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

Minutes of Proceedings

Session: 2011/2012

Date: 22 September 2011

Venue: 30

The meeting began at 10.35am in public session with the Clerk in the Chair.

The Clerk called for nominations for the position of a temporary Chairperson. Mr Gordon Dunne proposed that: Mr Stephen Moutray be temporary Chairperson of the Committee. Mr David McIlveen seconded this and the nomination was accepted.

On there being no further nominations the Clerk put the question without debate.

Agreed: The Committee agreed that Mr Moutray, being the only candidate proposed, be temporary Chairperson of the Committee.

10.36am Mr Moutray took the Chair.

1. Apologies

Apologies are detailed above.

2. Minutes of meeting held on 15 September 2011

Agreed: The draft minutes of the meeting on 15 September were agreed.

3. Chairperson’s Business

Members noted a request from Sainsbury’s for the Chair and Deputy Chair to meet with its CEO, Mr Justin King.

4. Matters Arising

Members discussed a letter from the Minister to the Chair with an update on the progress of legislation for NI Credit Unions and Industrial and Provident Societies.

Agreed: To consider a way forward once members have received a summary of consultation responses from the FSA/Treasury and responses from the Irish League of Credit Unions (ICLU) and Ulster Federation of Credit Unions (UFCU).

Members noted correspondence from OFMDFM to the Ulster Federation of Credit Unions regarding credit union legislation.

Members discussed a letter from a member of the public to the Chair regarding credit union legislation.

Agreed: To write to the individual and suggest that he forward this letter to his own credit union association and the FSA/Treasury, as it may help inform the current consultation on credit unions.

Members discussed a letter to the Chair from Finlay Communications Ltd regarding the proposed loss of the BSKYB contract.

Agreed: To note concerns about the potential loss of jobs.

Members discussed a draft list of invitees for the Committee’s SME Long Gallery Event on 17 November.

Agreed: To invite representatives from the community and voluntary sector through NICVA.

Members discussed an oral briefing from NICVA

Agreed: To invite NICVA to provide an oral briefing in October.

Members discussed next week’s oral briefing on the KPMG evaluation on the Potential Role of the Social Economy Sector and the future of the SEE Strategy Implementation.

Agreed: To invite the Chair of the Social Economy Network to appear as part of that oral briefing.

Members discussed an oral briefing from the Department regarding policy proposals for a new Energy Bill.

Agreed: To receive an oral briefing from DETI Energy Division at the meeting of 13 October regarding policy proposals for a new Energy Bill.

5. Public Sector Gas Uptake: Assembly Research

The Assembly Research Officer joined the meeting at 10.47am.

Members received an oral briefing from the Assembly Research Officer. Key issue discussed included potential savings for public buildings if they converted from traditional fossil fuels to gas.

Daithí McKay joined the meeting at 10.55am and took the Chair.

Robin Newton left the meeting at 10.59am.

The Assembly Research Officer left the meeting at 11.02am.

Agreed: To commission follow-up research regarding:

  • Incorporating conversion costs and savings for biomass boilers vs traditional fossil fuels and savings that energy efficiency could make to the costs of heating; and
  • The terms of the licences of gas suppliers when they were granted.

Agreed: To copy research paper to Phoenix Gas and Firmus Energy for comment.

Agreed: To copy research paper to Head of Gas at NIAUR and Clerk to meet with Head of Gas to discuss.

Agreed: Write to DHSSPS to determine why it does not furnish DFP with individual data as other Departments do.

Agreed: Await statistics from DHSSPS before proceeding further.

Members agreed to consider agenda items 7, 8 and 9 next.

6. CCNI Corporate Plan 2011-15: Written briefing

Members discussed the written briefing.

Agreed: To receive an overview from the Consumer Council on the organisation.

7. Correspondence

Members noted the following items of correspondence:

i Letter from the Minister to the Chair regarding an update on the work of the Sustainable Energy Inter-Departmental Working Group (SEIDWG).

ii. Letter from the Clerk to the Committee for the Environment regarding:

  • Reducing energy costs
  • Fracking with respect to Northern Ireland

Agreed: To forward the correspondence to the Department for a response

iii. Letter from the Clerk to the Committee for Culture, Arts and Leisure regarding Friends of the Earth: Corporation Tax Debate.

iv. Letter from Clerk to the Committee for Finance and Personnel regarding:

  • Budget Flexibility, EYF and Monitoring Rounds
  • Monitoring Post Project Evaluations
  • Monitoring of Department Efficiency Plans

v. Information from the Committee for Social Development regarding Federation of Master Builders: Form of State Survey.

vi. Letter from the Renewable Integration Development Project (RIDP) with an update on its project.

vii. Letter regarding the HSENI consultation on Proposals to Amend the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (NI) 1997.

viii. Letter to the Minister from the Chair of the Committee for Employment and Learning.

Agreed: To forward the letter to the Minister.

ix. Invitation to members to a launch of a local business improvement programme called ‘The Evolution Project’.

The meeting went into closed session at 11.08am.

8. Any other business

Members discussed tourism events.

Agreed: Chair and Deputy Chair to arrange to meet with NITB to see how they can promote a positive attitude to life and living within local communities on which tourism events impact. 

The meeting re-opened in public session at 11.17am

9. NITB Programme of Events - 2012/2013: Oral briefing

NITB officials joined the meeting at 11.17am.

Members received an oral briefing from Kathryn Thomson, Chief Operating Officer, Susie McCullough, Director of Marketing and Events. Key issues discussed included key events in Northern Ireland during 2012/2013, forecasts for tourist numbers and promoting local festivals.

David McIlveen left the meeting at 11.45am.

Robin Newton returned to the meeting at 12.04pm.

Agreed: To forward the information received from NITB to the Committee for Culture, Arts and Leisure.

NITB officials left the meeting at 12.15pm.

10. Date, time and place of next meeting

The next meeting of the Committee will take place on Thursday 29 September at 10.30am, InterTradeIreland, Newry.

The Deputy Chair adjourned the meeting at 12.17pm.

Mr Daithí McKay
Deputy Chair
Committee for Enterprise, Trade and Investment
29 September 2011 






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