ASSEMBLY BUSINESS

Minutes of Proceedings

Session: 2011/2012

Date: Wednesday, 08 June 2011

Venue: Room 21, Parliament Buildings

The meeting commenced at 3.00pm in open session.

Chairperson’s Introduction

The Chairperson welcomed Members to the second meeting of the Committee.

1. Apologies

As detailed.

2. Declaration of Interests

The Chairperson reminded Members of their obligation to declare any relevant financial or other interests before and during each Committee meeting.

3. Draft minutes of the meeting held on 25th May 2011

Agreed: The draft minutes of the meeting held on 25th May 2011 were agreed by the Committee.

4. Matters arising

There were no matters arising.

3.03pm The Committee moved into closed session.

5. Briefing by the Interim Assembly Commissioner for Standards

Members noted the briefing paper received from the Interim Assembly Commissioner for Standards.

3.04pm Mr McCarthy joined the meeting.

3.04pm The Chairperson welcomed Dr Tom Frawley, Interim Assembly Commissioner for Standards and Mr John MacQuarrie, Director for Standards and Special Projects, Ombudsman’s Office and invited Dr Frawley to brief the Committee.

3.16pm Mr Copeland declared an interest in one of the issues on which the Commissioner was briefing the Committee and left the meeting during the course of the briefing.

3.25pm Mr Copeland returned to the meeting.

3.27pm Ms Bradley joined the meeting.

3.34pm The Chairperson thanked Dr Frawley and Mr MacQuarrie for attending the meeting.

3.36pm Mr Copeland left the meeting during the Committee’s consideration of the issue in which he had declared an interest.

Agreed: The Committee agreed that the suspended investigation referred to in Case 2 should resume.

3.45pm Mr Copeland returned to the meeting.

Agreed: The Committee agreed that:

  • The investigation into the complaint referred to in Case 1 should continue to remain suspended until the outcome of the legal proceedings is known;
  • The relevant papers in relation to the unauthorised disclosure of the draft PAC report may be shared with the Information Commissioner’s Office in order to obtain the comments and views of that Office on the matter; and
  • No further action is required by the Interim Commissioner in relation to Case 4.

The Committee noted that the Interim Commissioner would report back to it with the comments and views of the Information Commissioner’s Office in order to enable it to determine what additional actions, if any, might need to be taken. The Committee also noted that, in respect of Case 4, it remains possible that the complainant may still submit an admissible complaint under the Assembly Code of Conduct.

Agreed: The Committee agreed that the Clerk should write to the Interim Assembly Commissioner for Standards informing him of the outcome of the Committee’s deliberations.

6. Any other business

There was no other business.

7. Time, date and place of next meeting

The next meeting of the Committee will be held at 1.15pm on Wednesday, 29 th June 2011 in Room 21, Parliament Buildings.

The Chairperson adjourned the meeting at 3.50pm.

Mr Alastair Ross MLA
Chairperson, Committee on Standards and Privileges
29th June 2011

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