here

EUROPEAN UNION STRUCTURAL
FUNDS
2000 – 2006
ERDF FINAL REPORT ON IMPLEMENTATION
VERSION 3
THE NORTHERN IRELAND PROGRAMME
FOR
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY
(BSP - ERDF)
A TRANSITIONAL OBJECTIVE 1 PROGRAMME
CCI NO 1999 GB 161 PO 007
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
INDEX OF ABBREVIATIONS USED IN THE REPORT
Government Departments
DARD
Department of Agriculture and Rural Development
DCAL
Department for Culture, Arts and Leisure
DE
Department of Education
DEL
Department for Employment and Learning
DETI
Department of Enterprise Trade and Investment
DFP
Department of Finance and Personnel
DHSSPS
Department of Health and Social Services and Public Safety
DoE
Department of the Environment
DRD
Department for Regional Development
DSD
Department for Social Development
DTI
Department of Trade and Industry
OFMDFM
Office of the First Minister and deputy First Minister
Others
IDB
Industrial Development Board (now part of Invest NI)
IRTU
Industrial Research and Technology Unit (now part of Invest NI)
NITB
Northern Ireland Tourist Board
LEDU
Local Economic Development Unit (now part of Invest NI)
NILGA
Northern Ireland Local Government Association
NISRA
Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency
PPP
Public / Private Partnership
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
INDEX
Chapter
Page
LEGISLATIVE FRAMEWORK …………………………………………..
Commission Decisions ……………………………………………………
Council and Commission Regulations ………………………………......
[7]
FOREWARD – REPORT OUTLINE ……………………………………..
[8]
1.
1.1
1.2
1.3
1.4
1.5
1.6
1.7
1.8
1.9
1.10
1.11
NORTHERN IRELAND CONTEXT ………………………………………
Northern Ireland as a Region ……………………………………………..
New Institutional Arrangements …………………………………………..
Devolving Power ……………………………………………………………
Northern Ireland Assembly ………………………………………………..
Executive Committee ………………………………………………………
The Civic Forum …………………………………………………...……….
Local Government in Northern Ireland ………………………………......
Berlin Council Outcome – A Region in Transition ………………………
Programme for Government .……………………………….……………..
Lisbon Strategy ……………………………………………………………..
Economic Growth and Competitiveness Programming …………………
2.
2.1
2.2
2.3
2.4
2.5
2.7
2.8
2.9
2.10
2.11
2.12
2.13
2.14
2.15
2.16
PROGRAMME RATIONALE …………………………………………….. [43-51]
Background ………………………………………………………………….
Ex-ante evaluation ………………………………………………………….
Consultation on the Draft Plan (Jan 1999-Nov 1999) …………………..
Link with Northern Ireland CSF Priorities ………………………………..
Structure of the Northern Ireland Programme for Building ……………..
Sustainable Prosperity 2000-2006 ………………………………………..
Overall Aim of the Northern Ireland Programme for Building ………….
Sustainable Prosperity ……………………………………………………..
Accountability ……………………………………………………………….
Balanced Intervention/Equal Opportunities ………………………………
New Targeting Social Need ………………………………………………..
Economic and Social Sustainability ……………………………………….
Operationalisation …………………………………………………………..
Partnership …………………………………………………………………..
Locally Based Decision Making Delivery Mechanisms ………………..
Publicity/Transparency …………………………………………………….
Co-ordination ………………………………………………………………..
Environmental Sustainability ………………………………………..…….
3.
OPERATIONAL FRAMEWORK ………………………………………….
3.1
3.2
3.3
3.4
Background …………………………………………………………………
The Programme Monitoring Committee …………………………………
Managing Authority ………………………………………………………..
Paying Authority ……………………………………………………………
2.6
3
[9-42]
[52-71]
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Chapter
3.5
3.6
3.7
3.8
3.9
Page
3.10
3.11
3.12
3.13
3.14
3.15
Information and Publicity………………………………………..………
Working Groups …………………. …………………………..………...
Monitoring of Environmental Sustainability …………………………..
Annual Implementation Reporting and Annual Review Meeting …..
Summary of significant difficulties in Implementation of the
Programme ……………………………………………………………
Monitoring Indicators …………………………………………………...
Mid-term Evaluation …………………………………………………….
The Performance Reserve …………………………………………….
Electronic Data Exchange …………………………………….……….
Ex-post Evaluation ……………………………………………………..
Major Projects and Global Grants ……………………………………
4.
FINANCIAL IMPLEMENTATION AND CONTROL …………….…
5.
OVERVIEW OF PRIORITIES ………………………………..………..
6.
6.1
6.2
6.3
6.4
6.5
PRIORITY 1 ……………………………………………………………. [104-204]
Introduction ………………………………………………..…………….
Implementation ……………………………………….…..……………..
State Aid Schemes ………………………………………..……………
Measure details for Measure 1.1 – Business Support………….…..
Measure details for Measure 1.2 – Research & Technology
Development & Technology Transfer.…………………………..…..
Measure details for Measure 1.3 – Tourism..………………………...
Measure details for Measure 1.4 – Local Economic Development ..
Measure details for Measure 1.5 – Information Society..……………
Measure details for Measure 1.6 – Roads & Transport..……………
Measure details for Measure 1.7 - Telecommunications……………
Measure details for Measure 1.8 – Energy……………………………
6.6
6.7
6.8
6.9
6.10
6.11
[72-90]
[91-103]
7.
7.1
7.2
PRIORITY 2 ……………………………………………………………… [205-217]
Introduction ………………………………………………………………
Measure details for Measure 2.5 – Energy & Training ICT &
Information Support. ………………………………………………….
8.
8.1
8.2
8.3
8.4
8.5
8.6
PRIORITY 3 …………………………………………………………….. [218-252]
Introduction ………………………………………………………………
Implementation ………………………………………………………….
Measure details for Measure 3.1 – Urban Revitalisation ….………..
Measure details for Measure 3.2 – Advice & Information Services ..
Measure details for Measure 3.3 – Community Sustainability .……..
Measure details for Measure 3.4 – Investing in Early Learning …….
9.
9.1
9.2
PRIORITY 5 ……………………………………………………………… [253-268]
Introduction ……………………………………………………………….
Measure Details for Measure 5.1 – Sustainability Management of
the Environment and Promotion of the Natural and Built Heritage
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Chapter
10.
10.1
10.2
Page
PRIORITY 6 …………………………………………………………….. [269-283]
Introduction ……………………………………………………………….
Measure Details for Measure 6.1 – Technical Assistance …………..
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
ANNEXES
Annex 1
Programme Financial Tables (Original and Final)
Annex 2
Programme Complement Financial Table changes
Annex 3
Detail of expenditure declared by year and by Measure
Annex 4
Indicator Tables - Achievements V Targets
Annex 5
List of project applications by Measure
Annex 6
Major Projects
Annex 7
Monitoring Committee Meeting minutes
Annex 8
BSP Annual Implementation Reports
Annex 9
Article 4 Guidance and checklist (original and updated)
Annex 10
Article 10 Guidance and checklist
Annex 11
Paying Authority Record of on-the-spot check
Annex 12
Internal Audit
Annex 13
Commission Audit findings
Systems Audit
24 -28 September 2001
Systems Audit
20 -24 June 2005
Project Audit
3 -7 April 2006
Project Audit
17-21 September 2007 (follow up)
Annex 14
Irregularities Guidance Note
Annex 15
Reported Irregularities – details as reported to
UK authorities
Annex 16
Recorded Irregularities
Annex 17
Equality Guide
Annex 18
General Publicity/Newsletters
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
LEGISLATIVE FRAMEWORK
CCI No
1999GB161PO007
Transitional Objective 1
Programme for Building Sustainable Prosperity
Northern Ireland
UK Member State
Programming Years
2000 – 2006 Multi Fund (ERDF 2000 – 2005)
Managing Authority:
Department of Finance and Personnel (DFP)
Paying Authority:
ERDF - Department of Finance and Personnel (DFP)
COMMISSION DECISIONS IN RESPECT OF 1999GB161 PO 007
ORIGINAL COMMISSION DECISION No C (2001) 637
22.03.2001
Revised Commission Decision C (2004) 5871 issued
30.12.2004
Revised Commission Decision C (2005) 2700 issued
07.07.2005
Revised Commission Decision C (2006) 7159 issued
21.12.2006
Revised Commission Decision C (2006) 3424 issued
01.08.2006
Applicable Regulations:
Council Regulation (EC) No 1260/1999 – General Regulation
Council Regulation (EC) No 1783/1999 – ERDF Regulation
Commission Regulation (EC) No 643/2000 – Use of the Euro
Commission Regulation (EC) No 1159/2000 – Information and Publicity
Commission Regulation (EC) No 1685/2000 – Eligibility (as amended by Commission
Regulation (EC) No 448/2004)
Commission Regulation (EC) No 438/2001 – Management and Control Systems (as
amended by Commission regulation (EC) No 2355/2002)
Commission Regulation (EC) No 448/2001 – Financial Corrections
Commission Regulation (EC) No 1681/1994 – Irregularities and Recoveries (as amended
by Commission Regulation (EC) No 2035/2005)
Applicable State Aid Schemes are detailed in the Priority 1 summary.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
REPORT OUTLINE
This is the closure report on ERDF activities that took place within the 2000-06 NI
Building Sustainable Prosperity (BSP) Programme. This report has been
produced by the European Division of the Department of Finance and Personnel
acting as Managing Authority for the Programme.
This ERDF closure report on implementation is one of three documents required
by the Commission to formally close the ERDF element of the programme. The
other two documents are the certified statement of final expenditure, including a
final payment application and a declaration on the winding-up of the assistance
by the audit bodies for the programme.
The Programme for Building Sustainability Prosperity (BSP) is a multi-funded
operational programme with contributions from the European Regional
Development Fund (ERDF), the European Social Fund (ESF), the European
Agricultural Guidance and Guarantee Fund (EAGGF)and the Financial
Instrument for Fisheries Guidance (FIFG and is structured in such a way that the
final eligibility date for the ERDF element was 31 December 2007 with the
exception of Measures with notified State Aids Schemes – these had a final
eligibility date of 30 April 2008. The remaining Funds closed on 31 December
2008. This report addresses only the ERDF assistance delivered under the BSP
Programme and has been structured to read as a stand alone report particularly
with regard to Priority and Measure progress but has in parts covered general
updates in relation to social economic review of the NI Economy which will form
part of the overall final report.
This report was approved by the permanent members of the BSP Monitoring
Committee through written procedure on 15 July 2009.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
CHAPTER 1: NORTHERN IRELAND CONTEXT
1.1
Northern Ireland as a Region
Northern Ireland is one of four territories of the United Kingdom. It is bounded by
the Atlantic Ocean on the North, the Irish Sea on the East and sharing a land
border with Ireland to West and South.
It has a population of some 1.7 million (approximately 2½% of the UK total) living
in an area of 13576km2. Approximately half of the total population is situated on
the eastern seaboard with two thirds living within a 50km radius of the capital,
Belfast.
1.2
New Institutional Arrangements
Northern Ireland had its own Parliament from 1921 to 1973. The Unionists –
mainly representing the majority community – held a permanent majority and
formed the regional government. Consequently, Nationalists – representing the
minority community – did not play a significant role in the Government and public
life during this period. The Government had full responsibility for local affairs,
with the exception of defence, foreign and trade policies, taxation and customs.
A civil rights movement came to the fore in the late sixties seeking social and
economic reforms. Major rallies were opposed by many Unionists and civil unrest
and street violence ensued.
The deteriorating situation caused the British
Government to assume direct responsibility for Northern Ireland affairs and
security in 1972.
Since then, successive British Governments have tried to
establish, through negotiations with the Northern Ireland political parties, a locally
accountable Northern Ireland administration commanding widespread support
from the Unionist and Nationalist communities.
Despite many political initiatives, it was not until the Belfast Agreement was
concluded in April 1998 that arrangements for devolved administration in
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Northern Ireland were agreed. The elements of the Agreement reflected the three
strands of relationship identified in previous negotiations in 1990/91. Namely the
relationship between the communities in Northern Ireland, the relationship
between the North of Ireland and the remainder of Ireland and between the
London and Dublin governments.
Following the Agreement and its overwhelming endorsement by the people of
Northern Ireland and Ireland, elections to a shadow Assembly took place in June
1998.
Under the Westminster legislation which underpinned the Belfast Agreement, it
was the responsibility of the Secretary of State to lay a devolution order to enable
powers to be transferred to the new Assembly.
On the provision that the
Secretary of State was satisfied that sufficient progress had been made and in
December 1999 the Devolution Order was signed.
1.3
Devolving Power to the People of Northern Ireland
On the same date, power was devolved to the Northern Ireland Assembly, its
Executive Committee of Ministers, the North/South Ministerial Council,
North/South Implementation Bodies, British-Irish Council and British-Irish Intergovernmental Conference became fully functioning institutions. A Civic Forum
was also established to advise on social, economic and cultural issues.
In June 1998, 108 Members were elected to the New Northern Ireland Assembly,
with the functions of the 11 Departments agreed by the Assembly in February
1999.
1.4
Northern Ireland Assembly
The Assembly is the prime source of authority for all devolved responsibilities. It
has full legislative and executive authority - the power to make laws and take
decisions on all the functions of the Northern Ireland Departments.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
1.5
Executive Committee
The Assembly elected, on a cross-community basis, a First Minister, a Deputy
First Minister and ten Ministers with responsibility for the Northern Ireland
Departments.
Its purpose is to discuss and agree on issues which cut across the
responsibilities of two or more Ministers, prioritising executive business and
recommending a common position as necessary.
The Executive seeks to agree each year and review as necessary, a programme
of government with an agreed budget.
This is subject to approval by the
Assembly after scrutiny in Assembly Committees on a cross-community basis.
1.6
The Civic Forum
The Civic Forum consists of 60 members made up of representatives from
business, trade union, voluntary and other sectors of the Northern Ireland
community. The Chairperson is appointed by the First Minister and Deputy First
Minister.
The Civic Forum acts as a consultative mechanism on social, economic and
cultural matters. More detailed information on the Civil Forum is available on
www.ofmdfmni.gov.uk/civic_forum.
1.7
Local Government in Northern Ireland
The system of local government has been in operation in its current form since
1973 consisting of a single tier of 26 District Councils based on the main
population centres. The Districts vary considerably in area and resources with
populations ranging from 15,400 to 283,600 persons.
There are 582 councillors in the 26 Districts and Councillors are elected for a 4year term of office under proportional representation, using the single
transferable vote system.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
All District Councils have the same range of functions though a different
emphasis may be placed on them in some areas (e.g. tourist functions in the
coastal areas).
Their functions can be divided into 3 groups – direct;
representative; and
consultative.
Direct functions give Councils the responsibility for a wide range of local
services. These include the provision and management of recreational, social,
community and cultural facilities; environmental health; refuse collection and
disposal; street cleansing; the provision and management of tourist development
facilities; promotion of economic development; consumer protection; the
enforcement of building regulations; litter prevention; management of cemeteries
and crematoria; miscellaneous licensing registration provisions and dog control.
Representative functions permit councils to nominate representatives to sit as
members of various statutory bodies established to administer regional services
such as education and library services, health and social services, drainage
services and fire protection.
Consultative functions allow councils to represent the views of their population
on the way in which regional services are operated throughout each District.
This consultative role covers functions such as planning, roads, water and
conservation, which are centrally administered and where there is an obligation,
either by statute or by voluntary agreement to consult District Councils about
proposals affecting their district area.
Councils employ some 8,500 people and are responsible for substantial public
funds – in 1998/99 £406m.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
1.8
Berlin Council Outcome – A Region in Transition
At the Berlin Council in March 1999 the Heads of State and Government decided
to allocate 260 billion Euros1 to structural measures in the European Union for
the period 2000-2006.
The Northern Ireland Programme for Building Sustainable Prosperity was a
Transitional Objective 1 Operational programme and was part of the practical
procedure to direct the spend of EU Structural Funds. It follows on from the
strategic aims and objectives of the Northern Ireland Region agreed between the
Northern Ireland Authorities and the European Commission as set out in the
Community Support Framework (CSF) for Northern Ireland.
The CSF was
formally adopted by the Commission in December 2000 and represented the
convergence of the Regional strategic aims and spending priority embodies in
the draft Programme for Government and the socio-economic priorities of the
European Union.
1.9
Programme for Government
In early 2001, the First and Deputy First Ministers issued on behalf of the
Executive Committee the draft Programme for Government. This set out their
vision, as recorded in the Belfast Agreement, of a “peaceful, inclusive,
prosperous, stable and fair society” together with their proposed strategic
aims and priorities to be pursued, working with and for all the people of Northern
Ireland.
The Northern Ireland Programme for Building Sustainable Prosperity represents
the convergence of the Executive Committee’s strategic objectives and those of
the European Union supported by Structural Funds.
The Executive Committee of the Assembly retains a close interest in the
allocation and management of the Structural Funds in Northern Ireland. The
Minister of Finance and Personnel chairs the Community Support Framework
(CSF) Monitoring Committee, which is tasked with overseeing all of the Structural
1
The amount allocated at the Berlin Council has been indexed at a flat rate of 2% over the period.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Funds including The Northern Ireland Programme for Building Sustainable
Prosperity, PEACE II and the Community Initiatives. His deputies are the two
Junior Ministers representing the office of the First and Deputy First Ministers.
(The following sections 1.10 and 1.11 relate to the overall BSP Programme)
1.10
Lisbon Strategy
In March 2000, at the Lisbon European Council, the leaders of Europe committed
themselves to a ten-year programme of economic reform designed to advance a
new strategic goal for the European Union. This would enable the EU to become
“the most competitive and dynamic knowledge-based economy in the
world, capable of sustainable economic growth with more and better jobs
and greater social cohesion”. The Lisbon Strategy is underpinned by a series
of targets, agreed at the Lisbon European Council and in Stockholm, Gothenburg
and Barcelona.
The Lisbon Strategy involves a number of targets under a range of key themes.
Examples of some of the areas that inform the key themes are as follows:
•
Employment – More and Better Jobs.
•
Innovation and Research.
•
Economic Reform.
•
Social Cohesion.
•
Sustainable Development.
•
Environment.
A mid-term Review of the Lisbon Strategy was conducted in 2005 to assess the
progress by Member States and the impact of the strategy. In February 2005 the
European Commission presented a revised strategy for the EU to create more
growth and jobs. New integrated Guidelines were endorsed by the European
Council in June 2005. Detailed below are a number of indicators that assess
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Northern Ireland’s progress with regard to the Lisbon Strategy targets and within
the context of the BSP Programme.
The Lisbon Strategy places importance on sustainable economic growth and in
general terms the economic outlook for Northern Ireland has been positive. For
example, Northern Ireland Gross Value Added per head has shown a growth
consistent with that of the UK over the period 1999 to 2007 64.0% in Northern
Ireland and 61.4% across the UK. Total GVA for Northern Ireland increased by
72.7% in nominal terms over the period 1997 to 2007. In terms of productivity,
NI’s GVA per hour worked is at 83.9% of the UK average for 2006.
Manufacturing productivity has also made a recovery in recent years whilst
tourism revenue has continued to grow since 2001.
Employment levels
experienced a period of growth between 1999 and 2006 recording an increase of
9.5% in the working age population in employment.
The number of people
registered as unemployed in Northern Ireland has dramatically decreased since
the late 1990s. The unemployment rate has improved from 7.4% in 1999 to
4.5% in 2006.
In Innovation and Research, Expenditure on R&D accounted for 0.62% of GVA
for Northern Ireland in 2007. This compares to 1.29% for the UK as a whole.
Northern Ireland businesses would have needed to invest some £190 million
more in R&D in 2007 to reach the UK average. The target set by the Lisbon
Strategy for expenditure on R&D is 3% of GVA by 2010. The BSP Programme
has a target to support 286 R&D projects throughout Northern Ireland and
support has already been given to 762 projects. This support will help Northern
Ireland towards increasing its R&D expenditure.
Regarding innovation activities, 11% of NI firms have co-operation arrangements
on technological innovation activities with other enterprises or institutions
compared with 8.2% across the UK as a whole. In addition, 3% of turnover
amongst NI businesses is attributable to new or improved products compared to
the UK average of 8.6%.
In the three-year period 2002-2004, 57% of
enterprises in Northern Ireland were innovative active, comparing to the
equivalent UK figure of 63.6%.
The proportion of firms in Northern Ireland
engaging in innovation activity has increased from 46% in 1998-2000 to 63% in
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
2002-04. Under Priority 1 of the BSP Programme there are measures to support
the development of Small, Medium Enterprises (SME) through innovating
practices, improved products and enhanced ICT and competitiveness.
In terms of entrepreneurial activity, the Global Enterprise Monitor UK Survey
shows that in 2008, 4.8% of the adult population in Northern Ireland were
involved in such activity compared with 5.8% for the UK. Northern Ireland has
surpassed Wales and Scotland in terms of VAT registrations with 32 per 10,000
populations in 2007, although this is still considerably short of the UK average of
42. Exports were estimated to be worth £5.46 billion in 2008, which represents
an increase of 8.6% over the year, and an increase of 56% over the nine year
period 1999 to 2008.
Under the employment theme, there are a number of measures under Priority 2
that aim to bring about high levels of employment and develop a skilled,
adaptable and entrepreneurial workforce and also to promote access to the
labour market for all and foster social inclusion. This is entirely consistent with
the Lisbon Strategy. The latest progress under the ESF policy fields show that
there have been around 190,000 annual participants of training funded by the
BSP Programme.
The employment rate in Northern Ireland stands at 68.8% (Oct-Dec 2008) of the
working age population (ages 15 to 59/64). This is significantly below the UK
rate of 74.1% and Northern Ireland is the lowest of the UK regions. Northern
Ireland has an employment rate of 66.4% for people aged from 15 to 64. This is
higher than the rate for the EU27, which currently stands at 65.9% but is
currently below both the Lisbon target of 70% and just reaches the Stockholm
intermediate target of 67%.
The need for training measure in Northern Ireland is justified by the fact that only
83.2% of economically active adults in NI are qualified in NVQ level 1 or above.
The UK figure is higher at 91.3%. At NVQ level 4 or above, the figures are
31.6% for Northern Ireland and 32.9% for the UK. For 16-19 year olds, 56.1%
are qualified to NVQ level 2 or above in Northern Ireland compared to 63.6% in
the UK as a whole, whereas for NVQ level 3 or above the figures are 21.4% for
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Northern Ireland and 23.9% for the UK. For those within employment, 9.1% of
employees received job-related training within the last 4 weeks compared to
14.3% across the UK as a whole. This information demonstrates the positive
role that the BSP Programme plays in helping to achieve a better skilled
workforce and increase levels of employment and economic activity.
The environment also plays a key role in the Lisbon Strategy. Within the BSP
Programme, Measure 5.1 aims to understand and manage the growing
pressures on the environment and also develop a proper awareness and
understanding of the environment.
The Measure itself has supported the
completion of 4 water treatment plants and 2 sewage treatment plants. This
helps Northern Ireland meet the EU Directives on the drinking water as well as
sewage and purification.
In addition to treatment plants, Measure 5.1 has
supported a waste awareness campaign and an air quality project which will help
towards complying with the Air Quality strategy. These activities are consistent
with the aim of the Lisbon Strategy with regard to the environment.
1.11
Economic Growth and Competitiveness Programming
Socio Economic Review
Although the global economy has weakened considerably since mid-2008, the
Northern Ireland economy at the macro level had improved over the 2000 -2006
period, boasting record high levels of employment and solid rates of economic
growth. The UK’s strong macro economic fundamentals and strong growth in
public expenditure have contributed towards Northern Ireland’s positive
performance up to 2008. Improvement had been made across most industry
sectors, particularly in the Service sector. However in Q4 2008, The UK’s
economy entered official recession with two consecutive quarters of GDP
contraction. This translates into a change in the socio-economic conditions with a
decrease in employment, a rise in unemployment and contraction in the
Construction and Services sectors. However, these changes happened after the
ERDF element of the BSP Programme had been completed. Therefore,
throughout the 2000-2006 period there were no changes to the socio-economic
conditions that required a change to the ERDF strategy.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
During the life of the BSP Programme and until the change in Global economic
conditions, Northern Ireland had experienced a sustained period of growth. In
addition, the unemployment rate had moved from being the highest amongst UK
regions to a much more favourable position below the UK average (joint second
lowest). At the macro level the economy gives a generally positive impression
however, a number of areas at the micro level still require further attention. In
the labour market, economic activity rates have shown little sign of improvement
from 2001 to 2008 and the inactivity rate remains the highest amongst the UK
regions.
The
main
contributor
to
the
production
industries,
namely
manufacturing, has experienced heavy job losses since 1999 even though output
growth within the industry has been positive. Indeed, Gross Value Added (GVA)
estimates released in December 2008 indicate that whilst there has been steady
year-on-year growth for Northern Ireland, impact has been minimal in relation to
the overall UK position post-1999. Whilst improving upon the UK average, by
April 2008, median gross weekly earnings for full-time employees across the UK
regions were reported lowest for workers in Northern Ireland.
Main Changes since the Implementation of the Programme
In 2007, elections led to a restoration of the Northern Ireland Assembly in May.
This new found stability created a positive and optimistic environment to help
enable Northern Ireland to move forward.
The new Northern Ireland Executive’s aim is to ‘build a peaceful, fair and
prosperous society in Northern Ireland, with respect for the rule of law and
where everyone can enjoy a better quality of life now and in years to come’.
This is to be achieved through the new Programme for Government. The key
priorities for the Programme for Government are as follows:
•
Growing a dynamic, innovative economy;
•
Promote tolerance, inclusion and health and well-being;
•
Protect and enhance our environment and natural resources;
•
Invest to build our infrastructure; and
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
•
Deliver modern high quality and efficient public services;
Although there have been changes in socio-economic conditions, most of these
reflect ongoing trends that were evident at the outset of the Programme.
However, it must be noted that while there are areas that have seen positive
change since 1999, there are others that continue to be problematic.
For
example, the size and spending power of the public sector continues to largely
influence economic growth irrespective of private sector achievement.
Unemployment rates have continued to decline but longer-term unemployment is
still a major problem, which is proving difficult to address.
Nevertheless, employment in Northern Ireland remains at record high levels with
total employee jobs totalling 717,070 as at September 2007 and this upward
trend has been evident since 1993. The agricultural sector has continued to
struggle and is expected to continue to face challenges following the most recent
CAP reforms as well as the cost and practical problems involved in the delivery
of a range of EU environmental directives. The recent downturn in the global
economy occurred after the ERDF element of the BSP Programme had been
completed.
Relative impact of socio-economic developments
The new Programme for Government continues to focus on infrastructure
investment and on reform and modernisation of public services across its
priorities.
This focus has been further enhanced by the publication of an
‘Investment Strategy for Northern Ireland’ announced in March 2006 by the
Strategic Investment Board.
The Strategy contains blueprint for transforming
Northern Ireland into a successful, competitive, regional economy with high
quality public services. As noted by the Secretary of State, “we are clearly
signalling Government’s strong commitment to taking forward major
programmes of work including education, health and transport and, of
course, those areas that fall within EU compliance”.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
The Northern Ireland Sustainable Development Strategy announced in May 2006
set out a commitment to build sustainable communities founded on economic
growth and a high quality environment.
It recognised that prosperity and
sustainable development are inextricably linked and that the concept of
sustainable development should underpin all aspects of policy-making and
decisions.
Furthermore the Review of Public Administration, announced in November 2005,
detailed large-scale re-structuring of local government, health and education
authorities.
In addition, the ‘Economic Vision for Northern Ireland’ set out a
strategic vision which ‘aims to ensure that Northern Ireland benefits from the
Government’s long-term focus on faster economic growth and improving
living standards across the United Kingdom’.
This is further support for the former Executive’s key priorities and is in line with
UK policy.
There have been a number of positives regarding the economic conditions within
Northern Ireland where growth in the economy has continued throughout 2008,
although several challenges remain, particularly in the traditional and low value
added sectors. In fact, the focus of the BSP Programme is entirely consistent
with the government’s strategy on improving productivity, through innovation,
entrepreneurship, skills and investment.
One current challenge to continued growth in the economy is the increasingly
global nature of the marketplace. As a small open economy Northern Ireland
cannot insulate itself from global economic developments. Not only is Northern
Ireland facing increased competition from new competitors such as China, India
and the EU Accession countries, but also the business cost base is rising.
However, globalization also presents a number of opportunities for firms to
become more outward looking and to take advantage of new markets.
This is the challenge facing businesses in not only Northern Ireland but across all
EU regions over the next few years and the importance being placed on
20
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
competitiveness in the marketplace is consistent with the Lisbon Strategy. The
current state of the global economy has also exacerbated the challenge facing
businesses in not just Northern Ireland but across Europe and the rest of the
World.
Expenditure on Research and Development (R&D) is a key area in developing
the economy.
Northern Ireland continues to have relatively low levels of
expenditure on R&D in comparison with the rest of the UK. Recent years has
seen R&D expenditure growing at a faster rate than the UK. In particular, Higher
Education in Northern Ireland is above the UK average and is an area which has
been and will continue to be concentrated on.
This improvement can be
attributed directly to the funding received through the BSP Programme.
Improvements have also been made in the manufacturing sector as Northern
Ireland gradually moves to higher value added sectors (as noted in the CSF exante in 1999). However, there is still much to do for improvements to continue
both in R&D expenditure and in the manufacturing sector and help close the gap
in economic performance with the UK and other EU regions - a key priority of the
Lisbon Strategy.
It has become apparent that the general socio-economic conditions that underpin
the strategy for the BSP Programme did not change significantly within the
Programme period to warrant a change in policy. The subsequent downturn in
the World Economy will have repercussions for the 2007-2013 Programming
period.
GDP/GVA
Gross Value Added (GVA) is used globally as a measure of economic
performance. The latest available data (2007) shows that in Northern Ireland
GVA per capita increased by 64.0%, in nominal terms, between 1997 and 2007
compared to the overall average UK growth rate of 61.4%.
21
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
GVA per head 1997 - 2007
23 000
21 000
19 000
17 000
15 000
£
United Kingdom
Northern Ireland
13 000
11 000
9 000
7 000
5 000
1997
1998
1999
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
20074
Year
In the early 1990s Northern Ireland experienced much greater growth in GVA
compared to the UK. The relatively higher growth rates during this time can be
attributed to the fact that Northern Ireland was spared many of the detrimental
effects of the UK recession of the early 1990s. However, in the latter half of the
period, Northern Ireland’s growth rates are much more in line with the UK.
Growth in GVA 1990-2007
10.0
9.0
% growth from previous year's GVA
8.0
7.0
6.0
United Kingdom
5.0
Northern Ireland
4.0
3.0
2.0
1.0
0.0
1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007
Year
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
As a percentage of UK GVA per capita, the Northern Ireland position has risen
slightly from 80% in 1997 to 81% in 2007.
Generally, Northern Ireland has
remained around 80% of the UK GVA per capita average over the 1997-2007
period.
2008 GVA Figures for UK and its regions will not be available until December
2009. However, UK Gross Domestic Product (GDP) contracted by 0.6 per cent
in the second quarter of 2009. UK GDP is 5.5 per cent lower than the second
quarter figure for 2008. The UK has experienced negative growth in GDP for the
past 5 quarters (Negative growth appearing first in Q2 2008). This negative
growth is likely to impact on the future estimates of UK and NI GVA. This is
evident in the total employee jobs figure of 709,040 (June 2009) which
represents a decrease of 5,470 over the quarter and a decrease of 25,450 (3%)
over the year.
Output
Whilst output measures have shown downward trends since 2008 there was an
upward trend in output throughout much of the 2000 – 2006 period which is
evidenced in the various Annual Implementation Reports (AIRs) for the BSP
Programme. Therefore, the socio-economic conditions presented in the AIRs
demonstrated that there was no need for a change to the strategy of the
Programme.
The Index of Production is a quarterly survey of almost 600 companies and is
designed to provide a general measure of changes in the output of the
Manufacturing, Electricity, Gas and Water, and Mining and Quarrying industries.
Results from the Northern Ireland Index of Production for the first quarter of 2009
show that output levels fell over the quarter in real terms (-3.4%). This is the
fourth consecutive quarter in which output has fallen after peaking in Q1 2008.
Revisions to the Index have shifted the peak from that previously reported (Q2
2008). Over the year NI Production levels fell by 9.0%.
Output from all the production industries fell by 9% over the year to Q1 of 2009 in
Northern Ireland, with the manufacturing component of this increasing by 3.5%.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
In contrast, the UK figures for all production industries decreased by 2.6% over
the same period. Manufacturing is typically the main determinant of change in
the production sector and continues to maintain an important position within the
Northern Ireland economy.
