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Minutes of Proceedings

Session: 2000/2001

Date: 04 April 2001

In attendance for a presentation on 'Marketing Techniques' at 11:00am :- The Belfast Giants: Mr Bob Zeller, Managing Director and Mr Matt McIvor, Technical Assistant.

The meeting opened, in public at, 10.20am.

1. Chairperson's business

1.1 The Committee noted the recent correspondence from the NITB and Mr Chris Tarrant in relation to material promoting the Northern Ireland Angling Product featured in the Mail on Sunday and the NITB website.

1.2 Agreed - that the Minister's invitation to hold a meeting later in the year in the Interpoint Building would be accepted.

1.3 Members were advised that a response had been received from the Minister regarding the non-availability of MAGNI Board minutes. The Minister has asked his officials to discuss this issue with MAGNI's Chief Executive.

1.4 Agreed - that the Committee would await the outcome of the meeting between the Department's officials and the MAGNI Chief Executive before considering further action.

1.5 Members were advised that a tour of W5 had been arranged for Thursday 24 May 2001. It is hoped that members will meet Mr Tom Nolan, Chairman of W5 and other Board members. The visit is scheduled for 12:00 to 1:30pm, with lunch being provided. Numbers of members attending will be confirmed nearer to the visit.

1.6 Members were referred to a letter received from Mr Edward Montgomery of Bann System Ltd concerning Recommendation 16 of the report into the Inquiry into Inland Fisheries. He is concerned that this would have adverse effects on certain fisheries in the Lower Bann and its tributaries.

1.7 Agreed - that the concern raised by Bann System Ltd would be best addressed by inviting both Bann System Ltd and the Ulster Angling Federation (UAF) to a meeting facilitated by the Committee. A representative from the Department's Inland Fisheries should be invited to attend. The Clerk of the Committee will liaise with Inland Fisheries and write a letter of invitation to Bann System Ltd, copying it to the UAF.

Mr Agnew joined the meeting at 10:31am

2. Minutes of the last meeting

2.1 The minutes of the meeting of 22 March were agreed.

3. Matters arising

3.1 Agreed - that the Clerk of the Committee would establish whether the debate on the Minister's Motion relating to the PricewaterhouseCoopers' research report on football will come forward again as an item for the business list.

3.2 The Committee discussed the Minister's non-availability until 31 May 2001 to appear before the Committee to discuss his comments during the debate on the Committee's Report on Inland Fisheries and compliance with Government guidelines on restricting the spread of Foot and Mouth Disease.

3.3 Agreed - that the Committee Chairperson would raise the issue with the Permanent Secretary in the first instance.

4. Report on Committee's visit to Boston

4.1 The Chairperson outlined the delegation's successful study tour of Boston's cultural heritage and artistic treasures, the political figures met and the information gleaned on public/private funding partnerships.

4.2 The Chairperson recorded the Committee's thanks to the Committee Clerk, the Assistant Committee Clerk and Mr William Stuart of the Transition Programme for their assistance on this study tour.

Mr McElduff joined the meeting at 10:53am.
Mr Shannon joined the meeting at 10:55am.

4.3 A report on the visit was tabled for further consideration at a meeting at 10.30am on Tuesday 10 April 2001.

Mr Wilson left the meeting at 11:05pm.

5. Presentation on 'Marketing Techniques' by Mr Bob Zeller, Managing Director of the Belfast Giants at 11:00am

5.1 Mr Zeller outlined the history of the Belfast Giants in Northern Ireland, spending some time detailing the extensive research carried out before Belfast was chosen as their 'home'. He also described their very successful marketing techniques. He answered questions raised by members.

Dr Adamson left the meeting at 12:14pm. 
Mr Wilson rejoined the meeting at 12:16pm.

6. Finance & Personnel Committee Inquiry into Public Private Partnerships

6.1 Mr McConaghy outlined the history of Public Private Partnerships (PPP) and Private Finance Initiatives (PFI) in the United Kingdom. The Department has yet to identify innovative PPP and PFI schemes which will increase its potential overall level of financial resources.

Mrs Nelis left the meeting at 12:30pm.
Mr Hilditch left the meeting at 12:30pm.

6.2 Agreed - a response to Mr Francie Molloy, Chairman of the Committee for Finance and Personnel.

Mr Hilditch rejoined the meeting at 12:39pm.

7. Committee of the Centre's Inquiry into Children's Commissioner

7.1 Mr McConaghy provided a background brief on the concept of a Children's Commissioner and the current position in the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland. In addition he outlined potential issues for consideration by the Committee in the argument for and against a Commissioner for Children.

7.2 Agreed - that a draft response would be prepared for consideration at the Committee's meeting on 26 April 2001.

8. Cultural Tourism and the Arts Inquiry

8.1 The Chairperson advised members that 75 submissions had been received including a submission from the Department.

8.2 Agreed - that the Committee office would group the submissions within specific themes, taking account of geographical spread and community background issues.

9. Any Other Business

9.1 Agreed - that the Committee would write to the Minister seeking his comments on issues raised by the Northern Ireland Ice Hockey Association.

10. Date of next meeting

10.1 The next meeting of the Committee will take place on Tuesday 10 April at 10:30am in Room 152

The meeting closed at 1:10pm.

E ONeill

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