Minutes of Proceedings

Session: 2011/2012

Date: Wednesday, 23 November 2011

Venue: Room 29

2:00 pm The meeting opened in public session.

1.  Apologies

Apologies are listed above.

2. Minutes of the meeting on 16 November 2011

Agreed: The minutes of the last meeting were agreed. 

2:13 pm Mr McQuillan entered the meeting.

3. Matters Arising

Correspondence the Committee for Culture, Arts and Leisure

The Committee noted correspondence from the Clerk to the Committee for Culture, Arts and Leisure enclosing correspondence from an individual highlighting concern of financial irregularities within the Odyssey Trust Company Ltd.

Agreed:  The Committee agreed to forward the correspondence to the C&AG to investigate the issues raised and to report back to the Committee upon its conclusion.

Correspondence from Michelle Gildernew MP MLA

The Committee noted correspondence from Michelle Gildernew MP MLA attaching correspondence from a whistleblower highlighting concerns of financial irregularities within the Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service.

2:05 pm Mr Copeland and Mr Girvan entered the meeting.

Agreed:  The Committee agreed to forward the correspondence to the C&AG to investigate the issues raised and to report back to the Committee upon its conclusion.

Correspondence from the Committee for Agriculture and Rural Development

The Committee noted correspondence from the Clerk to the Committee for Agriculture and Rural Development regarding the department’s strategy in the eradication of Bovine Tuberculosis.

4. Briefing on NIAO report ‘The Use of Locum Doctors by NI Hospitals’

2:06 pm Mr Easton declared an interest stating that he is currently the Assembly Parliamentary Secretary for the Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety; and further in this role has undertaken recent work on the use of locum doctors; and therefore should withdraw from participating in this inquiry.

2:07 pm Mr Easton left the meeting.

2:09 pm Mr Hussey entered the meeting

2:10 pm Mr Anderson entered the meeting.

2:13 pm The meeting went into closed session after the C&AG’s initial remarks.

Mr Kieran Donnelly, Comptroller and Auditor General; Mr Sean McKay, Director; and Ms Claire Dornan, Audit Manager; briefed the Committee on the report.

2:48 pm Mr Hussey left the meeting.

2:53 pm Mr Hussey entered the meeting.

The witnesses answered a number of questions put by members.

5. Consideration of Draft Committee Report on ‘Creating Effective Partnerships between Government and the Voluntary and Community Sector’

The Committee considered its draft report on ‘Creating Effective Partnerships between Government and the Voluntary and Community Sector’.

Paragraphs 1 - 11 read and agreed.

Recommendation 1 read and agreed.

Paragraphs 12 -15 read and agreed.

Recommendation 2 read, amended and agreed.

Paragraphs 16 – 19 read and agreed.

Paragraph 20 read, amended and agreed.

Paragraph 21 – 28 read and agreed.

Recommendation 4 read and agreed.

Paragraphs 29 – 34 read and agreed.

Recommendation 5 read, amended and agreed.

Paragraphs 35 – 43 read and agreed.

Paragraph 44 read and agreed.

Recommendation 6 read, amended and agreed.

Paragraph 45 – 46 read and agreed.

Recommendation 7 read and agreed.

Paragraph 47 read, amended and agreed.

Paragraph 48 read and agreed.

Paragraph 49 read, amended and agreed.

Paragraph 50 read and agreed.

Recommendation 8 read and agreed.

Paragraph 51 read, amended and agreed.

Recommendation 9 read and agreed.

Paragraph 52 read, amended and agreed.

Paragraph 53 read and agreed.

Recommendation 10 read, amended and agreed.

Paragraphs 54 – 56 read and agreed.

Recommendation 11 read and agreed.

Consideration of the Executive Summary

Paragraph 1 – 7 read and agreed.

Agreed: The Committee agreed the correspondence to be included within the report.

Agreed: The Committee ordered the report to be printed.

3:48 pm Mr Hussey left the meeting.

6. Any other business

Request for Legal Advice

The Committee was briefed by the Clerk to the Committee on the advice required by the Committee regarding the secondment arrangements for Mr Paul Priestly.

Agreed:  The Committee agreed to write to the Head of the Civil Service to request some additional information.

Assembly Electronic Christmas Card

The Committee agreed to send an electronic Christmas card to seven recipients in the name of the Committee and signed on its behalf by the Chairperson.

Correspondence from NIPSA

The Committee noted correspondence copied to the Committee from Mr Brian Campfield, General Secretary, NIPSA to the Speaker requesting that the Assembly suspends its business on 30 November 2011 as a result of planned industrial action. 

7. Date, time and place of next meeting

The next meeting will be held on Wednesday, 7 December 2011 at 2:00 pm in the Senate Chamber, Parliament Buildings.

The Chairperson adjourned the meeting at 3:55 pm.

Mr Paul Maskey MP
Chairperson, Public Accounts Committee

7 December 2011.

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