Within Northern Ireland, the manufacturing sub-
section that showed the greatest increase over the year to Q3 2008 was Food,
Drink and Tobacco (11.5%), while the sub-section showing the greatest decrease
in output was Non-metallic Mineral Products (-20.9%).
Output of the Production Industries
Production
Industries
Index 2001=100
140
130
Mining &
Quarrying
120
110
Manufacturing
100
90
Electricity, Gas
& Water
80
Q1
2001
Q1
2002
Q1
2003
Q1
2004
Q1
2005
Year
Q1
2006
Q1
2007
Q1
2008
Q1
2009
As a result of increasing demand for better performance of the service sector in
Northern Ireland, the Department for Enterprise, Trade and Investment has
developed a new experimental quarterly inquiry into the Distribution and Services
sector. The survey is designed to provide a general measure of changes in
output of the private service sector industries. The Index of Services for the Q3 of
2008 show that output levels decreased by an estimated 0.3% over the quarter
and by 3.5% compared to the same quarter one year earlier. This is the fifth
consecutive quarterly fall in the overall services index for NI.
Northern Ireland’s decrease over the quarter (-0.3%) is less than that for the UK
as a whole which decreased by an estimated 0.5%. In historical terms, Northern
Ireland Services have increased by 24.3% from Q1 of 2001 to Q3 of 2008, similar
to an estimated increase of 23.8% for the UK as a whole over the same period.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Northern Ireland Index of Services
135
All Services
130
Distribution Wholesale and
Retail
Hotels &
Restaurants
Index 2001=100
125
120
115
110
Transport,
Storage and
Communication
Business
Services &
Finance
Other Services
105
100
95
90 Q3
2001
Q3
2002
Q3
2003
Q3
2004
Q3
2005
Q3
2006
Q3
2007
Q3
2008
Year
The Index of Construction (indexed to 2000) provides a Q3 2008 figure of 94.8,
down 3.6 points on the corresponding quarter of 2007. This continues the overall
downward trend in output, since the second quarter of 2007. The main drivers
behind the overall decrease in construction output are the decreases in the
output of new work in general and housing. With specific regard to output, the
estimated seasonally adjusted value (at 2000 prices) was £525 million in Q3 of
2008, a decrease of 4.8% on the previous quarter (£546 million) and a decrease
of 6.1% on the corresponding quarter in 2007 (£557 million).
Productivity
Economic growth in Northern Ireland is largely driven by productivity growth,
which can be measured as output per hour worked. GVA per hour worked in
Northern Ireland as a proportion of the UK decreased from 87.2% in 1999 to
83.9% in 2006. Productivity levels in Northern Ireland are considerably lower
than the UK average, with Northern Ireland being the least productive region
within the UK. Differences between Northern Ireland and UK productivity rates
partly reflect higher growth rates in hours worked and employee jobs, as well as
differences in the composition of the local economy compared to other UK
regions. Northern Ireland continues to work longer hours on average and the
gap between Northern Ireland and the UK is widening. Despite the increased
growth in total hours worked in Northern Ireland, its productivity relative to the UK
continues to fall, indicating that GVA in Northern Ireland has not grown in
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
proportion to the rise in the total workforce hours worked in the region. This
suggests that the recent employment growth has been primarily in low value
added sectors.
GVA per hour worked 1999 - 2006
Indexed to UK average (UK = 100)
105
100
1999
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
United Kingdom
95
North East
Wales
England
90
Scotland
Northern Ireland
85
80
Year
The four key drivers of productivity, identified in the Economic Vision for Northern
Ireland as a means to achieving regionally balanced growth are Innovation,
Enterprise, Skills and Investment.
In summary, Northern Ireland exhibits relatively low levels of productivity
because:
Northern Ireland businesses invest less in innovation activity;
entrepreneurial activity is well below the UK average; there are poor skills levels
in the existing Northern Ireland workforce; and investment in infrastructure has
been historically lower compared to UK.
Innovation
The resource devoted R&D within a region is an indicator of the degree of
innovation. R&D activity is therefore an essential component in the drive towards
a competitive economy that can develop new products/processes in response to
changing demands and market conditions.
Total expenditure on Research and Development (R&D) in Northern Ireland was
£351.1 million in 2007, representing a rise of 6.2% in cash terms (3.1% real
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
terms) from the 2006 figure. For the last three years Northern Ireland Business
has accounted for a greater share of total R&D expenditure than the Higher
Education sector (52.7% compared with 43.1% in 2007, 50.5% compared with
45.4% in 2006 and 49.1% compared with 46.5 in 2005). Higher Education
expenditure fell in real terms by £3.2 million (-2.1%) while Government
expenditure increased by £0.6 million over the year. Business R&D expenditure
rose by £13.3 million (7.7%) in real terms on the previous year.
Human resources are another innovation performance indicator. The number of
science and technology graduates in Northern Ireland compare favourably to the
other EU member states and the EU27 average. However, at present Northern
Ireland has fewer science and technology graduates per 1,000 persons than the
UK. More generally, despite Northern Ireland continuing to have high rates of
participation in Higher Education, student migration away from Northern Ireland
continues to persist with nearly 30% of Northern Ireland students moving away to
study for their degree and not returning. The proportion of school leavers
continuing on to Higher Education has increased by 4.4 percentage points from
32.9% in 2000/01 to 38.5% in 2006/07, whereas the proportion continuing on to
Institutions of Further Education increased by 0.2% from 27.2% in 2000/01 to
27.4% in 2005/06. The proportion of pupils unemployed after leaving school
decreased between 2000/01 and 2006/07 from 4.2% to 3.3%.
Enterprise
Enterprise heightens competition within the market and provides an entry point
for innovative techniques and technology. The Global Entrepreneurship Monitor
(GEM) provides a measure of entrepreneurial activity within a global context.
Despite entrepreneurial activity increasing on the 2002 figure (3.7%), to 4.8% of
the population in 2008, Northern Ireland remains with Scotland, Yorkshire and
the Humber, and the North East, as the UK regions which have the lowest level
of entrepreneurial activity. In 2008, Northern Ireland’s entrepreneurial activity was
87% of the UK (5.5%).
In addition, Northern Ireland had the highest fear of
failure rates in the UK. Within an international context, comparisons with the
participating countries from the EU highlight that entrepreneurial activity in
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Northern Ireland is higher than Belgium, Demark, Germany and Italy. The level
of female entrepreneurship in Northern Ireland in 2008 is the lowest of all the UK
regions at 2.3%. The gap between male and female entrepreneurship is the
lowest in the UK regions but this may simply be due to the male TEA being the
lowest in the UK, 2.8% below the UK average male TEA. For the first time since
2002 young adults (25-34 year olds) in Northern Ireland have above UK average
levels of entrepreneurial activity (7.9%). While graduates are more likely to be
entrepreneurs than any other qualification group in Northern Ireland, graduates
are less likely than all but two UK regions (Scotland and the North West) to be
entrepreneurs.
Northern Ireland’s entrepreneurial activity (as measured by VAT registrations per
10,000 adult population) was below the UK average. However in 2007, analysis
of the Inter-Departmental Business Register (IDBR) revealed that there were
58,135 businesses in Northern Ireland registered for VAT, this represented an
increase of 2.6% over the year with a higher rate of growth compared to the UK
(1.7%). The largest increase over the year in the number of VAT registered
businesses occurred within the Property and Business services sector.
Northern Ireland has much higher business survival rates compared to the rest of
the UK. Approximately 78.5% of NI Businesses were still trading three years
after registering for VAT (2002), compared to UK rate of 71.3%.
However,
convergence from 1997 survival rates may reflect increasing competition in the
Northern Ireland economy.
In other words, it is likely that a decreasing
percentage of firms will survive for more than three years as the market becomes
more competitive.
The information on business survival rates comes from DETI’s edition 10 of the
“facts and figures from the IDBR” report which was published in June 2008.
Skills
Across the UK, substantial variations in educational achievement at school and
university exist, in most cases a strong performance at 16 is carried through to
the percentage of the population with a degree or equivalent. While education
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
attainment has been high in Northern Ireland relative to the UK, this has not
always translated into the labour market.
Even though Northern Ireland
compares reasonably in terms of the proportion of the working age adults with a
high level of qualifications at levels 2 and 3, Northern Ireland has a
disproportionately high level of working age persons with no qualifications.
The most recent Skills Monitoring Survey (2005) identifies various data relating to
skills gaps in Northern Ireland. The same proportion of employers (13%) in both
the private sector and the public sector reported a skills gap among some of their
existing staff. This perception varied between employers of different sizes as
well as across various locations. For example, only 11% of smaller employers
(those with 1-4 employees) reported a skills gap compared to 22% of larger
employers (50+ employees). Reasons cited by employers for the lack of full
proficiency among staff included: lack of experience (42%); the introduction of
new technology (28%); and new skills needed for the development of new
products (27%). The skills monitoring survey is the most recent publication from
DEL’s Skills Unit.
Fieldwork for the next skills monitoring survey has been
completed and a report is being drafted, however there is no set publication date.
Investment
In terms of technological infrastructure, Northern Ireland has benefited to a
significant extent from different EU Programmes, including the BSP Programme.
In particular Northern Ireland has achieved 100% broadband availability, which is
unique to Europe. Every household, business, school and library in Northern
Ireland now has the opportunity to access broadband regardless of location.
Northern Ireland has a broadband penetration rate of 51%, below the UK
average of 57% but significantly above the EU27 and ROI rates (42% and 31%
respectively). The Northern Ireland Business Monitor 2006/07 reports that 72%
of businesses surveyed had internet access with three industry sectors
(manufacturing, construction and professional services) having a penetration rate
for internet access well above 80%.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Transport
76.7 million tonnes of freight were transported by road in Northern Ireland by
vehicles weighing over 3.5 tonnes in 2007. [This is the most up to date
information NI transport Statistics 2007/08]. Crude minerals were the greatest
single commodity transported within Northern Ireland at 40.6% of all tonnes
moved. Of the 8,464 tonnes transported on international outward journeys, the
single largest commodity was building materials (38%).
There were 1,008,289 vehicles licensed in Northern Ireland by 31 December
2007, 83% of which were Private Light Goods Vehicles. Over the six-year period
from 1999 to 2007, the NI licensed vehicle stock increased by 39.5% compared
with 25.7% in Wales, 24.3% in Scotland and 18.8% in England. During 2007-08,
806,483 tonnes of petroleum were delivered for use in Northern Ireland, 6.2%
more than the 2006-07 figures.
During 2007-08 there were 9.5 million rail passenger journeys made, an increase
of 12% from 2006-07. This generated passenger receipts of approximately £25.1
million, a rise of 11% from the previous period. Between 2000 and 2006, the
number of terminal passengers, using both Belfast International Airport and
Belfast City Airport, increased by 61.2%. There were approximately 69.9 million
bus passenger journeys in Northern Ireland in 2007-08 accounting for £106.2
million in passenger receipts. This represents a rise in passenger journeys by
2.4 million from a 2006-07 figure of 67.5 million and an increase in passenger
receipts of 3.8% from just below £102.3 million in 2006-07.
Employment
Employment experienced a period of growth between the late 1999 and 2006,
recording an increase of 9.5% in the working age population in employment
between Spring 1999 and Spring 2006.
30
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Working Age Employment
760
740
(,000s) of persons
720
700
680
Working Age Employment
660
640
620
600
1999
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
The number of persons in employment in the period October–December 2008
was 774,000. This represents a decrease of 14,000 over the quarter and 9,000
over the year. The working age employment rate is estimated at 68.8%, down
1.2% over the same quarter and 1.0% from a year earlier. Northern Ireland’s
working age employment rate remained well below the UK average (74.1%) and
was the lowest among the UK regions. Within an international context, latest
figures indicate that Northern Ireland compares favourably with the EU27. Using
harmonised employment rates, based on a population aged between 15-64 years
for both males and females for EU countries, Northern Ireland’s employment rate
is currently 66.7%. This is below the UK employment rate of 71.3% and the
Republic of Ireland’s rate of 69.1% but 1.4% higher than the average EU27
employment rate (65.3%). Northern Ireland’s employment rate is currently above
the Lisbon target of an employment rate of 65% by 2005 but is currently below
the Lisbon target of a 70% employment rate by 2010.
Northern Ireland has experienced a period of sustained growth in terms of
employee jobs. From March 1998 to March 2008, employee jobs in Northern
Ireland have increased by 18.8%. Much of this growth is reflective of a growth in
the services and construction sectors for Northern Ireland.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Growth in employee jobs within the services sector has more than compensated
for the reduction in employee jobs experienced within Northern Ireland’s
manufacturing
sectors.
From
September
1998
to
September
2008,
manufacturing jobs fell by 18.7%.
NI employee jobs
Full-time
Part-time
All employees
130
125
Index 1999=100
120
115
110
105
100
95
90
1999
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008
Year
The seasonally adjusted number of economically inactive persons in the period
October – December 2008 was estimated at 559,000, up 9,000 over the quarter
and up 15,000 over the year.
The working age economic inactivity rate for
Northern Ireland is 27.4%. This is significantly higher than the UK average rate
(20.8%) and is the highest of the 12 UK regions.
Two labour market weaknesses in Northern Ireland are high inactivity rates and
low female participation compared to the UK. Northern Ireland has a higher
proportion of those who identify sickness or disability as the main reason for not
seeking employment (33%) compared to the UK (29%). Northern Ireland also
has a higher percentage of students that do not want a job (30%) compared to
the UK (27%).
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Unemployment
The number of people registered as unemployed in Northern Ireland has fallen
dramatically since the early 1990’s. To set in the context of the Programming
period, the Spring 2006 figure (36,000) was 19,000 less than it was six years
previous in Spring 1999 (55,000). This translates into a fall in the unemployment
rate from 7.4% to 4.5% over the programming period.
Northern Ireland had
moved from being historically the region with the highest unemployment rate to a
favourable position, amongst the UK regions with lowest unemployment rate.
Using the October-December 2008 figures (42,000) for comparison purposes, it
is clear how far Northern Ireland has moved from being historically the region
with the highest unemployment to a rate of 5.1% which compares favourably to
the UK average of 6.3%. During October- December 2008, Northern Ireland was
joint third lowest of the unemployment rates amongst the UK regions. Northern
Ireland’s unemployment rate is also below the EU27 average of 7.2%, (and
Ireland’s rate of 7.9%). In 2007, Eurostat estimate the unemployment rate for
those aged 15-24 years old to be 15.6% in EU27, 14.4% in UK and 9.4% in NI.
There is also a falling number of unemployed who come under the category of
long-term unemployed. The long-term unemployment rate fell from 47.6% in
October-December 1998 to 33.6% in October-December 2008. Although this has
been a significant reduction, a similar trend has been experienced across the UK
regions and as a result Northern Ireland’s relative position has altered little over
the last decade and remains the region with the highest long term unemployment
followed by the North West at 30.7%. For comparison purposes, latest available
figures from Eurostat show that in 2007, the long-term unemployment rate in
Northern Ireland was 36.6%, which was much higher than that of the UK average
at 23.9%, but less than EU27 average of 43.3%.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
% of Total Unemployed
Long-term Unemployment
50
45
40
35
30
25
20
15
10
5
0
EU27
UK
NI
ROI
Long-term Unemployment Rate
90
80
70
unemployed
longtermunemployedasa%of all
100
EU27
60
ROI
50
UK
40
NI
30
20
10
0
1999
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
year
Priority 2 influenced this area through the ESF policy fields. Under the Active
Labour Markets Measure there has been 49,503 (of which 33% are female)
annual participants, 7,539 qualifications gained, and 10,021 unemployed have
now entered employment. In fact 13,657 are now deemed to have achieved a
positive outcome under this Measure. Under the Equal Opportunities for All in
Accessing the Labour Market Measure there has been 43,128 (of which 39% are
female) annual participants, leading to 4,322 unemployed entering employment
to end 2008.
Adaptability and Entrepreneurship field records 52,765 (27%
female) annual participants, 27,112 qualifications gained and 1,570 people
achieving positive outcomes.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Income and Earnings
The median gross weekly earnings, taken from the Annual Survey of Hours and
Earnings (ASHE), for all employees in Northern Ireland 2008 were £346.50,
representing growth of 5.1% over the year.
Northern Ireland continues to
experience lower average earnings relative to the UK equivalent earnings of
£388.40. Comparable figures for the other UK regions indicate that Northern
Ireland had the lowest ranking median gross weekly earnings.
Over the period 2007-2008 the gender pay gap has been relatively unchanged in
Northern Ireland. As at April 2008 female full-time median hourly earnings
excluding overtime, were slightly less than male earnings (97.4%) in NI, this is in
comparison to 87.2% in the UK.
In 2008, public sector earnings (£498.80) were 32.3% higher than private sector
earnings (£377.10). In the UK, average weekly public sector earnings (£522.60)
were 13.6% higher than private sector earnings (£460.00).
NI Median Gross Weekly Earnings as % of UK
Men
Women
All
100
95
%
90
85
80
75
1999
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008
Year
Median gross weekly pay of full-time employees by industry shows that in April
2008, those employed in education were the highest earners (£628.50). This
compares to employees in hotels and restaurants where median gross weekly
pay was the lowest (£267.70). Average gross weekly earnings increased in 2008
in all areas of Northern Ireland. However, average gross weekly earnings of
people in rural areas are consistently below those of people living in urban areas
35
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
over the years from 2003 to 2008. During most of this period the evidence
suggested that the gap between rural and urban weekly earnings was widening.
However, this trend appears to be reversed in 2008 when the gap reduced.
Average gross weekly earnings per person
500
450
400
350
£
300
Urban
Accessible Rural
250
Rural
200
150
100
50
0
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008
year
UK regional estimates of Gross Disposable Household Income (GDHI) show that
over the past ten years the Northern Ireland position has remained steady
relative to the other regions. Along with the North East of England, Northern
Ireland has consistently had the lowest GDHI per head in the UK. In 2008, the
lowest household income per head was in the North East, £12,216, followed by
Northern Ireland at £12,472.
The composition of household income differs substantially between Northern
Ireland and the rest of the UK. Specifically, a greater proportion of household
income is derived from social security benefits. In 2006/2007, 64% (most up-todate figure) of Northern Ireland’s weekly household income was derived to
wages and salaries. The comparable figure for the UK was 65%. 10% of weekly
household income in Northern Ireland was in the form of social security
compared to 7% for the UK as a whole. Specifically, the proportion of people in
receipt of disability living allowance is two times higher than in the UK as a
whole.
Over the three years to 2004/05, Northern Ireland households have
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
consistently relied much more on benefits than their GB counterparts. However,
it should be noted that Northern Ireland has proportionately more households
with children under 16 than GB. This means that there are proportionately more
households in receipt of Child Benefit and Tax Credits than in GB and explains
some of the difference between reliance on benefits.
In May 2008, Northern Ireland had the highest proportion of income support
claimants of the UK regions and countries at 9.2% of 16-59 year olds; this is in
comparison to 8.2% in the North East and 8.3% in the North West. The UK’s
Department for Business Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (BERR) use the
proportion of Income Support claimants within a region as a measure of social
deprivation.
Agriculture
In 2008, provisional figures show that Total Income From Farming (TIFF), which
measures the return to farmers and all members of their families working on
farms decreased by 1.3% to £233 million, a fall of 5.5% from the 2007 figure after
allowing for inflation. This followed a 12% increase in 2006 and a 40% increase
in 2007 in real terms. Following this slight decrease in 2008, TIFF is 0.5% above
the average for the last 20 years, after allowing for inflation. Over the same
period, the number of people gaining a living from farming has declined steadily.
Growth of 13% in Gross Output to £1.40 billion is the main driver behind TIFF for
2008. Across the various sub-sectors, the major change in output was in beef,
poultry and milk sectors.
The number of net VAT registrations disaggregated by area over the 10 year
period from 1998-2008 indicates that rural areas both accessible and less
accessible have demonstrated the strongest growth in net registrations by
accounting form 71% of total net registrations over this period.
The total agricultural labour force remained unchanged in 2008 to around 49,000
persons. This includes approximately 31,000 full and part-time farmers, with a
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
number of full-time farmers declining by 1.5% and the number of part-time
farmers increasing by 1.0%.
Figures for the United Kingdom indicate that UK Total Income from Farming
increased by 42% in 2008 to £3.46 billion, a rise of 36% in real terms. The
decrease in Northern Ireland compared to the increase in the UK is due largely to
a 66% or 1.27 Billion increase in gross output of cereals in the UK as a whole, as
a result of an increase in production and higher average cereal prices in 2008
than in 2007. The cereals sector is relatively small in Northern Ireland accounting
for only 2.5% of output. Another factor contributing to the differing position for NI
compared with the UK as a whole is that the GB milk price remained relatively
high throughout 2008, probably because GB producers are much less dependent
on export markets. In Northern Ireland milk prices have weakened during the
latter half of 2008 in line with global markets. In 2008, gross output in the UK
dairy sector rose by 22% compared with 4 % in Northern Ireland.
NI Total Income From Farming
TIFF
250
£ million
200
150
100
50
0
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
Year
Priority 4 in the BSP Programme has supported projects and programmes for
local regeneration, sectoral development, fleet modernization and food/fish
processing. The number of supported projects was 653 at the end of 2007 with
the gross full time equivalent jobs created reaching 134.5 under this priority.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Tourism
Tourism is an important economic sector for Northern Ireland, both in terms of
the employment opportunities it provides and the revenue it generates as well as
the social and cultural benefits it offers.
Visitor Tourism Performance, as reported by the Northern Ireland Tourist Board,
estimates 2,097,000 visits to Northern Ireland in 2008 (this represents less than
a 1% change in total visits between 2007 and 2008). The total number of nights
spent by visitors in Northern Ireland has increased by 7% to 11,214,000,
translating into a total tourism revenue of £403 million for 2008, a 7% increase on
the 2007 figure (£376 million).
The results from the third instalment of the Tourism Barometer of 2008 indicate
that as a result of challenges facing the tourism industry and the impact of the
recession, respondents claimed that they were identifying proactive actions to be
taken. Principal actions taken were special offers/packages (50%), discounted
prices (27%), and revised market activities (22%). Significantly one in five of the
437 respondent enterprises had taken steps to reduce their workforce while 17%
had revised their targets for the coming year.
Priority 1 of the BSP Programme sought to support 15 marketing initiatives per
annum across key markets and in addition create 1,400 additional jobs in the
sector. To date continued support has been provided for the Regional Tourism
Organisations and an average of 11 marketing initiatives per annum have been
supported since 2000.
Environment
The sustainable development of the Northern Ireland Economy has been
assisted by the provision of additional water and sewage treatment schemes
since 1999. In particular, activity under Priority 5 of the BSP Programme has
supported the completion of 4 new water treatment schemes and 2 sewage
treatment schemes to the end of 2006.
The provision of these additional
schemes will facilitate the continued expansion of the Northern Ireland industrial
and business economy without further environmental deterioration and neglect.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Northern Ireland’s air quality has shown substantial improvement in recent years,
with most measures well within the national air quality objectives. In particular,
levels of pollutants associated with coal and oil combustion have reduced over
the past decade. Nitrogen dioxide is monitored using automatic techniques at 15
urban sites across Northern Ireland. The annual mean background concentration
of NO2 for Northern Ireland has been below 25µg/m3 since the year 2000. This
average is well within the National Air Quality objective for NO2 of 40µg/m3. The
annual average concentrations of NO2 in urban areas have been generally
declining over the long term. This is due primarily to the increased use of
catalytic converters in cars and a move from domestic coal burning to gas
heating. In the last 10 years, the background level of NO2 in urban areas has
remained relatively stable but the roadside levels, which have been monitored
since 2002, have been more variable.
Particulate matter in the atmosphere with a diameter of less than or equal to 10
microns (PM10) arises from both man-made and natural sources. Road transport
and fossil fuel combustion produce the majority of particulate matter found in
urban locations. All the readings in the last 10 years have been well below the
40µg/m3 level that has been set out as the UK Air Quality objective for the
protection of human health for PM10. The average number of days of moderate or
worse air quality in 2007 was 2.8 days across all sites and 13 days at the Lough
Navar rural background site. The average number of days of moderate or worse
air quality across all sites in Northern Ireland has decreased in the last ten years
from 9 days in 1998 to 2.8 days in 2007. In general, there has been a long term
decline in the average number of air pollution days in Northern Ireland. This is
largely because of a reduction in emissions of particles and sulphur dioxide but
deviations from this trend may be seen in certain years, for example in 2003, due
to particular weather characteristics. Ozone is monitored using automatic sites at
Belfast, Londonderry and Lough Navar. The National Air Quality Strategy sets an
objective for a daily maximum eight hour running mean of 100µg/m3 ozone not to
be exceeded more than 10 times per year. Unlike some other pollutants, levels of
ozone in Northern Ireland do not appear to be decreasing, but remain variable
from year to year, depending on weather conditions. Therefore, ozone
40
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
exceedences remain a possibility. The objective has not been exceeded in
Belfast or Lough Navar in the last ten years but has been exceeded in Derry in
four of the last ten years.
Greenhouse gas emissions for England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland
are published annually, detailing estimates of greenhouse gas emissions since
1990. The estimates are consistent with the United Nations Framework
Convention on Climate Change reporting guidelines. In 2006, Northern Ireland’s
total greenhouse gas emissions were 22,461 ktCO2 equivalent, which accounted
for 3.4% of the UK total. Since 1990, Northern Ireland’s total greenhouse gas
emissions have decreased by 5.8%. This is less than the reduction seen for the
UK as a whole, which has seen a decrease of 15.7% on 1990 levels.
There are over 15,000km of rivers and streams in Northern Ireland, of which
approximately one third is monitored annually. Monitoring is carried out routinely
against national standards for the General Quality Assessment (GQA)
classification scheme. The majority of monitored river length is of at least a good
standard (Class B and above), both chemically (75% in 2005-07) and biologically
(59% in 2007). Lakes are a significant source of drinking water supplies. Lough
Neagh and Upper and Lower Lough Erne make up over 90% of the total
hectarage of lakes greater than 50 hectares in Northern Ireland. Excess
levels of phosphorus are considered to be the main nutrient contributing to
eutrophication on lakes across Europe and there is evidence to suggest that the
number of Northern Ireland’s lakes that are excessively nutrient enriched is
increasing.
Based on a methodology adopted following the update of the Ex-ante
environmental impact assessment projects should be assigned a development
path.
This reflects their anticipated environmental impact and will enable
monitoring through the central database.
Conclusion
The preceding text demonstrates the state of socio-economic conditions in
Northern Ireland in over the period from 1999 to 2008 making reference to
41
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
changes that have occurred during the course of the programming period. Whilst
the recent downturn in the global economy from mid-2008 has changed the
socio-economic conditions in Northern Ireland, these changes happened after
the ERDF element of the BSP Programme was completed and therefore is more
serious concern for the 2007-2013 Programming period.
For the 2000-2006 Programming period it can be seen that progress has been
made in Northern Ireland at the macro level with continued growth in GVA and a
growing labour force pool of working age population. It is also clear that in
addition to the deterioration of the world & UK economy in 2008, a number of
problems persist:
•
inactivity rates;
•
relatively high long-term unemployment; and
•
high proportion of workers with no qualifications.
However, it is also clear that the ERDF element of the BSP Programme has
provided benefit to the socio-economic conditions, particularly through R&D,
business and regeneration activities, within Northern Ireland through funded
activities and initiatives and has contributed to a more positive outlook for the
region especially given the recent downturn in the global economy.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
CHAPTER 2. PROGRAMME RATIONALE
2.1
Background
Northern Ireland has faced unique opportunities and challenges over the period
2000-2006.
The European Union has shown its support & commitment to
helping Northern Ireland to meet these challenges which involve making
significant transitions in the economic, social and political fields.
The European Council, meeting in Berlin in March 1999, decided that for the
period 2000-2006 Northern Ireland would receive support as an Objective 1 in
Transition Region. The Northern Ireland Programme for Building Sustainable
Prosperity operated under the authority of the Northern Ireland Community
Support Framework.
A Structural Funds Plan was developed setting out proposals for the Northern
Ireland Community Support Framework (CSF) and for the Northern Ireland
Programme for Building Sustainable Prosperity. The Structural Funds Plan (‘the
Plan’) was prepared after careful analysis of Northern Ireland’s needs based on
an independent ex-ante evaluation, a widespread consultation process and
consideration of the possible responses to the needs of the region.
It included a Chapter on ‘Co-operation with Ireland’ which was agreed jointly and
followed on from the ‘Common Chapter’ which appeared in the Northern Ireland
Structural Funds Plan 1994-1999 and the comparable document prepared by the
Irish Government.
Taken together with a new emphasis on East–West co-operation reflecting the
terms of the Belfast Agreement of April 1998, the Plan placed a strong emphasis
on the much greater involvement of Northern Ireland in European and
international networks.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
2.2
Ex-ante Evaluation
A full and independent ex-ante evaluation was carried out to identify the
strengths and weaknesses of Northern Ireland as a region and available sources
of potential growth and development. This ex-ante evaluation included a careful
analysis of the environmental position of the region, equality between men and
women and the regional labour market. The ex-ante evaluation also drew upon
experience of the operation and evaluation of the 1994-1999 round of Structural
Funds support to Northern Ireland.
The ex-ante evaluation found that:
•
evaluation results were mainly available only in relation to Mid-Term
assessments of 1994-1999 Programmes and the conclusions of those
assessments were, by their nature, interim and unable to take account of
subsequent developments, including the benefits of implementing
changes recommended in Mid-Term reviews;
•
the Structural Funds had made a significant contribution to social and
economic cohesion in Northern Ireland overall but the effects of ERDF
Programmes tended to be more obvious and longer term;
•
procedural weaknesses and lack of integration in some Programmes
reduced their impact;
•
evaluators have consistently recommended rationalisation of local delivery
mechanisms for the Structural Funds in Northern Ireland to avoid
overlapping objectives and procedures;
•
significant advances had been made in the administrative arrangements
for Structural Funds Programmes in Northern Ireland; and
•
arrangements for future evaluation required that indicators used in
Structural Funds Programmes should be both quantifiable and meaningful.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Increased expenditure took place on security and prison services as measures
on health, education and housing intended to ameliorate community divisions.
While this additional public expenditure helped to sustain household incomes, it
did not contribute to developing the economy and its capacity for self-sustaining
growth. The diversion of funds to social and security expenditure and away from
public investment in areas such as economic infrastructure further undermined
the development of the supply-side of the regional economy.
These effects and the very low of level of development of the tourism industry,
community divisions, degraded urban environments and a sense of political
instability leading to a lack of business confidence have all created a context
minimal to economic development.
The “troubles” have produced additional employment in the police and security
sectors and in other public sector occupations.
However, these non-market
related jobs are ultimately unsustainable and the diversion of human resources
into these sectors further reduced the economy’s productive potential.
Community conflict has also fostered labour market inflexibility and made it more
difficult to match job opportunities and job seekers, a factor, which contributed to
the very high rates of unemployment in particular communities.
2.3
Consultation on the Draft Plan (Jan 1999–Nov 1999)
The Northern Ireland CSF was developed through a process of extensive and
inclusive consultation. The Northern Ireland political parties, regional sectoral
interest organisations and the general public were all invited to make written
submissions whilst two consultative conferences were organised, - in May and
September 1999. These brought together several hundred delegates from a wide
range of local interest groups. Members of the Northern Ireland Assembly
provided input to the development of the Plan, notably in the course of briefing
seminars organised in May 1999 and September 1999.
Following the May Consultation Conference, it was decided to establish a "Core
Consultative Group" to act as a conduit for more regular consultation with key
45
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
economic and social partners in order to provide ongoing advice.
The "EU
Programmes Development Committee" was established bringing together in one
forum the Assembly Parties, representatives of the Local Authorities and the key
economic and social partners.
A further round of consultation was undertaken in February 2000. At the same
time the Northern Ireland Programme for Building Sustainable Prosperity was
revised in the light of comments received from the European Commission and
was resubmitted in March 2000 to Brussels. Copies of the revised Programme
Document were subsequently issued by DFP to all those involved in the
February consultation process including political representatives,
District Councils and the economic and social partners in April 2000.
The
Executive Committee considered and endorsed the outcome of this further round
of written consultation, which included the establishment of an Interim CSF
Monitoring Committee (CSFMC). The Executive and Committee held its first
meeting following the restoration of devolution in May 2000.
In order to continue the consultation process, an "interim” CSFMC was
established and its inaugural meeting was held in April 2000.
This “interim” CSFMC enabled regional and local interests to be kept informed of
the negotiations on the new CSF in monthly meetings from April to July 2000.
The membership of this consultative body included the Departments involved in
the spending proposals, the main Northern Ireland Assembly Parties, District
Councils, social and economic partners and other relevant local interested
parties (Equality Commission, etc) and representatives from the Commission in
an advisory capacity.
