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

Minutes of Proceedings

Session: 2012/2013

Date: 25 September 2012

Venue: Room 106, Parliament Buildings

1. Apologies

1.1 Apologies were noted from Mr Gerry Kelly.

2. Minutes of the meeting held on 18 September 2012

2.1 The minutes of the meeting held on 18 September were agreed and signed by the Speaker.  

3. Matters arising

3.1 There were no matters arising.  

4. Finalisation of Order Papers for plenary meetings in week commencing 01 October 2012

Assembly Business

4.1 Members agreed to schedule a DUP motion to change committee memberships for Monday 1 October.

Executive Business

4.2 Members noted that, in addition the Executive Business agreed previously for Monday 1 October, it was expected that the First Stage of the Welfare Reform Bill would also be scheduled, subject to clearance.

4.3 Members noted that, in addition to the Executive Business agreed previously for Tuesday 2 October, a motion from the First Minister and deputy First Minister in relation to authority to make appointments to the NI Judicial Appointments Commission had been scheduled. Members agreed to allow one hour 30 minutes for the debate with the usual speaking times; and noted that the motion would be subject to a cross-community vote. Members also noted that the First Stage of the Education Bill was also expected to be scheduled on that day, subject to clearance.

Committee Business

4.4 There was no Committee Business requested on Monday 1 October or Tuesday 2 October.  

Private Members’ Business  

4.5 Members noted that there was no change to Private Members’ business already scheduled on Monday 1 October or Tuesday 2 October.

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

4.7 The draft Order Papers were agreed.  

5. Provisional arrangements for Plenary meetings in week commencing 08 October 2012

Executive Business

5.1 Members noted that, in addition to Question Time to the Minister of Health, Social Services and Public Safety, and the Minister of Justice, it was expected that, subject to clearance, the First Stage of the Air Passenger Duty (Setting of Rate) Bill would be scheduled for Monday 8 October.  

5.2 Members noted that, in addition to Question Time to the Minister for Regional Development, and the Minister for Social Development, a motion to approve the Jobseekers Allowance (Domestic Violence)(Amendment) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2012; and the Second Stage of the Welfare Reform Bill (subject to its First Stage taking place on 1 October) were scheduled for Tuesday 9 October.

Committee Business

5.3 Members agreed to schedule a motion from the Committee for Agriculture and Rural Development on the ‘Crisis in Farming’ on Monday 8 October, with the usual speaking times.  

Private Members’ Business

5.4 Members agreed to schedule two Private Members’ motions on Monday 8 October but none on Tuesday 9 October.

5.5 Under the system of allocation, the selections lay with the DUP and Sinn Féin.

The following motions were proposed:

  • ‘Foodbanks’ (Mr S Hamilton, Mr S Douglas);
  • ‘Path to Economic Recovery’ (Mr P Flanagan, Mr D McKay);


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

5.7. Members agreed to schedule an Adjournment Debate on Tuesday 9 October. Under the system of allocation, the selection lay with Sinn Féin.  The following topic was proposed and selected:

  • ‘Education provision in the Kilkeel area’ (Ms C Ruane)

5.8 Ms Ruane indicated that a minor change to the description of the topic might need to be advised to the clerk.

5.9 Junior Minister McCann advised that all relevant Ministers were available to respond.

5.10 The provisional Order Papers were agreed.

6. Any other business

6.1 The Speaker asked Whips for their continued support in the Chamber through their increased presence to ensure that business proceeds smoothly, that speaking lists are submitted in good time, and that party colleagues are fully briefed about expected votes. The Speaker also advised that, with immediate effect, if there is a division, Whips should come to the Table to advise the names of their Tellers, as the practice of Table Clerks approaching parties on the Floor will be discontinued.

7. Date and Time of next meeting

7.1 Members agreed to meet at approximately 12.30pm on Tuesday 2 October 2012 in Room 106.

The Speaker brought the meeting to a close at 12.57pm.

Mr Peter Weir
Acting Chairperson

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