Technical Booklet F1: NIHE Stock

Oral Answers to Questions — Finance – in the Northern Ireland Assembly at 3:15 pm on 18th October 2021.

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Photo of Kellie Armstrong Kellie Armstrong Alliance 3:15 pm, 18th October 2021

T6. Ms Armstrong asked the Minister of Finance, in light of the welcome consultation on proposals to amend technical booklet f1, which covers the conservation of fuel and power, with the Northern Ireland Housing Executive (NIHE) holding stock that may never be able to meet the proposed standard, whether any capital moneys will be allocated in the multi-year Budget to bring those many thousands of Housing Executive homes up to the new home standard. (AQT 1696/17-22)

Photo of Conor Murphy Conor Murphy Sinn Féin

Obviously, we will talk to all Departments ahead of the multi-year Budget. We had a high-level planning session about a number of themes, with health being the number one theme for the Executive. We are looking at other issues such as anti-poverty, vulnerable people and the green growth agenda, which will include retrofit. I am sure that the Department for Communities will make propositions about that when it comes to put its case for the three-year Budget.

Photo of Kellie Armstrong Kellie Armstrong Alliance

Thank you very much, Minister. Can you outline how the cross-departmental Budget planning and the management of that Budget will go forward to ensure that no Department is working in a silo? You mentioned that. Housing, for instance, is a cross-cutting theme.

Photo of Conor Murphy Conor Murphy Sinn Féin

To break that down, a point that I made to my Executive colleagues is that we are setting the Budget for the next Executive. None of us may be in the position that we are currently in when that Budget comes into play. In that sense, I asked people to set aside their departmental interests and to look at the broader interest of what will continue to be a very limited Budget. However, at least that Budget gives us a chance to plan on a three-year basis. There is an opportunity to set priorities. There is an opportunity, however painful that might be for Departments, to set the necessary resources to meet those priorities, and that involves the Executive working together as a team without focusing on the internal priorities of their Departments.