Once the CSF entered into force with its approval by the Commission, the
“interim” CSFMC’s work ended and was replaced by the formal CSF Monitoring
Committee.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
A Monitoring Committee for the Northern Ireland Programme for Building
Sustainable Prosperity Operational Programme was established, initially in
shadow form, to provide the appropriate mechanism for consultation on and input
to the individual Programme Complements.
2.4
Link with Northern Ireland CSF Priorities
The overall structure and main priorities of the CSF were derived from the
Structural Funds Plan, the Ex-ante Evaluation the consultation process and,
through negotiations with the Commission. The needs and opportunities were
distilled into the CSF Priorities, which set the context for the Operational
Programmes as follows:•
Peace and Reconciliation.
•
Economic Growth and Renewal.
•
Employment, Human Resource Development and Social Inclusion.
•
Balanced Regional, Urban and Rural Development.
•
North South and Wider Co-operation.
The CSF Priorities are underpinned by the Horizontal Principles of: •
Accountability.
•
Balanced Intervention/Equal Opportunity.
•
New Targeting Social Needs.
•
Economic and Social sustainability.
•
Partnership.
•
Locally based decision making.
•
Transparency/Publicity.
•
Co-ordination.
•
Environmental sustainability.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
The Northern Ireland Programme for Building Sustainable Prosperity addressed
development priorities, which were commonplace throughout the less prosperous
regions of the European Community. As it contained almost 2/3 of the total EU
Structural funds allocation under the Community Support Framework (CSF) and
must carry the main weight of the transition process, the Northern Ireland
Programme for Building Sustainable Prosperity played the key role in achieving
the overall CSF objective of a transition to “a more peaceful, stable,
prosperous, fair and outward looking society, sustained by a better
physical environment.”
The Programme addressed a wide range of
development needs, including improvements to infrastructure and increasing the
skills of the workforce to improve the region’s competitiveness.
2.5
Structure of the Northern Ireland Programme for Building
Sustainable Prosperity 2000-2006
Northern Ireland Programme for Building Sustainable Prosperity was implemented
through 5 Priorities which addressed:
•
Economic Growth & Competitiveness.
•
Employment.
•
Urban & Social Revitalisation.
•
Agriculture, Rural Development, Forestry & Fisheries.
•
The Environment.
The Programme was the main instrument for the realisation of the economic and
social transition identified in the CSF and it built on the experience in the successful
delivery of the 1994-99 Northern Ireland Single Programme.
2.6
Overall Aim of the Northern Ireland Programme for Building
Sustainable Prosperity
The overall objective of the Programme was to move Northern Ireland to a state
of sustainable prosperity in a competitive modern economy by focusing on the
restructuring of its businesses and the key skills development of its people while
maintaining a quality environment.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
The horizontal principles were embedded in and delivered through the 5 main
Priorities and included:
•
Project selection criteria.
•
Implementation arrangements.
•
Targets and indicators.
2.7
Accountability
Accountability and the safeguarding of public funds (whether EU or matching)
was a primary concern. Financial management and control arrangements were
established to ensure that all funds were managed in accordance with the
principles of the proper treatment of public funds, all applicable Community rules
and the principles of sound financial management. Further details are contained
in the Operational Framework chapter.
2.8
Balanced Intervention/Equal Opportunities
In order to ensure coherence between the actions supported and the aims and
objectives of the Programme, relevant groups, sectors, areas or projects were
identified and encouraged to make applications.
All eligible applicants for
support were afforded equal opportunities to access funding.
In accordance with the Structural Funds regulation and consistent with section
75 of the Northern Ireland Act 1998, operations part-financed by the Structural
Funds must comply with and where appropriate, contribute to Community policy
and legislation on equal opportunities for men and women.
They shall also have due regard to the need to promote equality of opportunity:•
between persons of different religious belief, political opinion, racial
group, age, marital status or sexual orientation;
•
between men and women generally;
•
between persons with a disability and persons without; and
49
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
•
between persons with dependants and persons without.
Have due consideration and regard to the desirability of promoting good relations
between persons of different religious belief, political opinion or racial group.
Equality of participation in the Programme Monitoring Committee, working groups
or selection panels was encouraged in accordance with the provisions of the
Structural Funds Regulation. Every effort was made and every assistance given
to ensure (within the parameters of the Programme) that all sectors of the
population participated fully in the Programme.
2.9
New Targeting Social Need
Relevant aspects of the BSP Operational Programme conformed to the principles
of the New Targeting Social Need (New TSN) policy; and involved targeting of
resources and efforts on people, groups and areas objectively shown to be most
socially disadvantaged. This policy included special focus on the problems of
unemployed people and on improving their chances of finding employment.
2.10
Economic and Social Sustainability
An assessment of sustainability for all projects, which required public funding in
order to continue was of critical importance. In assessing projects, all funding
bodies bore in mind that all operations funded should, by the end of the relevant
programming period, have developed an appropriate exit strategy.
2.11
Operationalisation
The Mid-term Evaluation recommended a more co-ordinated and strategic
approach to the related issues of mainstreaming and sustainability in respect of
third-party projects.
2.12
Partnership
In accordance with the principles of partnership, the BSP Monitoring Committee
comprised of regional and local authorities, other competent public authorities,
the economic and social partners and other relevant competent bodies.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
2.13
Locally Based Decision Making Delivery Mechanisms
Bodies and organisations selected as delivery mechanisms were those which
were best placed to deliver the objectives of the Programme by virtue of their
scale, expertise or the nature of their activities.
2.14
Publicity/Transparency
All bodies involved in the delivery of the Northern Ireland Programme for Building
Sustainable Prosperity committed to a high degree of transparency. The link with
EU intervention was always clearly specified according to publicity requirements
defined at Operational Programme level.
2.15
In
Co-ordination
conjunction
with
the
principles
of
transparency
and
accountability,
mechanisms were put in place to ensure that funding from Structural Funds and
other sources private and public were applied in a co-ordinated and
complementary manner. Co-operation among the various delivery mechanisms
was encouraged especially in the sharing of information and of best practice.
2.16
Environmental Sustainability
The UK Government outlined four principles in its strategy for sustainable
development: •
High and sustainable levels of growth and employment;
•
social progress which meets the needs of everyone;
•
effective protection of the environment; and
•
prudent use of natural resources.
Many forms of economic development have environmental costs; they use
natural resources, can damage or destroy natural habitats; wildlife, and generate
by-products causing pollution and waste, which can be harmful to health. The
horizontal principle of environmental sustainability set out to ensure that the
Programme supported only economic activity which was at least environmentally
neutral and included all that seeks to protect and enhance the environment.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
CHAPTER 3: OPERATIONAL FRAMEWORK
3.1
Background
In accordance with the requirement of Article 18.2(d)2 this Chapter sets out the
implementing provisions for the Northern Ireland Programme for Building
Sustainable Prosperity for Northern Ireland. This has taken into account the
requirements of the Council Regulation referred to above and the Commission
Regulations on the euro, information and publicity, eligibility of expenditure and
financial corrections.
The Operational Framework deals with the arrangements for managing the
Northern Ireland Programme for Building Sustainable Prosperity.
As defined in Article 9(m), the Programme Complement implements the
programme strategy and priorities and contained detailed elements at measure
level.
It was drawn up by the Managing Authority after agreement by the
Monitoring Committee and contains the information requested by Article 18.3 and
was forwarded to the Commission within the three months stipulated by the
Commission when giving its decision to approve the Programme.
3.2
The Programme Monitoring Committee
In accordance with Article 35, the Programme was supervised by a Programme
Monitoring Committee which also was set up within the 3 months timescale. The
Monitoring Committee included members from Northern Ireland Assembly,
business, trade unions, the agriculture/rural development/fisheries sector, the
community and voluntary sector, district councils and those representing
environmental and equal opportunities interests. Particular effort was made to
maintain this balance and equal gender participation.
The Commission
participated in an advisory capacity.
2
All Articles referred to in this Chapter relate to Council Regulation (EC) No 1260/99 of 21 June 1999
52
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
The role of the Programme Monitoring Committee was to review progress,
monitor and report on the effectiveness and the quality of the implementation of
the Programme. To this end: •
it shall periodically review progress made towards achieving the specific
objective of the Programme;
•
it shall examine the results of implementation, particularly the achievement
of the targets set for the different Measures and the mid-term evaluation.
•
it shall consider and approve the annual and final implementation reports
before they are sent to the Commission;
•
it shall consider and approve proposals to amend the contents of the
approved Programme; and
•
it may propose to the Managing Authority adjustments or review of the
Programme and Programme Complement in order to help attain the
Programme objectives or to improve the management of the Programme,
including financial management.
Non-Permanent Members from the Member State or other relevant organisations
may be invited by the Programme Monitoring Committee to attend Monitoring
Committee meetings in response to specific agenda items.
The Monitoring Committee met twice each year in Spring and Autumn. Minutes
of these meetings can be found in Annex 7.
3.3
Managing Authority
Day-to-day responsibility for the programme was carried out by the Managing
Authority under the supervision of the Programme Monitoring Committee and
included assessment of progress towards:
•
achievement of the financial, physical and impact indicators;
•
organisation and co-ordination of data relating to financial, physical and
impact indicators; and
•
qualitative aspects of implementation
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
The Managing Authority in accordance with Article 34 was responsible for the
efficiency and correctness of management and implementation.
The Northern Ireland Department of Finance and Personnel was the Managing
Authority for the Northern Ireland Programme for Building Sustainable Prosperity
and worked in close liaison with other Northern Ireland Departments accountable
for relevant expenditure.
The Managing Authority agreed the management arrangements for the
Programme taking into account the advice of the Programme Monitoring
Committee. The Managing Authority remained responsible at all times for the
management of the Programme and during the lifetime of the Programme
provided effective delivery of priorities and measures and their outputs and
targets through guidance, support and effective dissemination of good practice.
Compliance with Community Policies
The Managing Authority has taken all appropriate measures within the framework
of the assistance to ensure conformity with Community policies including the
rules of competition, the award of public contracts, environmental protection and
improvement, the elimination of inequalities and promotion of equality between
men and women and, as far as rural development is concerned, the Common
Agricultural Policy.
3.4
Paying Authority
The Paying Authority was responsible for drawing up and submitting certified
payment applications and receiving payments from the Commission in
accordance with the requirements of Article 9(0).
The Paying Authority for the ERDF element of the BSP Programme was the
Department of Finance and Personnel and it has fulfilled all relevant functions in
accordance with Article 32. In the carrying out of the task of Paying Authority,
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
there was a clear separation of duties between the Managing and Paying
Authority although staff engaged in both were located in the same building.
The Paying Authority put in place procedures for receiving copies of various
information documents to provide assurances before submitting payment
applications.
These include:
•
Implementing Bodies provide a signed certificate for each payment
application
confirming
compliance
with
the
relevant
Commission
Regulations and a signed declaration is obtained from Departmental
Finance branches to confirm that payments included in the application have
been effected through the Departmental accounting system;
•
the Managing Authority provides a signed certificate confirming:
‰
the date of adoption of the latest Programme Complement;
‰
submission of the latest Annual Implementation Report;
‰
submission of the mid-term evaluation;
‰
implementation of recommendations made by the Commission
including action on requests for corrective measures;
‰
documents containing original signatures are held by the Managing
Authority; and
‰
any issues arising from verification checks (Article 10) have been –
or are being addressed;
•
copies of all Article 10 visit reports detailing amounts examined and results
of checks are provided by the Verification Teams;
•
copies of the annual control reports (Article 13) detailing audit activity and
findings and providing audit assurances signed by the Departmental Heads
of Internal Audit are provided;
•
copies of Internal Audit reports following inspections by Department of
Finance and Personnel audit staff on activities of the Managing and Paying
Authorities’ systems are provided;
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
•
copies of the detailed findings following visits by Commission auditors, the
European Court of Auditors and OLAF auditors – together with responses to
any issues raised are provided; and
•
copies of ‘best practice’ documents produced by the Commission and other
UK regions are provided.
In addition, the Paying Authority has reserved the right to conduct its own on-thespot checks to confirm the regularity of any information provided for use in
payment applications to the Commission. One such visit was carried out in
respect of information provided by the Department for Regional Development to
verify compliance with the requirements for a complete audit trail. A copy of the
findings can be found in Annex 11.
3.5
Information and Publicity
EC Regulation 1159/2000 sets down the EC requirements for publicity. It states
that information and publicity is to be provided “to increase public awareness,
assist transparency and create a coherent picture of the assistance”.
Communications and Information Action Plan
In compliance with Article 18(3) (d), the Department of Finance & Personnel
(DFP) European Division developed a Communications and Information Action
Plan to detail measures intended to publicise the BSP Operational Programme.
The aim was to promote a positive image of European Structural Fund
programmes in Northern Ireland.
The objectives of the Action Plan were to:
•
To promote funding opportunities offered by the European Union by
providing clear information about the Programmes in Northern Ireland and
the European Structural Funds and by disseminating best practice.
•
To aid transparency of the operation of the Programmes.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
To assist Accountable Departments and Implementing Bodies the Managing
Authority issued a Guidance Note suggesting ways on how to meet the
regulatory requirements together with a pro-forma to monitor details of publicity
activities at measure level. This information is collated into reports which are
used by the Structural Funds Monitoring Committee to monitor the effectiveness
of Publicity Measures undertaken and also provide the Management Authority
with assurance that there is compliance with EC Regulation 1159/2000. Publicity
activities have also been reported in the BSP Annual Implementation Reports.
Regulatory Article 4 verification checks also examine the publicity activities of
projects to ensure adherence to the EC Regulation.
The Managing Authority has also undertaken a variety of activities to promote the
BSP Programme to citizens in Northern Ireland which include:
•
A Website to disseminate information relating to the BSP Operational
Programme (including all EU Structural Funding to NI).
The website,
www.europe-dfpni.go.uk, was designed to provide access to all parts of
the Community and has taken significant steps to meet its equality
obligations under Section 75 of the Northern Ireland Act 1998.
website
provides
access
to
material
ranging
from
The
programme
documentation, the Structural Funds manual, to minutes of Monitoring
Committee meetings and logos. Guidance to Implementing Bodies on
publicity
requirements
is
available
on
http://www.dfpni.gov.uk/publicityguidelines.pdf ;
•
issue of two guides – Guide 1 ‘An Introduction to Structural Funds in
Northern Ireland’ which provides information on structural funds, their
purpose and aims, how the money will be used, managed and how to
access it. Guide 2 ‘Building Sustainable Prosperity in Northern Ireland
through European Union Structural Funds’ provides more information on
the BSP Programme which would be of interest to those seeking general
information on the programme. The booklet also explains how the BSP
Programme fits into the wider picture of European Funding in Northern
57
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Ireland (front page examples below. Original copies included with hard
copy version of report);
58
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
•
production of a BSP Newsletter issued in Spring and Autumn which
showcases a wide range of projects from the Programme (front page
example below. Original copy included with hard copy version of report);
•
a selection of BSP promotional materials was distributed to project
promoters via the Implementing Bodies. The promotional materials
included mugs, pens, key-rings, pens, pencils, mouse mats, all with full
colour BSP logo;
•
2004 and 2005 calendars with photographs of various projects were
produced and distributed to projects and key contacts;
•
an advertising campaign was run for six months using buses in main
towns throughout Northern Ireland. This coincided with a four week
advertising campaign at bus stops;
59
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
•
European Division in its role as CSF Managing Authority produced a CSF
leaflet highlighting projects. 220,000 copies were issued in the 4 main
newspapers in Northern Ireland (front page example below. Original copy
included with hard copy version of report);
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Implementation of the Information and Communication Action Plan
Set out below is an indication of how the BSP Programme MA met the
requirements of the Action Plan:
Requirement
Mechanisms
A mechanism is in place for The Structural Funds Central
collecting
and
reporting Database system has been fully
information relating to plans, operational since 2002.
execution
and
delivery
of
programmes.
Communications are taking place The Structural Funds Database
both within and external to the has provided information on the
Implementing Bodies on quality quality of ongoing work.
and quantity of ongoing work.
Bi-lateral meetings and Article 4
and Article 10 checks have
provided information on the quality
of ongoing work.
A dedicated publicity officer has
provided advice and guidance to
Departments and IBs.
Baseline information has been
identified and measured against
which
progress
can
be
compared.
Progress towards
goals can and
measured
A full set of indicators – targets,
outputs and impacts – have been
developed in conjunction with the
Northern Ireland Statistics and
Research Agency (NISRA).
programme The Managing Authority has
are being monitored progress on an ongoing
basis using the Central Database.
There have been regular bilateral
meetings
with
Departmental
Implementing
Bodies.
Implementing Bodies have been
required to provide information on
progress on a quarterly basis.
Guidelines have been published
and updated by the MA.
The aims of communication and On
a
6
monthly
basis,
publicity are being met.
Implementing Bodies have been
required to provide information on
publicity actions taken in relation
to the Measures they administer.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Other actions specified in the plan have been implemented as follows:
Requirement
Mechanisms
Publicity and information activity
will be targeted at individual
sectors of the target audience,
sectoral groupings or the entire
audience. The nature of the
message will determine the
publicity
and
information
measure and communication
channel to be used to reach the
audience.
In order to ensure compliance
with Section 75 of the Northern
Ireland Action 1998, access to
BSP information has been made
available to all sectors of the
Community e.g. disabled, ethnic
minorities.
Implementing
Bodies
have
targeted potential beneficiaries of
specific sectors. The MA has
targeted
beneficiaries
more
generally and also the wider
public.
The Operational Programme –
summary document, is available in
the following languages and
formats:
• Urdu;
• Cantonese;
• Irish;
• Ulster Scots;
• Braille; and
• Audio
All documents are available
electronically and as hard copies.
The above translations and
formats are also available upon
request, from the Department of
Finance & Personnel (DFP)
European Division.
Internet access for information Internet
access
has
been
relating to Structural Funds.
implemented fully as laid out in the
Action Plan.
A newsletter was used to inform
the target audience of the latest
Programme
news;
promote
Programme events and other
useful sources of information;
and provide contact points for the
interests of the target audience
segments.
Newsletters featuring successful
BSP projects and providing
information on the Programme
have
been
produced
and
circulated widely on a 6 monthly
basis throughout the Programme.
BSP articles also contributed to
specialised newsletters e.g. NI
Seafood Newsletter, Training for
The newsletter was published on Women
Network
newsletter,
a six-monthly basis. The format British Council newsletter.
included full colour A4 featuring
62
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
photographs
Articles
where
possible.
A “Simple Guide” will be The
Operational
Programme
available for potential applicants Documents
summary
was
and a wider public audience.
published
to
the
standards
mentioned
above.
Other
publications appropriate to the
needs of potential beneficiaries
have
been
published
by
Implementing Bodies.
Posters provide a cost effective A poster campaign at bus shelters
way for projects to promote the on prominent routes throughout
contribution from the European the province was carried out for a
Union. This action has worked 2 week period in June 2005. A 3
particularly well for ESF projects month long bus advertising
across Europe.
A series of campaign was carried out through
posters for all Funds will be Northern Ireland in 2005 to raise
designed for distribution.
awareness of the public of the
BSP Programme.
This was
followed by a further 2 week
campaign.
Stickers will be developed to help
projects promote the contribution
from Europe. Colour logos in 2
sizes will be printed on
transparent stickers for projects
to use on stationery, trainee
application forms, certificates etc.
A variety of promotional stickers
and other items was disseminated
to Departments, beneficiaries and
the general public. Implementing
Bodies
have
also
provided
promotional items to beneficiaries.
An Information Officer was
appointed to provide guidance and
encouragement to Accountable
Departments and Implementing
Bodies. He also liaised with the
Departmental Press Office in
issuing press releases in targeted
A dedicated Information Officer newspapers and maximising photo
will co-ordinate a proactive media opportunities.
campaign
that
maximises
ministerial visits, launches and
photo
opportunities.
The
Information Officer will assist
Implementing Bodies to develop
a press campaign including
drafting and issuing press
releases, placing features and
editorial in targeted newspapers
and journals, dealing with media
A press campaign is the main
measure for targeting the general
public. It is also an effective
method of reaching potential
beneficiaries and the business
community/private sector.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
enquiries and also
TV/radio interviews.
arranging
A series of seminars, workshops
and conferences should be held
throughout
the
Programme
period
(2000-2006)
by
Implementing Bodies to both
publicise the Programmes and
enhance understanding of the
new
mechanisms
for
implementation.
General
publicity of events will also help
raise the profile of BSP with the
general public.
It will be necessary to ensure that
events and held throughout
Northern Ireland and that the
audience are targeted carefully
according to the nature of the
event.
The Managing Authority held a
communications conference in
June 2002 in Hilton Hotel in
Templepatrick.
The audience
included Members of the Social
Partner organisations, programme
deliverers and members of the
Managing Authorities from all the
programmes.
The Managing Authority has also
organised a stall at the Europe
Day events organised by the City
Council to provide details of the
European Funding available, the
application process and publicity
requirements for the 2000-2006
Programmes.
3.6 Working Groups
A number of cross cutting themes were established by the overarching
Community Support Framework (CSF) Monitoring Committee – working groups
were established to report on all Programmes within the CSF.
The Working Groups were:
•
Communications and Information Working Group (CIWG). The aim of
the CIWG was to ensure that processes of communication and publicity
were in place and effective.
•
Mainstreaming Equality Working Group (MEWG). The aim of the MEWG
was as a cross cutting sub-committee.
•
Environmental Working Group (EWG) was established as a cross cutting
sub-committee to make recommendations and give technical advice on
environmental issues to the Monitoring Committee.
•
Information Society Working Group (ISWG). Its role was to monitor
information society activity within BSP.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
•
Human Resource Development Working Group (HRDWG). The aim of
the HRDWG was to oversee, co-ordinate and inform on the implementation
of the ESF co-funded interventions to the Monitoring Committee.
•
Fisheries Working Group (FWG). The aim of the FWG was to monitor the
financial performance and effectiveness of the fisheries measures and to
recommend any necessary changes in financial profiles, to the BSP
Monitoring Committee.
3.7 Monitoring of Environmental Sustainability
Development Path Analysis (DPA) was used to assess the environmental impact
of any given project. Each project was allocated a development path ranging
from 1 to 6, which was then recorded on the central applications database.
Analysis of the database has shown that of the 1,253 BSP projects approved
before 31 December 2007, 100% had a DPA score, representing 100% of total
funding awarded.
Analysis of the DPA data showed that a majority of 958 of projects were
classified as Path 1, i.e. ‘business as usual’.
86.5% of all funding.
These projects accounted for
Path 5 (improving eco-efficiency) was allocated to 99 of
approved projects, representing 2% of funding. Path 6 (encouraging new types
of economic activity which use less environmental wastage) was allocated to 52
of approved projects and 4.1% of funding. Projects under Path 2, which aimed to
clean up the mess from past activities and projects under Path 3 projects, putting
environmental infrastructure in place, denote 66 and 74 respectively of all
approved projects. They represent 3% and 4.2% of all funding respectively. The
lowest proportion of projects (under 0.2% of funding) were allocated to Path 4
(helping existing firms meet increasing environmental standards).
3.8 Annual Implementation Reporting and Annual Review Meeting
In accordance with Article 37, the Managing Authority submitted to the
Commission within six months of the end of each full calendar year of
65
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
implementation an Annual Implementation Report (AIR) on activities across the
Programme.
Each report was examined and approved by the Programme Monitoring
Committee before it was sent to the Commission. Links to each AIR can be
found at Annex 8. The annual report included the following information: •
Any change in general conditions which was of relevance to the
implementation of the Programmes, in particular the main socioeconomic trends, changes in national, regional or sectoral policies or
in the frame of reference, the implications for the mutual consistency
of assistance from the different Funds and consistency between Fund
assistance and that from other financial instruments;
•
the progress in implementation of priorities and measures in relation
to their specific targets, with a quantification, wherever and whenever
they lend themselves to quantification, of the physical indicators and
indicators of results and impact;
•
the financial implementation of the Programme;
•
the steps taken by the Managing Authority and the Monitoring
Committee to ensure the quality and effectiveness of implementation,
in particular monitoring, financial control and evaluation measures,
including
data
collection
arrangements,
significant
problems
encountered and the action taken and corrective measures;
•
the use made of Technical Assistance;
•
the measures taken to ensure publicity for the BSP Programme;
•
reporting on the compatibility with Community policies and coordination of all the Community Structural Assistance; and
•
a section on the progress and financing of major projects and global
grants.
All reported submitted were deemed acceptable and satisfactory by the
Commission.
In accordance with Article 34(2) following submission of the
66
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Annual Implementation Report the Commission and the Managing Authority met
to review progress.
3.9
Summary of significant Difficulties in Implementation of the
Programme
•
In 2001 the most significant problem encountered in the implementation of
the Building Sustainable Prosperity Operational Programme was the fact
that the Commission Decision approving the Programme was not taken
until March 2001 and the Programme Complement not approved by the
Monitoring Committee until June 2001. During 2001, the Programme
Complement had still to be formally accepted by the European
Commission. This meant that implementation of the Programme was
slower than anticipated with calls for projects only beginning in the Autumn
of 2001.
•
Also during 2001, the severe downturn in the Telecommunications sector,
due to a general lack of confidence in the stock markets, had a marked
effect on Measure 1.7. The implementation of the Tourism Measure, 1.3 in
Priority 1, to the end of 2001 was affected by the uncertainty created by
the foot and mouth disease and the events of September 11. However,
the target number of marketing initiatives supported in key markets was
achieved in 2001.
•
During 2002 the Closure of 1994-1999 Programmes lead to a diversion of
resources from implementation of the Programme, thus reflecting in the
slower progress of some Measures and other areas such as Publicity
activities, input to database etc. By the end of 2002, the design phase of
the central database had been completed but the work of populating it with
data had only just begun. Implementing Bodies found that the task of
inputting data was more resource intensive than expected and this
coupled with existing staffing difficulties resulted in significant delays in
populating monitoring data during 2002.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
•
During 2003 work on the closure of the 1994-1999 Programmes continued
to be a drain on audit resources which meant that the Article 4 and Article
10 checks were slow to get underway and a backlog built up, which could
only be addressed by bringing in additional assistance. This Managing
Authority therefore made Technical Assistance Funding available to
Implementing Bodies to employ outside expertise to carry out Article 10
checks up to 31 December 2002.
•
There were also difficulties in collecting monitoring data in relation to the
Equal Opportunities and Sustainable Development horizontal principles. In
June 2003, the Managing Authority introduced a new system for collecting
anonymous Section 75 data. The Environment Working Group also
commissioned research into use of the Development Path Analysis (DPA).
•
In 2004 monitoring n+2 targets was a major concern due to the fact that
relevant spend was recorded by Departments on the Central Database
infrequently. The Managing Authority took steps to encourage the
Departmental Implementing Bodies to make future declarations of spend
regularly throughout the year to ensure that n+2 targets could be
monitored constantly in 2005. Under Priority 1, the delay in obtaining
approval for the major project application for the gas pipeline put pressure
on the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Investment (DETI) in meeting
its portion of the ERDF target.
•
Difficulties in collecting data in relation to the Sustainable Development
horizontal principle continued in 2004. The research into the use of the
Development Path Analysis (DPA) methodology commissioned by the
Environment Working Group resulted in a retraining and data conversion
exercise. The collection of non-financial monitoring data in general was a
major concern for the Managing Authority during the year. It put
procedures in place requiring Departmental Implementing Bodies to
update the Central Database quarterly. The emphasis for 2005 was to
ensure that the improvements made in 2004 in relation to recording
financial monitoring data was replicated for non-financial monitoring data.
68
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
•
During 2005 DETI and the Managing Authority agreed the approval of a
restricted gas pipeline project with the European Commission and were
able to agree the transfer of the balance of ERDF to measures 1.6 and 1.7
at the Autumn Monitoring Committee.
•
During 2006, following recommendations by European Commission
Auditors, it was agreed that the Classroom 2000 project approved under
measure 2.5 should be subject to the major project approval procedure,
which involved the Managing Authority and DE, the Implementing
Department, in intensive work during the autumn to prepare and lodge the
application and subsequently dealing with points of clarification. In
addition, DE had to identify contingency expenditure in the event that the
project failed to win approval. A Commission Decision approving a
reduced sum for this project was received by the end of the year.
•
The Commission Decision approving Classroom 2000 (C2K) as a major
project was made in December 2006 and received by the Managing
Authority during January 2007. The categorisation of eligible expenditure
within the decision required DE to re-examine and correct expenditure
declarations already made for the project and to bring further eligible
expenditure to complete their share of the measure expenditure. They
identified the required adjustments to the expenditure declared under this
project and alternative expenditure to replace items now considered
ineligible.
•
During 2007, an audit exercise in relation to Measure 3.3 was carried out
by DSD internal Audit.
As a result of this audit, expenditure from a
number of projects was withdrawn from the Programme. In response to
this, DSD brought forward a proposal to move up to €4.3 ERDF from
Measure 3.3 to Measure 3.1 to alleviate any potential loss to the
Programme. This was agreed by the Programme Monitoring Committee in
October.
69
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
•
The 2007 AIR identified the issue of ineligible spend in respect of “Trigger
Points” or funds paid out on the achievement of results and not on
expenditure incurred. Auditors from DG REGIO raised a number of issues
in September 2007, in relation to payments to projects using trigger points.
After discussion with the DG REGIO auditors, DETI’s Internal Audit
provided assurance to the Commission on the eligibility of expenditure
claimed to date.
3.10
Monitoring Indicators
In accordance with Article 36 of Council regulation (EC) No 1260/1999, the
Managing Authority and the Monitoring Committee carried out monitoring by
reference to the physical and financial indicators to the specific character of the
Programme, its objectives and the socio-economic, structural and environmental
situation of Northern Ireland and included the findings in the Annual
Implementation Report each year.
3.11
Mid-term Evaluation
In accordance with Article 42 of Council regulation (EC) No 1260/1999, the midterm evaluation was carried out under responsibility of the Managing Authority in
co-operation with the Commission.
The mid-term evaluation examined the initial results of the Programme and was
carried out by an independent assessor, submitted to the Programme Monitoring
Committee and sent to the Commission prior to 31 December 2003.
The
Commission reviewed this evaluation, made appropriate recommendations all of
which were taken on board by the Managing Authority and implemented.
Further details can be obtained through the following links:
BSP mid Term Evaluation 2002 , BSP mid Term Evaluation Report Update 2005
3.12
The Performance Reserve
Article 44 of the general Structural Funds Regulation makes provision for a
‘Performance Reserve’ and sets out the mechanisms for determining the
distribution of that reserve.
This was linked to the findings of the mid-term
evaluation – details of which are available through the above link.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
3.13
Electronic Data Exchange
The Managing Authority set up and operates a computerised system gathering
reliable data required for the management, monitoring and evaluation of the
Community assistance. The guidelines and recommendations provided by the
Commission were used in the development of this system to ensure
compatibility with the Electronic Data Exchange requirements. Information was
collected and codified at project level for the Operational Programme.
The system was designed to support programming, financial and physical
monitoring and the making and monitoring of payments through a central
database. All financial and physical progress information, appropriately codified,
is relayed electronically to the Commission by the Managing and Paying
Authorities.
The frequency of electronic transmission conforms to the
management requirements as agreed between the Commission and the
Managing Authority. This system became operational at the end of 2001.
3.14
Ex-post Evaluation
In accordance with Article 43 of Council regulation (EC) No 1260/1999, the expost evaluation will be the responsibility of the European Commission, in
collaboration with the UK with and the Managing Authority. It will cover the
utilisation of resources and the effectiveness and efficiency of the Programme
and its impact and will draw conclusions regarding policy on economic and
social cohesion, the success or failure of implementation, achievements and
results, including their sustainability.
3.15
Major Projects and Global Grants
There were 2 major projects:
1.
Gas Pipeline.
2.
Classroom 2000
Full details of these projects are available in Annex 6.
71
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
CHAPTER 4: FINANCIAL CONTROL
Paying Authority
The Department of Finance and Personnel was designated as the ERDF Paying
Authority and was responsible for drawing up and submitting certified payment
applications and receiving payments from the Commission in accordance with
the requirements of Article 9(0) of Council Regulation (EC) No 1260/1999.
It has fulfilled all relevant functions in accordance with Article 32 and in the
carrying out of the task of Paying Authority there was a clear separation of
duties between the Managing and Paying Authority although staff engaged in
both were located in the same building.
In the early years of the programming period (up to 2003) a spreadsheet-based
system was used to collate expenditure information from Implementing Bodies
for inclusion in claims. This was then summarised by year and Measure and
transcribed on to the Commission’s SFC Database. During the systems audit
visit, DG Regio auditors recommended that all payment application information
should be extracted from a fully computerised system, since spreadsheets were
regarded as a manual system. Over a period of months in early 2004 a computer
system was then developed to gather reliable financial and statistical information
on implementation. Records were kept electronically and common information
provided for all projects. The system was used as the basis for all payment
applications submitted to the Commission since November 2004.
