NIABT Board of Trustees Meeting Monday 27 January 2014

The meeting opened in public session at 5:15pm.


Phil Flanagan MLA                         Chair
Michael Bell                                      NI Food and Drink Association
Alan Dickson                                    PricewaterhouseCoopers
Prof the Hon James Haughey       Norbrook Laboratories
John O’Farrell                                  ICTU
Glyn Roberts                                     NIIRTA
John Stewart                                    Director of Information and Outreach
Richard Stewart                               Treasurer/ Director of Corporate Services
Dr Joanne Stuart OBE                    Attrus Ltd, Vice Chair

In Attendance:

Susie Brown                                     Secretary
Louise Close                                     Deputy Secretary
Ivor Gibson                                      Co-ordinator


Judith Cochrane MLA
Leslie Cree MBE MLA
Alban Maginness MLA
Robin Newton MLA
David McClarty MLA
Lord Ballyedmond                           Norbrook Laboratories
John Rooney                                     Rooney Fish
Tara Whaley                                     British Telecom

The Vice Chair opened proceedings on elements of the agenda that did not require a vote.

1. Apologies:

Apologies are noted above.

2. Declaration of Interests 

No interests were declared by Board members in relation to agenda items.

Phil Flanagan MLA joined the meeting at 5:20pm.

3. Minutes of the meetings held on 18th November 2013:

Agreed: The Minutes of the Board meeting held on 18th November were agreed by the Board.          

4. Matters arising:

The Chair advised the Board that the majority of matters arising at the last meeting formed the agenda for 27th January.

Correspondence was received from the CBI in relation to their Infrastructure Report. At its last meeting, the Board had decided to collaborate with the ETI Committee as CBI had also requested to brief them on this Report. The ETI Committee have invited the CBI to deliver a briefing on 25th March in the Long Gallery and the NIABT have been invited to join them at this briefing.

The Northern Ireland Executive staff have agreed to deliver a European overview presentation in September 2014 in Parliament Buildings.

5. Review of Articles of Association:

Agreed: The Board agreed to the terms of reference for a review which will be carried out by the Secretary.

6. Financial Update – Membership Subscriptions

The Chair referred the Members to a copy of the latest figures in relation to Business Trust Member subscriptions and overall financial outlook

Agreed: The Board agreed the content of the financial update.

7. Correspondence

The Chair referred the Board to the following item of correspondence:

Copy of a letter from the Christine Watson of Watson & Co. Chartered Marketing suggesting that the Board consider holding an event on sales and marketing based on a paper soon to be published by DEL.

Agreed: The Board agreed that the Secretariat should explore the potential for holding this event in November. Initial findings indicate that this is a piece of work being carried out by Invest NI, DETI and DEL.

8. Past and Upcoming Events

The Chair referred the Board to a listing of past and future Business Trust events.

Agreed: The Treasurer proposed and the Board agreed that in lieu of refreshments being provided by the home owner of the passive house hosting the NIABT educational visit on 30th January, that a donation of £100 be made to Habitat for Humanity. It was noted that to provide refreshments for the delegation of 27 would cost an amount close to £100.

9. Fellowship Programme:

The Chair referred the Board to a copy of the MLA interest in fellowship visits.

Agreed: The Board agreed that the Secretariat should progress all MLA fellowship programmes introducing a proforma to be completed by both parties to ensure that they maximize the opportunity afforded by each individual fellowship visit.

10. Scottish Educational Programme:

The Chair referred the Board to a copy of a draft programme in relation to a proposed forthcoming educational visit to Scotland.

Agreed: The Board agreed to postpone the Dublin Educational Programme to 2015 and for the Secretariat to progress plans for an educational visit to Scotland on 28/29 May 2014. The secretariat will work on the format and content of the programme reflecting the feedback from the trustees.

11. 2014 President’s Dinner

The Chair drew the Board’s attention to the running order for the 2014 President’s Dinner. This year, a local journalist/broadcaster, Jim Fitzpatrick will interview the keynote speaker in the Great Hall, prior to the dinner taking place in the Long Gallery.    

Agreed: The Board agreed to budget for fees of up to £500 for the guest presenter and to also budget for travel and subsistence fees for the guest speaker at the President’s Dinner.

12. Large Business Steering Group

The Chair referred the Board to the recent Large Business Steering Group event on 26th November 2013 and to the fact that the Trust has received three applications with a further three pending applications as a result of the dinner.

13. Membership Applications

The Chair referred the Board to a list of applications from local organisations to join the Trust. 

Agreed: All applications were approved collectively.

14. Any Other Business

The Board discussed the desire to look into Directors and Officers liability insurance for the NIABT

The Board also discussed the feasibility of hosting an educational event on the new Council structures after the May 2014 elections.

Agreed: The Board agreed that a paper on Directors and Officers Liability insurance be agreed by correspondence before the next Board meeting.

The Board discussed the importance of RPA and how this may affect businesses. The Vice Chair reported that she would provide an update on RPA at the next Board meeting and the Board would then consider hosting an event on this topic if appropriate.

Date of Next Meeting

The Chair confirmed that the next meeting would be held on Monday 10 March at 5.00pm.

The meeting was adjourned at 5:52pm.

Mr Phil Flanagan MLA
Chair, Northern Ireland Assembly and Business Trust
12th March 2014