Fallen animal collector paid €1,000 after lawsuit was upheld


A fallen animal collector’s complaint to the Ombudsman that his business was unfairly affected by a travel restriction in a Department of Agriculture program has been upheld.

The TSE Fallen Animal Subsidy Scheme limits the distance animals can be transported to 125 km from the company, but provides an exception where animal collectors cannot access the services of more than one pet owner within the distance.

In one case, detailed in the Ombudsman’s annual report, the animal collector told the Ombudsman that he knew of a cheaper recycler, but that was just outside the 125km limit. He also struggled to get two competitive bids from suppliers within the limit, but the Department of Agriculture hadn’t given him an exemption.

The collector claimed that his company was at a significant competitive disadvantage compared to other similar companies in the area that could use the cheaper facility.

The ministry said changes to the program (including the travel restriction) aim to address a range of issues including budgets, TSE testing requirements, animal by-product regulations and the need for businesses to remain competitive. It also recognized the importance of having adequate disposal capacity, particularly in the event of a major outbreak.

The ombudsman, whose job it is to investigate complaints from people who feel they have been unfairly treated by certain public service providers, including government agencies, upheld the animal collector’s complaint. It ruled that his business had been unfairly affected by the system’s travel restriction, as guarantees to ensure competitiveness were not respected in his case.

Since the animal collector’s claim was upheld, the Ministry agreed to review the system, but the resulting changes did not solve the problem for the animal collector, so the Ministry granted him an exemption from the 125 km limit at the Ombudsman’s request .

Concerned at how long it had taken the department to address the animal collector’s concerns, the Ombudsman agreed to pay him €1,000 for the inconvenience.

A total of 77 complaints about the Ministry of Agriculture were lodged with the Ombudsman in 2021, down from 163 in the previous year. Fallen animal collector paid €1,000 after lawsuit was upheld

Fry Electronics Team

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