Section 12(5) of the Inland Fisheries Act 2010 (No 10 of 2010) provides for twelve areas of experience from which the nine members of the Board of Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) shall be drawn, including business, commercial affairs, environment and biodiversity, aquaculture, fisheries ownership etc. The Act makes clear that members of the Board are appointed with a view to representing the public interest in respect of inland fisheries. In accordance with the Code of Practice for the Governance of State Bodies they will share collective responsibility and authority of the Board.
In accordance with the provisions of section 12 of the Act, I, as Minister, appointed the Chairman and two others on my own nomination, two were appointed on the nomination of the Ministers for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government and the then Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs. The fifth member was appointed to the Board, in accordance with the statute, to represent staff on a temporary basis pending the outcome of the election of the staff representative. The other three are being appointed on the nomination of the Joint Oireachtas Committee.
The Deputy will be aware that I appointed the first six members to the Board of Inland Fisheries Ireland on its establishment in July 2010.
These members of the Board have a range of expertise relevant to the remit of IFI. One has a background and interest in fishing and fish farming and was a member of the former North Western Regional Fisheries Board. Another member has a background in business, environmental issues, is a part time farmer and has an interest in angling. A third member has run successful angling tourism business and was a member, and subsequently Chairman of the former Western Regional Fisheries Board. A fourth member is an expert in environmental matters including invasive species. The fifth member appointed, has a strong business background and is the managing director of a company providing technical management training in areas such as environmental and project management. The sixth member is the temporary staff representative and a full-time union official. Section 12 of the Act also provides for the appointment of 3 members nominated by the Joint Oireachtas Committee. The Committee, through the Public Appointments Service, sought expressions of interest for the three positions from individuals who had recognised expertise or a track record in one or more of the areas set out in the Act. On 20 October I received the nominations of the Joint Oireachtas Committee for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources and arrangements are underway to make these appointments.