In accordance with Article 32(1), the Paying Authority ensured that Final
Beneficiaries received payment in full.
In compliance with of Article 32(3,4) of the General Regulation on Structural
Funds, the ERDF Paying Authority drew up and certified the interim and final
payment applications at the level of each Measure by year.
72
Payment
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
applications were converted from sterling to euro in compliance with
Commission Regulation (EC) No. 643/2000 and detailed records were
maintained by the Paying Authority for each payment application.
Electronic Data Exchange
Following discussion with Commission auditors regarding a computerised
system for generating payment applications, the Paying Authority undertook a
major exercise in conjunction with the provider of the Central Database to
establish a system for extracting financial data for use in claims. After a number
of months spent in reconciling existing claim information and populating the
newly created drawdown area of the Database, the system for generating
payment applications became operational from November 2004 and has been
used for all claims submitted since that date.
Article 10 verifications database
A further enhancement of the electronic system was commissioned by the
Paying Authority in 2005 to enable the extraction of data in respect of verification
visits carried out under Article 10 of Commission Regulation (EC) No 438/2001.
Details of expenditure declared and the value of expenditure examined and
verified – together with a summary of findings – are held on the system and
used by the Paying Authority as one of the sources towards providing assurance
on the regularity of expenditure being used for claims. This became operational
in April 2006.
Full details of the financial controls applied to the Programme are provided in the
Chapter covering the Operational Context.
N+2 discipline
Council Regulation (EC) No 1260/1999 Article 31 (2) requires that claims from
the Commission must be made within 2 years of the year of the commitment.
Known as the N+2 rule (N = year of commitment, +2 = end of the second year
73
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
following the year of commitment). The late approval of the BSP Operational
Programme in March 2001 meant that N+2 did not come into operation until end
December 2003.
During the life of the Programme no decommitments were made by the
Commission under the n+2 rule.
Eligible expenditure declared
Table 1 below provides a summary of the overall expenditure declared to the
Commission in claims against the allocations for ERDF for the period 2000 2006.
Table 1
All amounts shown in €
Allocation in
Programme
Complement
Expenditure
Declared in
claims to the
Commission
EU Amount
Public Amount
Private
Total
537,129,400.00
250,818,000.00
300,000.00
788,247,400.00
531,674,745.99
252,814,933.07
378,942.72
784,868,621.78
Expenditure
declared as
% of available
EU Allocation
Table 2 on the following page provides a further breakdown of expenditure
declared against allocations by year is shown in the table below – it should be
noted that, while ERDF Funding was allocated until 2005 only, expenditure has
been declared for the full period of the Programme – hence later years where
there is no allocation against the declared expenditure and corrections made in
2008 and 2009.
74
99.57
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Breakdown of expenditure by year.
Table 2
Breakdown of expenditure declared by year against financing plan
Overall Total
Allocation in
Programme
Complement
Expenditure
Declared in
claims to the
Commission
Expenditure
declared as % of
available EU
Allocation
EU Amount
Public Amount
Private
Total
537,129,400.00
250,818,000.00
300,000.00
788,247,400.00
531,674,745.99
252,814,933.07
378,942.72
784,868,621.78
99.57
EU Amount
Public Amount
Private
Total
Expenditure
declared as % of
available EU
Allocation
116,293,000.00
57,243,000.00
72,500.00
173,608,500.00
30,432,785.49
10,929,888.83
0.00
41,362,674.32
26.17
Total
Expenditure
declared as % of
available EU
Allocation
By Year
2000
Allocation in
Programme
Complement
Expenditure
Declared in
claims to the
Commission
EU Amount
2001
Allocation in
Programme
Complement
Expenditure
Declared in
claims to the
Commission
Public Amount
Private
106,152,000.00
51,365,000.00
65,700.00
157,582,700.00
54,969,577.89
21,098,143.30
0.00
76,067,721.19
51.78
Total
Expenditure
declared as % of
available EU
Allocation
EU Amount
2002
Allocation in
Programme
Complement
Expenditure
Declared in
claims to the
Commission
Public Amount
Private
96,654,000.00
47,075,000.00
57,300.00
143,786,300.00
68,760,937.04
34,245,413.99
0.00
103,006,351.03
71.14
Total
Expenditure
declared as % of
available EU
Allocation
EU Amount
2003
Allocation in
Programme
Complement
89,669,000.00
Public Amount
Private
43,620,000.00
52,900.00
75
133,341,900.00
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Expenditure
Declared in
claims to the
Commission
87,789,430.02
EU Amount
2004
Allocation in
Programme
Complement
Expenditure
Declared in
claims to the
Commission
Total
Expenditure
declared as % of
available EU
Allocation
32,400,500.00
33,500.00
109,590,200.00
123,994,310.17
59,403,443.32
21,691.88
183,419,445.37
160.71
Total
Expenditure
declared as % of
available EU
Allocation
Public Amount
Private
51,205,200.00
19,114,500.00
18,100.00
70,337,800.00
87,121,227.61
38,929,212.01
16,647.75
126,067,087.37
170.14
Public Amount
Private
Total
Expenditure
declared as % of
available EU
Allocation
0.00
0.00
0.00
57,131,626.89
26,115,949.94
213,333.91
Public Amount
Private
0.00
0.00
0.00
21,608,494.25
14,178,075.54
123,879.85
EU Amount
2008
Allocation in
Programme
Complement
Expenditure
Declared in
claims to the
Commission
97.90
77,156,200.00
EU Amount
2007
Allocation in
Programme
Complement
Expenditure
Declared in
claims to the
Commission
135,718,234.90
Private
EU Amount
2006
Allocation in
Programme
Complement
Expenditure
Declared in
claims to the
Commission
-16,806.48
Public Amount
EU Amount
2005
Allocation in
Programme
Complement
Expenditure
Declared in
claims to the
Commission
47,945,611.36
Public Amount
Private
0.00
0.00
0.00
-99,667.35
-16,248.37
20,195.81
76
0.00
83,460,910.74
Total
Expenditure
declared as % of
available EU
Allocation
0.00
35,910,449.64
Total
0.00
-95,719.91
Expenditure
declared as % of
available EU
Allocation
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
EU Amount
2009
Allocation in
Programme
Complement
Expenditure
Declared in
claims to the
Commission
Public Amount
Private
Total
0.00
0.00
0.00
0.00
-33,976.02
-14,556.85
0.00
-48,532.87
Expenditure
declared as % of
available EU
Allocation
The above Table demonstrates that the ERDF element of the Programme
achieved expenditure of 99.57% of the available allocation leaving a small
(0.43%) underspend at closure.
Note: “Expenditure Declared in claims to the Commission” in the Table
above refers to interim payment applications submitted to the Commission
by the ERDF Paying Authority
The expenditure declared is further broken down by Field of Intervention in the
following table where minor differences are attributable to rounding:
Table 3
All figures shown in
Meuro (€m)
Priority / Measure
Total
Measure
Value
1
Total
Eligible
Actually
Paid &
Certified
Expenditure
2
% of
Eligible
Cost
Field of Intervention
3+2/1
PRIORITY 1
Measure 1.1
Measure 1.2
Measure 1.3
Measure 1.4
Measure 1.5
110.587
85.253
62.600
80.000
15.667
105.563
86.916
62.084
72.530
14.570
95.46%
101.95%
99.18%
90.66%
93.00%
Measure 1.6
Measure 1.7
113.767
38.973
115.631
40.291
101.64%
103.38%
Measure 1.8
PRIORITY 2
Measure 2.5
PRIORITY 3
Measure 3.1
Measure 3.2
Measure 3.3
22.173
22.268
100.43%
161 (11%), 163 (71%),164 (18%)
181 (20%), 182 (80%)
171 (41%), 172 (14%), 173 (45%)
163 (25%), 164 (75%)
153 (30%), 163 (30%), 324 (40%)
311 (6%), 312 (69%), 317 (19%),
318 (6%)
312 (75%), 322 (25%)
331 (95%), 332 (2.5%), 333
(2.5%)
122.028
124.350
101.90%
23 (100%)
50.156
2.830
6.574
49.716
2.678
7.147
99.12%
94.63%
108.72%
35 (100%)
36 (100%)
36 (100%)
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Measure 3.4
PRIORITY 5
11.340
11.359
100.17%
22 (100%)
Measure 5.1
TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE
62.149
65.588
105.53%
181 (1%), 343 (1%), 344 (55%),
345 (37%), 1306 (2%), 1312 (4%)
4.150
788.247
788.247
4.179
784.870
784.870
100.70%
99.57%
99.57%
Measure 6.1
TOTAL
ERDF RELATED
Priority 1 Regions
receiving Transitional
Support
Priority 2 Regions
receiving Transitional
Support
Priority 3 Regions
receiving Transitional
Support
Priority 5 Regions
receiving Transitional
Support
Priority 6 Regions
receiving Transitional
Support
529.020
519.853
98.27%
122.028
124.350
101.90%
70.900
70.900
100.00%
62.149
65.588
105.53%
4.150
4.179
100.70%
TOTAL
788.247
784.870
99.57%
411 (34%), 412 (13%), 413
(13%), 414 (13%), 415 (27%)
Payments from European Commission
Payments received from the European Commission total 510,272,929 euros
which represents the 95% limit for payments prior to settlement of the final claim.
Details of receipts are set out in the following table:
Table 4
DATE
PAYMENT AMOUNT
CUMULATIVE TOTAL
23.07.2001
35,245,630.00
35,245,630.00
24.10.2002
183,465.00
35,429,095.00
08.01.2003
77,579,319.00
113,008,414.00
26.02.2003
26,814,864.00
139,823,278.00
16.04.2003
9,092,362.00
148,915,640.00
24.10.2003
14,113,996.00
163,029,636.00
10.02.2004
66,564,259.00
229,593,895.00
28.12.2004
11,519,892.00
241,113,787.00
18.03.2005
80,011,547.00
321,125,334.00
07.06.2005
5,492,446.00
326,617,780.00
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
16.11.2005
11,457,731.00
338,075,511.00
16.12.2005
47,158,111.00
385,233,622.00
10.02.2006
43,226,522.00
428,460,144.00
10.05.2006
10,292,587.00
438,752,731.00
16.05.2006
5,359,167.00
444,111,898.00
16.01.2007
47,427,710.00
491,539,608.00
16.04.2007
7,587,627.00
499,127,235.00
10.07.2007
5,812,016.00
504,939,251.00
18.09.2007
5,333,678.00
510,272,929.00
The payment dated 23.07.2001 represents the 7% advance payment from the
Commission. Due to the operation of the Government banking arrangements no
interest was earned on this advance.
Income and Revenue
None of the ERDF activities earned income or revenue, therefore no reduction
was necessary in compliance with Rule 2 of the Annex to Commission
Regulation (EC) No 1685/2000 as amended by Commission Regulation (EC) No
448/2004.
Unfinished Projects
At closure no projects were unfinished and none were suspended due to legal
action, therefore no projects funded under the 2000 – 2006 round will be carried
forward for further funding under the 2007 – 2013 funding period.
Financial Controls applied to the Programme
In the UK, the treatment of Structural Funds expenditure is based on the
principle that receipts from the Commission should be managed, disbursed and
monitored in exactly the same way and using the same systems as the UK’s
own public expenditure. The basic principles of the UK Government Accounting
apply to these receipts which are:-
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
•
Parliamentary scrutiny and accountability;
•
the identification of an Accounting Officer responsible for the funds under
his or her control; and
•
a statutory basis for all expenditure, whether from National or EC source.
A feature of the UK public sector financial management and control is the
obligatory requirement to submit all public expenditure operations to periodic
audits. This covers both the financial systems in operation and an annual audit
of specific payments made by the Member State.
Financial control is further maintained through the separation of duties between
those responsible for the certifying and authorising of payment claims, to
safeguard against the possibility of personal involvement in a project or fraud.
Treatment of receipts
Payments from the Commission in respect of operations part-financed by the
Structural Funds are received in a Treasury Account at the Bank of England,
where they are converted into sterling and subsequently transferred via the
Northern Ireland Office to DFP’s PMG Account, where each fund is separately
identified.
In order to facilitate the verification of expenditure by Community and National
control authorities, the Member State ensured that all bodies involved in the
management and implementation of Structural Fund operations maintained
either a separate accounting system or an adequate accounting codification
capable of providing detailed and complete summaries of all transactions
involving Community Assistance.
Control Arrangements
All monies from the European Union are treated in the same way as national
funding for the purposes of financial management and control, as well as being
subject to EU Regulations.
In line with the DFP’s handbook on Government
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Accounting in Northern Ireland (GANI), European Division produced a Structural
Funds Manual which set out the main aspects of NI Structural Funds
administration so there was a consistency of treatment both within and between
Departments and other Implementing Bodies.
Banking Arrangements
Nominated Departments and nominated delegated authorities issued offers of
their respective Structural Funds grants and received payment claims from the
Final Beneficiaries to which they had issued offers. All payment claims were
checked and backed up by invoices or other accounts documents against the
offer of grant and the project papers and ensured consistency with the
performance targets set and eligibility. If satisfactory, they were authorised and
paid out on the basis of actual eligible expenditure incurred.
Use of Euro and Conversion Rates
In accordance with Article 33, all statements of expenditure and payment
applications submitted to the Commission were made in euros. Since the United
Kingdom does not have the euro as its national currency, amounts of
expenditure incurred in sterling were converted into Euros by applying the rate in
force on the last but one working day at the Commission in the month preceding
the month during which the expenditure was recorded in the accounts of the
Paying Authority.
Control Activities
Within Northern Ireland, the Department of Finance and Personnel (DFP), in
accordance with Article 38(1)(a) and 38(1)(c), established financial management
and control arrangements for BSP in such a way as to ensure that ERDF
Programme funds are used efficiently and correctly and assistance is managed
in accordance with all the applicable Community rules and in accordance with
the principles of sound financial management. The detailed requirements set
out in Commission Regulations (EC) No 438/2001, (EC) No 448/2001 have
been applied throughout the life of the Programme.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Article 5 Statement
The document outlining the management and control systems for Northern
Ireland (Article 5 description) was submitted to the Commission in 2001, a copy
of which can be found in the DFP website, http://www.dfpni.gov.uk.
Financial Control activities were developed and enhanced as detailed below
during the life of the Programme in liaison with all Fund Paying Authorities,
Article 10 Teams, Heads of Internal Audit and subject to the direction of the
Managing Authority. Guidance notes were issued as detailed in the following
paragraphs.
Article 4 - Management checks
Management checks in compliance with Article 4 of EC Regulation 438/2001
were carried out on all projects across the Programme. These comprised desk
checks of claims and on-the-spot visits. A formal checklist was developed for onthe-spot visits to ensure consistency of approach across the Programme. A copy
of the checklist can be found in Annex 4. The Managing Authority reviewed
progress in this area at its bi-annual meetings with Implementing Departments.
Early detection of issues through this control mechanism provided an opportunity
to refine and clarify processes/letter of offers in order to avoid more serious
issues occurring in the latter stages of the projects. Further information on the
implementation of these checks is included in relevant measure reports.
During 2007, the Managing Authority in response to issues highlighted during the
ERDF follow up audit, by DGREGIO auditors, reviewed and enhanced the Article
4 Guidance and Checklist to move away from a “tick box” exercise to the more
qualitative evidence/comments based approach. Revised guidance was issued
across the programme in September 2007. A copy of the updated checklist can
be found in Annex 2.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
The outcome of work from all Article 4 checks was shared with Article 10
Verification Teams in order to inform their process of selection of projects and
reported in the annual control report (Article 13).
Article 10 - Verification Checks
The
Managing
Authority
was
responsible
for
establishing
appropriate
arrangements ensuring that the 5% verification checks were undertaken on total
eligible expenditure across the BSP Programme in accordance with Article 10 of
Commission Regulation (EC) No 438/2001. In determining these arrangements,
appropriate separation of tasks were put in place to demonstrate the
independence of these checks, i.e. those carrying out the checks were separate
from those implementing the actions under the Programme and from those
involved in payment procedures.
The actions of the bodies carrying out the
verification checks were subject to scrutiny by independent Departmental Internal
Audit Units. Guidance Notes were issued together with a detailed checklist
outlining the minimum coverage required to meet the regulations and Verification
Teams were instructed to extend checking as necessary – based on their
findings. A copy of the Guidance Note and checklist can be found in Annex 3.
In meeting these local arrangements the overall percentage of declared
expenditure, for ERDF Measures checked under Article 10 requirements was
11.98% at the end of 2008. The latest position of 15.32% (as at August 2009) is
significantly above the 5% required by the Regulation. From this control work the
error rate across ERDF related measures is calculated to be 26.53% as
explained at the end of Table 5. Detailed Measure information is included in the
relevant implementation section.
Findings from Article 10 checks indicated that, while some enhancement of
existing controls was necessary only a small number of potentially systemic
weaknesses have been reported. This is covered in more detail in the relevant
implementation section.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Copies of all completed Article 10 reports were made available to the respective
Fund Paying Authorities, the relevant Implementing Body, Heads of Internal Audit
and the Managing Authority.
A computerised system to record details of Article 10 activity, provide a summary
of findings and recommendations and maintain details of the percentage of
eligible expenditure examined and verified was developed as an additional area
on the Central Database, and became operational in 2006 (with data from
previous reports uploaded). It has proved to be a valuable tool in the follow up of
recommendations made and general monitoring of Article 10 reporting. It has
also assisted in ensuring that Interim Payment applications were based on
effective financial control systems and also facilitated the Closure process.
For ease of reference, details of expenditure declared and examined under
Article 10 are shown in the following table:
Table 5
1.1
1.2
1.3
1.4
1.5
1.6
1.7
1.8
Priority 1
2.5
3.1
3.2
3.3
3.4
Priority 3
5.1
6.1
Amount
Examined (£)
6,495,277.19
5,789,930.83
5,571,380.96
3,764,067.17
687,729.87
15,359,708.73
4,039,572.62
6,343,853.46
48,051,520.83
21,871,471.94
2,728,166.81
148,056.46
390,969.61
1,494,797.60
4,761,990.78
6,932,392.58
706,515.62
Amount
Declared (£)
69,339,212.38
58,851,396.82
41,471,020.28
50,565,153.56
9,913,770.60
79,438,165.28
27,773,436.94
15,237,593.35
352,589,749.21
89,753,338.41
35,622,428.00
1,818,932.28
4,958,999.69
7,818,639.00
50,218,998.97
43,286,350.68
2,838,284.99
%
Examined
9.37
9.84
13.43
7.44
6.94
19.34
14.54
41.63
13.63
24.37
7.66
8.14
7.88
19.12
9.48
16.02
24.89
Amount
Vouched (£)
6,070,395.62
5,225,253.95
5,329,122.36
3,670,832.41
534,788.97
15,359,708.73
3,989,572.62
6,339,489.35
46,519,164.01
21,101,192.10
2,728,166.81
145,791.20
388,182.81
1,494,710.65
4,756,851.47
6,932,392.58
706,515.62
Overall
82,323,891.75
538,686,722.26
15.28
80,016,115.78
Measure
Error Rate
6.54
9.75
4.35
2.48
22.24
0.00
1.24
0.07
3.19
3.52
0.00
1.53
0.71
0.01
0.11
0.00
0.00
Information verified as at 5.3.2010
“Amount declared” in the Table above is the Sterling value of interim
payment applications submitted to the Commission by the ERDF Paying
Authority
84
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
In relation to Measure 2.5 there is an artificially high error rate shown (92.06%)
because verification work was incomplete at time of preparation of this Report.
Work is ongoing by the Verification team in Department of Education in respect
of Measures 2.5 and 3.4 and further updates will be provided when available.
Internal Audit Arrangements
The Head of the Departmental Internal Audit Branch of DFP is responsible for
the declaration referred to in Article 15 of Commission Regulation 438/2001
which summarises the conclusions of the checks and gives an assessment of
the validity of the application for payment of the final balance and the legality
and regularity of the transactions covered by the final certificate of expenditure.
The Internal Audit Units of DETI, DEL, DE, DFP, DRD and DSD act as coordinators for the subsidiary declarations from their respective Departments with
regard to the provision of the assurance for ERDF. The individual Departmental
Internal Audit Units act in a joint way to maximise effectiveness and consistency
eliminate duplication and develop best practice. Meetings, chaired by DFP, were
held on average twice each year with the Departmental Heads of Internal Audit
to ensure consistency of approach to EU audit issues and more recently to
agree and implement the closure process.
All Internal Audit activities resulted in unqualified opinions and further details are
shown – broken down by Measure – in Annex 12 attached to this Report.
External Audit activity
A number of ERDF audit visits were conducted by DG REGIO auditors in the
period 2001–2007 including an initial systems audit (covering BSP and Peace II)
in September 2001 with a follow-up visit in 2003. Findings from this visit led to
the development of the formal Article 4 Guidance and the commencement of
work on the electronic drawdown processes using data from the Central
database. (Annex 2).
There were further ERDF audits carried out on the BSP Programme in June
2005 and again in September 2007 to follow up on findings from the original
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
ERDF systems audit. The initial findings from the June 2005 visit were reported
in February 2006. These included issues around the ‘trigger points’ in DETI
projects, designation of ‘Classroom 2000’ expenditure as a major project and the
fires at NITB offices causing loss of some original documentation. In addition
DGREGIO auditors carried out an individual project audit visit in 2006 where
issues around KTP and Business Start funding and transparency of expenditure
were raised. The findings of these audits are not yet formally complete and
updates will be provided as this happens.
In response to the ‘trigger points’ issue, it was agreed that DETI’s Internal Audit
would carry out sample exercises on the eligibility of expenditure claimed to date
to provide reassurance to the Commission. Terms of Reference specific to this
exercise were agreed with DGREGIO auditors and the outcome of the work
shared with them to bring the issue to conclusion.
The Managing Authority
excluded expenditure under these Measures from drawdowns until the audit
issues were satisfied. This additional verification work in agreement with DG
REGIO auditors was reported to the Commission. A copy of the details of all
audit findings can be found in Annex 6.
Audit recommendations to have Classroom 2000 (C2k), in Measure 2.5,
designated a ‘major project’ were taken through the application process during
2006 resulting in a Commission Decision in December 2006. Categorisation of
eligible expenditure within the decision required a re-examination and correction
of expenditure declarations already made for the project and the bringing forward
of further eligible expenditure to complete measure expenditure. DE identified
the required adjustments to the expenditure declared under this project and
alternative expenditure to replace items now considered ineligible.
The
Managing Authority and the Implementing Body worked on this issue to ensure
that the remaining expenditure from this Measure was included in the
expenditure certification process in a timely manner.
The Managing Authority provided a formal response to the 2007 follow up audit
on 10th October 2007 and further responses were provided – the latest submitted
in March 2009.
There were 19 outstanding findings, it is hoped with the
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
additional information supplied by the Managing Authority, these will be reduced
however final formal feedback from the Commission is unlikely to be received
before the Regulatory deadlines for closure and this matter will be updated as
part of the final BSP Programme report due in 2010.
No formal Programme audits were carried out by the Northern Ireland Audit
Office, the European Court of Auditors or OLAF auditors on ERDF expenditure in
the BSP Programme.
Article 13 - Annual Control Reports
Co-ordinated reports under Article 13 of Commission Regulation (EC) No
438/2001 on financial control were prepared and submitted within the required
deadline of 30th June each year. Separate reports for each of the four Structural
Funds were provided.
The reports were made widely available on the EUD
website following clearance procedures with the Commission. This link will take
you to published reports - Article 13 Reports.
Irregularity Reporting
Implementing Departments were also responsible for investigating and drawing
up reports on any irregularities declared. Details were forwarded to DFP, which
were responsible for notifying irregularities to the Department of Trade and
Industry now (BERR) in compliance with the requirements of Commission
Regulation (EC) No 1681/1994 as amended by Regulation No 2035/2005 on
Structural Funds. Annex 10 provides details of irregularities reported up to the
date of this report. In addition to providing guidance on the treatment and
reporting of irregularities, DFP organised two information seminars for
Implementing Body staff to explain the requirements and share best practice. At
the Commission’s request, the audit authorities within Member States carried
out a review of irregularity reporting systems and the system operated by DFP
was examined by the Northern Ireland Audit Office (NIAO) as part of the UK
Member State report. Their findings were positive and highlighted many good
practices employed by DFP. These were subsequently published as a good
practice guide by NIAO and circulated widely in Northern Ireland.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Initially the threshold for reporting irregularities was set at €4000 this increased,
with the new Regulation, in 2006 to €10,000 (EU element).
Annex 15 summarises 234 ERDF cases reported during the Programme period
which have all been closed. Before the introduction of the new irregularity
Regulation all information was recorded in national currency, therefore the total
value of irregularities and recoveries was reported in £ Sterling. A notional Euro
value has been calculated based on the date the irregularities were reported to
OLAF.
Table 6 below provides further details.
Included in these cases were irregularities discovered before payment was made
or raised as part of closure pending further investigation and reported for
information as ‘amount at risk’ with no recovery necessary. Total EU element of
irregular expenditure for the period 2003 – 2009 was €122,308,729.55 (including
amounts ‘at risk’) and was reported to OLAF. In total 6,102 cases which fell
below the reporting threshold or were due to an administrative error were
recorded and therefore were not included in any claim to the Commission. The
ERDF involved in recorded cases amounted to £118,884,338.55 with a 100%
recovery rate.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Table 6
2000 – 2005 (20 cases – all closed with full amount recovered)
€ Euro
EU Amount
Total Amount
Reported
736,619.00
1,089,956.51
Recovered
736,619.00
1,089,956.51
0.00
0.00
To be recovered
Note: For 2000 – 2005 irregularities were reported in £ Sterling as required by
the Commission Regulations – a Euro value has been calculated based on the
date reported
2006 – 2009 (214 cases – all closed with full amount recovered or
withdrawn)
€ Euro
EU Amount
Total Amount
Reported
121,572,110.55
230,594,090.44
Recovered/
121,572,110.55
----
0.00
----
withdrawn
To be recovered
Closure
Following the issue of the Commission Closure guidance in August 2006, the UK
issued Operational Closure guidance to all Regions. Following on from this in
October 2007, DFP/EUD issued a Northern Ireland version of this operational
closure guidance, covering BSP, PEACE II and the Community Initiatives. The
complete closure guidance pack comprising the operational guidance and audit
methodology for closure was issued to Implementing Departments and copied to
Heads of Audit and was copied to DGREGIO Auditors for information.
The
guidance outlined the requirements and timescales for closure documentation,
with subsequent amendments and updates issued as and when required.
DFP/EUD met regularly during the closure process with staff from the operational
side of Implementing Departments as part of an operational working group, to
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
review progress towards gathering the required information. Separate meetings
were held with Departmental Heads of Internal Audit in their role as Article 15
body, providing audit assurance on expenditure declared in the ERDF.
In addition DFP/EUD monitored the Central database to ensure all expenditure
was recorded for use in claims, Article 4 checks were carried out and the targets
for Article 10 checking were being met.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
CHAPTER 5: OVERVIEW OF PRIORITIES
Overview of Priorities
The Building Sustainable Prosperity (BSP) Programme is Northern Ireland’s
largest single European programme, in financial terms, for the funding period
2000-2006 – the ERDF element is worth close to €800million. The overarching
aim of BSP is to move Northern Ireland to a state of sustainable prosperity in a
competitive modern economy by focusing on the restructuring of its businesses
and the key skills development of its people while maintaining a quality
environment.
The focus of the ERDF element in Priority 1 of the Programme is economic
growth and competitiveness. This priority has funded over 3,000 SMEs (Target 3,600) whilst creating close to 18,095 gross jobs (Target - 8,400) in the process.
In addition, the Local Economic Development measure (M1.4) developed 26
district council action plans which resulted in 926 businesses being created as
well as 4,072 jobs. In addition, 250,000 square feet of workspace has been
created. The R&D element of this Priority has been a very successful measure
and should ensure that Northern Ireland goes some way to raising its level of
R&D.
The Tourism element of the priority has for the most part surpassed its targets
resulting in increased visitors and visitor spend. Information technology and
telecommunications targets have been met or surpassed ensuring that Northern
Ireland will be able to compete in the world marketplace. An element of Priority 2
delivered ICT services to schools ensuring that children are skilled in ICT and
computer usage for when they reach the workplace. The energy infrastructure
element has met its target for the North/West gas pipeline as well as those for
energy efficiency projects.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
The transport element of Priority 1 has met or exceeded the majority of its targets
which should result in improved transport infrastructure and increased passenger
services. It is important that Northern Ireland has the necessary transport
networks to ensure it can be competitive in modern Europe.
The ERDF element of the Programme also funded regeneration activities as well
as community and voluntary organisations to help improve the social and
economic conditions of deprived areas in Northern Ireland. This has been
successful with employment opportunities increasing by 28% (before the
economic downturn of mid-2008). Funding was also provided to enable almost
2,000 children to take up full-time and part-time nursery places, especially in
deprived areas.
The final aspect of the ERDF element of the BSP Programme is the environment.
The programme funded 4 water treatment facilities and 2 waste treatment
facilities which will ensure that Northern Ireland’s infrastructure is capable of
dealing with an expanding economy. In addition a number of projects have been
funded to increase awareness of the environment as well as ensuring that
Northern Ireland takes a step forward in protecting and enhancing the
environment for the future.
In conclusion, it is obvious that the ERDF element of the BSP Programme has
gone some way to creating a state of sustainable prosperity in a competitive
modern economy by supporting businesses while supporting and maintaining a
quality environment. In addition, the ERDF element has been complemented by
the ESF, EAGGF and FIFG elements of the BSP Programme which has ensured
that a joined up approach has been taken in the delivery of EU Structural Funds
throughout 2000-06.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Priority 1 – Economic Growth and Competitiveness
The main targets for Priority 1 focus on assistance to SMEs, creation of jobs, R &
D and tourism.
Almost one quarter of the total value of this Priority can be attributed to activities
assisting SMEs and directly creating jobs. Around 85% of the target set for
SMEs supported has been met whilst the achievement against the target for
gross jobs created has been more than doubled (Achievement – 18,095; Target
– 8,400). There has been some doubt over the reliability of performance reported
for Measure 1.1 previously but Invest NI put systems in place to accurately
record outcomes.
The R&D element of this Priority has progressed well with achievement against
the target for projects being surpassed by 166% (Achievement – 762; Target –
286). The latest position for projects completing successfully, at 86%, is above its
target of 80%. This has been a very successful measure and should ensure that
Northern Ireland goes some way to raising its level of R&D.
The Local Economic Development measure (M1.4) developed 26 district council
action plans which resulted in 926 businesses being created as well as 4,072
jobs. In addition, 250,000 square feet of workspace has been created.
Regarding the tourism aspect of this Priority, the 2001 foot and mouth outbreak
and the events of September 11th had a significant impact on tourism activity in
2001 and 2002. However, the target number of marketing initiatives supported in
key markets has continued to be achieved up to the end of the programme.
The Tourism sector has also benefited from the creation of 5,920 gross additional
jobs from the beginning of the programme until June 2006 whilst tourism pure
visitor numbers have increased by almost 46% from the 2000 baseline. This
demonstrates significant advancement for the tourism sector following the events
of 2001. It is obviously not possible to attribute these achievements solely to the
marketing initiatives funded by BSP and the ERDF. However, it is also obvious
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
that marketing plays a key role in promoting Northern Ireland as a holiday
destination and also in providing material for that purpose. Therefore, the BSP
Programme has had an impact on this outcome.
Additional indicator information at Measure level (Measure 1.3B) shows that
under the accommodation element 664 bedrooms (750 programme target) have
been developed from the 47 accommodation units supported.
The units
supported indicator has achieved just below its target of 50 but the new
bedrooms achievement has fallen some way short. This reflects the final position
in relation to physical achievements. The shortfall is explained by a different
product-mix of the accommodation units actually supported than initially
envisaged. When the targets were set, it was on the basis of supporting more
hotels than happened.
More of the accommodation units than expected,
therefore, were supported within the B&B and guesthouse sector. As the cost of
bed provision in this sector is higher per space created than in the hotel sector,
fewer bed spaces could be provided overall with the available money.
In addition to the tourism activities mentioned above, 15 visitor attractions have
been enhanced or re-themed. This exceeds the target of 10 and is, again, a final
position for this indicator. Whilst actual visitor numbers to these attractions have
increased on average by 78%.
Other elements of this Priority have also performed strongly. In Measure 1.5,
Information Society, the targets regarding business awareness and business
take-up of ICT technologies have largely been met. The targets for broadband
coverage under Measure 1.7 Telecommunications have been met.
