Saturday, April 10, 2010

Joint Council & Executive Meeting

This morning we held a scheduled joint meeting of Executive and Council at Clyde Rd,  from 10am-1pm.

We opened the meeting by holding a minute's silence in memory of Tadhg Walshe,  Council and Executive member who very tragically died recently.

After the most recent minutes of both groups,  we reviewed the key engagements which the Director General has attended,  and noted the increasing media coverage and profile of Engineers Ireland.

We then proceeded to consider the draft annual financial report,  which had been examined in depth at last Thursday's Finance Committee.  Because of changes in national accounting treatments relating to pensions,  the accounts for last year are not directly comparable to those for 2008.   After appropriate explanation,  the accounts were accepted by Council and will go forward to the AGM.

We examined the financial results to the end of March 2010,  and noted that our subscription revenues remain behind budget.  We also considered the cash flow projection for the rest of the year,   and noted that should revenues remain on their current trajectory,  then further cost actions will be required if we are to break even.   Finally,  we had an update on the opportunity to buy out the ground rent on 22 Clyde Rd.,   and Council gave the authorisation to proceed with the negotiations.

This was in fact Brian Kavanagh's last report as Chair of the Finance Committee and after six years of leadership,   he is stepping aside with Murt Coleman taking over in his stead.

We approved my proposal for the incoming new Vice President,  who is Michael Phillips,  Dublin Director of Traffic and City Engineer.

We have five nominations,  and five positions open,  to next years' Council.  The incoming Council also has the ability to co-opt further participants should it so wish.   Our bye-laws nevertheless require us to hold an election,  which in turn costs us a considerable sum.   Council therefore proposes to seek approval via an EGM,  to be held immediately before the scheduled AGM on 27th May,  to avoid the cost of running an election under the circumstances.   Separately,  a new working group is to be formed which will review all the bye-laws,  with a view to proposing any changes and amendments via Council to the membership in due course.

We approved by nominations for fellowship by Presidential Invitation,  who will all be conferred on 7th May next.

A further working group,  to review and consider our CPD policy and strategy,  is being formed under the Chairmanship of Bill Grimson,  and will report in the next few months.

The report of the Liaison subcommittee was adopted.

A couple of ethics cases were duly noted.

John Power reported on the recent meeting he and I had had with the Minister for Environment,  Heritage and Local Government over the regulation and licensing of Professional Engineers.  The current draft whitepaper was circulated to Council,  seeking further comments and input.

John Power reported on the status of the planning for the Annual Conference on 22nd/23rd April next.  Both he and I stressed the urgent need to increase the number of registrations,  which are so far disappointing in the light of the strength of the programme and our 175th year.

I gave a report on the work of the Taoiseach's Innovation Taskforce,  at which I represented Engineers Ireland.

Under any other business,  we noted the momentum building behind our new Middle East region,  and some interest arising from Irish Engineers in forming a new region in Libya.

The joint meeting then concluded.

1 comment:

  1. Chris

    Given that we how have a Middle-East Region, should we pro-actively look at developing Engineers Ireland Regions in China, USA(E), USA(W), India & Aus/NZ?
    Following the Minister for Foreign Affairs comments last Thursday about the availability of our embassies, they might be willing to host inaugural meetings?