Minutes of Proceedings

Session: 2011/2012

Date: Wednesday, 08 February 2012

Venue: The Senate Chamber

1:35 pm The meeting commenced in closed session.

 3. Matters Arising

Meeting with HOCS

 The Chairperson informed the Committee of the issues discussed at his recent meeting with Dr Malcolm McKibbin, Head of the Civil Service and Mr Stephen Peover, Accounting Officer, Department of Finance and Personnel.

Agreed:  The Committee agreed that the note of the meeting was very informative and that these meetings should be convened when required but not in a set rotation.

1:44 pm Mr McQuillan entered the meeting.

1:47 pm Mr Copeland and Mr Easton entered the meeting.

Correspondence from DFP
  • Letter of 1 February from TOA

 The Committee noted correspondence from Ms Fiona Hamill, Treasury Officer of Accounts, Department of Finance and Personnel which sought to clarify the Department’s approach to clarification correspondence on Memorandums of Reply.

1:50pm Mr Girvan entered the meeting.

Agreed:  The Committee agreed to return to this issue at a future meeting to consider an options paper.

  • Letter of 6 February from Stephen Peover attaching Fourth Compliance Report on the Use of External Consultants

The Committee noted that the Compliance report, which had been circulated electronically on 6 February, was submitted as a “latest position” paper in advance of the Evidence session on the use of consultants.

1:54pm The meeting was suspended.

2:04 pm The meeting opened in public session.

1.  Apologies

Apologies are listed above.

2. Minutes of the meeting on 1 February 2012

Agreed: The minutes of the last meeting were agreed. 

4. Evidence on the Northern Ireland Audit Office Report ‘Use of External Consultants by Northern Ireland Departments: Follow-up Report’’.

The Committee took oral evidence on the above report from:

  • Mr Stephen Peover, Accounting Officer, Department of Finance and Personnel (DFP);
  • Mr Richard Pengelly, Public Spending Director, Department of Finance and Personnel (DFP);
  • Mr Paul Wickens, Chief Executive, Enterprise Shared Services, Department of Finance and Personnel (DFP);

2:43pm Mr Copeland left the meeting.

2:45 pm Mr Copeland entered the meeting.

3:14 pm Mr Dallat left the meeting.

3:15 pm Mr Dallat entered the meeting.

3:20 pm Mr McQuillan left the meeting.

3:46 pm Mr Copeland left the meeting.

3:50 pm Mr Copeland entered the meeting.

3:55 pm Mr Girvan left the meeting.

4:04 pm Mr Hussey left the meeting.

4:05 pm Mr Hussey entered the meeting.

4:06 pm Mr Girvan entered the meeting.

4:19 pm Mr Anderson left the meeting.

4:22 pm Mr Hussey left the meeting.

4:25 pm Mr Hussey entered the meeting.

4:47 pm Mr Hussey left the meeting.

The witnesses answered a number of questions put by the Committee.

Agreed: The Committee agreed to request further information from the witnesses.

5. Any other business

There was no other business.

6. Date, time and place of next meeting 

The next meeting will be held on Wednesday, 15 February 2012 at 2:00 pm in Room 29, Parliament Buildings.

The Chairperson adjourned the meeting at 4:32 pm.

Mr Paul Maskey MP MLA
Chairperson, Public Accounts Committee
15 February 2012.

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