In Measure 1.8 Energy Infrastructure and Energy Efficiency, only the North /
West element received funding. The targets related to the North / South activity
will not, therefore, be met for BSP. The second sub-Measure under 1.8, which
provides support for energy efficiency activities, is also completed and has met
its objectives.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Under the roads and transport element of the Priority, three road by-pass
schemes had been completed accounting for 12.4 km of new carriageway. The
bypass schemes are located at Newtownstewart, Limavady and Comber. In
addition, funding has been provided to strengthen the Foyle Bridge whilst a
throughpass at Omagh was also completed.
Under the transport infrastructure element of the Priority, work has been
completed on 3 urban public transport projects, as well as one new rural bus
station.
Priority 1 Indicators
Indicator
Target
Progress to end
December 2008
Output
Support to SMEs
SMEs supported
3,600
Result
Gross jobs created
8,400
Impact
Net jobs created by new
start up
2,940
within
sectors)
Impact
Net jobs created by existing
businesses
1,260
Not to be reported until end
of programme
Research and development
projects supported
286
762
Result
% of supported projects
completing successfully
80%
Impact
Increase
in
Business
Expenditure in R&D
15%
85.96%
Not to be reported on until
the end of the Programme
3,067
18,095
(10%
new
Not to be reported until end
of programme
Research and Development
Output
Tourism
Output
Result
Impact
Impact
Marketing
Initiatives
supported
per
annum
across key markets
Over the period of the
programme to create gross
additional jobs in tourism
Over the period of the
programme to create 1,000
net additional jobs in
tourism
Visitor numbers to Northern
Ireland
as
a
holiday
destination
15
1,400
1,000
Increase
from
2000 baseline
23 marketing initiatives
have been supported since
2000, with an average of 11
per annum
5,920
Not to be reported on until
the end of the programme
480,000 visitors for the year
(preliminary forecast)
Source: DETI; EU Structural Funds Central Database
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Indicator
Output
Target
Progress to end
December 2007
Result
Roads
By-pass schemes
Km of new carriageway
3
12.1 km
Output
Output
Through-pass scheme
Link Road Scheme
1
1
All 3 Bypasses completed
12.4km of new carriageway
completed
Complete
Activity is not to be funded
Output
Bridge-strengthening
scheme
Strengthen structure to
increase capacity to carry
the maximum 40 tonne
HGV vehicles.
Also
repainting and resurfacing
the bridge.
Reduced peak journey
times
1
Complete
Bridge capable of extra
carrying capacity to meet
future demand, which will
see numbers of HGVs
increasing from 2,700 per
day to 3,200 per day over
the next 10 years. Painting
will
provide
required
protection for next 20 years
Rural Transport
Infrastructure
Increased
Capacity
Output
Result
Rural bus station project
New passenger and staff
facilities
1
1
rural
station
Impact
Improvement
in
accessibility,
social
inclusion
and
more
sustainable movement of
people
No target
Output
Result
Impact
Strengthening is complete.
Painting is complete and
Resurfacing is complete
by an average of
35% for each
scheme
Newtownstewart Bypass =
47%
Limavady Bypass = 32%
Comber Bypass = 44.5%
Bridge
now
has
the
capacity to deal with 40
tonne HGV vehicles and
the
expected
future
demand
Lisburn
Station
was
officially opened on 8
September 2008.
96
bus
Lisburn
Station
was
officially opened on 8
September 2008.
Lisburn
Station
was
officially opened on 8
September 2008.
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Indicator
Urban
Infrastructure
Target
Progress to end
December 2007
Transport
3
projects
complete
are
now
Urban bus depot projects
Compliance
with
H&S
standards and upgrade of
urban bus depots
More efficient movement of
people and improved urban
public transport system
Enhancement of Services
3
3
3
3 Urban bus depots now
complete
and
H&S
compliant
Introduction of Customer
Information Service
Innovative
schemes
to
complement
high-level
strategies
No target
Project withdrawn
4
The accounting system has
now gone live and is
complete.
No further
schemes will be funded
during this programme.
Enhance and modernise
the operation of integrated
transport across Northern
Ireland
Source: DETI & DRD
No target
8 trains purchased and
associated
infrastructure
completed March 06.
Output
Result
Impact
Output
Result
Impact
Projects are now compliant
with H&S standards
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Priority 2 – Employment
Under the ERDF element of this Priority, all targets have been met. All post
primary and special schools now have new PCs and local area networks installed
and are linked to a wide area network and system integrator providing a
managed ICT service. This represents significant progress. This Measure is
funded through ERDF and is worth some €122million.
Priority 2 Indicators
Result
Impact
Indicator
Target
All secondary schools
(233) and special
schools (48) to have new
PC’s at a ratio of at least
1 PC to 9 pupils and
local area networks
installed and to be linked
to a wide area network
and system integrator
providing a managed ICT
service at a cost of
£115.2m
All schools to be utilizing
the managed service
providing curricular
resources and internet
access with broadband
connectivity
All pupils (155,000) will
experience the use of
ICT across all areas of
the curriculum, including
a range of applications
and media and will
spend, on average, 10%
of the weekly timetable
using ICT facilities to
support learning across
the curriculum
233 secondary
schools and 48
special schools
Progress to end
December 2008
277 schools
All schools
277 schools
155,000 pupils
All pupils using ICT
across all areas of the
curriculum (161,000
pupils).10% of weekly
timetable using ICT
supported learning.
Source: DE; EU Structural Funds Central Database
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Priority 3 – Urban and Social Revitalisation
There were 7 Projects supported under Measure 3.1 accounting for all the
funding. The first 5 projects dealt with the regeneration of an extensive inner city
area within Belfast. The remaining two projects have impacted across 5 areas of
Belfast, as well as in 18 other towns and cities across Northern Ireland through
support for Jobs and Benefits Offices.
Under the 2 projects relating to the Jobs and Benefits Offices, indicator
information within Measure 3.1 shows that there have been significant
achievements on the ground. The number of job / training enquiries / referrals
has increased by 76% in the 23 supported offices from 2000 to 2004 when
funding was completed. Over the same period the number of gross employment
opportunities has increased by 28% in the supported offices whilst the number of
people sent for training opportunities increased by 8%.
In addition, there has been a reduction in the number of long-term unemployed in
the 23 offices of 28% whilst the overall number of unemployed has dropped by
24% between 2000 and 2004. It is important to note that these changes cannot
be entirely attributed to the supported Jobs and Benefits offices as other
Government programmes, such as New Deal, and the general improvement in
the Northern Ireland economy have also played a key role.
Measure 3.1 has also funded a number of regeneration activities including the
enhancement of 1,370 square metres of space at Cathedral Close in Belfast to
create a versatile public performance area which caters for up to 1,000 people.
The Old Bank Building in Royal Avenue, Belfast was refurbished to
accommodate artists, crafts people and community organisations in flexible, high
quality buildings. In addition, dredging activity for the River Lagan in Belfast was
supported to improve the river environment and quality.
Other activities for this Priority have seen funding allocated to organisations
delivering services at a local. Under Measure 3.4, 55 nursery units (including
Nursery Schools) have been constructed, resulting in the provision of some
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
1,928 additional full time nursery places and up to 146 additional posts for
teachers and classroom assistants have been created.
Priority 3 Indicators
Indicator
Target
Urban & Social
Revitalisation
Output
Number of projects /
organisations /
schemes
funded/assisted
Increase in employment
in local area
No target
Impact
Evidence of a positive
impact in the local area
attributed to assisted
projects / organisations
/ schemes
No target
Output
Community
organisations assisted
100
Result
Number of support
hours delivered over the
life of the programme
2,000
Result
No target
100
Progress to end
December 2008
4 groups funded to
March 2007. 3 further
groups funded to
September 2007.
There was no activity
in 2008
There are no statistics
readily available on
increase in
employment arising
from improved
delivery of advice
services – to be
reported on for
closure
Post project
evaluations show
evidence of improved
accessibility to advice
services, particularly
those with special
needs.
17 sub-regional
groups supported up
to end of March 2007.
The target for
community
organisations assisted
has been significantly
exceeded.
This target has been
significantly exceeded
with over 20,000
direct support hours
delivered from the
start of the
programme to March
2007. there was no
activity in 2008
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Indicator
Impact
Evidence of
sustainability in the
community
organisations assisted
Target
No target
Source: DSD; EU Structural Funds Central Database
101
Progress to end
December 2008
In addition to the sub
regional support
groups gaining
sustainable funding
from the
Neighbourhood
Renewal Programme
and Regional
Infrastructure
Funding, 17 groups
have secured
sustainable
mainstream funding
from the Community
Investment Fund.
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Priority 5 – The Environment
Progress in this Priority has been good under the infrastructure element with 4
water treatment schemes and 2 sewerage treatment schemes completed. The
targets have been achieved/surpassed for all the output and result indicators
under this element. The targets for average increase in the capacity of water
treatment and sewerage treatment have also been met. The objectives under this
element of the Measure will be met.
Achievement under the sustainable environment projects element of this Priority
has been good after a slow start. The projects funded cover a range of activities
including waste management (5 projects including 1 for the 26 District Councils),
biodiversity conservation (4 projects), built heritage conservation (1 project),
environmental education and countryside access.
These projects have resulted in a number of research papers and conclusions
being disseminated, improved waste management (recycling rates have
increased from 18.2% in 2004/05 to 28.8% in 2007/08), enhanced understanding
of the Mourne environment, as well as the publication of information on the built
heritage of Northern Ireland.
Priority 5 Indicators
Indicator
Output
Result
Target
Progress to end
December 2008
Infrastructure
Water treatment
schemes
% increase in capacity
3
4 Water Treatment
Works complete.
Average 30%
Average 30%
Impact
Water Quality
Improvement (variable
up to 100%)
No Target
Water quality complies
with EC Directive
standards
Output
Sewerage treatment
schemes
% increase in capacity
Effluent quality
improvement (variable
up to 100%)
2
2
Average 275%
No Target
Average 275%
Effluent quality
complies with EC
Directive standards
Result
Impact
Source: DRD; EU Structural Funds Central Database
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Indicator
Output
Result
Result
Impact
Target
Progress to end
December 2008
Air quality project for the
26 District Councils in
Northern Ireland
Capital infrastructure
projects to enable District
Councils to measure,
monitor and improve air
quality
1
1
No Target
Staff resource projects to
enable District Councils
in the carrying out of all
appropriate air quality
activities
Contribute towards the
achievement of national
and EU air quality
standards and objectives
No Target
3 applications for
relocation of existing
equipment have been
received. Other
applications included
requests for QA/QC and
maintenance contracts
for air quality monitoring
data and equipment.
All 26 district councils
who applied requested
staff costs for year 3 of
the scheme.
District councils are
responsible for managing
local air quality. This
includes the identification
of areas not likely to
meet air quality
objectives and the
preparation of plans in
pursuit of their
achievement. BSP part
funding is contributing
towards enabling
councils to achieve the
requisite standards and
objectives
Source: DOE; EU Structural Funds Central Database
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
CHAPTER 6: PRIORITY 1
6.1
Introduction
Aims & Objectives
The overarching aim of Priority 1 was “to produce a fast-growing, competitive,
innovative knowledge-based economy where there are plentiful opportunities and
a population equipped to grasp them”.
To achieve this, the Priority was divided into 2 sub-Priorities aimed at (a)
supporting business competitiveness comprising Measures 1–5 and (b) creating
the conditions for regional competitiveness Measures 6-8.
The diagram
‘Structure of Priority 1 showing sub-priorities’ overleaf illustrates this.
Measures 1–5, 7 and 8 were implemented by the Department of Enterprise,
Trade and Investment (DETI) through Invest NI (which brought together the
functions of the former the Local Economic Development Unit (LEDU) the
Industrial Development Board (IDB) and the Industrial Research and Technology
Unit (IRTU)) and the Northern Ireland Tourist Board (NITB).
Measure 6 was implemented by the Department for Regional Development was
responsible for delivery of the Roads and Transport activity.
Ten State Aids schemes were approved by the Commission in respect of
activities assisted under Measures 1–3 of this Priority and these are detailed in
paragraph 6.3.
Details of the objectives and activities carried out under all of the Measures are
found throughout this chapter.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
6.2
Implementation
The following table shows the allocation and expenditure declared for Priority 1
with a summary by Measure.
Priority 1 Allocations and expenditure declared – all amounts shown in Euro (€)
EU Amount
Public
Amount
Private
Total
Allocation
376,765,000.00
152,255,000.00
0.00
529,020,000.00
Expenditure
Declared
370,210,530.63
149,641,797.10
0.00
519,852,377.73
Expenditure
declared as % of
available
Allocation
98.26
Expenditure declared by Measure
1.1
79,171,769.83
26,390,840.14
0.00
105,562,609.97
1.2
65,186,439.67
21,729,075.56
0.00
86,915,515.23
1.3
46,500, 561.86
15,583,809.08
0.00
62,084,370.94
1.4
36,264,916.59
36,264,916.59
0.00
72,529,833.18
1.5
10,927,848.62
3,642,616.51
0.00
14,570,465.13
1.6
85,312,668.99
30,317,855.47
0.00
115,630,524.46
1.7
30,218,181.37
10,073,288.06
0.00
40,291,470.03
1.8
16,628,173.70
5,639,395.09
0.00
22,267,568.79
A total of 206 applications were approved under this Priority.
6.3 State Aid Schemes
In conformity with its duties under Article 34(1)g of Council Regulation
No 1260/1999, the Managing Authority, has kept the State Aid table below,
updated and informed the Commission of any modifications.
105
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
STATE AID SCHEMES IN ERDF MEASURES
Priority and
Measure No
Title of the State Aid Scheme or
Ad Hoc State Aid
State Aid
Number
Approval
Letter
Reference
Scheme
Duration
Selective Financial Assistance
(LEDU/IDB)
Provision of Sites and Standard
Advance Factories
N567/92
SG (94)
D/3118
SG (94)
D/3118
Ongoing
Property Development Scheme
(LEDU)
Property Development Agreement
(IDB)
Shortfall Guarantee Scheme (IDB)
N567/92
SG (94)
D/3118
SG (94)
D/3118
SG (97)
D/2254
SG (91)
D/2382
Ongoing
SG (92)
D/9899
C(2003)
2624
Ongoing
Valid until
March
2007
Ongoing
Priority 1
Measure 1
Measure 1
Measure 1
Measure 1
Measure 1
N567/92
N567/92
NN58/92
Measure 1
Local Enterprise Agencies
NN 80/89
(operating in Northern Ireland as
Local Enterprise Development Unit
(LEDU) Local Enterprise Programme
(LEP)
Measure 2
Science and Technology
Programme (START)
Product and Processes
Development (COMPETE)
Programme
NN54/92
Measure 2
Small Firms Mentoring Awards for
Research & Technology (SMART)*
N280/99
SG (99)
D/50888
Measure 3
Tourism Development Scheme in
Northern Ireland
N444/90
SG (90)
D/28204
Measure 2
NN 92/95
106
Ongoing
Ongoing
Ongoing
Redundant
2003-2008
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Structure of Priority 1 showing sub-Priorities
Business Support
Research and
Development &
Technology Transfer
Supporting
Business
Tourism
Competitiveness
Sub-Priority 1(a)
Local Economic
Development
Economic Growth
and
Information Society
Competitiveness
Priority
Road & Transport
Creating the
Telecoms
conditions for
Regional
Energy
Competitiveness
Sub-Priority 1(b)
107
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
6.4
Measure details for Measure 1.1 - Business Support
Background
The aim of Measure 1.1 was to increase the size and competitiveness of
Northern Ireland’s internationally competitive small business sector by means
of targeted support to key business sectors and processes and development
of regional business support networks, thereby increasing Northern Ireland’s
export trade and the Northern Ireland GDP and to stimulate and promote the
benefits of an enterprise culture and encouraging entrepreneurial activity.
Implementation
The overall value of this Measure was €110,586,667 which included an ERDF
allocation of €82,940,000.
Under this Measure 19 projects were approved:
¾ Measure 1.1(a)
10
¾ Measure 1.1(b)
5
¾ Measure 1.1(c)
4
Further details at the level of the sub-Measures can be found within the
respective reports.
A list of all projects for Measure 1.1 which incurred expenditure and the EU
element can be found in Annex 5.
Examples of Publicity
Sample 2.pdf
Sample 8.pdf
Sample 3.pdf
Sample 5.pdf
Sample 1.pdf
108
Sample 6.pdf
Sample 7.pdf
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Assessment and summary of Achievements v Targets
Details are available within the sub-Measure reports for 1.1(a), 1.1(b) and
1.1(c):
Expenditure and Financial Control
Total Expenditure declared for Measure 1.1
All amounts shown in €
Allocation in
Programme
Complement
Expenditure
Declared in
claims to the
Commission
EU Amount
Public Amount
Private
Total
82,940,000.00
27,646,667.00
0.00
110,586,667.00
79,171,769.83
26,390,840.14
0.00
105,562,609.97
Expenditure
declared as
% of
available
Allocation
95.46
Article 4 Activity
All projects were subject of at least one Article 4 check.
Summary of Findings as a result of Article 4 Activity
KPMG Consultants were engaged by DETI European Programmes Branch in
2006 to undertake an Article 4 check on Measures 1.1 to 1.3 using the
standard checklist template.
The key initial findings were:
•
Poor file maintenance.
•
Missing project files.
•
Article 4 checks outstanding/Incomplete Article 4 checklists.
•
Letter of Offer clauses.
•
Deficiencies in document storage arrangements.
•
Lack of EU Publicity.
•
Deficiencies in identification and reporting of irregularities.
•
Projects to complete Equality & Environmental Impact templates.
109
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
As a result of these findings Invest NI formed an EU Compliance Team and a
major exercise of remedial work was undertaken that fully addressed the
issues identified. The report detailing this work has since been provided to
and accepted by DG REGIO auditors.
Article 4 checks were carried out retrospectively by Invest NI as part of the EU
Compliance Exercise which began in February 2007. A standard checklist
was used throughout, and the Client Executive signed off each individual
checklist which was placed on the relevant project file.
There were no control weaknesses identified.
The findings of the KPMG
review in 2006 highlighted that visits were incomplete and also that
administrative issues needed to be addressed as a result. Action was then
taken to ensure that all visits and checklists were completed.
In addition to the Article 4 checks all Invest NI project claims had been subject
to standard grant inspection procedures and controls as a matter of routine
financial control.
Article 10 Activity
9.37% of declared expenditure was examined under Article 10 revealing an
error rate of 6.54%.
Spread of Article 10 – 5% checks
% checked
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
3.88
8.01
5.39
24.37 5.69
2005
2006
2007** 2008
14.21 15.04 -1.34
0
** see footnote on page 112
Summary of Findings as a result of Article 10 Monitoring
This Measure is made up of three sub-Measures, M1.1(a), M1.1(b) and
M1.1(c).
Projects within sub-Measures 1.1(a) and 1.1(b) were affected by the
payments by output rather than invoice, known as the “Trigger Point”, issue.
Vouching had been postponed whilst a solution was being sought and in
110
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
November 2006 a pilot exercise was carried out on a small representative
sample of projects to investigate the issue, seek a solution and re-establish
vouching. An initial sample of 10 projects was selected from the 451 projects
identified.
The selection was made using interval sampling and as
expenditure after 2003 was under-represented in the initial selection, a further
project was selected giving a total of 11 projects for the scoping exercise.
Two of the selected projects, were not detailed on the database and were not
declared for drawdown purposes.
After this work and further discussions with the DGREGIO auditors during
follow up audit agreement was reached in 2008 on how the necessary
assurances on declared expenditure would be provided.
As a result, the “Trigger-Point” related expenditure in the Pilot projects was
disregarded and only the “non-Trigger Point” related expenditure that had
been vouched to “actuals”, was deemed to count towards the final
percentage.
Following agreement with the DGREGIO auditors, the Verification Unit used
the same sampling to select a further sample of projects. Twenty of these
were subjected to a joint visit with the Invest NI Claims Inspector. During
these checks, the actual expenditure that could be vouched to original
documentation was subjected to a full Article 10 Inspection and this
expenditure was counted towards the 5% target.
A further two projects were selected in 2009 in order to satisfy the
requirements to examine the main beneficiaries of the funding.
Projects assisted under sub-Measure 1.1(c) related to the promotional work
carried out on behalf of Invest NI. This included two Advertising campaigns the “Believe” and the “Go for it” campaigns.
These projects were both
selected for Article 10 Inspections and interval sampling was used to select
the payments to be vouched from the claims submitted.
111
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Audit Activity
Details of internal audit activity can be found in Annex 12 and details of
Commission Audit findings are provided in Annex 13.
Irregularities detected through Article 10 Checks
Organisation
/
Project
M1.1b EPS
T/A Sam
Evans
UK Case
No
M1.1b Four
Dee
M1.1b Weld
Tech
M1.1b
Moypark
M1.1b
Glanbia
Cheese
M1.1c
Promotions
Trigger Points
Total
irregularity
£’s
EU Element
£’s
Nature of
irregularity
(code)
Date
identified
Date
reported
to EC
Date
cleared
N/A
1,000.00
750.00
Recordable
only
11/12/06
N/A
N/A
N/A
2,500.00
1,875.00
11/12/06
N/A
N/A
N/A
1,156.88
867.66
11/12/06
N/A
N/A
27/06/09
302,115.78
226,586.84
Recordable
only
Recordable
only
121 &210
31/12/07
07/05/09
Open
27/07/09
109,558.83
82,169.12
121 & 210
31/12/07
07/05/09
Open
18/05/09
7,595.43
5,696.57
121 & 325
31/12/07
07/05/09
Open
18/06/09
57,325.59
42,994.19
121 & 325
31/12/07
07/05/09
Open
Irregularities
A total of 43 irregularities were reported for this Measure all of which were
cleared. Irregularities that were below the reporting threshold were recorded
and details are in Annex 16. There were no projects were suspended due to
legal or administrative proceedings.
** Footnote to 2007 Article 10 negative amount on page 110
The most recent adjustment takes account of irregularities such as VAT and
output related payments. Irregularities in 2007 total £4,484,685 against
eligible expenditure of £381,257, therefore, final expenditure in 2007 is stated
as ─£4,103,428.08. This in turn implies a negative verification percentage,
however as £54,899 total eligible expenditure was vouched in 2007, when
calculated against 2007 payments, 14.4% was in fact vouched.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Sub- Measure: - 1.1(a) – Business Support – Enterprise
Aims and Objectives
Traditionally there is a lack of enterprise culture within the Northern Ireland
economy as evidenced by low start-up and economic activity rates. Northern
Ireland also had the lowest VAT registration rate in the UK. At international
level, entrepreneurial activity is positively correlated with economic growth, so
by enhancing entrepreneurial activity, it was hoped that economic growth
would follow.
The objectives set for this Measure were:
•
to increase start-up activity with a specific focus on groups previously not
well represented in self-employment or business ownership (e.g. women
and people in the age groups of 45+) in sectors able to exploit global
markets;
•
to stimulate and promote the benefits of an enterprise culture particularly
the need to celebrate entrepreneurship and the success of local small
businesses;
•
to provide a physical and support infrastructure to encourage
entrepreneurial activity; and
•
to ensure that the skills and capabilities needed to start and develop a
business are on the education “menu”.
To meet these objectives, Invest NI deployed the following activities:
i.
develop a strategy for the creation of more sustainable business
start-ups particularly those with the potential for high growth;
ii.
increase
entrepreneurship
awareness
and
start-up
activity,
particularly among under represented groups; www.bwnni.com
being one example. The BWNNI Programme was funded under
BSP ESF, however, Invest NI assisted in its promotion through the
“Go for it” campaign which was ERDF funded.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
iii.
identify gaps in the enterprise support network and engage in
partnership initiatives to address these gaps, both in terms of
infrastructure and in capacity building;
iv.
work
with
other
Government
Departments
and
relevant
Organisations to raise awareness of the importance of business and
entrepreneurship within the education system;
v.
pursue closer links with Universities, Science Parks, Centres of
Excellence and other research based Organisations to accelerate
the development of knowledge based businesses; and
vi.
ensure the provision of a range of financial support options (both
public and private) to meet the needs of new business starts.
Invest NI Schemes funded under this Measure were as follows:
•
Business Start Programme (renamed Start A Business Programme)
•
EMIS.
•
Pre Start Incentive.
•
Home Start, Accelerated Start.
•
Third Party Start.
•
Growth Start Up.
•
Regional Activities and Export Start.
•
Promotions.
Implementation
Ten applications were approved under this Sub-Measure.
For 3 of the schemes – Business Start up, Third Party Support and
Promotions expenditure was deemed irregular due to a lack of an audit trail.
Expenditure in respect of these schemes has been removed from the
database.
All schemes progressed satisfactorily during the period of the Programme.
Examples of strengths identified include the setting up of the Start a Business
Programme and the good working relationships between Invest NI and their
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
clients. There were no major difficulties encountered in the implementation of
this Measure at Scheme or Project level.
The Business Start Programme, subsequently renamed as Start a Business
Programme (SABP) was set up to provide a package of mentoring assistance
to potential entrepreneurs, targeting the local market place. It was the
introduction of this Programme that contributed to this Measure meeting its
target indicators in terms of business start-ups.
Examples of Projects - Measure 1.1(a)
Pumps and Fuel Installations Limited – This company is involved in the
supply, installation and maintenance of fuel handling equipment from bulk
storage facilities through to retain petrol forecourts. A major investment in
2006 enabled this firm to increase its capability and take advantage of
growing export market opportunities by relocating to a purpose built factory at
Invest NI’s Whiterock Business Park.
Belfast Aircraft Stress Engineers – This Company based in Dundonald won
the First Time Exporter of the Year Award 2005 hosted by Invest NI. The
Company specialises in expert consultancy providing stress analysis and
other services to the global aerospace industry and has worked on projects for
the majority of the main aerospace companies including Boeing, Airbus and
Bombardier. The success of this Company has showed that a smaller
business can do very well with innovative products in a world class
environment.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.1(a)
Original Indicator
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Output
100 high growth potential businesses 242
created (of which 60 in high tech
sectors) (1a)
*3000 locally focused businesses
created
Result
*700 Gross jobs
(100 gross jobs)
Revised Indicators
Final Position
*100 high growth potential
businesses created (of
which 60 in high tech
sectors)
546(1)
*3000 locally focused
businesses created
14,332(2)
882
963 (52)
*700 Gross jobs
*
(100 in high tech sectors)
*6000 Gross jobs
Impact
400 Net jobs
(50 net jobs)
1323
*6000 Gross jobs
*
550
(26)
400 Net jobs
(50 in high tech sectors)
4,302 net employed (3)
2500 Net jobs
551
2500 Net jobs
18,630 net employed (4)
90% survival rate in
assisted businesses after
year 1
End of prog (5)
End of prog (5)
70% survival rate in
See
note below
assisted businesses after
3 years
* Invest NI have been unable to obtain gross job figures at the end of this Programme. Invest NI only has one figure for job creation
for each of the targets i.e. the number of jobs in these start up companies at 2007 – so it is a net change figure.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
The 2001 AIR, highlighted that for this measure, over 90% of the high growth potential businesses created target, had already been
achieved (Target - 100 Position at the end of 2001- 91).
By the end of 2003, and mid term evaluation, this target had been exceeded at 253 as highlighted in the AIR of that year.
This figure continued to grow and by the end of 2007 (and the BSP Programme), 546 high growth businesses had been created; the target
at the outset of the programme had been exceeded by over 300%.
(1)
Only includes start up projects within the following parameters – in receipt of SFA assistance totalling £25k or more to a client employing
less than 250.
(1a)
The table also demonstrates that the original target of 3000 locally focused businesses created, had been exceeded by the end of 2007.
This figure stood at 14,332 locally focused businesses created.
(2)
(3) Invest NI have been unable to obtain gross job figures at the end of this programme. Invest NI only has one figure for job creation for
each of the targets i.e. the number of jobs in these start up companies at 2007 - so it is a net change figure.
The impact of the number of high growth businesses created on the number of Net Jobs created was determined as 4,302 at the end of the
BSP programme
Again, the resulting gross jobs created cannot be determined, however the number of net jobs created in relation to locally focused
businesses created was 18,630.
(4)
The 2001 AIR, highlighted that for this measure, over 90% of the high growth potential businesses created target, had already been
achieved (Target - 100 Position at the end of 2001= 91). By the end of 2003, and mid term evaluation, this target had been exceeded at 253
as highlighted in the AIR of that year. This figure continued to grow and by the end of 2007 (and the BSP Programme), 546 high growth
businesses had been created; the target at the outset of the programme had been exceeded by over 300%.
(5)
INVEST NI NOTE: 78% of businesses assisted through Start A Business Programme survived at least 3 years.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Control Activity
Article 4
Ten projects in Measure 1.1(a) were subjected to an Article 4 check.
Summary of findings as a result of Article 4 Activity
KPMG Consultants were engaged by DETI in 2006 to undertake an Article 4 check
on Measure 1.1 using the standard checklist template. The key findings are included
in the Measure 1.1 summary.
Article 10
Details of Article 10 activity are included in the Measure 1.1 summary.
Audit Activity
Details of internal audit activity can be found in Annex 12 and details of Commission
audit findings are provided in Annex 13.
The 2007 AIR identified the issue of ineligible spend in respect of “Trigger Points” or
funds paid out on the achievement of results and not on expenditure incurred.
Auditors from DG REGIO raised a number of issues in September 2007, in relation
to payments to projects using trigger points. After discussion with the DG REGIO
auditors DETI’s Internal Audit provided assurance to the Commission on the
eligibility of expenditure claimed to date.
Irregularities
Details of irregularities are provided at Measure 1.1 summary level in Annexes 15
and 16.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Sub- Measure: - 1.1(b) – Business Support – Competitiveness Excellence
Support
Aims and Objectives
The rationale for Measure 1.1(b) was that there remained a low level of business
competitiveness in Northern Ireland as was evidenced by business reliance on a
small local marketplace, with the exporting activity of small firms was minimal with
innovation and R&D poorly developed with ICT usage lagging well behind other
regions. Through increasing business competitiveness and encouraging SMEs to
compete in foreign markets, it was seen that economic growth would ensue.
The main objective to be met under each of the schemes funded under this Measure
was to accelerate the competitiveness and growth rates of businesses. Invest NI did
this by deploying the following activities:
i.
provision of a holistic approach to the analysis and identification of
business growth constraints in agreement with client companies. This
was achieved through the application of the Competitiveness Excellence
Process and currently forms a basic tool for situational analysis and a
range of benchmarking techniques; and
ii.
interventions which were measurable in response to needs identified as
part of the above process, through selective financial assistance and
trade development activities.
Implementation
Five applications were approved under this Measure.
funded under this Measure were as follows:
•
Growth Major
•
Growth Minor
•
Growth Incentive
•
Sectoral Studies
•
Single Development
119
The Invest NI Schemes
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Of these 5 applications, 2 schemes the Single Development and Sectoral
Studies/Initiatives incurred spend before being deemed irregular due to the lack of
an audit trail. Expenditure in respect of these schemes has been removed from the
database. The remaining schemes were deemed eligible.
Examples of Projects within Measure 1.1(b)
McMullen Architectural Systems Ltd – In 2006, this Company won a highly
prestigious £13 million contract as part of the redevelopment of The Arsenal’s
Highbury Stadium in London. The new development was a collection of studios,
apartments and penthouses set within the Art Deco surroundings of the former
stadium.
The Company which designs, manufacturers and installs architectural
aluminium curtain walling and window frames was selected as a sub-contractor for
Sir Robert Alpine. McMullen’s Architectural System’s success followed a three year
investment programme by the Company worth over £2 million. It has therefore
secured significant new business in England, where it now carries out the majority of
its work. In 2006 it increased its number of employees from 110 to 175 and employs
in excess of 200 workers.
Adamsez – is the only manufacturer of acrylic baths in Ireland and the designorientated market place. The Company received ERDF assistance towards the high
marketing costs required to gain market share and the costs associated with
launching and marketing the new range of shower enclosures. Adamsez is a small
niche player operating in a market, which is dominated by larger household names
such as Jacuzzi, Shires and Villeroy & Borsch. Adamsez’s strength lies in innovative
design and product quality, however these attributes alone are not sufficient to
ensure market profile. The focus of the current marketing strategy is to launch a
number of new innovative products in the GB market and at the same time elevate
the Adamsez brand.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.1(b)
Original Indicator
Output
*500 SMEs supported by LEDU
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Revised Indicators
Final Position
623
*500 SMEs supported by INVEST NI per
annum
1714 (6)
1856
*1700 jobs (gross)
37,152 (7)
7% growth in sales (net) per annum over
the six years of the programme (as
compared with 5% in 1999/2000)
10.2% increase in
sales over the
period. (8)
20 companies assisted by IDB
Result
*1700 jobs (gross)
To maintain turnover and profit levels
at 1998/0999 levels
Impact
8% growth in sales (net) per annum
Figures unavailable at
MTE
8% growth in export performance
(net) per annum
Figures unavailable at
MTE
8% growth in export performance (net) per 15.6% increase in
exports. (9)
annum over the six years of the
programme (as compared with 6% in
1999/2000)
5% increase in net jobs creation per
annum (1300 jobs)
Figures unavailable at
MTE
1300 net jobs at the end of the
programme
Improved productivity within the
companies
Figures unavailable at
MTE
121
1918 net jobs.
