§ Mr. Kilfedder
asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland (1) whether the bonus payment made to 59W members of the maintenance staff of the Northern Ireland Housing Executive is to be reduced or set aside on foot of the 6 per cent. increase awarded with effect from November 1980;
(2) whether he is satisfied with the economic performance of the Northern Ireland Housing Executive's nursery at Dundonald; and whether financial savings would result from a measure of privatisation in this area;
(3) whether he is satisfied with the tendering procedures being adopted by the Northern Ireland Housing Executive for the cutting of grass, and especially with safeguards intended to ensure that payment is not made to a contractor in advance of proper completion of the work.
§ Mr. David Mitchell
These are matters for the Northern Ireland Housing Executive. However, I understand from the chairman that:
- 1. The bonus payments to the maintenance staff will not be affected by the November 1980 increase;
- 2. The nursery has over the years demonstrated its viability in growing trees and shrubs of varieties suitable for planting in housing estates. This is a field which is not well covered by private nurseries. Privatisation of the Excutive's ground maintenance operations is however, one of a number of possibilities being examined in the continuing search for financial savings.
- 3. The Executive is satisfied with the tendering procedures in force for grass cutting and with the procedures for the payment for completed work.