Minutes of Proceedings
Date: Thursday, 24 May 2007
Venue: Room 152, Parliament Buildings
The meeting opened at 10.40am in public session.
1. Chairperson’s business
The Chair informed members that he had received and accepted an invitation from the Rural College & Derrynoid Centre to attend a showcase event for its storytelling programme on 25 May 2007.
The Chair informed members that he had received an invitation from the Forum for Local Government and the Arts and attended the quarterly Plenary of District Council Arts Officers in the Alley Arts Centre/Theatre in Strabane on 23 May 2007.
The Chair informed members that he had received an invitation to attend the launch of Ofcom’s Market Report.
The Chair informed members that he had received an invitation to attend a reception to mark Northern Ireland’s participation at the 52nd Venice Arts Biiennale 2007, but that he and the Deputy Chair were unable to accept the invitation due to other engagements. The Chair noted that the invitation had been copied to all members.
The Chair informed members that the Clerk had received an email from Children in Northern Ireland making first contact with the Committee and offering to provide briefing.
2. Draft minutes of the meeting held on 17 May 2007.
Agreed – the draft minutes were agreed as amended.
3. Matters arising
The Chair drew Members’ attention to all Members’ interests which had been declared to the Clerk. The Chair reminded Members that they could declare any further interests or make amendments at any time with the Clerk.
Members declared the following interests:
Mr Barry McElduff (Chair)
Member of Omagh District Council
Director, Rural Link
Director, Fintona Regeneration Initiative (FRI)
Member of various community groups
Member of Western Education & Library Board
Mr David McNarry (Deputy Chair) None
Mr Dominic Bradley
Education editor of Irish Language Daily Newspaper LÁ NUA
Columnist for weekly newspaper for Newry Democrat
Member of BOG Bunscoil an Iúir
Member of the staff of St Paul’s High School Bessbrook (leave of absence)
Columnist weekly newspaper Newry Reporter
Member of Board of Tí Chulainn Cultural Activity Centre, Mullaghbawn, Co Armagh
Mr Francie Brolly None
The Lord Browne
Member of Belfast City Council
Trustee of Somme Association
Mr David Burnside
David Burnside Associates Ltd (DBA Ltd):
DBA Ltd: Communications consultancy
Home farm at Secon, Ballymoney from which a rental income is received
New Century Holdings Ltd: the holding company for DBA Ltd
Mr Paul Maskey
Belfast City Council
West Belfast Partnership Sub Economic Development Partnership
Greater Andersonstown Neighbourhood Partnership
Féile an Phobail
Upper Andersontown Community Forum
Fáilte Feirste Thiar
Mr Kieran McCarthy
Member of Ards Borough Council
Member of Portaferry Regeneration Ltd
Member of Kircubbin Regeneration Group
Member of Peninsula Healthy Living
Member of Parish of Ardquin Community Hall Group
Member of St Patrick’s School Board of Governors
Member of Portaferry Integrated School Board of Governors
Land and Property
Small farm holding Ballycranmore, Kircubbin
Farm bungalow Ballycranmore, Kircubbin
Shop premises & dwelling at Main Street, Kircubbin
Mr Nelson McCausland
Acting chair of Ulster-Scots Heritage Council
Member of Linen Hall Library
Member of Belfast City Council
Chair of Belfast Education & Library Board, library committee
Director – North Belfast Partnership Board
Director of Greater Shankill Partnership Board
Governor – Wheatfield Primary School
Governor - Legoniel Primary School
Governor - Carr’s Glen Primary school
Mr Pat Ramsey
Member of Derry City Council
Member of District Policing Partnership
Director of Foyle Haven – Drop in centre for alcoholics
Member of the Board Millennium Forum
Mr Jim Shannon
Councillor, Ards Borough Council
Self-employed Pork Retailer
The Chair advised members that he had written to the Minister of Culture, Arts and Leisure seeking information on the ADSEA project and asking for a breakdown of the current spend and CSR bids for Foras na Gaeilge and the Ulster Scots Agency. A response has been asked for by 4 June 2007.
The Chair advised members that the Clerk had requested from Research Services information on comparative spend per capita on minority languages in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. A response is expected by 25 May 2007.
The Committee discussed the format and content of the Minutes of Proceedings.
Agreed: The Clerk agreed to provide the Committee with a memorandum on the conventions relating to the Minutes of Proceedings.
4. Presentation from Bill Office
Mr Denis Arnold from the Bill Office briefed Members on the primary legislation process in the Assembly.
Mr McNarry left the meeting at 11.02am
5. Departmental presentation on draft Libraries Bill
The following officials from the Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure joined the meeting at 11.10am:
Mr Paul Sweeney (Permanent Secretary)
Mr Colin Jack (Head of Culture Division)
Mr McNarry rejoined the meeting at 11.12am
Mr Jack gave an overview of the draft Libraries Bill. This was followed by a question and answer session.
6. Departmental presentation on Review of Public Administration
The following official from the Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure joined the meeting at 11.40am:
Ms Judena Goldring (Director of Review of Public Administration)
Ms Goldring and Mr Paul Sweeney (Permanent Secretary) briefed the Committee on the impact of the Review of Public Administration on the Department. This was followed by a question and answer session.
Mr Bradley left the meeting at 11.57am
Mr Bradley rejoined the meeting at 12.02pm
7. Departmental presentation on proposed Irish Language Bill
Ms Goldring and Mr Sweeney briefed the Committee on the work the Department had undertaken to date in taking forward plans for the introduction of Irish language legislation. This was followed by a question and answer session.
8. Presentation from the Arts Council of Northern Ireland
The following officials from the Arts Council of Northern Ireland joined the meeting at 12.40am:
Ms Roisin McDonough (Chief Executive)
Mr Nick Livingston (Director of Strategic Development)
Ms Noirin McKinney (Director of Arts Development)
Ms McDonough gave an overview of the work of the Arts Council and briefed the Committee on the funding issues currently facing it. This was followed by a question and answer session.
Mr McNarry left the meeting at 12.41pm
Mr McNarry rejoined the meeting at 12.48pm
9. Committee Forward Work Programme
Agreed: The Committee agreed to address the issue of the Comprehensive Spending Review at next week’s meeting.
Agreed: The Committee agreed to address the issue of topics for potential inquiries as the first item of substantive business at next week’s meeting.
Agreed: The Clerk agreed to provide members with a background paper on Committee inquiries.
Agreed: Members approved the Chair’s response to the Department in relation to how the Committee wishes to be consulted, and the response to the Arts Council regarding the TURAS project. Members approved the Clerk’s response to correspondence from Children in Northern Ireland.
11. Any Other Business
Agreed: The Committee agreed that Mr Shannon would inform Members about the British Shooting Sports Council at next week’s meeting.
12. Date, time and place of next meeting.
Agreed: The Committee agreed its next meeting will be held on Thursday 31 May 2007 at 10.30am in Room 152, Parliament Buildings.
The Chairperson adjourned the meeting at 13.35pm.
Mr Barry McElduff MLA
Chairperson, Committee for Culture, Arts and Leisure
31 May 2007.