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
(6) By
the end of 2007, 1,714 SMEs had been supported (relates to locally-owned SME’s offered £25,000 or more)
2002/03 to 2007/08 employment has increased from 33,611 to 37,152 representing a growth rate of 10.5% over the period and 2.0% annually.
(8) Sales grew from £3.1 billion to £5.3 billion resulting in a 62.7% increase over the period and 10.2% per annum.
(9) Exports grew from £889m to £1.8 billion resulting in an 106.5% increase over the period and 15.6% annually.
(7) From
Invest NI Response:
In relation to the achievement of 10 Regional initiatives focusing on SME development against a target of 5 (200% success
rate), Invest NI's has 5 local offices developing a plan to encourage for example export starts, developing an innovative
approach or working with local stakeholders and these have been delivered on the ground by the local office personnel.
This amounts to each regional office having two such initiatives rather than one in the time period. Given changing
economic priorities and reacting to the needs of clients it would sometimes be necessary to do this.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Control Activity
Article 4
All projects in this Measure were subjected to an Article 4 check.
Summary of findings as a result of Article 4 activity
KPMG Consultants were engaged by DETI in 2006 to undertake an Article 4 check
on Measure 1.1 using the standard checklist template. The key findings are included
in the Measure 1.1 summary.
Article 10
Details of Article 10 activity are included in the Measure 1.1 summary.
Audit Activity
Details of internal audit activity can be found in Annex 12 and details of Commission
audit findings are provided in Annex 13.
The 2007 AIR identified the issue of ineligible spend to “Trigger Points” or funds paid
out on the achievement of results and not on expenditure incurred. Auditors from
DG REGIO in September 2007 raised a number of issues in relation to payments to
projects using “Trigger Points”. After discussion with the DG REGIO auditors DETI’s
Internal Audit provided assurance to the Commission on the eligibility of expenditure
claimed to date.
Irregularities
Details of irregularities are provided at Measure 1.1 summary level in Annexes 15
and 16.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Sub- Measure: - 1.1(c) - Business Support – Small Business Support Network
Aims and Objectives
There was strong evidence to suggest that links existed between the high levels of
entrepreneurship and economic growth. The key to maximising entrepreneurship
was seen as a more coherent and co-ordinated approach to the delivery of support
to small businesses and to a small firm development policy.
This Measure sought to encourage individuals to consider establishing a business
and so began to address Northern Ireland’s low business start-up rate.
The main objectives to be met through schemes funded under this Measure were:
•
develop a framework for integrated small business support; and
•
ensure that all small businesses have access to appropriate levels of support to
develop their business.
To meet these objectives, Invest NI undertook to:
i.
work in partnership with all those who had an interest in small business
development (e.g. Local Authorities, Community Groups and other
Government Departments).
Develop integrated strategies to address
development needs of small businesses and implement plans in a coordinated way;
ii.
establish a resource dedicated to the sourcing, analysis and interpretation
of market intelligence to inform the development of plans and assist with
the evaluation of small business support services;
iii.
establish a “gateway” service to facilitate single point of access information
and ‘problem-solving’ advice for the NI small business base; and
iv.
work with other providers of support to build capacity and capability in the
area of small business development.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Implementation
Four projects were approved under this part of the Measure.
The Invest NI Schemes funded under this Measure were:
•
Scheme Development;
•
Business Counsellors;
•
Third Party Support; and
•
Promotions.
Example of Projects within Measure 1.1(c)
“Go For It” Campaign - Since 2001, Invest NI’s Start a Business Programme (SABp)
has been the main volume intervention in Northern Ireland to raise the level and
quality of business start-ups. Between 2002 and 2008, 18,817 locally-owned
businesses and individuals have been supported to start a business through Invest
NI’s appointed third sector organisation, Enterprise NI and its network of 32 Local
Enterprise Agencies (LEA’s). The primary communications channel for promoting
the SABp has been the “Go For It” advertising campaign and up until 2007, the
campaign has played a vital role in encouraging potential entrepreneurs to start their
own business. Since Financial Year 2003-04, the campaign has delivered a total of
63,720 enquiries to the LEA’s network and the 0808 helpline number. These have
resulted in 48,271 SABp Lead in Assessments and 19,998 SABp Letters of Offer.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.1(c)
Original Indicator
Output
26 integrated plans
5 Regional Action plans
Result
10strategic alliances formed
10 regional initiatives focusing on
SME development
Impact
Positive change in business base
Positive change in business
performance
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Revised Indicators
Final Position
26
2
5 regional action plans
5
0
0
10 regional initiatives focusing on SME
development
10
Not available
Positive change in business base
Positive change in business performance
No target (10)
No target (10)
Under this measure, there were indicators as opposed to targets to aim towards, such as a positive change in business base and also a
positive change in business performance. The objectives of the measure were documented as continuing to be successful on the whole
although this impact could not be evaluated in terms of figures.
(10)
Invest NI Response:
In relation to the achievement of 10 Regional initiatives focusing on SME development against a target of 5 (200% success
rate), Invest NI's has 5 local offices developing a plan to encourage for example export starts, developing an innovative
approach or working with local stakeholders and these have been delivered on the ground by the local office personnel.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
This amounts to each regional office having two such initiatives rather than one in the time period. Given changing
economic priorities and reacting to the needs of clients it would sometimes be necessary to do this.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Control Activity
Article 4
All projects in this Measure were subjected to an Article 4 check.
Summary of findings as a result of Article 4 activity
KPMG Consultants were engaged by European Programmes in 2006 to
undertake an Article 4 check on the Measure using the standard checklist
template. The key findings are included in the Measure 1.1 summary.
As a result of the KPMG review of this measure and of other BSP Measures
Invest NI formed an EU Compliance Team and a major exercise of remedial
work was undertaken to address the issues identified. The report detailing
this work has since been copied to DG REGIO auditors.
A further Implementing Body Article 4 check was carried out by the DETI
Article 4 Team in February 2008.
The main recommendations related to
Invest NI providing documentation in relation to ‘I Believe’ advertising
campaign, ie tendering process, appointment of contractors, Ministerial
approval, Development Path Analysis.
Article 4 Checks carried out by Invest NI
Article 4 checks carried out by Invest NI were completed retrospectively as
part of the EU Compliance Exercise which began in February 2007. A
standard checklist was used throughout and when signed off by the Client
Executive, was placed on the relevant project file.
All Article 4 checks were completed by DETI by programme closure deadline
of 31st December 2007.
There were no control weaknesses identified by Invest NI. The findings of the
KPMG review in 2006 highlighted the extent to which visits were incomplete
and also the administrative issues that needed to be addressed as a result.
Action was then taken to ensure that all visits and checklists were completed.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
In addition to the Article 4 checks all Invest NI project claims were subject to
standard grant inspection procedures and controls.
Article 10
Details of Article 10 activity are included in the Measure 1.1 summary.
Audit Activity
Details of internal audit activity can be found in Annex 12 and details of
Commission audit findings are provided in Annex 13.
Irregularities
Details of irregularities are provided at Measure 1.1 summary level in Annexes
15 and 16.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
6.5
Measure Details for Measure 1.2 – Research & Technology
Development & Technology Transfer
Aims and Objectives
The rationale for this Measure was to raise industry R&D to promote
innovation and encourage greater links between indigenous SME’s and
inward investors while developing linkages between the business and
education sectors. This was identified as a priority action and subsequently
firms were encouraged to undertake technology transfer. The availability and
accessibility of knowledge based research infrastructure, supporting and
facilitating local SMEs in their development of innovative products and
processes, was seen as critical to Northern Ireland’s technological
advancement.
The main objectives of this Measure were to:
•
support and strengthen Northern Ireland’s industrially driven research
base (COMPETE and START);
•
encourage and enhance the design and development of environmentally
friendly innovative products and processes (SMART, Awareness
Programme,
Innovation
Audit
and
Environmental
Audit
Support
Schemes); and
•
provide the opportunity for university graduates to develop their
capabilities both technically and managerially by undertaking key
projects through work placements (TCS).
To meet these objectives, Invest NI deployed the activities through the
following six schemes:
i.
COMPETE Programme – encourage and enhance innovative market
led
product
and
process
development
130
in
Northern
Ireland
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
companies.
Projects that demonstrate a strong environmental
element will be encouraged;
ii.
START Programme – provide a strong R&D capability in Northern
Ireland
companies
and
universities
through
participation
in
technology based industrially relevant pre-competitive research and
development projects.
iii.
SMART – Support for individuals and small firms to improve
competitiveness through innovative ideas for products and processes.
iv.
Green
awareness
Programme
–
Seminars,
Workshops
and
Conferences to promote R&D, technology transfer, green issues and
best practice in industry and commerce;
v.
Knowledge Transfer Programme (KTP) – Provide the opportunity for
University graduates to develop their capabilities both technically and
managerially by undertaking key projects through work placements.
vi.
Environmental Audit Support Scheme (EASS) – Encourage and
enhance the design and development of environmentally friendly
innovative products and processes.
Implementation
The value of this Measure was €85,253,334 which included an ERDF
allocation of €63,940,000. A list of all projects for Measure 1.2 which incurred
expenditure and the EU element can be found in Annex 5.
The Measure progressed smoothly over the course of the Programme,
however, as reported in the 2005 Annual Implementation Report the
participation levels in the COMPETE were slightly lower than levels previously
recorded for the Programme prior to 2000. A survey of COMPETE was carried
out in an attempt to identify the causes of falling participation. It revealed that
participants were of the opinion that Invest NI’s processing times were too
long. This resulted in a re-examination of Invest NI’s assessment process for
individual COMPETE proposals and a more user friendly and significantly
simplified process was piloted. The pilot ‘Streamlined COMPETE” involves
the preparation of the necessary and appropriate casework jointly by the
Invest NI Client Executive and the Technology Executive and process
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
contains all necessary checks and controls as required. The aim was that the
higher level of support and faster response times would significantly increase
the participation level. This new ‘COMPETE’ has been designated under
Priority 1 in the new Sustainable Competitiveness Programme 2007 -2013 as
COMPETE.
Some of the strengths that were identified included the shifting focus on R&D
projects by companies, the expected increase in Business Expenditure on
Research and Development (BERD) and the establishment of good working
relationship between Invest NI and their clients.
Examples of Projects within Measure 1.2
The Envirowise Programme, under the Environmental Awareness Programme
(EASS Scheme) helped Northern Ireland based companies achieve savings
through the prevention of waste. A series of waste minimisation seminars and
workshops for businesses were held to communicate best practice which
were of considerable benefit and ‘Fast Track’ Waste Auditing of local
companies continues to help business identify low cost opportunities to
minimise waste and achieve savings.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.2
Original Indicator
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Revised Indicators
Final Position
Output
No of R&D projects supported 220
142
No of Environmental & Innovative
audits Initiated
180
No of graduate placements 256
47
286 R&D projects supported (broken
down by type of research orientation
871 (11)
350 Environmental & Innovative audits
Initiated
393
150 graduate placements
204
Result
80% of supported projects
completing successfully
87%
80% of supported projects completing
successfully
86%
90% of businesses undertake an
audit
86%
90% of businesses undertake an audit
100%
Not reported on as ‘result’
130 projects involving graduates
161
64%
80% of graduates successfully completing
placement
No of projects involving graduates
256
80% of graduates successfully
completing placement
133
95%
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Impact
15% increase in Business
Expenditure on R&D
45%
15% increase in Business Expenditure on
R&D
50% increase in
expenditure on
R&D from £123m
in 1999 to £185m
in 2007.
60% of businesses adopt audit
recommendations
Not available
60% of businesses adopt audit
recommendations
100%
60% of graduates retained by host firm
62%
60% of graduates retained by host
Not available
(11) The 2001 AIR highlighted that there had been 98 R& D projects supported against a target of 220 for the programme. This target was
surpassed by the end of 2004, with 263 projects supported. This figure reached 715 by the end of 2006 and 871 by the end of 2007 with
approximately 86% of supported projects successfully completed against a target of 80%.
Invest NI Response:
Demand for programmes under this measure was much higher than initial reviews suggested.
.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Expenditure and Financial Control
Total Expenditure Declared for Measure 1.2
All amounts shown in €
Allocation in
Programme
Complement
Expenditure
Declared in
claims to the
Commission
EU Amount
Public Amount
Private
Total
63,940,000.00
21,313,334.00
0.00
85,253,334.00
65,186,439.67
21,729,075.56
0.00
86,915,515.23
Expenditure
declared as %
of available
Allocation
101.95
Article 4 Activity
All schemes in this Measure were subjected to an Article 4 check. The
Innovation Audit Scheme element was deemed irregular due to a lack of an
audit trail. Expenditure in respect of this scheme has been removed from
expenditure declarations to the Commission.
Summary of findings as a result of Article 4 Activity
KPMG Consultants were engaged by DETI in 2006 to undertake an Article 4
check on the Measure using the standard checklist template.
A summary of
the findings can be found under Measure 1.1.
As a result of the KPMG checks on this and other BSP Measures managed by
Invest NI, the organisation formed an EU Compliance Team and a major
exercise of remedial work was undertaken to address the issues identified.
The report detailing this work has since been copied to DG REGIO auditors.
Article 4 checks carried out by Invest NI were completed retrospectively as
part of the EU Compliance Exercise which began in February 2007. A
standard checklist was used throughout and the Client Executive signed off
each individual checklist, which was then placed on the relevant project file.
An Article 4 check was not carried out on the Knowledge Transfer Partnership
(KTP) Scheme which was managed by the Department of Trade and Industry
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
(DTI) based in London. This scheme was reviewed by the DGREGIO auditors
during their 2006 visit and it was subsequently agreed that the DETI
Verification team would carry out an Article 10 check.
There were no control weaknesses identified on a project basis. The findings
of the KPMG review in 2006 highlighted the extent to which visits were
incomplete and also the administrative issues that needed to be addressed as
a result. Action was then taken to ensure that all visits and checklists were
completed.
In addition to the Article 4 checks all Invest NI project claims were subject to
their normal grant inspection procedures and controls.
Article 10 Activity
9.84% of declared expenditure was examined under Article 10 revealing an
error rate of 9.75%.
Spread of Article 10 – 5% checks
2000
% checked
2001
2002
2003
21.13 22.14 30.04 3.46
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008
10.91 5.87
5.42
27.66 0
Summary of Findings as a result of Article 10 Monitoring
The ‘COMPETE’ and ‘START’ programmes were selected for verification
using a risk analysis approach which considered the allocation and
percentage (%) spend to date.
Within each programme a number of
companies were selected, to give a representative spread of type and size of
projects towards meeting the annual 5% requirement.
This methodology
ensured that a good mix of different types and sizes of projects were visited
including the largest grant recipient.
Following an Article 10 Verification exercise in March 2005 on the Measure,
no significant weaknesses were discovered. A number of recommendations
were made regarding missing clauses in the original letters of offer and the
need for Invest NI to complete Environmental Impact Assessments, Article 4
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
management checks and the need to implement a formal mechanism to
record irregularities. Invest NI confirmed that remedial action was taken for
each of these recommendations and follow-up action was completed to
ensure that these actions were satisfactory.
As a result of a DGREGIO auditors visit in 2006 the Verification Team was
requested to carry out an Article 10 sample check of the KTP scheme. This is
a DTI run scheme and regional sponsors - of which Invest NI is one – are
invoiced by DTI for 50% of the running costs of the KTP scheme. Invest NI
listed all companies involved in funded ‘Knowledge Base Partnerships’ and all
payments made by DTI to the Education partner in relation to each of these
Partnerships. Expenditure for the region is then declared by Invest NI to DETI
European Programmes for the purpose of drawing down EU grant.
The
Verification Unit concluded that Invest NI were in fact the final recipients of the
ERDF funding and that the claims from DTI should have been the eligible
costs claimed against this Measure. An irregularity was subsequently raised
for the over-declared amount.
A follow-up Article 10 exercise was completed in April 2009 to verify further
expenditure under the Measure in later years. It was determined that overall
the management systems and controls were found to be operating well. Any
recommendations made have been followed up.
Irregularities detected through Article 10 Checks
Org/
Project
UK
Case
No
Total
irregularity
£’s
EU Element
£’s
Nature of
irregularity
(code)
TCS/KTP
n/a
3,036,980.75
423,157.28
325
COMPETE –
McGeary
Compost I
COMPETE –
W D Irwin
Thales air
Defence
n/a
409.13
306.85
Recordable
only
n/a
463.50
347.63
N/a
8.62
6.47
Recordable
only
Recordable
only
137
Date
identified
March
2007
March
2005
March
2005
Sept 08
Date
report
ed to
DFP
June
2008
n/a
n/a
N/a
Date
cleared
June
2008
Feb
2007
Feb
2007
May 09
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Audit Activity
All internal audit activity in respect of Measure 1.2 is detailed in Annex 12 and
details of Commission audit findings are provided in Annex 13.
Reported Irregularities
A total of 43 irregularities were reported for this part of the Measure all of
which were resolved. A detailed list of all reported irregularities for Measure
1.2 can be found in Annex 15. Irregularities that were below the reporting
threshold were recorded and are detailed in Annex 16.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
6.6
Measure Details for Measure 1.3 - Tourism
Aims and Objectives
To realise the potential of the tourism industry this Measure aims to ‘grow’
tourism to Northern Ireland, effect a better regional spread of benefits and
increase employment in the sector in a manner that is environmentally
sustainable and recognises the needs and requirements of the indigenous
population. More specifically the objectives were to:•
grow discretionary visitors as a proportion of all visitors;
•
increase the contribution discretionary visitors make to tourism revenue
by attracting a higher spending visitor, increasing their length of stay
and providing opportunities to spend more; and
•
enhance the competitiveness of Northern Ireland tourism through
product development which is based on the Northern Ireland offer.
Implementation
The overall value of this Measure was €62,600,003 of which the ERDF
allocation was €46,950,002 and this Measure was divided into sub-Measures
(a) Tourism – strategic marketing and (b) enhancing the business of tourism.
Two schemes administered by the Northern Ireland Tourist Board and
Invest NI on behalf of the Department of Enterprise Trade and Investment
(DETI) were approved and these provided funding to some 75 projects.
Details of the activities at sub-Measure level can be found under each section
report. A list of all projects for Measure 1.3 which incurred expenditure and
the ERDF element can be found in Annex 5.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Examples of Publicity
Links to some examples of the publicity undertaken promoting the Tourism
Measure of the Programme are shown below.
NITB - Irelands Christian Heritage
http://www.discovernorthernireland.com/downloads/Christian_Heritage.pdf
NITB - Walk Northern Ireland Brochure
http://www.discovernorthernireland.com/downloads/WalkNI.pdf
NITB – The View brochure
http://www.nitb.com/ContentCache/Files/d7a38f9e-264d-43d7-a56ef7144ed2b137/2.0.20080307165231000/Comm%20View%202006-05.pdf
NITB – Marketing Plan, Best International Prospects – your steps to success
in 2007
http://www.nitb.com/DocumentPage.aspx?path=b3448d14-e182-4420-8cd6e77e8f976728,30238ee9-2b49-4394-a3f2-751f6d0b5544,e5d9e2bc-602f4983-86ba-026cd274d7d9
Assessment and Summary of Achievements v Targets
Details are available within the sub-measure reports for 1.3(a) and 1.3(b).
Expenditure and Financial Control
Total Expenditure Declared for Measure 1.3
All amounts shown in €
Allocation in
Programme
Complement
Expenditure
Declared in
claims to the
Commission
EU Amount
Public Amount
Private
Total
46,950,002.00
15,650,001.00
0.00
62,600,003.00
46,500,561.86
15,583,809.08
0.00
62,084,370.94
Article 4
Each scheme was subject to at least one Article 4 check.
140
Expenditure
declared as % of
available
Allocation
99.18
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of findings as a result of Article 4 Activity
KPMG Consultants were engaged by DETI’s European Programmes Branch
in 2006 to undertake an Article 4 check on the Measure using the standard
checklist template.
There was a further Article 4 check under taken by the
DETI Article 4 Team in June 2007.
The main recommendations were:
•
ensure that all projects have completed Equality Questionnaire &
Development Path Analysis; and
•
publish details of projects supported acknowledging EU support.
Both issues were addressed satisfactorily.
Article 10
13.43% of declared expenditure was examined under Article 10 revealing an
error rate of 4.35%.
Spread of Article 10 – 5% checks
2000
% checked
2001
19.50 7.78
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008
37.64 9.20
9.12
9.04
6.62
6.52
9.12
Summary of findings as a result of Article 10 monitoring
Sub-Measure 1.3(a)
As this is a co-financing Measure, sampling was done using the two tier
approach, by first obtaining a list of payments from the BSP Database for
each scheme funded under this sub-Measure and then from within the various
schemes, selecting projects on a random basis for a more detailed
examination. As some schemes had expenditure only in certain years, this
dictated which schemes were selected for checking, based on the target of a
minimum of 5% per annum.
Within these selected schemes, all expenditure was checked for the selected
years. Two separate verification exercises were carried out on this sub-
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Measure, the first in December 2005 and then a follow up exercise in
February 2009.
The first Verification exercise on this sub-Measure had to be deferred due to
the NITB not being able to provide a full breakdown of costs in support of the
amounts claimed. A follow-up exercise in 2005 found that this had now been
done and the verification exercise was able to proceed. During this exercise,
it was noted that the NITB had included ineligible VAT in this sub-Measure
and NITB undertook a full review of the costs in order to remove this ineligible
expenditure.
An irregularity was subsequently reported for the amount of
£85k and these cost removed from the drawdown. A further issue was noted
where a number of payments were included as Sterling which should have
been converted from Euro’s and again the NITB were requested to carry out a
full review, to determine the extent of the over claim. An acceptable level of
assurance was given.
Documents relating to expenditure for the first year of the Programme and the
first quarter of 2001 could not be obtained for Verification purposes due to
their destruction in a fire in an NITB store.
A special report was
commissioned by the DGREGIO auditors and using a sampling strategy
agreed with the auditors and the reconstruction of the selected documentation
from the original suppliers, a high level of assurance (78% by value) was
obtained. The formal DGREGIO audit response to this exercise was not
available at the time this report was prepared – updates will be provided.
Sub-Measure 1.3(b)
This sub-Measure related to NITB and Invest NI activity regarding “Enhancing
the Business of Tourism”.
During the two verification checks of this sub-Measure a number of issues
were found. The main issue related to Consultants fees which should not have
been charged to this Measure. Other minor irregularities were noted and
reported in respect of projects which were no longer in business or had come
under new management and where the new owner did not want to go ahead
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
with the project. The Implementing Body was required to carry out further
work to establish the extent of the problem. The Verification Unit also
increased the level of checking on this sub-Measure.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Irregularities detected through Article 10 Checks
Org/
Project
Landmark Hotel
UK Case
No
Total irregularity
EU Element
Nature of
irregularity
(code)
Date
identified
Date reported to
EC
Date
Cleared
€236,257.68
€236,257.53
325
1.9.06
1.9.06
14.1.09
Golfkeel SC
€72,729.58
€72,729.58
325
1.9.06
1.9.06
14.1.09
Largy SC
€61,656.53
€61,656.53
325
1.9.06
1.9.06
14.1.09
€1,234,275.51
€1,234,275.51
Admin error
1.3.06
Recordable only
14.1.09
Killykevlin Hotel
€172,586.06
€129,439.55
Other - 999
1.3.06
1.3.06
14.1.09
Silverbirch Hotel
€14,396.38
€14,396.38
325
1.3.06
31/3/07
14.1.09
Fermanagh Lakeland
Lodges
€41,426.63
€41,426.63
999
Feb 07
Feb 07
28.2.07
Belle Isle Estate
€11,470.99
€11,470.99
999
Mar 07
Mar 07
22.3.07
Retention payment
projects
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Audit Activity
Details of internal audit activity can be found in Annex 12 with details of
Commission Audit findings provided in Annex 13.
Irregularities
A total of 10 irregularities were reported for this Measure all of which were
resolved. A detailed list of all reported irregularities can be found in Annex 15.
Irregularities that were below the reporting threshold were recorded and are
listed in Annex 16.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Sub- Measure: - 1.3(a) Tourism Strategic Marketing
Aims and Objectives
Under Measure 1.3(a) the Northern Ireland Tourist Board (NITB) undertook to
increase the contribution that discretionary visitors make to tourism revenue
through marketing and promotion that attracts a higher spending discretionary
visitor to Northern Ireland.
This was carried out by:
•
investing in marketing activity which communicates the Northern
Ireland offer within each of our key markets;
•
investing in tactical and specialist marketing activity which differentiates
the uniqueness of Northern Ireland assets within the all Ireland brand;
•
tactical marketing activity which profiles the natural and cultural
resources to those sectors of the markets which are most likely to
respond;
•
developing processes as a key element of the activity of the Northern
Ireland Tourist Board which provide ways of communicating with the
industry in Northern Ireland that are participative, yet focused on
agreeing opportunities for growth market-by-market and sector-bysector; and
•
engaging in partnership marketing with Board Failte Eireann and British
Tourist Authorities to maximise opportunities for the strategic marketing
of Northern Ireland through all Ireland and all UK marketing mix.
Implementation
One application was approved under this part of the Measure and a complete
list of projects for Measure 1.3(a) which details expenditure and the ERDF
element is available in Annex 5.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
The Measure allocation was increased to €32,380 million with agreement from
the Monitoring Committee in December 2007.
A total of 25 ‘Projects’ were administered by a number of different business
units within the Northern Ireland Tourist Board throughout the period of the
Programme. The NITB was successful in utilising its original allocation and
benefitted from additional allocation as detailed above for use on marketing
and promoting Northern Ireland as a tourist destination.
Examples of Projects within Measure 1.3(a)
Publications
B&BS and Guesthouses Guide 2008 - covered print production of 45,000
copies, distributed via NI based Tourist Information Centres and 19,515
copies distributed via Tourism Ireland market offices.
Northern Ireland Visitor Guide 2008 – covered print production of 115,000
copies, distributed via NI based Tourist Information Centres and 52,025
copies distributed via Tourism Ireland market offices.
Annual Report and Accounts 2005-2006 – covered print production of 600
copies, distributed as reference materials for DETI and Holt Jackson Book
Company plus misc. contacts within Press / Communications unit.
A copy is available on www.nitb.com/documentpage.aspx.
October 2005 – publication of NITB 2005/2006 Northern Ireland short breaks
campaign.
C.S Lewis Publication and publicity around the Irish premiere of ‘The Lion,
The Witch and The Wardrobe’ in December 2005.
DVD – publicised in Headlines and Signature Project updates.
Further information on Headlines is available on www.nitb.com
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Campaigns - The purpose of the Destination Marketing unit is to promote
Northern Ireland as a short breaks destination within NI and the Republic
through fully integrated marketing campaigns. Visit www.nitb.com for more
information.
•
Also, launch of Gateway RoI Campaign in Spring of 2007.
•
Launch of Spring Short Breaks Campaign in January 2007 consisting of
press ads, TV and radio.
•
Advertisements at tourist gateways including airport and train stations,
wrapped taxi and buses and others. Oct 2005 launch of spring short
breaks campaign.
•
The promotion ‘Be a Tourist at Home’ ran during September 2005 and
included Industry Workshops, publications and outdoor publicity
(posters).
NITB also ran regional workshops to recruit and promote
industry participation in the event.
Examples of publications are
available at www.visitballymoney.com, www.sionmills.org.
•
The Ryder Cup Golf Promotion, Jan-March 2006.
Masterclasses - The NITB continued its drive to achieve excellence in tourism,
during 2006, by holding a second series of three Masterclasses themed
‘Making a Difference’. Tourism representatives from across Northern Ireland
benefited from highly motivating presentations from Jeff Dziak, Executive
Manager in The Ritz Carlton Hotel Company USA , Jane Sunley, Managing
Director of Learnpurple and Chris Daffy who is widely recognized as one of
the UK’s leading experts on customer experience and management. Press
coverage was obtained before each Masterclass in newspapers and on the
day via radio.
Visit www.starkeventsuk.com and www.nitb.com for further
information
Signature Projects - Have been identified for their potential to deliver worldclass excellence, drawing visitors from home and overseas. These projects
continue to be developed and attract media attention. The Walled City
Signature Project along with the Titanic, Mournes, Causeway Coastal Route
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
and St Patricks Trail will all have a significant impact on Northern Irelands
tourism. For further details visit NITB – Titanic Signature Project.
http://www.nitb.com/CategoryPage.aspx?path=aedbda88-d741-4bec-b32436204c735653,2d95614c-f2b9-4096-8fa8-8ceabab3894f,aefebc4e-df7440d2-bb3e-c368d9424751
PRide Awards - NITB picked up a Gold Award for the best in-house PR
campaign for the C. S. Lewis - ‘Unlock Your Imagination’, at the Chartered
Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) PRide Awards. Visit www.nitb.com for
further details.
The PRide Awards is the only Awards scheme showcasing the best PR work
being carried out across the UK regions and nations. The NITB campaign was
aimed at promoting Northern Ireland as the birthplace of C.S. Lewis and to
highlight that the Northern Ireland landscape was the inspiration for the “World
of Narnia”.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.3(a)
Original Indicator
Output
15 marketing initiatives supported
per annum across key markets
Result
Increase acceptability of Northern
Ireland as a holiday destination from
2000 baseline
Increased intention to visit Northern
Ireland from 2000 baseline
Impact
Over the period of the programme to
generate on an additional £100m
Over the period of the programme to
create 1300 additional jobs in
tourism
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Revised Indicators
Final Position
22.5
15 marketing initiatives supported per
annum across key markets
23
Increased acceptability
Increase visitor numbers to Northern
Ireland as a holiday destination by 7%
annually by end 2006 (from 2000
baseline)
(2007 - prelim
forecast 174000
increase from
2000 baseline –
56.9% increase
and 6.6% on year
increase) (12)
not available
Over the period of the programme to
create 1400 additional jobs in tourism
5920 (13)
not available
Increase visitor spend by 5% annually by
end 2006 (from 2000 baseline)
Preliminary
forecast of
115,000 increase
from 2000
baseline
representing a
45.8% increase
and 5.5% year on
year increase
Statistics on intentions but
not reported relative to
baseline
(12,13) Over the period of the programme Northern Ireland has experienced significant growth in tourism, both in terms of visitor numbers and revenue
generation. This growth is a direct result of the investments the Northern Ireland Tourist Board has made in developing the tourism market and enhancing
Northern Ireland’s tourism product which has been co-financed by the ERDF through the BSP Programme.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Control Activity
Article 4
NITB have their own financial procedures manual and all expenditure is
subject to management checks. During the period of the programme, periodic
internal compliance checks were undertaken by NITB to ensure that the
systems of internal control established by management, in relation to contract
management, the payment of invoices to suppliers & consultants etc,
complied with the NITB Financial Procedures Manual and corporate
governance in general. Regular awareness sessions took place to ensure
staff were aware of their responsibilities in relation to financial procedures,
corporate governance and EU payments etc.
Summary of findings as a result of Article 4 activity
Responsibility for carrying out an Article 4 check on Measure 1.3(a) fell to
DETI European Programmes. KPMG Consultants were engaged by DETI
European Programmes in 2006 to undertake an Article 4 check on the
measure using the standard checklist template. There was a further Article 4
check under taken by the DETI Article 4 Team in June 2007.
The Key findings of the KPMG report can be found in the Measure 1.1
summary.
An agreed action plan was put in place between the DETI Article 4 Team and
NITB and all issues raised in the report were fully addressed.
Article 10
Details of Article 10 activity are provided at Measure 1.3 summary level.
Audit Activity
Internal audit activity is detailed in Annex 12 and a summary of Commission
audit findings is included in Annex 13.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Irregularities
Details of irregularities are provided at Measure 1.3 summary level in Annexes
15 and 16.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Sub-Measure: - 1.3(b) Tourism– Enhancing the Business of Tourism
Aims and Objectives
The purpose of this element of the Measure in conjunction with 1.3(a)
(Tourism Strategic Marketing) was to enhance the competitiveness of the
Northern Ireland tourism industry to achieve a balanced, innovative,
knowledge based and fast growing tourism economy.
