Committee recommends international travel
The Parliament Finance and Expenditure Committee has recommended that the Office of the Clerk and Legislative Assembly considers international travel for Parliamentary Committee members.
The Committee has also asked that appropriate funding for relevant duty travel is considered by the Office (O.C.L.A.) when it makes its deliberations.
The recommendations by the Committee were outlined in the Government’s Response to the Finance and Expenditure Committee’s Report issued for the 2015-2016 period.
The report stated that the Committee has recommended that the O.C.L.A. factor into its budget estimates funding for the enhancement of the work of Parliamentary Committee members.
“This will assist the Committee in responding to public needs and to better advice Ministries in ways to improve national development,” the report stated.
But the O.C.L.A., in response, stated that the recommendation had already been fully implemented.
“There is a sub-output for servicing Parliamentary Committees within O.C.L.A. budget and the final amount is determined by Ministry of Finance and Cabinet.
“Another recommendation submitted to the O.C.L.A. to to consider international travel for Parliamentary Members and include appropriate funding for relevant duty travel.
“This was stated as necessary to ensure attendance at important conference such as the 2015 C.P.A. conference, despite $81,000 available under output operations,” stated the report.
The O.C.L.A. has also indicated that there is an allocation in the budget for Member’s travelling costs with travel funded from overall savings.
The Committee has also recommended that the O.C.L.A. is restructured, particularly the Parliamentary Committee Office, as it was of the view that the functions and responsibilities of many of the staff overlapped.
“The Committee stated that a restructure would streamline functions and reduce staff turnover rates,” stated the report.
The report stated that the O.C.L.A. has acknowledged the suggestion.
The primary function of the O.C.L.A. is to provide Parliament and its members with quality and timely support in the operation of Parliament and the Legislative Assembly as prescribed by Law and Standing Orders of Parliament.