Minutes of Proceedings
Date: 07 June 2007
Venue: Room 152, Parliament Buildings
The meeting opened at 10.30am in public session.
1. Chairperson’s business
Agreed – The Committee agreed to invite the Flowerfield Arts Centre to make a presentation.
2. Draft minutes of the meeting held on 31 May 2007.
Agreed – the draft minutes were agreed.
3. Matters arising
The Chairperson advised Members that he would raise the issue of the level of detail in the Minutes of Proceedings at the first meeting of the Chairpersons Liaison Group, which is scheduled to be held in June.
The Chairperson referred Members to the June monitoring tables received from the Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure after the Committee’s meeting of 31 May 2007. The Chairperson advised that the outcome of June monitoring would become known during July.
The Chairperson advised Members that the Minister for Culture, Arts and Leisure was prioritising the bids under the Comprehensive Spending Review, and it is expected that the Minister will brief the Committee on this issue at its meeting on 14 June 2007.
Agreed – The Committee agreed to write to the Arts Council of Northern Ireland regarding the naming of the TURAS/Journey project and its associated Equality Impact Screening.
Agreed – The Committee agreed that the Clerk would commission further information from Research Services on the comparative spend on minority languages in Northern Ireland.
The Chairperson advised Members that the Clerk was currently drafting the Committee’s response to the Department’s consultation on indicative clauses for the Irish language legislation, and that the Committee would consider the draft response at its meeting on 14 June 2007.
The Chairperson advised Members that responses had been received from the Department on the ADSEA project and on the breakdown of current spend and proposed bids under the Comprehensive Spending Review for Foras na Gaeilge and the Ulster Scots Agency and that these responses would be discussed at the meeting on 14 June 2007.
The Chairperson advised Members that he had written to the Arts Council of Northern Ireland to seek a breakdown of its current costs and bid under the Comprehensive spending Review, and that a response is expected by 15 June 2007.
The Chairperson advised Members that the schedule for the Libraries Bill has been changed, with the Bill scheduled to be introduced on 18 June 2007, with Second Stage after summer recess.
The Chairperson advised Members that any amendments to the Hansard transcripts covering two of the items of the meeting of 31 May 2007 should be notified to the Committee Office by the end of the week. The Chairperson also advised Members that a Freedom of Information request had been received asking for release of the transcripts.
4. Forward Work Programme
Agreed – The Committee agreed that it would factor in to its’ forward work programme briefings from the following groups:
Ulster Council Gaelic Athletics Association
Irish Football Association
Amalgamated Northern Ireland Supporters Clubs
Linfield Football Club
Ulster Scots Heritage Council
Ulster Historical Foundation
Federation for Ulster Local Studies
Agreed – The Committee agreed that its priority before summer recess was to familiarise itself with the issue of the multi-sports stadium, and to invite presentations from the three governing bodies involved (Ulster Council Gaelic Athletics Association, Ulster Rugby, Irish Football Association), as well as the Amalgamated Northern Ireland Supporters Clubs. The Irish Football Association would also be asked to brief the Committee on the impact of the multi-sports stadium on Linfield Football Club.
Agreed – The Committee agreed to request a written briefing paper from the Office of the First Minister and Deputy First Minister on the proposals for the multi-sports stadium.
Agreed – The Committee agreed to invite the Northern Ireland Events Company (NIEC) and the Northern Ireland Tourist Board to brief it in relation to the proposed changes to the NIEC under the Review of Public Administration. The Committee agreed that this was a priority before summer recess.
5. Terms of reference for inquiry
Mr McNarry left the meeting at 11.15am.
Agreed – The Committee agreed that the Clerk would work with Research and Library Service to develop draft terms of reference for the inquiry, based on the Committee’s discussions, and circulate to Members before the meeting of 14 June 2007.
Mr McNarry rejoined the meeting at 11.20am.
6. Presentation from Sport Northern Ireland
The following officials from Sport Northern Ireland joined the meeting at 11.20am:
Professor Eric Saunders (Chair)
Mr Eamonn McCartan (Chief Executive)
Mr John News (Participation Manager)
Mr McElduff left the meeting at 11.22am.
Mr McNarry assumed the Chair.
Mr McElduff rejoined the meeting at 11.28am.
Mr McElduff resumed the Chair.
The officials briefed the Committee on the challenges facing the organisation, the under funding of sport in Northern Ireland and the impact this has on the provision of facilities. The officials also provided information on plans and priorities for the future, particularly in relation to the London Olympic Games in 2012. This was followed by a question and answer session.
Agreed – The Committee agreed to accept an invitation from Sport Northern Ireland to visit its headquarters and the Sports Institute at the University of Ulster.
Mr McNarry left the meeting at 12.35pm.
7. Interim Programme for Government 2007/2008
The Chairperson advised Members that the Department was not able to provide a paper on Interim Programme for Government 2007/2008 sufficiently in advance of the meeting for it to be included as an agenda item. The Chairperson advised that the item may be rescheduled for the Committee’s meeting of 14 June 2007, if there was still sufficient time for the Committee to make an input.
Agreed – The Committee agreed to write to the Department to express its disappointment at not receiving a paper on the Interim Programme for Government 2007/2008.
The Chairperson advised the Committee that he was accepting an invitation to attend a dinner hosted by the Northern Ireland Affairs Committee on 18 June 2007.
Agreed – The Committee agreed that the Chairperson would respond to the Lough Cuan Bowmen in Comber to advise them that the Committee does not have a remit for fundraising and that it would forward the club’s letter to the Department voicing its support for the All British Field Archery Championships 2008 event.
The Chairperson advised Members that he had sent his apologies in relation to invitations from Summit on Action for Sustainable Development and the Southern Education and Library Board to attend events on 29 June 2007 and 6 June 2007 respectively.
Agreed – The Committee agreed that the Clerk would investigate the protocol in relation to the Chairperson passing on invitations to Members when he was not available to attend an event and advise the Committee.
Agreed - The Committee agreed to the Chairperson accepting an invitation from the Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage to attend the opening ceremony of the 41st annual Smithsonian Folklife Festival on 27 June 2007 in Washington.
The Chairperson advised the Committee that he had received a letter of congratulations on his appointment as Chair of the Committee from the Housing Executive.
9. Date and time of next meeting
Agreed: The Committee agreed its next meeting will be held on Thursday 14 June 2007 at 10.30am in Room 152, Parliament Buildings.
The Chairperson adjourned the meeting at 12.40pm.