In April 2002, the Capital Investment Programme for accommodation
development moved from the Northern Ireland Tourist Board (NITB) to Invest
NI. Invest NI had responsibility for allocation of resources accommodation
infrastructure projects through the Tourism Development Scheme. The NITB
retained responsibility for investment in visitor attractions, visitor amenities
and visitor servicing.
The main objective under this sub-Measure was:
•
To sustain the tourism product already available and to develop product
initiatives based on the Northern Ireland offer
To meet this objective, Invest NI/NITB undertook the following activities:
i.
the sustained development of the tourism infrastructure to secure a
high quality tourism product which will enable Northern Ireland to
compete in the global market place, providing where appropriate
support for the provision of accommodation and the development of
tourism facilities and amenities.
ii.
the development of innovative products which are based on
Northern Ireland’s values and attributes as a destination including
those which capitalise on the unique qualities of the natural and
creative resources of the region.
iii.
the provision of relevant feasibility studies.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Implementation
One application was approved under this part of the Measure and details of
the allocation are included in Annex 5.
Examples of Projects within Measure 1.3(b)
Dunsilly Hotel - The Hotel had its official opening on 11 May 2005 with the
creation of 40 bedrooms.
Corick House - This venue underwent an extension of a successful licensed
Guest house which resulted in a total of 40 bed spaces.
Belle Isle Cookery School - Information on this project can be found on
www.irish-cookery-school.com. Belle Isle Cookery School is located in the
470 acre Belle Isle Estate in Co Fermanagh. The estate comprises 8 islands
on the northern end of Upper Lough Erne and is reached by a private bridge
across the Lough. The estate already boasts a very successful high quality
self-catering development which has been complemented by the opening
Cookery School. This is a first for Northern Ireland.
The Cookery School is
run by Elizabeth Moore who is fast developing a high reputation as an up and
coming chef. Previous clients include the Prince of Wales and Tony Ryan of
Ryan Air. Liz is assisted by 4 part-time staff. Since the Cookery School
opened in November 2003, bookings have steadily increased with nearly 600
bookings in 2006. A copy of their promotional leaflet is attached.
Sample 4.pdf
Armada Exhibition - The Armada in Ireland exhibition has been housed in the
refurbished Tower Museum and provides a home for the numerous objects
recovered from the ship La Trinidad Valencera in 1971. This particular project
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
forms just one element of a wider Walled City of Derry Project and is in line
with the Walled City of Derry being designated a Signature Project in its
Strategic Framework for Action.
The exhibition tells stories of the Spanish Armada, life onboard a 16th century
ship, the Armada and Ireland and the tragic fate of La Trinidad’s crew along
with a range of interactive displays explaining a range of things from buoyancy
and tidal movement to underwater archaeological techniques. Promotional
material for The Armada Shipwreck and The Activity Trail is available in the
attached document below.
Sample 9.pdf
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.3(b)
Original Indicator
Output
Accommodation projects assisted
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
28
Revised Indicators
Final Position
50 Accommodation projects assisted 47
Assisted cultural and natural
resource programmes
0
visitor attractions assisted to
enhanced or re-themed
Result
750 new bedrooms
8
10 visitor attractions enhanced or rethemed
15
489
750 new bedrooms
664
Premises with new bedrooms to
show an occupancy rate higher than
relevant regional and sectoral
averages
Not available (reported on
as ‘Impact’)
!0% increase in visitor numbers to
the attractions by the end of the
programme (from 2000 baseline)
5 programmes developed
0
10 visitor attractions enhances/rethemed
Not reported on as ‘result’
increase visitor numbers to
enhanced or re-themed attractions
Increases ranging from 2%
to 59% at 8 attractions
Visitor numbers to
those attractions
assisted by the
programme increased
on average by 78%
(based on figures
provided by those
attractions that made
returns to NITB
between 2000 and
2007) Overall across
all visitor attractions in
Northern Ireland
numbers have
increased by 23%
between 2000 and
2007
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.3(b) (contd)
Impact
350 direct jobs created by the end of
the programme
336
350 net jobs created by the end of
the programme
428
50 (direct and indirect) jobs created
by the end of programme
not available
Increase room occupancy by 2%
above the regional average 2 years
after opening
Jobs sustained in enhanced/rethemed attractions
not available
Currently difficult to
assess. It is questioned
whether this is a
reasonable measure in
that increased volume
will normally lead to a
reduction in
occupancy.
Of the 15 enhanced –
14 are still in existence
(93%)
70% of visitor attractions still
existence by the end of programme
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Control Activity
Article 4
This project underwent three Article 4 checks during the life of this Programme.
Summary of findings as a result of Article 4 Activity
KPMG Consultants were engaged by European Programmes to undertake an Article
4 check on the Measure using the standard checklist template. The checks took
place in December 2006 (Invest NI element) and January 2007 (NITB element).
The key findings of the KPMG report can be found in Measure 1.1 summary.
As a result of the KPMG checks, the organisation formed an EU Compliance Team
and a major exercise of remedial work was undertaken to address the issues
identified.
The report detailing this work has since been copied to DG REGIO
auditors.
The issues identified by KPMG in relation to NITB were followed up by the European
Programmes’ Article 4 Team.
All recommendations have been satisfactorily
implemented.
European Programmes’ Article 4 Team undertook an Article 4 check on the NITB
element of Measure 1.3(b) in June 2007 using the standard Implementing Body
checklist. The main recommendations were:
•
ensure that all projects have completed Equality Questionnaire & Development
Path Analysis; and
•
publish details of projects supported acknowledging EU support.
Both issues were addressed satisfactorily.
Article 4 Checks undertaken by Invest NI/NITB
Article 4 checks carried out by Invest NI were completed retrospectively as part of
the EU Compliance Exercise which began in February 2007. A standard checklist
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
was used throughout and when signed off by the Client Executive, was placed on
the relevant project file.
All NITB Article 4 checks were carried out using the standard checklist. Thirteen of
the checks were carried out after the project had completed and incurred all eligible
expenditure; the remaining 2 were carried out during project implementation.
Article 10
Details of Article 10 activity are provided at Measure 1.3 summary level.
Audit Activity
Internal Audit activity is detailed in Annex 12 and a summary of Commission Audit
findings included in Annex 13.
Irregularities
Details of irregularities are provided at Measure 1.3 summary level in Annexes 15
and 16.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
6.7
Measure Details for Measure 1.4 – Local Economic Development
(LED)
Aims and Objectives
The aim of Measure 1.4 was to assist Northern Ireland’s 26 District Councils,
through match-funding, to implement key schemes identified in their Local Economic
Development Action Plans.
The aim of the Action Plans was to:
•
help drive forward economic change and stimulate sustainable economic
development;
•
contribute to greatly improved infrastructure leading to economic growth
and competitiveness; and/or
•
enhance long-term economic prospects for the area.
Examples of Action Plans can be found at:
Banbridge DC – Rathfriland Town Centre Development Plan
http://www.banbridge.com/uploads/docs/RathfrilandTCDPlan.pdf
North Down DC – Local Economic Strategy
http://www.northdown.gov.uk/uploads/docs/LedStrategyFeb05.pdf
Implementation
A total of 156 applications were approved under this Priority.
A list of all projects for Measure 1.4 which incurred expenditure and the EU element
can be found in Annex 5.
The objective of this Measure was delivered through a broad range of themes
across Northern Ireland by the 26 District Councils as follows:
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
•
Business Development – to increase the competitiveness of local
businesses through advice, mentoring and awareness raising, the
opportunity for IIP accreditation and developing linkages. This scheme
included sectoral development initiatives, focussing on developing the Craft
industries.
The objective was to develop the skills and capability of local
businesses and to foster business growth and job creation.
•
Business Start – delivered by Invest NI since 2005, the Start a Business
Programme which has, since 2005, provided support, advice and financial
assistance to individuals to enable them to start their own business. Its
remit was to promote and support the development of small businesses with
a view to addressing local need.
•
Environment & Business Infrastructure – this theme targeted projects
which ranged from the creation of work, office space and refurbishment of
existing workspace to feasibility studies on potential regeneration projects.
The overall objective of this theme was to improve physical infrastructure to
foster business growth and job creation.
•
Tourism Development – Geared towards projects whose aim was:
increasing the number of available bed spaces, visitors and average visitor
spend in Northern Ireland. Projects included those who specifically develop
tourist attractions and visitor centres, the provision of infrastructure (for
example improvements to accommodation) and the provision of information
to facilitate tourism (for example the production of a local tourist guide or the
introduction of website facilities in B&Bs). The objective was to ensure that
tourism contributes to the creation of a dynamic, competitive local economy.
•
Town Centre Development & Urban Regeneration – focused on activities
such as reducing derelict sites, physically regenerating streets, buildings
and erecting signage. At a strategic level, many District Councils developed
town centre/city strategies and Action Plans, appointed a Town Centre
Manager specifically for promoting local towns as engines for economic
growth. The overall objective being to improve the physical aspect of the
region’s towns’ and cities’ to heighten their profile and to attract tourists and
employers.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
•
Rural Regeneration – projects included: development of co-ordinating
bodies (such as rural development partnerships), development of strategies
(including the commissioning of feasibility studies for regeneration and/or
infrastructure programmes); and village action projects. Their objective was
to improve the physical aspect and infrastructure of rural regions to create
opportunities for business growth and development networks.
•
ICT Development – a number of District Councils identified the importance
of new technologies in the promotion of economic development. Information
Communication Technology (ICT) projects included the provision of physical
infrastructure (for example supply of computer hardware and software).
Others embarked on capital build projects for Science Parks and Incubation
Units. ICT’s objective was to raise the adoption of ICT in order to raise
business competitiveness.
•
Inter-Regional Co-operation – to develop working relationships with other
counties to collaborate on projects and learn from one another.
•
Inward Investment – inward/outward trade missions, hosting of US/EU
conferences,
meetings,
the
establishment
and
consolidation
of
civic/commercial relationships with other countries, all came under the
umbrella of Inward Investment. Other activities included the compilation of
trade directories, property registers and business databases. The objective
being to attract investment to Northern Ireland, learn from global experience
for job and economy creation.
•
Other - some Projects did that do not fit naturally within the 9 themes
described above, however, were considered strategic to the BSP
Programme
and
included
marketing
programmes
and
graduate
placements/employment acceleration initiatives; and
Programme Management – acted as the structure by which District Council Action
Plans were implemented, monitored and managed effectively and efficiently. This
was monitored monthly by DETI through reports and meetings.
The overall
objective of this theme was to deliver Action Plans effectively, efficiently and cost
effectively.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Examples of Projects within Measure 1.4
Ards
Business Centre (8 high specification business units)
Belfast
Business Centre (Business Incubation Units)
Belfast
Business Start Programme (914 businesses created
employing 1,508 jobs)
Castlereagh
Harwood Enterprise Centre (8,000 sq ft of workspace
units)
Craigavon
High Tech Incubation Units (12,000 sq ft of incubation
space)
Derry
Former Fire Station (high tech business units for the
creative media sector)
Derry
Business Start (610 businesses creating 1,007 jobs)
Lisburn
30,000 sq ft of additional workspace.
Lisburn
Business Start Programme (434 businesses creating
716 jobs)
Newry & Mourne Bagenals Castle Tourism Facility (Tourism
Information Centre)
Strabane
High tech modern tourism information and business.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.4
Original Indicator
Output
26 district council action plans
Result
List of Programmes detailing costs
and implementation details, including
number and types of action
envisaged
Impact
Increase in employment levels.
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Revised Indicators
26
26 district council action plans
153
List of Programmes detailing costs and
implementation details, including number
and types of action envisaged
DN: these are the indicators reported on:
New businesses created (target 150)
New jobs created (target 1700)
Sq ft of workspace created (target no
target)
Not available
Increase in employment levels.
Number of new business formations
as a result of council participation
not available
Number of new business formations as a
result of council participation
Improved co-ordination of local
economic development actions at
sub-regional and local level.
not available
Improved co-ordination of local economic
development actions at sub-regional and
local level.
DN: these are the indicators reported on:
New businesses still in existence at end of
programme (target 120)
Jobs still in existence at end of prog
(target 1360)
Evidence of improved infrastructure and
co-ordination at local council level
164
Final Position
26
926 (14)
4072 (15)
250,000sq ft (16)
926 (17)
4072 (18)
Post project
evaluation on 1.4
completed and
endorses this
impact
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
(14,15,16,17,18)
The explanation for the variance is that when the original targets were set they did not envisage or in incorporate the Business Start
Programme.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Examples of Publicity within Measure 1.4
Larne Community Development Project (DSD)
http://www.newtownabbeytcm.com/aboutus.cfm
Cookstown DC – Town Centre Regeneration Strategy
http://www.cookstown.gov.uk/media/COOKSTOWN%20TOWN%20CENTRE
%20REGENERATION%20STRATEGY.pdf
Lisburn City Council – Economic Development Annual Progress Report 20067
http://www.lisburncity.gov.uk/filestore/documents/economic_development/Fina
l_PDF_of_0607_Progress_Report
Expenditure and Financial Control
Total Expenditure Declared for Measure 1.4
All amounts shown in €
Allocation in
Programme
Complement
Expenditure
Declared in
claims to the
Commission
EU Amount
Public Amount
Private
Total
39,999,998.00
39,999,996.00
0.00
79,999,994.00
36,264,916.59
36,264,926.59
0.00
72,529,843.18
Expenditure
declared as % of
available
Allocation
Article 4 Activity
All projects in this Measure received an Article 4 check. In total there were
200 Article 4 checks carried out.
Summary of findings as a result of Article 4 Activity
Article 4 checks on District Councils under Measure 1.4 (Local Economic
Development) were carried out by DETI European Programmes Branch,
Article 4 Team. This team carried out a risk analysis exercise prior to the
commencement of visits to prioritise which Councils/Projects should be visited
first. All projects listed on the EU database have had at least one on-site
check, leading to follow-up visits and 4 received a second Article 4 check.
Main findings of Article 4’s on District Councils highlighted the lack of Article 4
checks carried out by District Councils on 3rd party projects. DETI’s Article 4
166
90.66
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
team took appropriate action to rectify this in subsequent follow-up checks.
In addition to the individual Project Article 4 checks, District Councils were
subject to close monitoring by the Finance and Project Development Section
within DETI European Programmes Branch.
District Councils were required
to submit quarterly physical progress reports and financial claims, which under
went rigorous checks and controls. They included desk checks, on site visits,
inspection of original documentation and regular meetings at individual
Council/Regional level.
Article 10 Activity
7.44% of declared expenditure was examined under Article 10, revealing an
error rate of 2.48%.
Spread of Article 10 – 5% checks
% checked
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008
0
0
4.09
20.22 8.69
5.42
5.69
8.09
6.68
Summary of findings as a result of Article 10 Monitoring
The sampling methodology used for this Measure was based on a detailed
risk analysis which ranked each Council according to their allocation; spend to
date and any previous Article 4 history that was available.
A similar risk
analysis was used within each of the chosen District Councils to select the
Schemes to be checked. Within each Scheme, a number of projects were
chosen, to give a representative spread of type and size of projects towards
meeting the annual 5% requirement.
This methodology ensured that a good mix of different types and sizes of
projects were visited including the largest Implementing Body. Out of the 26
Councils funded under this Measure 46% (12) were subjected to an Article 10
check. In addition, a special exercise was carried out at the request of the
DGREGIO auditors which examined the “Start a Business Programme” which
was funded by all the Councils and would have been the largest single final
beneficiary funded under this Measure.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
It should be noted that the 5% target was not achieved in 2002 (4.09%) but
was exceeded by a large margin in 2003 (20.22%). This is due to
retrospective adjustments being made to the Central Database after the
Verification work was completed. The Verification Unit are content that the
verification work carried out, represents an even spread over the Programme
period.
No significant weaknesses were found during the Article 10 Inspections of this
Measure. Following the first Verification check in 2005, a number of minor
recommendations were made regarding missing clauses in the 3rd Party
Letters of Offer. The Council subsequently revised the 3rd party Letters of
Offer, so that they reflected all of the clauses in their own direct Letters of
Offer from European Programmes Branch.
An amount paid to the Belfast City Council that was deemed to be ineligible
but was found to be a “one off” error where the Council were later in receipt of
50% of funding from another source for this item of expenditure. In addition a
number of payments were made to a Consultant (Sian Henry) under the Start
A Business Programme (SABp) which exceeded the amount agreed under the
original contract. This amount was deemed ineligible and an irregularity was
reported. No adjustment was required to be made to the Database as the
overpayment was offset against the revised costs. As these irregularities were
deemed to be “one off” in nature, no further additional vouching was required
over and above the amount already checked (7.44%).
Following a request from the DGREGIO auditors, the DETI Verification Unit
carried out a detailed review of SABp. No major issues were found, although
some minor weaknesses were pointed out in the Special Report 03/2007
issued on 27 March 2007. The DGREGIO auditors had requested an
examination of 30 items relating to the Belfast City Council. However due to
the way the SABp
was run on a Northern Ireland-wide basis and
administrated jointly between the Councils, the Steering Committee and the
Central Administration Unit in Invest NI, it was not possible to isolate the costs
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
relating to Belfast City Council. A full review of the SABp was carried out by
the DETI Verification Unit to establish the total cost of running the Programme
and to establish how many cases had been funded by each Council. A
number of recommendations were made to DETI European Programmes and
a revised Letter of Offer was issued to each Council - detailing the final total
number of cases which were supported and approved. After all the
adjustments were carried out, no adjustment to the database was required, as
the amount of the irregularity was covered by the additional eligible cases
identified.
Irregularities Detected through Article 10 Checks
Organisation/
Project
UK
Case
No
Belfast City
Council
Total
irregularity
£’s
EU
Element
£’s
Nature of
irregularity
(code)
Date
identified
66,879
33,439.50
325
March 05
Ards Borough
Council
N/a
194.63
97.31
Recordable
only
Dec 04
Ards Borough
Council
N/a
1,120.00
560.00
Recordable
only
Dec 04
SABp
Consultancy
Date
reported
to DFP
QE Sept
2005
Sept 2005
Under
reportable
limit
Under
reportable
limit
Dec 2004
15,594.80
7,797.40
325
Dec 06
QE Mar
2007
QE Mar
2007
SABp C’Avon
& N Down
N/A
4,091.00
3,068.25
Recordable
only
Dec 06
Armagh
District Council
N/a
1,506.82
753.41
Recordable
only
May 08
Armagh
District Council
N/a
3,848.50
1,924.25
Recordable
only
May 08
Date
cleared
Under
reportable
limit
Under
reportable
limit
Dec 2004
No
recovery
necessary.
Cost per
case
recalculate
d.
Recovered
Currently
being
recovered
Currently
being
recovered
Audit Activity
Details of Internal Audit activity can be found in Annex 12 and details of
Commission Audit findings can be found in Annex 13.
Irregularities
A total of 38 irregularities were reported for this part of the Measure. Of these
all were resolved before closure. A detailed list of all reported irregularities for
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Measure 1.4 can be found in Annex 15. Irregularities that were below the
reporting threshold were recorded and details can be found in Annex 16.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
6.8
Measure Details for Measure 1.5 – Information Society
Aims and Objectives
The key aims were to ensure access to and application of new technologies
by as wide a population as possible; and the rapid growth of the sector in NI
developing the new technologies – through the channels of business start-up,
indigenous company growth and inward investment.
Along with this was the need to accelerate progress towards a highly
attractive, dynamic and supportive knowledge-based economy.
To achieve this, three key objectives were identified: •
to encourage Northern Ireland companies and organisations to
exploit e-commerce opportunities and address the threats;
•
to develop existing and attract new foreign direct investment ebusiness opportunities to Northern Ireland; and
•
to develop within the Department of Enterprise, Trade and
Investment, an Information Age Unit to promote the benefits of ebusiness.
To meet these objectives, Invest NI undertook the following activities:
i.
stimulate economic development by providing assistance towards
the development of innovative e-business ideas;
ii.
improve access to and utilisation of e-commerce by SMEs and
larger businesses;
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
iii.
promote new business start-ups and enhancing existing knowledge
based industries;
iv.
increase business ICT use, establishing activities to enhance the
abilities of organisations in Northern Ireland to use the new
technologies and improve the way they conduct business;
v.
develop new sectors in the economy, thriving on the rapid
developments in technology and promoting greater quality jobs
therein;
vi.
establish North-South business links and local cross-border
linkages to promote e-commerce opportunities;
vii.
develop and increase benchmarking abilities to measure progress,
assess gaps, if any; and
viii.
ensure that appropriate infrastructural, promotional, legal and policy
frameworks are in place for organisations within Northern Ireland to
fully embrace the growth opportunities offered by the new
technologies.
Implementation
Seven schemes were funded under this Measure:
•
E- Process;
•
E Solutions;
•
ICT Advisors; and
•
MIS;
•
Information Age Projects
•
ENI E Commerce Project; and
•
Tourism Industry Extranet.
A list of all projects for Measure 1.5 which incurred expenditure and the ERDF
element can be found in Annex 5.
Examples of Projects within Measure 1.5
ICT Advisory Service incorporated Frylite Ltd and E-Business Roadshows.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Frylite Ltd installed systems which enabled them to employ the latest
technology, enhancing more effective running of their day-to-day business
and enabling the firm to link their Strabane, Dublin and Galway sites together.
E-Business Roadshows. These roadshows as highlighted in the 2006 Annual
Implementation Report were located in Londonderry, Cookstown, Antrim and
Banbridge, all strategically located for accessibility across the Province. They
were very well received and perceived by businesses to increase awareness
of ICT Practices.
A reference to the e-Roadshows is available in
www.nicva.org .
Wilsons Country Ltd availed of the technical expertise and guidance of Invest
NI’s ICT Advisory Team with the outcome of a streamlined approach to
processes in the business, resulting in substantive efficiency savings when
preparing and dispatching orders.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.5
Original Indicator
Position at Mid
Term Evaluation
Output
Outputs are based upon progressing NI
companies along the Connectivity Chain
as follows:
Revised Indicators
Final Position
Outputs are based upon progressing NI
business relating to the DTI International
Benchmarking Study report on ICT
making business aware of the benefits of
ICT
2
At least 2 programmes aimed at making
business aware of the benefits of ICT
3
facilitating business access to ICT
1
At least 2 programmes aimed at facilitating
business access to ICT
2
assisting business in the development of
internet presence
1
1 programme aimed at assisting business in
the development of e-business strategies
1
Working with business to develop
websites for on-line trading
Result
Assist 4,600 SMEs by 2005
Not reported on
4,500 engagements with SMEs by 2005
10,224 (19)
Assist 1300 SMEs by 2005
Not reported on
700 engagements with SMEs by 2005
1,251 (20)
Assist 70 SMEs by 2005
Not reported on
Assist 80 SMEs by 2005
Not reported on
70 engagements with SMEs by 2005
99
2175
174
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
As a result of the Awareness Programme, there was a reported total of 1,122 SMES assisted by the end of 2001. This represented 23%
of the overall measure target of 4,870. By the end of 2003, and mid term evaluation, this figure had risen to 4,449. At the end of 2007, this
figure stood at unchanged at 10,224 SMEs assisted.
(19)
(20)
The original target encouraging 700 companies to gain access to ICT was exceeded and stood at 1251.
Invest NI update: Demand for ICT awareness and engagement increased slightly above expectations but considering the
duration of the programmes and the economic and technological changes (eg. Broadband) that happened during the life
time of the projects it is not surprising there is some differences against targets. On the whole Invest NI feel the
programmes have over exceeded and that is to benefit of businesses and down to the delivery of the efficient delivery of
the programmes.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.5 (contd)
Impact
Achieve an increase in the number of
bases businesses using trading ‘ecommerce’ website technology from 24%
in 2000/01 to 40% by 2005
Achieve an increase
in the number of recognised ‘e-business’
businesses in Northern Ireland from 10%
in 2000/01 to 15% by 2005
NB. These impacts are based on the
cumulative effect of all the outputs.
Not available
Not available
Impacts will be accessed by measurement of
the progress of NI business by the DTI
International Benchmarking Study report on
ICT. The key targets are:
Achieve an increase
in the measurement of Northern Ireland
28% in 2004 DTI
based businesses towards sophistication in International ICT
the use of ICTs from 15% to 30%
Benchmarking
Report
NB. These impacts are based on the
cumulative effect of all the outputs.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Expenditure and Financial Control
Total Expenditure Declared for Measure 1.5
All amounts shown in €
Allocation in
Programme
Complement
Expenditure
Declared in
claims to the
Commission
EU Amount
Public Amount
Private
Total
11,750,000.00
3,916,667.00
0.00
15,666,667.00
10,927,848.62
3,642,616.51
0.00
14,570,465.13
Expenditure
declared as % of
available Allocation
93.00
Article 4 Activity
All projects were subject to Article 4 checks.
Summary of findings as a result of Article 4 Activity
ICT Advisory Service and the E-Solutions ICT Demonstration Centre European Programmes’ Article 4 Team carried out an Article 4 check in July
2007 on two schemes under Measure 1.5 - ICT Advisory Service and the ESolutions ICT Demonstration Centre.
The main findings common to both ICT Advisory Service and E-Solutions
were:
(i)
Invest NI not having background papers on LoO/MoU from DETI;
(ii)
No evidence of EU logo on website; and
(iii)
No Development Path Analysis completed.
E-Solutions had a further recommendation:
(i)
Original invoices to be endorsed with cheque/BACS run number.
Invest NI has since rectified all matters referred to above.
Information Age Projects - European Programmes’ Article 4 Team carried out
an Article 4 check on Information Age projects in August 2008. The main
finding concerned an amount of recoverable VAT which was claimed under
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
the Tourism Extranet project.
An irregularity has been declared and the
relevant amount deducted on the EU database – irregularity closed.
ENI – E Commerce Project - European Programmes’ Article 4 Team carried
out an Article 4 check on ENI E Commerce project in February 2009. Article 4
completed. No major issues identified.
Article 10 Activity
6.94% of declared expenditure was examined under Article 10, resulting an
error rate of 22.24%.
Spread of Article 10 – 5% checks
% checked
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008
4.85
19.37 5.46
5.39
5.06
7.10
6.09
0
0
Summary of Findings as a Result of Article 10 Monitoring
The two largest schemes and one of the smaller ones were selected from this
Measure for Verification checks. Payments, representing at least 5% of the
annual total expenditure, were selected from the lower level (Co-financing)
database payment records, for the relevant scheme for each year using
interval sampling methodology. In addition, further selections were made to
ensure that the main beneficiaries of each scheme were also included. In total
the sample checks carried out on this Measure amounted to 7%.
On the ENI e-commerce scheme, two reportable irregularities were found.
These related to an amount of £16,000 where documentation could not be
traced and £125,046 where project expenditure had been over-declared.
However these were deemed to be one-off irregularities and were not of a
systemic nature and therefore no additional checks were carried out.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Irregularities detected through Article 10 Checks
Organisation/
Project
MIS Scheme
Navital
MIS Scheme
Impro Printing
MIS Scheme
McMullan
Arch.
MIS Scheme
Capedale
MIS Scheme
Bullivant
Taranto
MIS Scheme
BHP Alarms
MIS Scheme
Stewart Digital
ENI E
Commerce
LEDU Pilot
ENI E
Commerce
DETI Grant
P’ment
UK
Case
No
N/A
Total
irregularity
£’s
4,550.00
EU
Element
£’s
3,412.50
Nature of
irregularity
(code)
Recordable
only
Recordable
only
Recordable
only
Date
identifie
d
Jan 2008
Date
reported
to EC
N/A
N/A
3,066.90
2,300.18
Jan 2008
N/A
N/A
N/A
767.84
575.88
Jan 2008
N/A
N/A
N/A
357.44
268.08
Recordable
only
Recordable
only
Jan 2008
N/A
N/A
N/A
1,962.00
1,471.50
Jan 2008
N/A
N/A
N/A
175.00
131.25
Recordable
only
Recordable
only
Jan 2008
N/A
N/A
N/A
179.00
134.25
Jan 2008
N/A
N/A
16,836.22
12,627.17
Vat
Irregularity
Jan 2008
30.6.09
Open
125,046.50
93,784.88
Vat
Irregularity
Jan 2008
30.6.09
Open
Audit Activity
Details of Internal Audit activity can be found in Annex 12 and details of
Commission audit findings can be found in Annex 13.
Irregularities
A total of 6 irregularities were reported for this Measure all of which were
resolved. Details of these are available on Annex 15. Irregularities that were
below the reporting threshold were recorded and can be found in Annex 16.
179
Date
cleared
N/A
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
6.9
Measure Details for Measure 1.6 – Roads and Transport
Aims and Objectives
The three main aims in this Measure are to:•
facilitate travel by enhancing public transport services through the
introduction of dedicated buses and quality bus corridors within the
Belfast urban area;
•
further the concept of integrated public transport by introducing
integrated ticketing throughout the public transport network; and
•
improve peak hour journey times by an average of 35% through the
provision of several road bypasses.
Implementation
The value of this Measure was €113,766,667 including an ERDF allocation of
€85,325,000. Eleven projects were assisted under this Measure.
The Measure was divided into sub-Measures (a) Roads and (b) Transport,
details of which are provided at sub-Measure level. A list of all projects for
Measure 1.6 which incurred expenditure and the EU element can be found in
Annex 5.
Assessment and Summary of Achievement v Targets
Details can be found within the sub-Measure reports for 1.6(a) and 1.6(b).
Publicity
One of the projects under Measure 1.6(a) was the Newtownstewart By-pass.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Under Measure 1.6(b) Lisburn Bus centre was upgraded.
Further information on both of theses projects can be found in Annex 18.
Expenditure and Financial Control
Total Expenditure Declared for Measure 1.6
All amounts shown in €
Allocation in
Programme
Complement
Expenditure
Declared in
claims to the
Commission
EU Amount
Public
Amount
Private
Total
85,325,000.00
28,441,667.00
0.00
113,766,667.00
85,312,668.99
30,317,855.47
0.00
115,630,524.46
Expenditure
declared as % of
available
Allocation
101.64
Article 4 Activity
A total of 11 projects were assisted under this Measure and all subject to
Article 4 checks.
Summary of Findings as a result of Article 4 Activity.
The findings for sub-Measure 1.6(a) and sub-Measure 1.6(b) are detailed in
the respective reports.
Article 10 Activity
19.34% of declared expenditure was examined under Article 10 covering both
parts of the Measure, with an error rate of 0%.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Spread of Article 10 – 5% checks
%
checked
2000 2001 2002
2003 2004 2005
0
6
7
9
18.9
2006
2007
2008
22.14 28.65
54.71
0
Summary of findings as a result of Article 10 activity
There were a total of 11 projects funded under the Measure and 7 projects
have been examined over the review period.
There were 5 schemes funded under this Measure; 1 bridge strengthening
and 4 roads schemes.
Management and control systems operated effectively and adequate
documentation exists to support Programme expenditure declarations. No
financial errors were identified during the course of Article 10 work and where
recommendations were made they have been addressed by management.
No irregularities were detected through Article 10 Verification process.
Audit Activity
This Measure was implemented by two different parts of the Department for
Regional Development details of internal audit activity for each sub-Measure
are provided in Annex 12 and details of DGREGIO audit findings are provided
in Annex 13.
Irregularities
There were no irregularities reported for this part of Measure 1.6.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Sub-Measure Details 1.6(a) - Roads
Aims and Objectives
As Northern Ireland faced new economic challenges and opportunities, need
was identified for further development of its infrastructure. A key challenge
was to provide road improvements that supported sustainable economic
development, widened opportunities for work, leisure, holidays and choice of
where to live.
This Measure addressed this need and aimed to sustain and develop social
progress, economic growth and sustainable development opportunities
through promoting integrated rural and urban development and reducing peak
journey times.
The projects carried out were in line with a number of high level transportation
strategies
including
the
Regional
Development
Strategy,
Regional
Transportation Strategy and Sub-Regional Transport Plan.
Key objectives were to:
•
Improve peak journey times through the provision of several road bypasses; and
•
support economic growth and sustainable development, equality of
opportunity in access to employment, training and education and
sustainable urban and social development by investments in
infrastructure projects.
Implementation
Five projects were approved under this Measure.
incurred and the EU element can be found in Annex 5.
184
Details of expenditure
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.6(a)
Original Indicator
Output
4 by-pass schemes
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Revised Indicators
2
3 by-pass schemes
1 Through-pass scheme
1 Link Road
Final Position
3
Complete
Not funded through
this measure
Complete
1 Bridge strengthening scheme
Result
14km of new carriageway
12.4km
12.1 km of new carriageway
Strengthen structure to increase capacity to Complete
carry the maximum 40 tonne HGV vehicles
Repainting and resurfacing the bridge
6.2km
Impact
Reduced peak journey times by an Not available
average of 35% for each scheme
measured through surveys held in
advance of the project and after
completion of the project.
Reduced peak journey times by an average of Newtownstewart
bypass = 47%
35%.
