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

Minutes of Proceedings

Session: 2011/2012

Date: 20 September 2011

Venue: Parliament Buildings

12.30p.m. The meeting opened in closed session

1. Apologies

Apologies are detailed above.

2. Minutes of the meeting on 28 June 2011

The minutes of the meeting on 28 June 2011 were agreed.

3. Matters arising 

Committee Budget allocations for the 2011-2012 financial year

The Liaison Group considered the finalised budget allocations for the 2011-2012 financial year and the change from four to three monitoring rounds in each financial year. The Group also noted that the outcome of the October monitoring round and expenditure to date will be considered at the next meeting on 18 October 2011.

4. Presentation on the Department of Finance and Personnel’s “Review of Financial Process” 

12.34pm Mr Ross joined the meeting.
12.35pm Ms Sue Ramsey joined the meeting.
12.38pm Mr Tom Elliott joined the meeting.
12.39pm Mr Mervyn Storey joined the meeting.

The Liaison Group considered and discussed correspondence and a research paper in relation to the Department of Finance and Personnel’s Review of the Financial Process. The Group also received a briefing from the Clerk and Research Officer of the Committee for Finance and Personnel on the papers.

Agreed: The Group noted a consultation event, hosted by the Department of Finance and Personnel, scheduled for 18 October 2011. The Liaison Group agreed to a reduced agenda for the meeting of 18 October 2011 to allow Members to attend the event.

12.46pm Mr Mervyn Storey left the meeting.
12.49pm Mr Spratt left the meeting; Mr A Maskey took the Chair.
12.51pm Mr Spratt returned to the meeting and resumed the Chair.
12.53pm Mr Mervyn Storey returned to the meeting.
12.56pm Ms Sue Ramsey left the meeting.

5. Business Efficiency Programme – Review of Clerking

1.11pm Mr McCrea joined the meeting.

Noted: The Liaison Group considered and discussed the Business Efficiency Review of Clerking and noted that a further update would be provided at the next meeting.

6. Electronic Committee Packs and other IT related issues in committee rooms

1.19pm Mr Storey left the meeting.

The Liaison Group received an update on the project to consider the use of electronic devices in committee rooms. The Group also considered the benefits and drawbacks of using such devices during committee meetings and other issues that need to be considered as part of the overall project, including Internet speed and the potential for members to purchase electronic devices through their Office Costs Allowance. Also discussed was the use of electronic devices elsewhere, particularly in local councils.

1.24pm Mr P Maskey left the meeting.

Agreed: The Group considered and agreed, subject to suggested amendments, a short questionnaire to be completed by members during a forthcoming committee meeting; the outcome of the questionnaire will allow members’ needs and views to be considered as the project progresses.

7. Key Principles on the review of Assembly Committees’ use of Public Notices

The Liaison Group considered an options paper on the use of public notices in local newspapers and IT related solutions to reach target audiences as part of Committees’ calls for evidence.

Agreed: The Liaison Group agreed the most appropriate option to progress and also agreed to consider this option in greater detail at the meeting of 18 October.

1.36pm Miss McIlveen left the meeting.

8. Revised Future Work Programme

Agreed: The Liaison Group noted and agreed the revised forward work programme for the 2011-2012 session.

9. Any other business

There were no other items of business.

10. Date, time and venue of next meeting

The next meeting of the Liaison Group will take place on Tuesday 18 October 2011 at 12.30p.m. in Room 21, Parliament Buildings.

1.39 p.m. The Chairperson adjourned the meeting.

 Mr Jimmy Spratt, Chairperson
18 October 2011 

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