Thursday, 4 November 2004

Questions (76)

Arthur Morgan

Question:

60 Mr. Morgan asked the Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government if he has examined the possibility of a conflict of interest arising from the appointment of a person (details supplied) to the board of the EPA following their previous employment with a prominent company in the incineration industry. [27381/04]

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Written answers (Question to Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government)

The directors of the Environmental Protection Agency are appointed by the Government following a statutory selection process which is set out in the Environmental Protection Agency Act 1992. The Act provides for the establishment of a statutory selection committee whose function is to select not more than three suitable candidates from which the Government will make an appointment to the appropriate director post. The Environmental Protection Agency (Selected Procedures) Regulations 2004 require the selection committee to advertise publicly for applicants. In the case of the two most recent appointments to the board of the agency, the Civil Service Commission provided operational assistance to the selection committee in relation to the recruitment process.

I am, therefore, satisfied that the recruitment process is manifestly fair, open and transparent. I am also satisfied that the conduct of the process was carried out properly and in accordance with the relevant statutory provisions.

The employment of all the directors of the agency is, in accordance with the terms and conditions of their contract, subject to the high standards set out in the code of conduct for directors and staff of the Environmental Protection Agency, which was adopted by the agency. The code requires that all staff must,inter alia, comply with the statutory obligations under the Ethics in Public Office Acts 1995-2001 to avoid a conflict or potential conflict between their interests and the interests of the agency. The provisions of the code are in addition to those set out in sections 37 and 38 of the 1992 Act which set out requirements in relation to declaration and disclosure of interests.

Question No. 61 answered with QuestionNo. 26.
Question No. 62 answered with QuestionNo. 14.