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RD 02/07


Water Reform and the financial and budget position of the Department for Regional Development were the main topics on the agenda for the second meeting of the Committee for Regional Development when it met on Wednesday 23 May 2007.

Thanking officials for their briefing, the Chairperson, Fred Cobain MLA, expressed dismay that:

“The surplus assets on transfer to the Go-Co were only valued at £20m.

“Under the current arrangements, it was the Regulator and not the Minister who will approve the disposal of Go-Co assets; and

“It was not clear that the Go-Co would honour the commitments given by the previous administration to provide the option of a water meter to those over 60 years of age.”

The Chairperson, Fred Cobain MLA, said:

“These issues have slipped under the radar in the absence of Committee and Assembly scrutiny. The Committee for Regional Development has prioritised this issue and will continue to pursue the Minister on the reform of water and sewerage.”

At next week’s meeting, Wednesday 30 May 2007, the Committee will receive briefing from a common platform by the Trade Unions, including NIC ICTU, NIPSA, TGWU, GMB and AMICUS, as well as the Consumer Council for Northern Ireland.

Note for Editor:

The Northern Ireland Assembly has established a Statutory Departmental Committee for Regional Development.

Membership of the Regional Development Committee is as follows:

Chairperson: Mr Fred Cobain
Deputy Chairperson: Mr Jim Wells
Committee Members: Mr William Irwin
Mr Stephen Moutray
Mr George Robinson
Mr Brian Wilson
Mr Cathal Boylan
Mr Willie Clarke
Mr Raymond McCartney
Mr John Dallat
Mr John McCallister

The Committee will meet in Parliament Buildings on Wednesday mornings at 10.00am. Visitors are welcome to attend open sessions. Members of the public are advised to check the website prior to arriving at Parliament Buildings as it is likely the Committee will take meetings outside Parliament Buildings.

For further information on the work of the Regional Development Committee, please contact:

Northern Ireland Assembly Information Office,
Room B2, Parliament Buildings,
Belfast BT4 3XX.
Telephone 028 90521137/521396. Fax 028 90521961.
Website Address:
E-mail –