Minutes of Proceedings

Session: 2012/2013

Date: Thursday, 30 May 2013

Venue: Senate Chamber, Parliament Buildings

The meeting began in public session at 10:09am.

1. Apologies

Apologies were indicated as above.

2. Minutes

The minutes from the meeting on 23rd May 2013 were agreed.

Mr Boylan joined the meeting at 10:10am

3. Chairperson's business

The Chairperson informed members that notes from the meeting held with Re Gen Waste were included in their packs.
Agreed: The Committee was content to forward a note of the meeting to the Department for comment.

4. Matters Arising

4.1 The Committee noted a reply from DRD to queries in relation to road safety in rural areas.
Mr Milne joined the meeting at 10:16am
Mr McElduff joined the meeting at 10:16am
Agreed: The Committee agreed to write to the Department to request a further briefing on the issue of road safety and on the number of road deaths this year and an analysis of their causes. The Committee also wished to be advised of whether ambulance call out figures are taken into account in collating the figures.
4.2 The Committee noted a reply from the Department to queries in relation to community planning.
4.3 The Committee noted a Departmental update on the Cross Departmental Working Group on climate change.
Agreed: The Committee requested that this correspondence be considered at next week's Committee meeting to allow members to fully consider the information.
4.4 The Committee considered a response from the Department on the amended powers of the Local Government Auditor to be included in the Local Government Reorganisation Bill.
Agreed: The Committee agreed to circulate an answer to an Assembly question from Mr Weir in relation to independent members of council audit committees.
4.5 The Committee noted Departmental correspondence regarding a delay in providing a synopsis of responses to the consultation on the continuing need for the Local Government Staff Commission.
4.6 The Committee noted a response from the Federation of Passenger Transport.
Mr Anderson left the meeting at 10:32am

5. The Road Traffic (Fixed Penalty) (Amendment No.2) Order (Northern Ireland) 2013

The Committee considered an SL1 proposal to make The Road Traffic (Fixed Penalty) (Amendment No.2) Order (Northern Ireland) 2013.

Agreed: That the Committee is content for the Department to proceed to make the Statutory Rule.

6. The Road Traffic (Fixed Penalty) Offences (Amendment No.2) Order (Northern Ireland) 2013.

The Committee considered an SL1 proposal to make The Road Traffic (Fixed Penalty) Offences (Amendment No.2) Order (Northern Ireland) 2013.

Agreed: That the Committee is content for the Department to proceed to make the Statutory Rule.

7. Departmental briefing on June Monitoring Round

Kieran McMahon (Finance and Business Planning) and Siobhan Lynn (Finance and Business Planning) briefed the Committee on the Department's proposals in relation to the June Monitoring Round 2013.
Agreed: The Committee agreed to write to the Department to support the June Monitoring Round submission.
Agreed: The Committee also agreed to write to the Department in relation to the dereliction improvement scheme to ascertain how this differentiates from similar schemes offered by DSD and DARD, what the criteria is for the scheme and what areas have benefitted from the scheme.
Lord Morrow joined the meeting at 11:02am

8. Planning Bill – formal clause by clause consideration

Ian Maye (Deputy Secretary), Brian Gorman (Planning Service), Irene Kennedy (Planning Service) and Simon Kirk (Strategic Planning) responded to the Committee's suggestions for amendments to clauses 2, 6 &27. The Committee was content with the proposals.
The Committee noted a draft indicative timetable for the Planning Bill to come into operation.

Mr Elliot joined the meeting at 11:08am
Mr McElduff left the meeting at 11:09am

Clause 1 – Statement of community involvement
Question put and agreed:
"That the Committee is content with Clause 1 as drafted"

Clause 2 – General functions of the Department and the Planning Appeals Commission
The Chairperson put the following question:
"That the Committee is content with Clause 2 subject to the amendment as proposed by the Department"

The Committee divided:
AYES                            NOES
Mr Boylan                    Ms Lo
Mr Elliott
Mr Hamilton
Mrs Kelly
Mr Milne
Lord Morrow
Mr Weir

The motion was therefore carried.

Clause 3 – Meaning of development
Question put and agreed:
"That the Committee is content with clause 3 as drafted"

Clause 4 – Publicity etc. in relation to applications
Question put and agreed:
"That the Committee is content with clause 4 as drafted"

Clause 5 – Pre-application community consultation
Question put and agreed:
"That the Committee is content with clause 5 as drafted"

Mr Anderson rejoined the meeting at 11:18am

Clause 6 – Determination of planning applications
The Chairperson put the following question:
"That the Committee is content with Clause 6 subject to the amendment as proposed by the Department"

The Committee divided:
AYES                              NOES
Mr Anderson                 Ms Lo
Mr Boylan
Mr Elliott
Mr Hamilton
Mrs Kelly
Mr Milne
Lord Morrow
Mr Weir

The motion was therefore carried.

