MINUTES OF THE PROCEEDINGS OF THE FIFTY SECOND MEETING OF THE EDUCATION COMMITTEE IN ROOM 135, PARLIAMENT BUILDINGS ON TUESDAY 26 JUNE 2001
Present:Mr D Kennedy (Chairman)
Mr S Wilson (Deputy Chairman)
Mrs E Bell
Mr J Fee
Mr O Gibson
Mr T Hamilton
Mrs P Lewsley
Mr G McHugh
Mr K Robinson
Apologies:Mr T Gallagher
Mr B McElduff
In Attendance:Mrs C Darrah
Mrs V Artt
Miss J Adair
Ms C Angelone
Ms A Montgomery (Assembly Research Directorate)
Ms G Kane (Assembly Research Directorate)
The Committee met at 12.37 p.m. in private session.
1. Discussion with Departmental Officials on the Department of Education's 2002/2003 Budget Position and Pressures
(i)The Chairman welcomed Mr David Woods and Mr Brian Morrow, officials from the Department of Education, to the meeting to outline the Department of Education's 2002/03 Budget position and possible pressures within the context of the Programme for Government and the Executive's Position Report to the Assembly.
(ii) A lengthy and detailed discussion ensued. Key issues discussed included:
- The timetable for the process
- The context of the current exercise
- The general position regarding bids from Departments
- The current indicative budget for 2002/03 and the breakdown of schools' recurrent budgets
- Education Bids for 2002/03 including service development bids and inescapable pressures
- The impact on services and priorities if the Department's bids are not met
- The scope for reprioritisation and possible efficiency savings.
Mr Robinson joined the meeting at 12.50 p.m.
Mr Fee left the meeting at 1.30 p.m. and Mrs Bell left at 1.40 p.m.
(iii)The Chairman thanked the officials for a useful briefing and they left the meeting.
Following a discussion the Committee agreed to consider draft responses outlining initial views on the budget and the Programme for Government at the meeting scheduled for 5 July. Members would submit any views/comments for inclusion in the responses to the Clerk by 2 July.
The Committee also agreed that a detailed examination and discussion of the Department of Education's Budget should be factored into the work programme for the Autumn.
2. Date of Next Meeting
The next meeting will be held on Thursday 28 June 2001 at 10.15 a.m. in Room 135, Parliament Buildings.
The meeting closed at 1.55 p.m.