Minutes of Proceedings

Session: 2011/2012

Date: Wednesday, 05 October 2011

Venue: Room 29

2:00 pm The meeting commenced in open session.

1. Apologies

Apologies are listed above.

2. Minutes of the meeting on 28 September 2011

Agreed: The minutes of the last meeting were agreed.

3. Matters Arising

2:03 pm Mr Hussey and Mr McLaughlin entered the meeting.

Correspondence from Sir Bruce Robinson

The Committee noted correspondence from Sir Bruce Robinson providing information sought by the Committee relating to the secondment arrangements for Mr Paul Priestly.

Agreed: The Committee agreed to forward to the correspondence to the Committee for Finance and Personnel for consideration in work on the accountability and handbook arrangements for civil servants.

Committee Inquiry ‘Reducing Water Pollution from Agricultural Sources: The Farm Nutrient Scheme’.

The Committee agreed to consider this matter in closed session.

4. Ministerial Direction

The Committee noted correspondence from Mr Kieran Donnelly, Comptroller and Auditor General notifying the Committee of a Ministerial Direction within OFMDFM relating to the former military site in Ballykelly.

2:25 pm Mr Girvan entered the meeting.

5. PAC Report Security

The Committee considered an options paper from the Clerk regarding the options available to the Committee to enhance the security of draft reports.

Agreed: The Committee agreed to restrict distribution of papers as per option one of the brief until it can consider the report of the Interim Commissioner for Standards on the matter of privilege.

2:40 pm Ms McCann left the meeting.
2:42 pm Ms McCann entered the meeting
2:47 pm Mr Byrne left the meeting.
2:50 pm Mr Byrne entered the meeting.

6. Briefing on NIAO Report on ‘Creating Effective Partnerships between the Government and Voluntary and Community Sector’

2:52 pm The meeting went into closed session after the C&AG’s initial remarks.

Mr Kieran Donnelly, Comptroller and Auditor General; Mr Brandon McMaster, Director; and Mr David Murdie, Audit Manager; briefed the Committee on the report.

The witnesses answered a number of questions put by members.

3. Matters Arising

Committee’s Inquiry ‘Reducing Water Pollution from Agricultural Sources: The Farm Nutrient Scheme’.

Mr Kieran Donnelly, Comptroller and Auditor General; Mr Robert Hutchinson, Director; briefed the Committee on the report.

3:29 pm Mr Girvan left the meeting.
3:31 pm Mr Girvan entered the meeting.
3:35 pm Mr Hussey left the meeting.
3:37 pm Mr Hussey entered the meeting.
3:53 pm Mr Dallat left the meeting.
3:54 pm Ms McCann left the meeting.
4:00 pm Ms McCann entered the meeting.
4:01 pm Mr Anderson left the meeting.

The witnesses answered a number of questions put by members.

Agreed: The Committee agreed to seek legal advice on the draft report for the Committee’s consideration.

7. Any other business

The Chairperson asked Members to complete the Committee services questionnaire in their meeting packs.

8. Date, time and place of next meeting

The next meeting will be held on Wednesday, 12 October 2011 at 2:00 pm at NICVA’s offices in Belfast.

4:13 pm Mr Hussey left the meeting.

The Chairperson adjourned the meeting at 4:14 pm.

Mr Paul Maskey
Chairperson, Public Accounts Committee
12 October 2011

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