* Approved at HAMC meeting on July 7/10
A regular meeting of the House of Assembly Management Commission was held in Committee Room 1, Dennis Building, Halifax on Wednesday, June 9, 2010. The meeting commenced at 9:40 A.M. with the Honourable Charlie Parker, Speaker of the House as Chair. Other members of the Commission were present namely: Honourable Frank Corbett, Pam Birdsall, Gordie Gosse, Maurice Smith, Manning MacDonald, Andrew Younger, Murray Scott and the Clerk. The Chief Legislative Counsel Gordon Hebb and the Acting Director of Administration of the Office of the Speaker, Clarence Guest, were also present at the Table.
The Chair announced that this constituted the first meeting of the new Commission.
1. The Commission unanimously agreed to the Agenda as presented.
2. Upon motion of A. Younger, seconded by M. Smith, the Regulations as were tabled in the House on May 7, 2010 with correction of a few minor errors, were approved as the Regulations of the Commission.
3. Upon motion of Hon. F. Corbett and seconded by G. Gosse, further amendments to the new Regulations were adopted. These were said to be in the nature of housekeeping changes.
4. The issue of changes in the administrative structure of the Office of the Speaker was next on the agenda. Deputy Minister Greg Keefe and Controller Byron Rafuse spoke to the reorganization of the administrative structure and presented their recommendations. These recommendations were continued in a written report which was available to the Members of the Commission in advance of the meeting. Following some general discussion with Mr. Rafuse, Ms. P. Birdsall moved that the report and recommendations continued therein be adopted. The motion was seconded by Hon. F. Corbett. Following debate upon the motion it was duly carried. The recommendations result in a down-sized administration office consisting of a Director and claims clerk. Some existing staff will be transferred to other offices in Government. The other recommendations related to clarification of Member funding during an election period and elimination, with appropriate notice of the quarterly pay plan for Members and staff. These latter two items will require Regulation change.
5. The Agenda item dealing with the request for an extra clerk in the Office of the Speaker Administration to assist with Member’s claims together with funding approval for a part-time position in the nature of a computer programmer to allow for online expenses was deferred upon motion of M. Smith, seconded by M. Scott and duly carried.
6. Following discussion it was moved by M. Scott, seconded by M. Smith that the Caucus Advertising Guidelines, which were put in place a few years ago under the Legislature Internal Economy Board be retained and remain in full effect. The motion was carried.
7. The matter of the approval list of office furniture and equipment was upon motion of A. Younger, seconded by Hon. F. Corbett and carried, deferred for the purpose of further consultation.
8. The matter of an inventory control system was discussed. Mr. C. Guest advised that contact has been made with the Department of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal with respect to the implementation of such a system. It was agreed that Mr. C. Guest would engage in further discussions with T.I.R.
9. The Clerk, R. MacArthur, advised it would be impossible to comply with the strict audit requirements imposed by the legislation for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2010. It was agreed that the formal audit process would commence with the fiscal year ending March 31, 2011.
10. Upon motion of Hon. F. Corbett, seconded by M. Scott, the following resolution was carried:
“Therefore be it resolved that all part-time CAs or summer students working at constituency offices currently, including those that may be on current payroll of those offices but not having been called for work in the past month, be pre-approved by the Commission under Section 21(1)(l)”. [of the Regulations]
Following some discussion the motion was carried.
11. Discussion ensued with respect to payment of recurring Members’ expenses, but without any resolution.
The meeting then adjourned at 10:59 A.M.