Clause 7 – Power to decline to determine subsequent application
Question put and agreed:
"That the Committee is content with clause 7 as drafted"

Clause 8 – Power to decline to determine overlapping applications
Question put and agreed:
"That the Committee is content with clause 8 as drafted"

Clause 9 – Aftercare conditions for ecological purposes on grant of mineral planning permission
Question put and agreed:
"That the Committee is content with clause 9 as drafted"

Clause 10 – Public inquiries: major planning applications
Question put and agreed:
"That the Committee is content with clause 10 as drafted"

Clause 11 – Appeals: time limits
Question put and agreed:
"That the Committee is content with clause 11 as drafted"

Clause 12 – Matters which may be raised in an appeal
Question put and agreed:
"That the Committee is content with clause 12 as drafted"

Clause 13 – Power to make non-material changes to planning permission
Question put and agreed:
"That the Committee is content with clause 13 as drafted"

Clause 14 – Aftercare conditions imposed on revocation or modification of mineral planning permission
Question put and agreed:
"That the Committee is content with clause 14 as drafted"

Clause 15 – Planning agreements: payments to departments
Question put and agreed:
"That the Committee is content with clause 15 as drafted"

Clause 16 – Increase in Certain Penalties
Question put and agreed:
"That the Committee is content with clause 16 as drafted"

Clause 17 – Conservation areas
Question put and agreed:
"That the Committee is content with clause 17 as drafted"

Clause 18 – Control of demolition in conservation areas
Question put and agreed:
"That the Committee is content with clause 18 as drafted"

Clause 19 – Tree preservation orders: dying trees
Question put and agreed:
"That the Committee is content with clause 19 as drafted"

Clause 20 – Fixed penalties
Question put and agreed:
"That the Committee is content with clause 20 as drafted"

Clause 21 – Power of planning appeals commission to award costs
Question put and agreed:
"That the Committee is content with clause 21 as drafted"

Clause 22 - Grants
Question put and agreed:
"That the Committee is content with clause 22 as drafted"

Clause 23 – Duty to respond to consultation
Question put and agreed:
"That the Committee is content with clause 23 as drafted"

Clause 24 – Fees and Charges
Question put and agreed:
"That the Committee is content with clause 24 as drafted"

Clause 25 – Duration
Question put and agreed:
"That the Committee is content with clause 25 as drafted"

Clause 26 – Interpretation
Question put and agreed:
"That the Committee is content with clause 26 as drafted"

Clause 27 – Commencement
The Chairperson put the following question:
"That the Committee is content with Clause 27 subject to the amendment as proposed by the Department"

The Committee divided:
AYES NOES
Mr Anderson Ms Lo
Mr Boylan
Mr Elliott
Mr Hamilton
Mrs Kelly
Mr Milne
Lord Morrow
Mr Weir

The motion was therefore carried.

Clause 28 – Short title
Question put and agreed:
"That the Committee is content with clause 28 as drafted"

Long title
Question put and agreed:
"That the Committee is content with the long title"

Mr Hamilton left the meeting at 11:29am.

9. Correspondence

The Committee considered correspondence from Daniel McCusker (Dmac Engineering Ltd) highlighting a number of planning concerns.
Agreed: The Committee was content to forward the correspondence to the Minister for comment.
The Committee considered an invitation from QPANI to visit a local site to view a mobile crushing and screening operation at first-hand.
Agreed: The Committee agreed to arrange a visit to a site after recess.

The Committee noted a copy of a letter sent by the OFMDFM Committee to the Chairman of the House of Commons European Scrutiny Committee regarding proposed regulations to reduce the cost of deploying high-speed electronic communications.

The Committee noted a copy of the Mobile Operators Association briefing paper which was presented to the Committee for Enterprise, Trade and Investment on 18 April.

The Committee noted correspondence from Concerned Ringhaddy Area Residents.

The Committee noted correspondence from the Department of Finance and Personnel regarding the current position of Post Project Evaluations.

The Committee also noted an invitation received.

10. Forward Work Programme

Members noted the draft Forward Work Programme.

Agreed: The Committee agreed to schedule a visit to a wind turbine site and to meet with representatives from the renewable energy sector and community groups in relation to issues surrounding wind turbines.

11. Any other business

No other business was discussed.

12. Date, time and place of next meeting

The next meeting will be held on Tuesday 4th June 2013 at 12:45pm in Room 29, Parliament Buildings.

The Chairperson adjourned the meeting at 11:40am.

Anna Lo, MLA
Chairperson, Committee for the Environment
6 June 2013

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