ICMSA: Budget measures must focus on smoother farm transfers
MEASURES to facilitate smoother family farm transfers must be made a top priority in the upcoming budget, ICMSA president Pat McCormack has said.
The association is calling for measures to include increasing the tax-free threshold to transfer a farm to a son or daughter from the current €310,000 to over €500,000, and allowing for sons and daughters to be able to lease the farm for a number of years so they can qualify for tax relief.
He also said that tax relief of 75pc should be introduced to encourage gifting land to children.
“Family leases under certain conditions should qualify for the farmland leasing taxation relief, given that the exclusion of family members is a blatant discrimination,” he said.
The ICMSA is also proposing that a Farm Management Deposit Scheme should be introduced so farmers can weather the storm of income volatility, which Mr McCormack said is “the biggest threat to the future of the family farm”.
“Teagasc has estimated that dairy farm income will fall by 50pc in 2018. It should be obvious to everyone that this kind of income surge and collapse is not sustainable,” he pointed out.