COMMITTEE FOR REGIONAL DEVELOPMENT
MINUTES OF PROCEEDINGS
Wednesday 14 November 2007
Room 144 Parliament Buildings
Fred Cobain MLA (Chairperson)
Cathal Boylan MLA
Willie Clarke MLA
John McCallister MLA
Raymond McCartney MLA
George Robinson MLA
Brian Wilson MLA
Roisin Kelly (Assembly Clerk)
Clairita Frazer (Assistant Assembly Clerk)
Keith McBride (Assistant Assembly Clerk)
Annette Page (Clerical Officer)
John Dallat MLA
William Irwin MLA
Stephen Moutray MLA
Jim Wells MLA
The meeting opened at 10.37 am in public session.
Apologies were received from John Dallat, William Irwin, Stephen Moutray and Jim Wells.
2. Chairperson’s Business.
- Members noted that today’s Committee meeting would be extended to facilitate additional briefing from Departmental officials on the draft Budget, the draft ISNI and the draft Programme for Government.
- Members noted that there would be two Committee meetings next week – an additional meeting to be held on Tuesday 20 November 2007 to meet the Minister and discuss the draft Budget, draft ISNI and draft Programme for Government as well as the normal Committee meeting on Wednesday 21 November 2007.
3. Draft Minutes.
The minutes of the meeting of 7 November 2007 were agreed.
4. Matters Arising.
- Members noted a paper from the Clerk to the Committee for Finance and Personnel on Departmental capital underspend.
- Members noted receipt of a paper from Northern Ireland Water setting out their response to the Independent Panel’s Strand One report.
- Members noted receipt of a letter from the Minister and draft policy on Speed Management. Members agreed that the Clerk would draw up a draft handling plan for this topic to be considered at next week’s Committee meeting.
- Members noted receipt of the research briefing on the draft Budget.
5. Oral Briefing from stakeholders - draft Budget, draft Investment Strategy (ISNI) and draft Programme for Government (PfG).
Oral briefings were received from the following stakeholders on DRD allocations and responsibilities in the draft Budget, draft ISNI and draft Programme for Government:
- Michele Bagnall Policy Officer from Help the Aged and Elaine Campbell Head of Policy from Age Concern.
John McCallister joined the meeting at 10.55am.
- Frank Caddy, Michael Larmour and Ronnie Patterson from the Inclusive Mobility Transport Advisory Committee.
- Glyn Roberts, John Friel and Carolyn Brown from the Federation of Small Businesses.
- Gordon Best, Regional Director, Johnny McQuillan, Chairman and John Shannon, Chairman of the Asphalt Committee of the Quarry Products Association.
Willie Clarke left the meeting at 11.55am.
Committee adjourned at 12.01pm.
Committee reconvened at 12.08pm.
- Nigel Smyth, Director of the Confederation of British Industry.
- Seamus McAleavey, Chief Executive and Frances McCandless Director of Policy from the Northern Ireland Council for Voluntary Action.
The stakeholders each gave a short presentation to the Committee followed by a question and answer session. The Chairperson thanked all the stakeholders for taking the time to attend the meeting. The Committee resolved that any additional material requested during the briefings be forwarded to the Committee.
Oral briefing session ended at 12.40pm.
Committee adjourned at 12.40pm.
Committee reconvened at 12.45pm.
Willie Clarke rejoined the meeting at 12.47pm.
6. Departmental Briefing on draft Budget, draft ISNI and draft Programme for Government.
The Committee received detailed briefing from Doreen Brown and Geoff Allister from the Department for Regional Development on the main issues for the Roads Service and the Regional Planning and Transportation Division arising from the draft Budget, draft ISNI and draft Programme for Government.
Willie Clarke left the meeting at 12.56pm.
Departmental Officials left the meeting at 1.16pm.
7. Subordinate Legislation.
Members were content with the SL1 noted at the meeting of 7 November 2007. This was:
- The Parking Places on Roads (Strabane) Order ( Northern Ireland) 2007.
