Business of Joint Committee

I remind members and those in the Visitors Gallery to turn off their mobile phones completely as they interfere with the recording and broadcasting equipment, even when left in silent mode.

As there are no matters members wish to discuss in private session, we will move on.

I remind members and those in the Gallery to turn off their mobile phones completely.

I wish to address some housekeeping matters. Minutes of the meeting of 19 June 2019 have been circulated. Are they agreed? Agreed.

In correspondence, an email was received from Mr. Colm McGinty on the report of the governance review group established by Sport Ireland and the Football Association of Ireland to develop reform proposals for the latter. A copy of the report of the governance review group has been circulated. It is proposed to note the correspondence and to schedule a meeting on the matter in the coming weeks. Is that agreed?

Who is it proposed to invite to the meeting? We had a discussion about it last week.

Sport Ireland.

It is agreed.

Correspondence, dated 24 June 2019, has been received from Mr. Michael Sheary, company secretary at Dublin Port, replying to an invitation to the chief executive officer of Dublin Port to appear before the joint committee. Further emails between Mr. Sheary and the clerk to the committee seeking further clarity on the proposed Mazars review were also received. The reply from Mr. Sheary, company secretary at Dublin Port, explained reasons for the declined invitation and suggested that members of the joint committee pay a visit to Dublin Port to discuss relevant issues. Do any members wish to comment?

Representatives from Dublin Port will not appear before us. Is it the case that we will travel to Dublin Port to meet them there?

They will not appear before the committee until after the review.

The review is likely to be completed within six or eight weeks. It is disappointing that the focus of the review’s attention appears to be on where the leak came from, rather than the substance of the issue, which is part of what we want to speak to them about. What exactly is being reviewed? Is it the substance of the issue around the credit card and the use of it or is it associated with who was responsible for the leak?

The terms of reference were circulated by email yesterday to members. It involves a forensic analysis of the expenditure undertaken on company credit cards from 2017 to 2018 and this year to date. It is disappointing that we had to decline an invitation to Dublin Port two weeks ago because not enough members wanted to go.

Correspondence has been received from the office of Deputy Bríd Smith concerning statements made at a recent hearing of the Committee of Employment Affairs and Social Protection. It is proposed to schedule a meeting on this in the autumn. Is that agreed? Agreed.

An email has been received from Rory O’Donnell, director of the National Economic and Social Council, NESC, dated 24 June 2019, referring to areas of work which may be of interest to the joint committee. This was circulated to all members yesterday. It is proposed to note the correspondence. Is that agreed? Agreed.

Correspondence, dated 24 June 2019, has been received from Mr. Michael O’Connor of the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport, regarding the committee's availability on this side of the summer break for pre-legislative scrutiny of the general scheme of the air navigation and transport Bill. It is proposed to deal with this in our schedule for the autumn. Is that agreed? Agreed.

An issue was recently brought to my attention which the Department might clarify. There is a fifth freedom in air navigation regulations for airline operators from outside of the EU when dealing with origin-destination issues. There appears to be one route that we have given permission for, namely, a Dublin-Madrid route operated by Ethiopian Airlines. I will give the clerk the details and the committee can write to the Department to find out why that is an exception.

Is that agreed? Agreed.