Apologies have been received from Deputy Ciarán Lynch and Senator Paudie Coffey.
Item No. 1 on the agenda is the minutes. The proceedings of the meetings of 31 March and 21 April 2009 have been circulated. Are they agreed? Agreed. Are there any matters arising? No matters arising.
Item No. 2 on the agenda concerns several items of correspondence. No. 420 is a European World newsletter which we will note. No. 421 is a newsletter on environmental issues from Global International which we will note. No. 422 is the Irish Human Rights Commissionbulletin which we will note.
There is also a letter from the president of the Irish Human Rights Commission, Mr. Maurice Manning, requesting a meeting with the committee. He writes regarding a policy statement on section 62 of the Housing Act which was submitted to the Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government, Deputy John Gormley. The purpose of the section is to protect and uphold the human rights of local authority tenants under Irish law in line with State obligations under the European Convention on Human Rights. He recommends a policy statement to the members of the joint committee be made at the earliest convenience and requests the opportunity to make a presentation to the committee on the human rights of local authority tenants under the law. Do members want to receive a submission on that? I understand the Bill concerned will come before us on Committee Stage. Perhaps we will invite him to make a submission to the members of the committee in advance of Committee Stage.
No. 423 is a newsletter on homelessness which we note. No. 424 is the European Water newsletter which we note. No. 425 is a press statement from the Department on the national tidy towns group which we note. No. 426 concerns the farm waste management scheme and planning permission and is a reply from the Minister, Deputy Gormley, to queries raised by this committee regarding possible delays to grant applications caused by planning permission periods. We wrote to him at the end of last year on that matter. Events have passed us by on this issue, but he said very few proposals for development under the farm waste management scheme came before An Bord Pleanála for a planning decision.