NI Water: So just how many STAs was DRD using?

This Assembly Questions to the DRD Minister Conor Murphy should flush out some interesting answers about the use of Single Tender Actions inside the Department:

2. Mr P McGlone (Mid Ulster):

To ask the Minister for Regional Development how many single tender actions were issued by (i) Roads Service; (ii) Translink; and (iii) the Harbour Commissioner in (a) 2005/06; (b) 2006/07; (c) 2007/08; (d) 2008/09; and (e) 2009/10.

3. Mr P McGlone (Mid Ulster):

To ask the Minister for Regional Development how many contract extensions have been put in place, without going to tender, by (i) Roads Service; (ii) Translink; and (iii) the Harbour Commissioner in (a) 2005/06; (b) 2006/07; (c) 2007/08; (d) 2008/09; and (e) 2009/10.

Look out for the material regarding the Harbour Commissioners when it emerges. It ought to bring a useful perspective on what IRT member, Peter Dixon actually thought was a good practice in his function as a DRD appointed member of the Board. As we have seen, the current CEO was less than candid about his own use of STAs over his nine years as CEO with NIE.

Will it be ‘better’ than NI Water’s performance, or ‘worse’? As we have argued, there is not much of a case for arguing that NI Water’s use of Single Tender Actions was either gratuitous nor the direct fault of the Non Executive Directors fired by the Minister.

If there was fault anywhere on the Board it is extremely odd that the one person, Don Price, who sat on the company’s audit committee is the one who still has his job.

Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty