Minister McConalogue highlights delay in trawler penalty point system

Agriculture Minister and Donegal TD Charlie McConalogue is to tell the Oireachtas Agriculture Committee that a penalty points system for trawler captains is now nine years overdue.

It’s as Ireland faces repaying up to 37 million euro worth of EU grant aid for not enforcing the same fisheries rules as the rest of the bloc.

Minister McConalogue believes Brussels isn’t likely to accept Ireland’s plan to cut the penalty in half, if a skipper admits an infringement before court.

Fianna Fáil’s Jackie Cahill, chair of the Agriculture Committee, says plans to change the law are coming at a tricky time.