Minutes of Proceedings

Session: 2014/2015

Date: 22 September 2014

Venue: Room 106

The meeting commenced at 1.00pm

1. ACTING CHAIRPERSON

The Clerk/Chief Executive in accordance with the Commission Handbook, sought the nomination of an acting Chairperson. He also advised that Ms Ruane, who was unable to attend the beginning of the meeting, had spoken to him to indicate that she wished to raise the agreed approach to rotating the role of Chairperson under AOB. Mr Ramsey proposed the nomination for Mr Gardiner to act as Chair for the meeting, seconded by Mr Weir.

2. DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST

The acting Chairperson sought any declarations of interest from the Commission in relation to items of business being discussed. None were declared.

3. ACTING CHAIRPERSON’S BUSINESS

The acting Chairperson thanked Members for their attendance at short notice. All Members extended best wishes to the Speaker for a speedy recovery.

4. MATTERS ARISING

4.1 BBC Spotlight Programme

The Clerk/CE provided Members with a copy of a draft statement from the Commission in response to information sought by the BBC as part of their Spotlight programme relating to MLA expenses. Members proposed some minor amendments to the document and agreed that it should be issued to the BBC.

Action:

  • Following minor amendment, statement agreed for issue to BBC.

4.2 Future Provision of Police Services at Parliament Buildings

The Director of facilities/Keeper of the House reminded Members of the options and associated cost savings relating to the future provision of policing at Parliament Buildings. Mr Welch sought Members consideration of the preferred option, however, Members noted that Ms Ruane had raised a number of queries and as she was not present, requested that a response to these queries issue to all Members for consideration and agreement on the way forward.

Action:

  • Responses to queries raised on 17 September 2014 to be issued to Commission Members for decision by correspondence .

4.3 Ormiston House Disposal

The Director of Facilities/Keeper of the House provided the Commission with an update in relation to the sale of the Ormiston House site. He highlighted that the Departmental Solicitor’s Office, carrying out the conveyancing on the Commission’s behalf, had been instructed to agree a contract for the sale with the purchaser’s solicitors and work had been progressing towards the sign the contract for the sale by the end of October 2014. He highlighted that there were two matters which required the Commission’s consideration, namely, the composition of the clawback clause and the issue of vacant possession relating to a small strip of land adjacent to the site. Following consideration Members agreed the clawback provision as outlined and agreed the process for securing the vacant possession of the land in question.

Actions:

  • Departmental Solicitor’s Office to be instructed to progress with clawback clause as outlined and to proceed with correspondence to obtain vacant possession of the land adjacent to the site.

5. Any Other Business

5.1 The Clerk/CE highlighted that Ms Ruane had raised a matter regarding the appointment of a temporary Chairperson at Assembly Commission meetings and that he would endeavour to meet with her to discuss the matter further. If necessary he would bring the matter to the next meeting.

5.2 The Clerk/CE updated Members on recent contact with DFP and requested the Commission’s agreement to write to the Permanent Secretary of DFP highlighting that the Commission are to further consider budget matters at their meeting in Oct 2014. Members agreed.

5.3 Mr Weir reported that he had been approached by a colleague who had experienced difficulties with noise disruption during a sitting day. It was agreed that Mr Welch would discuss the matter further with the member to ensure that the contractor was abiding by the agreed timings.

6. DATE OF NEXT MEETING

The next meeting will take place on Wednesday, 22 October 2014 at 2.00pm in Room 106.

The meeting concluded at 1.22pm

Mr Tony Logue
Head of the Commission and Chief Executive’s Office

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