These are the Board minutes from 1st February 2018
We are happy to publish the minutes of our Board meetings so that Board activities and decisions are accountable. There is always a delay between the meeting held and the publication of the minutes. This is because the minutes must be approved before they can be published. Minutes are approved at the meeting after the meeting they are a record off. For example, if a Board meeting is held in March and the next meeting is held in April, the minutes of the March meeting will not be on the website until after the April meeting.
Present: David O’Callaghan, Patricia Carey, Damian Casey, Frances Harrington, Dr. Mary T. Lodato, Francis Treanor.
Apologies: Thomas Cronin, Tom Daly, Katherine Finn
In attendance: David Yeomans (Secretary), Rachel Downes, Sinéad Fennell, Siobhán Kane, Caitríona Ní Mhurchú.
|Item No:||Item||Discussion||Decision / Action||Time|
|1.||Quorum, Apologies and Conflicts of Interest Declarations||The Chair noted that there was a quorum present and that apologies had been received from three members who were unable to attend. The Secretary stated that no member had declared an interest in the Agenda.|
|2.||Minutes||The Minutes of the last meeting held on 14th December 2017 were amended and approved as proposed by P Carey and seconded by D Casey. It was agreed that the Minutes be redacted for publication with regards to the High Court case under legal privilege.||
Redact for Legal Privilege
|3.||Matters Arising not on the Agenda||The Secretary was asked to confirm as soon as practicable with the Standards in Public Office whether a statement is not legally required when Directors consider that he/she has no interests which could materially influence him/her in or in relation to the performance of the functions of his/her directorship or position. There were no matters arising other than those on the Agenda.||Check with SIPO||Immediately|
|4.||Appeals Officer Decisions||The Acting CEO updated the Board on legal advice received. The Board decided unanimously that the authority be given for the Acting CEO to proceed with payments.
The Chairman referred to a letter that was sent from the Board to the Department of Education & Skills seeking recovery of the legal costs incurred in the High Court case. The Board are awaiting the response.
|5.||Report on Applications and Spend||The report to the end of December 2017 was noted with the Chairman commenting on the usefulness of the information provided. The Acting CEO briefed the Board on current waiting times, numbers being assigned and the needs being presented by new applicants.
A discussion took place on the relatively high level of organisational FOI requests and the Secretary undertook to provide a summary.
The Board noted that positive feedback is now being recorded with the incidence being significantly more than complaints with the Acting CEO confirming that these stats would be published on the website before publication of the Board minutes. A request was made for the report to include a geographical breakdown.
Organisational FOI Details
|6.||Executive Report||The Board noted the report and welcomed back the Head of Communications & Engagement. The Acting CEO highlighted the key points in the report covering Office works, Staffing, Customer Charter review, new financial system and new phone system. She also informed the Board that an operational planning session was scheduled and confirmed that the impending General Data Protection Directive Regulations would be on the next Audit & Risk Committee agenda.
The Board noted the recent outreach events including face-to-face meetings in Ireland, advocacy and other information sessions including Prisons.
The Chairman requested an update on the Eligibility Review being carried out by the Department. The Acting CEO understood that the report is being finalised and would be circulated to Cabinet shortly. The Chairman requested that the Chair of the Audit & Risk Committee be circulated with a copy before it is published by the Department.
The Board decided that as soon as the Review is available that a dedicated meeting would be convened to discuss the outcome of the Review and to take strategic decisions regarding managing the remainder of the Fund and organisation.
Eligibility Review Report to ARC Chair
Strategic Planning Meeting
Shortly after Review available
|7.||Governance Matters||The Secretary referred to the deferral of the Annual Self-Assessment of the Board to the next meeting reminding members to send in the questionnaires.
The Board noted the full list of contracts to 31 Dec 2017 as circulated.
|8.||Finance & Risk Matters||The Secretary updated the Board on the delayed clearance by the Office of the Comptroller & Auditor General of the Financial Statements for the year ending 31 December 2016.|
|9.||Correspondence & PQs||The Board noted the correspondence and PQs as included in the papers.
A discussion took place on the impact of increased Charity regulation on Survivor Groups in the UK which has led to higher costs, while at the same time a reduction in funding.
|10.||A.O.B.||There was no other business.
The Board met without Executive Team present to discuss a matter.
|11.||Next Meeting||The next meeting of the Board will be held on 8th March 2018 at 10:30. The meeting concluded at 13:15.|