated 11,000 to 12,000 claimants, with RPA chief executive Mark Grimshaw’s pledge to have paid ‘almost all’ – or 92-95 per cent – by the end of March coming under increasing scrutiny.