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Thursday, 16 Mar 2006

Business of Joint Committee.

Apologies have been received from Deputies Ó Caoláin and Cregan. The first item on the agenda is the minutes of the meeting of 15 February 2006. The draft minutes have been circulated. Are they agreed? Agreed. I will defer correspondence to next week's meeting on 22 March at 3 p.m. because there is nothing that cannot be held over until then.

I wish to immediately proceed to the main item on today's agenda, the review under section 32(2) of certain provisions of the Freedom of Information Act 1997. I seek agreement for a proposal on the following timetable: from now until noon we will deal with the Information Commissioner, Ms Emily O'Reilly; thereafter we will be joined by Mr. Eddie Sullivan, Secretary General of the public service management and development unit of the Department of Finance. Following their presentations, the committee may engage in a brief discussion on how it wishes to proceed. Having heard the two delegates, we will be obliged to adopt some approach in respect of completing the task. I hope we will conclude our deliberations within a few hours and that the session will not continue after lunch. Is that agreed? Agreed.