Members noted the following new SL1s received:
- The Motor Hackney Carriages (Antrim) By-Laws ( Northern Ireland) 2008;
- The Parking Places and Loading Bay on Roads (Kilkeel) Order ( Northern Ireland) 2007;
- The Roads (Speed Limit) (No.5) Order ( Northern Ireland) 2007;
- The Parking Places and Loading Bay on Roads (Limavady) Order ( Northern Ireland) 2007;
- The Waiting Restrictions (Limavady) Order ( Northern Ireland);
- The One-Way Traffic (Limavady) (Amendment) Order ( Northern Ireland) 2007;
- The Prohibition of Traffic (Beechmount, Belfast) (Amendment) Order ( Northern Ireland) 2007; and
- The Loading Bays on Roads (Amendment No.4) Order ( Northern Ireland) 2007.
Members noted receipt of the following Statutory Rules which are not subject to any Assembly procedure:
- 2007/449 Prohibition of Traffic ( Chichester Street, Belfast) Order ( Northern Ireland) 2007;
- 2007/456 The On-Street Parking (Amendment No.2) Order ( Northern Ireland).
Members noted receipt of the following Statutory Rules which are subject to negative resolution. The Examiner of Statutory Rules will forward his report before the end of the statutory period:
- 2007/459 The Belvedere Manor, Belfast (Abandonment) Order ( Northern Ireland) 2007;
- 2007/446 The B127 Ballyconnell Road, Derrylin (Abandonment) Order ( Northern Ireland) 2007; and
- 2007/463 The B7 Chapel Hill Road, Mayobridge (Abandonment) Order ( Northern Ireland) 2007.
8. Correspondence noted.
Members noted receipt of the following items of correspondence:
- Letter dated 30 October 2007 from Paddy Hillyard Chair of Independent Water Review Panel responding to NIAUR comments on the Strand One water report.
- Letter dated 6 November 2007 from Gordon Best Regional Director QPANI, enclosing a copy of their brochure, ‘Concrete- continuing to build a sustainable future’ and requesting that the Chairperson sponsor the launch of this publication. It was agreed that a Member from each party would sponsor this event.
- Letter dated 9 November 2007 from the Chairperson of the Committee for the Office of the First Minister and Deputy First Minister (OFMDFM) to the Chairperson Committee for Regional Development, inviting a response to the draft PfG and ISNI by Wednesday 28 November 2007.
- Letter dated 9 November 2007 from the Department of Regional Development confirming the attendance of Departmental officials and the Regional Development Minister, Conor Murphy MP, MLA, to brief the Committee on ports policy.
- Letter dated 12 November 2007 from the Department of Regional Development regarding passenger numbers and revenue on the Belfast to Londonderry railway line.
- Letter dated 12 November 2007 from the Department of Regional Development with further information on current asbestos pipework in Northern Ireland.
- Letter dated 12 November 2007 from the Regional Development Minister, Conor Murphy MP, MLA apologising for his absence during the Committee’s debate on the Independent Review Panel Strand One Report.
- Invitation to attend a discussion on Rural Planning Policy hosted by ASITIS Consulting on 28 November 2007.
- Notice regarding a lunchtime event to be held by CIPFA Northern Ireland on Tuesday 11 December 2007 in the Linenhall Library, Belfast. The topic for this debate will be transport and the environment.
- Email dated 9 November 2007 from NIC ICTU informing the Committee that it will be unable to give its position on the draft budget, draft ISNI and draft programme for government until consultation with member unions has been completed, when NIC ICTU will copy the Committee into its response paper.
9. Any Other Business.
Members noted that papers for the next meeting would be hand delivered to Members on Monday 19 November 2007 due to the Rally Ireland event being held in Stormont Estate on Thursday 15 November 2007.
10. Date, venue and time of next meeting.
Next week’s meeting will be in Parliament Buildings in Room 135 at 11 am on Tuesday 20 November 2007.
The Chairperson adjourned the meeting at 1.34 pm.