COMMITTEE FOR REGIONAL DEVELOPMENT
MINUTES OF PROCEEDINGS
WEDNESDAY 23 JUNE 2010
ROOM 21, PARLIAMENT BUILDINGS
Michelle McIlveen MLA (Deputy Chairperson)
Cathal Boylan MLA
Willie Clarke MLA
Danny Kinahan MLA
Billy Leonard MLA
Ian McCrea MLA
Conall McDevitt MLA
Roisin Kelly (Assembly Clerk)
Trevor Allen (Assistant Assembly Clerk)
Tara McKee (Clerical Supervisor)
Alison Ferguson (Clerical Officer)
Fred Cobain MLA (Chairperson)
Allan Bresland MLA
Trevor Lunn MLA
George Robinson MLA
The meeting commenced at 10.38am in open session.
Apologies are detailed above.
Members noted papers which were tabled for consideration later in the meeting.
2. Draft Minutes of meetings held on 16 June and 21 June 2010
Agreed : The minutes were agreed for publication on the Assembly’s website.
3. Matters Arising
10.42am Mr Kinahan joined the meeting.
- Members noted correspondence from the Department for Regional Development, dated 10 June 2010, in relation to the Civil Emergency Measures (Relevant Undertakings) (Northern Ireland) Direction 2010.
- Agreed: The Committee considered correspondence from the Department for Regional Development, dated 10 June 2010, in relation to the Northern Ireland Water Legal Services Framework Procurement and agreed to forward the correspondence to the Committee for Finance and Personnel for consideration.
- Members noted correspondence from the Department for Regional Development, dated 14 June 2010, in relation to the A5 and A8 road schemes and social inclusion in construction contracts undertaken by the Department and its arms length bodies.
- Agreed: The Committee noted the Transport Research Institute Chairman’s lecture on low carbon vehicles and agreed to consider the lecture as part of the Committee’s Sustainable Transport Inquiry.
- Members noted correspondence from the Department for Regional Development, dated 16 June 2010, in relation to the transfer of Coleraine Harbour to Coleraine Borough Council.
- Agreed: The Committee noted correspondence from the Committee for the Environment in relation to speed limits on roads and on the estimated cost to develop a speed limits database for Northern Ireland and agreed to forward the correspondence to the Department for Regional Development for consideration.
- Agreed: The Committee considered and agreed its submission to the Rural Community Network’s next edition of Network News.
4. Departmental update briefing on end-of-year performance against its Business Plan, PSA Targets and Efficiency Delivery Plans
Members noted papers from the Department in its PSA targets and its efficiency delivery plans. Members also noted the Department’s Corporate and Business Plan 2010-2011.
The Committee received briefing from Departmental officials, Paul Priestly, Lian Patteson, Doreen Brown and Stewart Matthews, and from Dr Andrew Murray of Roads Service , on the Department’s end-of-year performance for 2009-2010.
Agreed: The Committee agreed to consider a draft response to the Department on this briefing at its meeting on 30 June 2010.
10.25am Mr McDevitt left the meeting.
5. Departmental briefing on its revised Expenditure Plans
11.26am Mr McDevitt returned to the meeting.
The Committee received briefing from Departmental officials, Nigel McCormick and Roger Downey, and from Roads Service officials, Dr Andrew Murray and Terry Deehan, on the Department’s Revised Expenditure Plans for 2010-2011.
Agreed:Members noted a report of the Northern Ireland Audit Office in relation to improving public sector efficiency and agree to defer consideration of the report to the Committee meeting on 30 June 2010.
Agreed: The Committee agreed to request additional information from the Department for Regional Development on the Budget 2010 timetable and process; to schedule an additional briefing on the issue on 30 June 2010; and to consider, if necessary, convening an additional meeting of the Committee in July, prior to the deadline for receipt of Departmental responses by the Department of Finance and Personnel.
11.57am The meeting moved into closed session.
12.07pm Mr McDevitt left the meeting.
6. Transport Bill
12.20pm Mr McCrea left the meeting.
12.23pm Mr McDevitt returned to the meeting.
12.33pm Mr McCrea returned to the meeting.
Agreed: Members considered the Transport Bill and the associated Explanatory and Financial Memorandum and agreed to support the principles of the Bill. Members also agreed to forward any issues that they have in relation to the Bill to the Committee office, in advance of Second Stage debate on the Bill on 28 June 2010.
Agreed: The Committee agreed to schedule a stakeholder evidence gathering event in September 2010, in response to its call for evidence on the Bill.
12.47pm Mr Clarke left the meeting.
Agreed: Members agreed to request a research briefing on the Bill.
12.50pm Mr Clarke returned to the meeting.
Agreed: Members considered and agreed for publication a public notice calling for evidence on the Bill. Publication of the notice is agreed subject to the Bill successfully completing Second Stage, scheduled for 29 June 2010.
Agreed: The Committee considered and agreed its indicative timetable for the Committee Stage of the Transport Bill.
Agreed: Members agreed to review briefing from Assembly Research and Library Services on transport issues at the Committee meeting on 30 June 2010.
12.50pm Mr Clarke returned to the meeting.
12.57pm The meeting returned to open session.
7. Subordinate Legislation
12.58pm Mr McDevitt left the meeting.
Members noted the following Departmental proposal to make subordinate legislation:
- The Parking and Waiting Restrictions (Omagh) Order ( Northern Ireland) 2010 .
Members noted that the SL1 memo from the Department on the above proposal made no reference to its having been the subject of a public inquiry. Members noted that the Department has confirmed that the police service and relevant local council affected by the above proposal have been informed, and the Committee office has not received any comments from the relevant council regarding this policy proposal.
Members considered the following Departmental proposals to make subordinate legislation, which were noted at the Committee meeting on 16 June 2010:
- The Parking Places (Disabled Persons’ Vehicles) (Amendment No. 6) Order ( Northern Ireland) 2010;
- The Roads (Speed Limit) (No. 5) Order ( Northern Ireland) 2010;
- The Glebe Road, Annahilt (Footway) (Abandonment) Order ( Northern Ireland) 2010; and
- Railway (Safety Management) Regulations 2010.
Agreed: Members agreed that the Committee would write to the Department, indicating that it was content with the policy merits of these SL1s.
Members noted the following Departmental press releases:
- Roads Service reports on schemes in Down area; and
- Roads Service reports on schemes in Carrickfergus area.
Members noted the following Translink press release:
- Translink and retail network paypoint launch new top-up service
Members noted a press release from Sustrans in relation to Bike week.
9. Any Other Business
Forward Work Programme
Agreed: Members considered a revised forward work programme for the Committee and agreed that the revised work programme should be published on the Assembly website.
Committee input on Freedom of Information matters during summer recess
Agreed: Members agreed to delegate authority, in relation to Freedom of Information requests, to the Chairperson and Deputy Chairperson, during the summer recess.
Animal grazing in the high Mournes
Agreed: The Committee agreed to write to Northern Ireland Water in relation to concerns over animals not being permitted to graze in the high Mournes area, and the effect that this is having on the habitat of the area.
Winter gritting of footpaths
Agreed: The Committee discussed the need for Roads Service to put in place arrangements with councils for winter gritting of footpaths. Members agreed to request an update on this issue from the Department.
10. Date, Time and Place of Next Meeting
The next meeting will be held on Wednesday, 30 June 2010, at 10.30am in Room 21, Parliament Buildings.
The Deputy Chairperson adjourned the meeting at 1.04pm.
Michelle McIlveen , MLA
Deputy Chairperson, Committee for Regional Development
30 June 2010