The Northern Ireland Assembly has been dissolved. The election will take place on Thursday 5 May 2016.

Minutes of Proceedings

Session: 2011/2012

Date: 15 November 2011

Venue: Room 106

1. Introduction and Apologies

1.1 Apologies were noted from Mr Paul Maskey and Mr John McCallister.

2. Minutes of the meeting held on 8 November 2011

2.1 The minutes of the meeting held on 8 November were agreed and signed by the Speaker.

3. Matters arising

3.1 There were no matters arising.

4. Finalisation of Order Papers for Week Commencing 21 November 2011

Executive Business

4.1 Members noted that in addition to the Executive business already scheduled, the motions to affirm the Land Registry (Fees) Order (NI) 2011 and the Registration of Deeds (Fees) Order (NI) 2011 had been scheduled for Tuesday 22 November 2011.

Committee Business

4.2 Members noted that there was no Committee Business requested.

Private Members’ Business

4.3 Members noted that there were no changes to the Private Members’ Business previously agreed.

4.4 Members confirmed the following Private Members’ motions for Monday 21 November with the usual times:

  • ‘River Cleaning Strategy’; and
  • ‘Community Libraries’.

4.5 Members confirmed the following Private Members’ motion for Tuesday 21November with the usual times:

  • ‘Rate Relief for Community and Amateur Sports Clubs’.

Members also confirmed the Adjournment topic:

  • ‘Flooding in the Clogher Valley’.

4.6 Junior Minister Bell confirmed that all relevant Ministers were available to respond.

5. Provisional arrangements for Plenary meetings in week commencing 28 November 2011

Executive Business

5.1 Members noted that, apart from Question Time to the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development and the Minister of the Environment, no additional Executive business had been scheduled on Monday 28 November 2011.

5.2 Members noted that, apart from Question Time to the Minister of Finance and Personnel and the Minister of Health, Social Services and Public Safety, no further Executive business had been scheduled for Tuesday 29 November.

Committee Business

5.3 Members agreed to schedule four motions from the Committee on Procedures to amend Standing Orders on Monday 28 November 2011. Members noted that the motions would be debated as a single group, and that, while motions on Standing Orders were not normally time limited, it was unlikely that the debate would take more than 20 minutes.

5.4 Members agreed to schedule a motion from the Assembly and Executive Review Committee, on its report on the arrangements for the Department of Justice from 1 May 2012, on Tuesday 29 November. Members noted that the committee had indicated that the normal 90 minutes would be sufficient; and that, as the motion related to a Committee report, the Chairperson would automatically get 15 minutes to move and 15 minutes to wind. It was agreed that all other speakers would have 5 minutes.

Private Members’ Business

5.5 Members agreed to schedule two Private Members’ Motions on Monday 28 November and one on Tuesday 29 November.

Under the system of allocation for Private Members’ motions the selections lay with the DUP, Sinn Féin, and the DUP.

The following motions were proposed:

  • ‘School Closures in the SEELB Area’ (Mr A Easton, Miss M McIlveen, Mr P Weir, Mrs B Hale);
  • ‘Retention and Release of Information from Police Officers (Mr P Sheehan, Mr G Kelly, Mr R McCartney, Ms J McCann); and
  • ‘Sentencing for Crimes Against Older and Vulnerable People’ (Mr P Givan, Mr P Weir, Mr S Anderson, Mr J Wells).

5.6 Members agreed that up to 1 hour 30 minutes should be allocated for all the debates, with the usual speaking times.

5.7 Members agreed to schedule an Adjournment Debate on Tuesday 22 November. Under the system for allocating Adjournment Debates, the selection lay with Sinn Féin.

Sinn Féin selected the following topic:

  • ‘Lack of funding for the West Belfast and Greater Shankill Employment Services Board’.

Members agreed to schedule the topic as the Adjournment Debate on Tuesday 29 November.

5.8 Junior Minister Bell advised that all relevant Members were available to respond.

6. Any Other Business

6.1 The Speaker referred Members to a letter received a short time earlier from the First Minister and deputy First Minister requesting that the Assembly meet at 11.00am on Thursday 17 November to allow two statements to be made. Members noted that the first statement would be made by the First Minister and deputy First Minister on the Programme for Government and Investment Strategy; and that the second would be on the Economic Strategy and be made by the Minister of Enterprise, Trade and Investment. Members noted that there would be one hour for questions following each statement.

6.2 The UUP asked that its concern be recorded about the short notice that Members had been given.

6.3 Members noted that any scheduling issues with Committees that were due to meet on Thursday 17 November would be a matter for each Committee to resolve in its own way.

7. Date and Time of next meeting

7.1 Members agreed to meet at approximately 12.30pm on Tuesday 22 November 2011 in Room 106.

The Speaker brought the meeting to a close at 12.40pm.

Mr William Hay 

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