Northern Ireland Assembly Committees visited Londonderry on Wednesday, October 2 and again today, Thursday, October 3.
This follows a successful Committee visit to the City in June 2013.
Speaker of the Assembly, Mr William Hay MLA said: “This is the second time this year that a group of Assembly Committees will take their work to the City of Culture. The group of Committees that will be heading to the City next week are those that didn’t have the opportunity to go in June. The feedback and reception was so positive in June, so it is very fitting for this group of Committees to go and engage with the area as well.
“Committees often take their work outside Parliament Buildings, so it is a perfect chance for Committees to once again show their support to Derry/Londonderry in its City of Culture year.”
“The Assembly is committed to ensuring that as many people as possible have an opportunity to take part in the political process, to influence the work that we do and to see politics at work. Bringing Assembly Committees to the North West demonstrates how serious we are in pursuing this goal.”
The two day visit will begin with a reception hosted by the Culture, Arts and Leisure Committee in the Shirt Factory, Patrick Street on Wednesday, 2 October. This special event entitled ‘Change and Renewal’ will consist of a series of talks and exhibitions reflecting the City’s changing economy from its history of textile production to its future in the digital media industry.
Today, Thursday, October 3, the Assembly Committees for Culture Arts and Leisure, Environment, Social Development and Justice will all hold meetings at the Magee College campus, University of Ulster.
The Culture, Arts and Leisure Committee will hear an update from the Department on the progress of UK City of Culture and also on Stimulating Support for the Creative Economy and Social Innovation.
Members of the Justice Committee will be briefed by the Department on publicly funded representation in the civil and family courts and the Reducing Offending Women’s Strategy. The Committee will also consider the department’s pre-consultation strategy on domestic/sexual violence.
The Environment Committee will receive a departmental briefing on the Carrier Bags Levy Bill.
Members of the Social Development Committee will hear from the department on the Pavement Cafés Bill, the Empty Homes Strategy and on Fuel Poverty.
The Committee will also be briefed by Unite the Union on Northern Ireland Housing Executive Response Maintenance Contracts. The Agriculture and Rural Development Committee will also visit a number of local departmental buildings including the proposed DARD Headquarters site at Ballykelly, the DARD Single Farm Payment Centre at Orchard House and the Loughs Agency Headquarters.