Minutes of Proceedings
Date: Wednesday, 15 February 2012
Venue: Room 30, Parliament Buildings
The meeting opened in public session at 2.03 p.m.
1. Chairperson’s Business
Meeting with Danish Ambassador
The Chairperson reminded Members that at 5 p.m. this afternoon, the Committee are meeting the Danish Ambassador to the UK to discuss Denmark’s priorities for the EU Presidency.
Meeting with the Chairperson of the Committee for Finance and Personnel
The Chairperson informed the Committee that he would be meeting with the Chairperson of the Committee for Finance and Personnel next Tuesday, 21 February 2012, to discuss the committees approach to Peace IV.
The Committee noted the list of current invitations.
2. Draft minutes of the meeting held on 8 February 2012
Agreed: The draft minutes of proceedings of 8 February 2012 was agreed by the Committee.
3. Matters Arising
Joint Ministerial Committee (Europe)
The Committee noted a copy of the summary of discussions that took place at the meeting of the Joint Ministerial Committee (Europe) on 21 November 2011.
Agreed: The Committee agreed to consider regional transportation issues at the next meeting of the EU Advisory Panel.
The Committee noted a response from the Department clarifying the largest amount involved where a letter of offer was made to an organisation before it was approved by Ministers.
List of Outstanding Issues
The Committee noted the list of outstanding issues.
Mr Maskey joined the meeting at 2.10 p.m.
4. Victims and Survivors Service
Departmental officials joined the meeting at 2.11 p.m.
Mr Lyttle joined the meeting at 2.13 p.m.
Departmental officials, Mr Denis McMahon and Mr Fergus Devitt briefed the Committee on the proposals and plans for the Victims and Survivors Service. A question and answer session followed.
Departmental officials left the meeting at 3.01 p.m.
Agreed: The Committee agreed to request a written briefing from the Department in 3-4 weeks advising of the progress in establishing the Victims and Survivors Service.
5. Commission for Victims and Survivors
The Commissioners for Victims and Survivors joined the meeting at 3.02 p.m.
Mr Humphrey left the meeting at 3.23 p.m.
The Commissioners for Victims and Survivors, Ms Patricia MacBride, Mr Brendan McAlister and Mrs Bertha McDougall briefed the Committee on the proposals for the Victims and Survivors Service. A question and answer session followed.
The Commissioners for Victims and Survivors left the meeting at 3.50 p.m.
Committee for Enterprise, Trade and Investment
Agreed: The Committee agreed to forward a response from the Department to the Committee for Enterprise, Trade and Investment concerning its inquiry into Research and Development.
Peace and Reconciliation Group
The Committee noted correspondence from the Peace and Reconciliation Group in relation to its prison education proposal “Inside Out”.
Mr Maskey left the meeting at 3.53 p.m.
PSNI Staff Equal Pay
The Committee considered correspondence in relation to the equal pay claim by PSNI staff.
Agreed: The Committee agreed to write to the Department for Finance and Personnel to request that the Committee be kept updated on this issue.
Programme for Government Delivery Report
The Committee considered a copy of the Programme for Government Delivery report.
Agreed: The Committee agreed to write to the Department to request a briefing from Departmental officials on the Delivery Report.
Mr Maskey re-joined the meeting at 3.59 p.m.
7. Draft European Priorities
Departmental officials joined the meeting at 4.00 p.m.
Departmental officials, Dr Paul Geddis and Mr Alan Boyd briefed the Committee on the draft European Priorities for 2012/13. A question and answer session followed.
Departmental officials left the meeting at 4.30 p.m.
Agreed: The Committee agreed that the Clerk would draft a response to the draft Priorities for consideration at next week’s meeting.
8. Programme for Government
The Committee considered its draft report on the draft Programme for Government and agreed a number of amendments.
Agreed: The Committee read and agreed Paragraphs 1.1 – 1.3 Introduction.
Agreed: The Committee read and agreed Paragraphs 2.1 – 2.4 Approach.
Agreed: The Committee read and agreed Paragraphs 3.1 – 3.2 Responses from Statutory Committees.
Agreed: The Committee read and agreed Paragraphs 4.1 – 4.3 Strategic Priorities.
Agreed: The Committee read and agreed, as amended, Paragraphs 5.1 – 5.9 Gaps in the PfG.
Agreed: The Committee read and agreed Paragraphs 6.1 – 6.10 Comments on milestones/outcomes.
Agreed: The Committee read and agreed Paragraphs 7.1 – 7.4 Monitoring Progress.
Agreed: The Committee agreed to include Appendices 1-5 in the Report.
Agreed: The Committee ordered the Report to be printed.
Agreed: The Committee agreed that an extract from the Minutes of Proceedings of today’s meeting should be included in Appendix 1 of the report and are content that the Chairperson agrees the minutes to allow the extract to be included in the printed report.
9. Ombudsman Proposals
The Chairperson requested that Members forward any comments in relation to the Ombudsman proposals to the Clerk for consideration at next week’s meeting.
10. Any Other Business
Forward Work Programme
The Committee noted the Forward Work Programme.
11. Date, time and place of next meeting
The next meeting will be in Room 30, Parliament Buildings on Wednesday 22 February 2012 at 2 p.m.
The Chairperson adjourned the meeting at 4.55 p.m.
Mr Tom Elliott MLA
Committee for the Office of the First Minister and deputy First Minister