Limavady bypass =
32%
Comber bypass =
44.5%
Bridge now has
Bridge capable of extra carrying capacity to
capacity to deal
meet future demand, which will see the
with 40 tonne
numbers of HGVs increasing from 2700 per
HGVs and the
day to 3200 per day over the next 10 years.
expected future
Painting will provide required protection for
demand
next 20 years.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Control Activity
Details of expenditure declared are provided in the Measure summary.
Article 4
All 5 projects in this Measure were subject to Article 4 checks.
Summary of findings as a result of Article 4 activity
•
Newtownstewart Bypass – no weaknesses found
•
Limavady Bypass – no weaknesses found
•
Foyle Bridge strengthening – no weaknesses found
•
Comber Bypass – no weaknesses found
•
Omagh Throughpass – no weaknesses found
Article 10
Details of Article 10 verification activity are provided in the Measure level summary.
Audit Activity
Internal Audit activity can be found in Annex 12 and details of Commission audit findings
can be found in Annex 13.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Sub- Measure 1.6(b) Details – Transport
Aims and Objectives
An effective transport network is critical to improving the competitiveness of the Northern
Ireland economy, to encourage labour market access and mobility and promote equality of
opportunity across Northern Ireland.
This Measure aimed to address this gap by improving access to Public Transport and thus
opportunity for those in peripheral rural and deprived urban areas. The delivery of a
modern, integrated and sustainable transport system will have a major effect at local level
on the basis of access to education, training, employment and recreational opportunities,
improve travel choice and assist greatly in changing the travel culture in Northern Ireland
so that people can adopt more sustainable and healthier travel habits and it will further
enhance the development of the TEN-T Network.
Key objectives:
•
facilitate travel by enhancing public transport services through the development of
improved bus services along key transport corridors and enhancement of bus
provision in rural and isolated communities;
•
improve the safety of the rail network and enhance the overall provision for the
transport of goods and passengers by rail on the TEN-T network; and
•
support economic growth and sustainable development, equality of opportunity in
access to employment, training and education and sustainable urban and social
development by investments in infrastructure projects.
Implementation
Six projects were approved under this Measure.
•
New Rolling Stock - The aim of this project was to enhance and modernise the
operation of integrated transport across Northern Ireland through the purchase
of a number of the new CAF Trains for Northern Ireland Railways, which first
came into service in November 2004. Eight trains were purchased and
associated infrastructure completed. The introduction of the new trains greatly
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
contributed towards the annual 11% increase in rail passenger journeys since
2005.
•
Refurbishment of Falls Road Running Repair Depot Stage 1 - This project
contributed to an overall objective of upgrading urban bus depot projects and
ensuring compliance with health & safety standards. The projected impact was
an improved urban public transport system and more efficient movement of
people. The project is now compliant with health & safety standards.
•
Translink Accounting System - The aim of this project was to replace the old
system with a new fully integrated accounting system which would provide better
management capabilities and information. The 1st phase Sales and Cash went
‘live’ on 27 June 2005 and approximately 150 users were trained. The
Requisitioners and Stores Planning Phase went 'live' in November 2005 and the
entire new Accounting System has now gone live and is complete.
•
Falls Road Mechanical & Electrical System - This project followed on from the
Refurbishment of the Falls Road Running Repair Depot Stage I. This project
contributed to an overall objective of upgrading urban bus depot projects and
ensuring compliance with health & safety standards. The projected impact was
an improved urban public transport system and more efficient movement of
people. The project is now compliant with Health & Safety standards.
•
Short Strand Bus Depot - This project contributed to an overall objective of
upgrading urban bus depot projects and ensuring compliance with health &
safety standards. The provision of this facility achieved its main objective of
providing a modern facility for Translink’s passengers and staff. The project is
now compliant with health & safety standards.
•
Lisburn Bus Station - The aim of this project was to provide a new rural bus
station with improved passenger and staff facilities which would improve
accessibility and social inclusion as well as contributing towards more
sustainable movement of people. The ERDF funding related to preliminary
works which are now complete.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.6(b)
Original Indicator
Output
Urban/rural public transport
infrasctucture projects including
Ballymena Bus and Rail Station and
other projects serving rural
Communities.
Introduction of passenger
Information/Long Line Public Address
system and Global positioning Satellite
system
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
4
Revised Indicators
Final Position
1 new rural bus station
3 Urban bus depot projects
Introduction
of Customers Information,
replacement of management systems and 2
other transport related schemes
1
3
Project withdrawn
Passenger
information
system/longline
public
address
system – project
withdrawn
Refurbishment of
Falls Rd running
repair
shop
complete
Replacement
of
the
mechanical
and
electrical
system at the
Short Strand bus
depot
Not reported on
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.6(b) (contd)
Result
New urban/rural bus and rail projects 0
and enhanced services in isolated
communities. Increased patronage on
bus system in key transport corridors,
reduced journey times and improved
reliability
Innovative schemes to complement
high-level strategies to interface with
RTS and the introduction of the
integrated ticketing scheme
New passenger and staff facilities at 1 rural
bus station
Compliance with H&S standards and upgrade
of 3 urban bus depots
4 innovative schemes to complement high
level management strategies
Complete
Complete
Translink
accounting system
complete
0
Complete (reported
on original indicator
-completed 2006)
Impact
Improvement in accessibility, social Not available
inclusion
and
more
sustainable
movement of people.
Improvement in accessibility, social inclusion Compliance with
DDA. The
and more sustainable movement of people.
purchase of the
More efficient movement of people and new trains provides
a more sustainable
improved urban transport systems.
movement of
people by
Enhance and modernise the operation of facilitating the
improved
integrated transport across Northern Ireland
timetabling of
services.
More efficient movement of people and Not available
improved urban transport systems.
Enhance and modernise the operation
of integrated transport across Northern
Ireland
Complete
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Control Activity
Details of expenditure declared are provided in the Measure summary.
Article 4
All 6 projects in this Measure were the subject of Article 4 checks.
Summary of findings as a result of Article 4 activity
•
Translink Accounting System: EU emblem to be placed on training manual and
plaque to be erected at Milewater Road Office.
•
Lisburn Bus Station: Plaque to be erected at Station.
•
New Rolling Stock: Plaques to be erected on new Trains financed by BSP.
All of the above recommendations were implemented.
Article 10
Details of Article 10 activity are provided in the Measure level summary.
Audit Activity for Measure 1.6(b)
Internal Audit activity can be found in Annex 12 and details of DGREGIO audit findings can
be found in Annex 13.
Irregularities
Details of irregularities are provided at Measure 1.6 summary level in Annexes 15 and
Annex 16.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
6.10
Measure Details for Measure 1.7 - Telecommunications
Aims and Objectives
The Measure aims to stimulate investment in, and accelerate the development of, costcompetitive broadband communications infrastructure and services with the objective of
supporting balanced regional development.
Stimulating demand for advanced
communications and electronic commerce infrastructure and services will facilitate and
encourage competition and investment in peripheral, remote and less developed areas.
Implementation
Two projects were approved and funded under this Measure and details of expenditure
incurred and the EU element can be found in Annex 5.
The total value of this Measure was €38,973,334 including an ERDF allocation of
€29,230,000.
Measure 1.7 Telecommunications is split into two main elements, ie the DETI element and
the C2K project for which the Department of Education was responsible.
The most significant change has been the increase in the number of households with
broadband access. It is now estimated that 350,000 premises have a broadband service.
There has, however, been little significant change in the business use of broadband.
The biggest change in the market has been the general increase in broadband speeds
available. This is now becoming a focus of attention for regulators, the telecommunications
industry and government.
Northern Ireland has achieved 100% broadband availability, meaning every household,
business, library or school has the opportunity to access broadband regardless of location.
As broadband penetration in homes, businesses, schools and libraries increases, the risk
of “digital exclusion” decreases.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Examples of Projects for Measure 1.7
The following three examples all come under scheme Tele/M7 (006723).
Broadband Fund In October 2001 - DETI secured a share of the DTI’s UK Broadband
Fund for Northern Ireland. The Department issued 3 calls for proposals seeking feasibility
studies and pilot projects to explore innovative ways of extending broadband technologies.
DETI received 110 applications for funding and went on to support of 42 projects. A
subsequent DTI evaluation of the Fund (Hyder Consulting 2005) highlighted the quality of
the DETI decision-making process in the use of the Fund and commended the NI projects
for adherence to best practice.
Flagship - The aim of the Broadband Flagship initiative was to attract proposals for the
development of leading edge broadband applications and services that will showcase
broadband design and innovation in Northern Ireland. A project from Derry City Council
and the University of Ulster was chosen for the Northern Ireland Flagship initiative and
explored the benefits of broadband networks for the delivery of e-tourism, e-learning and
e-government in the City. The project had a number of strands including a leading edge
wireless network within the City’s walls, providing specific services for tourists such as
historic information, eating guides and shopping opportunities to wireless devices such as
PDAs or laptop computers. http://www.wirelessderry.com/index.htm
100% Broadband - On 29 March 2004, following a competitive tendering process. DETI
awarded BT a contract for the provision of broadband services across Northern Ireland.
The purpose was to ensure there was 100% availability of broadband services to all
business and households by the end of December 2005. This was achieved ahead of
schedule on 9 December 2005.
Northern Ireland is therefore the first region in the UK (outside London) to have its
telecommunications network upgraded so that all exchanges are broadband enabled.
Some 99.15% of the population now has access to broadband of at least 512kbps through
enabled exchanges. The remaining homes and businesses have access to broadband
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
through either wireless or satellite technology. Broadband services are now available to
every household and business in Northern Ireland. Visit Internet World Stats for further
information on Broadband.
Classroom 2000 (C2K) Project- www.c2kni.org.uk - C2K on behalf of the five education
and library boards is responsible for the provision of an information and communications
technology (ICT) managed service to all schools in Northern Ireland. C2k was supported
by the Department of Education for Northern Ireland and delivered to schools high quality,
sustainable infrastructure, connectivity and resources to meet strategic targets.
Grant-aided schools received a core entitlement, based on pupil numbers, which included:
•
an infrastructure with desktops and laptops connected to the Internet and linked to
legacy systems;
•
access to a wide range of content and services to support the Northern Ireland
Curriculum and the professional development of teachers;
•
an integrated suite of services for school administration and management;
connection of schools' networks into a single education network across Northern
Ireland, with tools to facilitate the development of on-line teaching and learning;
•
full service support through a central help desk;
•
a flexible online learning environment called LearningNI;
•
a library of digital resources in LearningNI licensed from educational publishers;
and
•
a secure online communications environment for all schools in Northern Ireland.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.7
Original Indicator
Output
Percentage of exchanges capable of
providing enhanced
telecommunications services, rising
from 10% to 70%
Result
The percentage of NI geographical
area with access to advanced
telecommunications rising from 11%
to 60%.
Impact
An increase in the use of enhanced
telecommunications facilities by
business.
Jobs created as a by-product of the
measure
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Revised Indicators
Final Position
5%
Percentage of exchanges capable of
100%
providing enhanced telecommunications
services, rising from 10% baseline in 2000
to 100%by end December 2005.
40%
The percentage of NI geographical area
with access to advanced
telecommunications rising from 11%
baseline in 2000, to 100% by end
December 2005.
100%
Not available
10 new telecoms-intensive firms to be
established
13
Not available
An increase in the use of enhanced
telecommunications, in particular basic
broadband services, from a baseline
figure of 1% in 2000 rising to 12% of
household take up, and 20% of business
take up by the end of 2005
49% NI
households. 76%
have internet
access 65% of
business use
broadband
(December 2007
survey)
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Expenditure and Financial Control
Total Expenditure Declared for Measure 1.7
All amounts shown in €
Allocation in
Programme
Complement
Expenditure
Declared in
Claims to the
Commission
EU Amount
Public Amount
Private
Total
29,230,000.00
9,743,334.00
0.00
38,973,334.00
30,218,181.37
10,073,288.66
0.00
40,291,470.03
Expenditure
declared as %
of available
Allocation
103.38
Article 4 Activity
All projects in this Measure were subject to an Article 4 check.
Summary of findings as a result of Article 4 activity
Article 4 checks were carried out by the Article 4 Team in European Programmes on
Telecoms Policy Unit in their role as a BSP Implementing Body.
The standard
Implementing Body checklist was used and the check was completed in the latter part of
the Programme period when the Measure was well underway.
Key Findings
•
Letters of Offer to lower level projects did not contain all standard clauses;
•
Article 4 checks at project level were not carried out on a risk analysis basis;
•
no appeals process available for rejected projects; and
•
no procurement procedures applied in relation to certain projects.
European Programmes Article 4 Team followed up with Telecoms Policy Unit to ensure
that all recommendations in the agreed action plan were carried out.
As part of the management of this Measure, Telecoms Policy Unit had in place a range of
management and control procedures and undertook Article 4 checks on each lower level
project co-financed under their Measure.
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Article 10 Activity
14.54% of declared expenditure was examined under Article 10, revealing an error rate of
1.24%.
Spread of Article 10 – 5% checks
% checked
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
0
0
36.86 21.46 36.49 13.21 5.73
19.45
2008
Summary of Findings as a Result of Article 10 Activity
Due to the nature of the expenditure in this measure and the need to achieve an annual
sample of at least 5%, a number of different methodologies were used. Examples below:
Telecommunications projects 2000–2004.
A printout from the BSP Central Database
showing all payments made to projects under Measure 1.7 for the period January 2000 to
December 2004 was obtained. Within these years, individual projects were then selected
using the following rationale:Only two projects had expenditure in 2002:- Western Connect and Fermanagh District
Council. As Western Connect had several other projects with expenditure in 2003,
Fermanagh District Council was selected for 2002.
Projects with expenditure in 2003 were selected using an interval sampling technique by
taking the first and last project and every third one in between.
Payments to the large BT contract began in 2004 and as this was the largest project it was
selected to cover the 5% target for 2004.
During the Article 10 check, issues were uncovered in connection with the Western
Connect projects and therefore the sample was extended to include an additional project –
Dungannon and South Tyrone District Council.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
In addition, as mentioned above, a file review of all projects in this Measure was carried
out to enable us to quantify the amount of expenditure which had been paid out on the
basis of notional Labour costs.
Telecommunications projects 2000–2004. A number of weaknesses were found during the
Verification of the Telecoms projects for the 2000–2004 years. The branch was
responsible for maintaining their local co-financing database which recorded details of
payments, letters of offer etc. at project level. A number of inaccuracies were found in the
data that had been entered.
In addition it was found that a number of projects had been paid Grant on the basis of
Notional Labour hourly rates and not actuals.
A full review was carried out by the
Verification Unit to establish the level of database errors and to quantify the amount of
ineligible Grant that had been paid out in respect of Notional Labour costs. Following the
review the Database errors were corrected by the branch and 16 irregularities were
reported along with corresponding adjustments to the expenditure.
Telecommunications Infrastructure Support for First Level Education 2005 – 2007. This
was treated as a separate exercise and two out of the five Education and Library Boards
were selected for the Verification checks. The Western Education & Library Board was the
Implementing agent and took the lead on this project on behalf of the other Boards. The
Verification Team therefore selected this Board for the Verification inspection and in
addition, the Belfast Education & Library Board which was the only Board that had drawn
down expenditure during the 2007 calendar year.
No issues were found during the Verification of the above expenditure for the years 2005 2007. The Management and control systems were found to be functioning effectively;
comprehensive Article 4 checks had been carried out by Telecoms branch and as a result
of the level of Grant expenditure checked for this period (10.24%) a high level of
assurance can be given.
A revised Allocation letter was issued on 4 October 2007 increasing the allocation to
£13.27m.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Irregularities detected through Article 10 Checks
Organisation/
Project
UK
Total
Case
irregularity
No
£’s
EU Element
Nature of
Date
irregularity
reported
(code)
to EC
BBF 001/02
39,881.00
29,910.75
325
June 06
BBF 002/02
6,773.00
5,079.75
325
June 06
BBF 039/02
16,400.00
12,300.00
325
June 06
BBF 101/03
39,716.34
29,787.26
325
June 06
BBF 102/03
20,735.00
15,551.25
325
Oct 05
2,630.00
1,972.50
Recordable
June 06
BBF 105/03
only
BBF 106/03
50,500.00
37,875.00
325
June 06
BBF 109/03
41,840.00
31,380.00
325
June 06
BBF 111/03
0,820.40
8,115.30
325
June 06
BBF 113/03
17,251.26
12,938.45
325
June 06
BBF 121/03
35,884.28
26,913.21
325
June 06
BBF 122/03
21,755.52
16,316.64
325
June 06
BBF 130/03
17,733.65
13,300.24
325
June 06
BBF 131/03
7,785.31
5,838.98
325
Oct 05
BBF 204/04
4,000.00
3,000.00
325
June 06
BBF 025/02
50,000.00
37,500.00
325
June 06
Audit Activity
Internal Audit activity can be found in Annex 12 and details of Commission audit findings
can be found in Annex 13.
Irregularities
A total of 13 irregularities were reported for this Measure all of which were cleared. A
detailed list of all reported irregularities for Measure 1.7 can be found in Annex 15.
Irregularities that were below the reporting threshold were recorded and can be found in
Annex 16.
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6.11
Measure Details for Measure 1.8 - Energy
Aims and Objectives
This Measure aims to provide an energy infrastructure that meets the standards required
by the Northern Ireland economy through:•
promoting the strategic development of an efficient, economic and environmentally
sustainable electricity industry in Northern Ireland;
•
promoting the development and maintenance of an efficient, economic and coordinated gas industry in Northern Ireland;
•
promoting the development of new and renewable forms of energy where it is
economically attractive and environmentally acceptable; and
•
promoting energy efficiency in the context of the development of overall energy
policy.
Implementation
A total of 5 projects were approved under this Measure, however, three remained nonoperational at closure. A list of all projects for Measure 1.8 which incurred expenditure
and the EU element can be found in Annex 5.
The Measure was split into sub-Measures (a) Energy Infrastructure and (b) Energy
Efficiency with 1 project approved in each sub-Measure. The total value of the Measure
was €22,173,334 including an ERDF element of €16,630,000.
Details of activities
undertaken for each element are found in the sub-measure reports.
Examples of Publicity
Plaques were placed at the Carrickefergus and Coolkeeragh power stations on completion
of the North-West Gas pipeline.
Document.pdf
Document.pdf
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Expenditure and Financial Control
Total Expenditure Declared for Measure 1.8
All amounts shown in €
Expenditure
declared as % of
available Allocation
EU Amount
Public Amount
Private
Total
Allocation
16,630,000.00
5,543,334.00
0.00
22,173,334.00
Expenditure
Declared
16,628,173.70
5,639,395.09
0.00
22,267,568.79
100.42
Article 4
Article 4 checks were carried out on both projects in this Measure.
Details of Article 4 findings for sub-Measure 1.8(a) and sub-Measure 1.8(b) can be found
under each report.
Article 10
41.63% of declared expenditure was examined under Article 10, revealing an error rate of
0.07%.
Spread of Article 10 – 5% checks
% checked
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
0
0
21.46 39.76 41.98 100
2006
2007
2008
0
100
0
Summary of findings as a result of Article 10 activity
This was a relatively small scheme with 18 projects supported. Two verification exercises
were carried out on this sub-Measure during the lifetime of the BSP Programme. The first
exercise in 2004 selected 3 projects (1 large, 1 medium & 1 small) supported during the
years 2002-2004, to give a representative spread of type and size of projects towards
meeting the annual 5% requirement. The second Verification exercise carried out in March
2009 selected the two projects with expenditure in 2005 and 2007. These were the only
projects with expenditure drawn down in these years and therefore expenditure for these
two years has been vouched 100%. No expenditure was drawn down in respect of 2006.
The total amount vouched for this sub-Measure is 23.32%.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
No common problems or significant weaknesses were uncovered during the verification of
this sub-Measure. During the early years of the Programme, it was found that the Letters
of Offer lacked some of the required standard paragraphs relating to publicity and
tendering. However, in all but one case inspected, the projects had erected plaques
acknowledging EU funding. Tendering was subsequently not found to be an issue as these
were relatively small projects which were funded by small private companies and sole
traders.
Following the first verification exercise to the branch, a number of minor recommendations
regarding Letters of Offer, Article 4 checks and the recording of irregularities were made.
These were followed up at the time of the second Verification exercise in 2009 and were
found to have all been satisfactorily addressed.
A post-project evaluation of all the projects funded under the EDS scheme, has now been
completed by independent consultants and is available from Energy Branch and is detailed
below.
Renewable Energy
PPE Detailed Findings
No Irregularities were detected through Article 10 Checking.
Audit Activity
Internal Audit activity can be found in Annex 12 for sub-Measure 1.8 (a) and sub-Measure
1.8(b). Details of Commission audit findings can be found in Annex 13.
Irregularities
There were no reported irregularities for Measure 1.8 and any recorded irregularities can
be found in Annex 16.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Sub- Measure Details 1.8(a) – Energy Infrastructure
Aims and Objectives
The purpose of this element of the Measure was:
•
the development of the natural gas industry outside the Greater Belfast area and in
particular to the SE and North/North West of Northern Ireland and
•
further North/South interconnection in line with the opening up of the electricity
market under the provisions of the EU Electricity Directive.
Implementation
One project was approved in this sub-Measure.
The sole project funded under Measure 1.8(a) is the Northern Ireland North West Gas
Pipeline Project. This project was approved by the European Commission as a major
project. Commission Decision C (2005) 2700 dated 7 July 2005 (Reference
2002GB161PR005) awarded the project ERDF of €16.24m. The North-West pipeline was
completed in October 2004 by Bord Gáis Eireann (BGE) and is supplying the power
station at Coolkeeragh outside Londonderry. The pipeline brings natural gas to 5 urban
areas in the North West - Ballymena, Ballymoney, Coleraine, Limavady and Londonderry.
It was laid between Carrickfergus and Londonderry.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.8(a)
Original Indicator
Output
KM of gas pipeline laid:
North/West – 116km
South/North – 140km
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
KM of gas pipeline laid:
North/West – 116km
0
0
Increase level of physical electricity
interconnection between NIE and
ESB systems
Result
Numbers of customers connected:
North/West – 9,000
South/North – 4,500
0
Increased security of supply
0
Revised Indicators
Final Position
116km
(South/North not
funded through
this measure)
0
0
Numbers of customers connected:
North/West – 9,000
1,949(includes
power station)
Reductions in CO2:
North/West – 16,800t
499,671 tonnes
CO2 (includes
power station)
Increased opportunity for crossborder trading of electricity
Impact
Reductions in CO2:
North/West – 16,800t
South/North – 9,600t
Not available
Not available
Fewer interruptions to power supply
Not available
Evolution of larger electricity market
leading to reduced prices
Not available
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Control Activity
Article 4
During the life of this project there were 2 Article 4 checks carried out.
Summary of findings as a result of Article 4 Activity
Energy Division project Article 4 check March 2004.
Information was comprehensive and showed a clear audit trail. Expense claims were
closely monitored and 100% of invoices were checked which equates to 100% of total
eligible expenditure. Administrative systems operate effectively and operations are up-todate and complete. The project had several vouching exercises carried out in the majority
of categories of invoice. Therefore one Article 4 visit was deemed satisfactory as strict
monitoring and audit controls were in place. Standard DETI checklist was used.
European Programmes Implementing Body Article 4 check May 2007. This was an Article
4 check carried out by the Article 4 Team in DETI on Energy Division in their role as a BSP
Implementing Body.
Key Findings
•
Application & appraisal process where in line with DETI policy.
•
Letter of Offer issued Feb 03 – at which time no EU funding was involved (remedial
action has since been taken by Energy Division). Under publicity, the LoO makes
reference to publicising financial contribution in the event of funding.
•
No official Article 4 proformas completed (remedial action has since been taken by
Energy Division).
•
Financial procedures established operated effectively and 100% checks on all claims
verify eligibility of claims.
•
Administration systems operated by Energy are sufficient to monitor and evaluate the
project.
•
Procedures in place to effectively deal with irregularities.
•
Project & final payments have been completed.
•
Appropriate logos have been used where possible.
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Article 10
Details of Article 10 activity are included in the Measure summary.
Audit Activity
Internal Audit activity can be found in Annex 12 for Measure 1.8(a).
Details of
Commission audit findings can be found in Annex 13.
In addition, the Northern Ireland Audit Office (NIAO) conducted an audit of the project in
2004 and raised no issues of concern.
Irregularities
Details of irregularities are provided at Measure 1.8 summary level in Annex 15 and Annex
16.
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Sub- Measure Details 1.8(b) – Energy Efficiency
Aims and Objectives
•
to improve energy efficiency and the uptake of renewable energies;
•
to remove barriers to increasing energy efficiency;
•
to reduce dependency on fossil fuels;
•
to promote a cleaner environment; and
•
to stimulate investment in energy efficiency, renewable energies and combined heat
and power.
Implementation
One project was approved under this Measure. Two projects remained non-operational at
closure.
Within this project, organisations were funded to install various renewable
energy technologies under the Energy Demonstration Scheme with a grant allocation of
£355,881.00. Details of expenditure incurred and the ERDF element can be found in
Annex 5.
A post-project evaluation was performed for each project under the Energy Demonstration
Scheme. The projects which installed biomass boilers, eg Rural Generation, were very
successful in terms of energy savings and value for money. Wind turbine installations
were not as successful and a few projects encountered problems with installations and did
not achieve the energy savings expected at time of application. Most projects, except
Craigavon Industrial Development Organisation, Share Holiday Village, Mulsanne
Casinos, Brian Henry Wind Development demonstration, Wingrove Farm wind turbine and
Robert Richmond wind development demonstration were successful in achievement of
objectives. The main reason for reduced success was failure of technology and lack of
knowledge in the industry.
It is important to note, however, that these technologies were still fairly new to the Northern
Ireland market and required this Measure to assess and monitor the technologies and
demonstrate their benefits or otherwise to both the public and government. To this end the
Measure has been very successful in raising awareness of the technologies and therefore
assisting Government in meeting its energy targets. Even those projects which were not
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
as successful succeeded in drawing attention to areas requiring investment and increased
training, thus helping to develop the renewable energy market in Northern Ireland.
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Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.8(b)
Original Indicator
Output
Information requests from
prospective projects
Result
Projects supported
Impact
20% reduction in number of tonnes
of CO2 consumed per project 10%
reduction in energy cost and
consumption in assisted projects
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Revised Indicators
Final Position
7 (Demonstration projects)
20 demonstration projects supported over
the lifetime of the programme
18
22 (Information requests
per project)
At least 150 information packs issued in
response to requests over the lifetime of
the programme
200
Not available
Specific positive environmental impacts
directly attributable to the projects
including 1,200 tonnes of CO2 emissions
savings over the lifetime of the
programme
End of Prog (21)
Some of the projects had difficulty measuring energy or fuel usage, and in particular reductions in CO2. Some the technologies involved were developing
or not suited to Northern Ireland weather, and in cases broke down. Therefore some figures are not available. From the figures measured and supplied, there
were a total of £9,500 savings in energy costs and 2.3 million litres reduction in CO2 emissions.
(21)
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Control Activity
Article 4
The Scheme was subjected to an Article 4 check.
Summary of findings as a result of Article 4 activity
An Article 4 check carried out by the Article 4 Team in European Programmes on
Energy Division in their role as BSP Implementing Body. Measure 1.8(b) covers one
co-financed project i.e. Energy Demonstration Scheme. The standard Implementing
Body checklist was used and the check was completed in the latter part of the
Programme period when the Energy Demonstration Scheme was well underway.
Key Findings
•
Letters of Offer to lower level projects did not contain all standard clauses;
•
no Article 4 reports issued to project promoters;
•
no acknowledgement of BSP funding by some projects; and
•
deficiencies in selection panel documentation.
DETI Article 4 Team followed up with Energy Division to ensure that all
recommendations in the agreed action plan were carried out.
As part of the management of this Measure, Energy Division undertook Article 4
checks on each lower level project co-financed under the Energy Demonstration
Scheme.
Article 10
Details of Article 10 activity are included in the Measure summary.
Audit Activity
Internal Audit activity can be found in Annex 12 and details of Commission audit
findings can be found in Annex 13.
Irregularities
Details of irregularities are provided at Measure 1.8 summary level in Annex 15 and
Annex 16.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
CHAPTER 7: PRIORITY 2
7.1
Introduction
While the majority of activity in this Priority was related to the ESF Fund, Measure 2.5
received assistance from ERDF and details of activities under that Measure can be
found in the following pages.
Aims and Objectives
The principal objective of the Employment Priority was to tackle specific labour market
needs of those in education who are about to enter the labour market, for those who
are unemployed and those who are in employment.
Actions undertaken were in
synergy with the other Priorities within the BSP Programme, in particular the
Economic Growth and Competitiveness Priority.
Literacy and numeracy skills levels as well as ICT skills remain low for a large
proportion of the unemployed and employed population.
Lifelong learning is only
slowly expanding in the education and training sectors. In the schools sector, while
the most academically gifted continue to do well, there remain significant problems
relating to educational underachievement and low attendance and a high proportion of
young people leave school at the end of compulsory education. Investment in human
resource development in companies remains low, as are the levels of selfemployment. Indeed levels of self-employment and the development of the social
economy are lagging behind UK averages.
The European Employment Strategy has recognised the very significant role that
Information and Communications Technology (ICT) will play in terms of job creation. It
is essential therefore that those about to enter the labour force should be equipped
with the appropriate knowledge and skills for the emerging information age.
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7.2
Measure Details for Measure 2.5 - Education and Training ICT
and Infrastructure Support
The main focus, therefore, under this Measure was support for the strategic
development of ICT within Northern Ireland’s secondary education system by
providing a significant level of infrastructure support for ICT teaching and learning at
the secondary level. Through the provision of an ICT infrastructure of high quality
resources, those in secondary level education preparing to enter the labour market will
develop the skills to use ICT and the effectiveness and the standards of their learning
will be improved.
This Measure also provided assistance towards the cost of general infrastructure
support to cover sufficient access to the required network of equipment, learning,
resources and accommodation in order to deliver the other Measures in this Priority.
The main objective was to ensure the provision of adequate support infrastructure in
order to enable organisations to meet the education/training needs of the target
groups.
Implementation
The Measure was delivered by DE and DEL with the majority (98%) of the expenditure
being declared by DE.
A total of 67 applications were approved under this Measure. A list of all projects
assisted under this Measure can be found in Annex 5.
The Department of Education element of this Measure covers three main strands.
These were: •
C2k (post primary and special schools); www.c2kni.org.uk
•
the Major Project Application for C2k; and
•
improvements to the infrastructure for post primary and special schools.
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C2k (post primary and special schools) - The Mission of C2k was to provide, for
Northern Ireland’s schools, a world class Learning Technology service and optimise its
use throughout the Community. C2k is a regional scheme operating under the
auspices of the Education Technology Strategy Management Group of the
Department of Education. It was funded by the Department, through the Western
Education and Library Board, as part of its Education Technology Strategy, to deliver
to schools high quality, sustainable infrastructure, connectivity and resources. The
Strategy set out to ensure that young people were prepared for their life and work in
the information economy of the 21st century and that ICT is used to raise educational
standards.
The C2k element of the Measure contained numerous components that included: •
Passive infrastructure to support C2k activities;
•
an infrastructure of approximately 23,000 networked computers connected to
the Internet and linked to legacy systems;
•
access to a wide range of content and services to support the Northern Ireland
Curriculum and the professional development of teachers;
•
connection of schools' networks onto a single education network across
Northern Ireland, with tools to facilitate the development of on-line teaching and
learning; and
•
full service support through a central help desk.
The requirement to submit a Major Project Application under Article 25 of EU
Regulation 1260/99 arose from the recommendations of a DGREGIO audit in April
2006. Consequently an application was made for confirmation of support in October
2006. EU commission approval was confirmed, at the end of December 2006, for
support to a total project value of €84m. Total EU assistance for this project of €42m
was to part fund the C2k infrastructure, for post primary and special schools, which
comprised: •
The passive infrastructure (cabling and socketry for the LAN and mains supply);
•
provision of ICT local hardware (PCs, printer, network hubs etc);
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
•
provision of remote hardware and software for central help desk and WAN
services (such as Internet access); and
•
provision of curricular content and software.
C2k was split into 3 component parts.
•
the provision of adequate LAN and mains cabling and socketry. This element
was to enable effective utilisation of the services provided by C2k. Each
Education and Library Board engaged contractors, by way of competitive
tender, from a framework agreement to carry out the work in each school.
•
to provide the local ICT infrastructure to support curricular activities such as
provision of hardware (PCs, printers etc) and software (system, personal
productivity and curriculum software and packages). SX3, latterly Northgate
systems was contacted under OJEC 2001/s 98-067814, to provide the service.
•
to provide-wide area connectivity and integration of services. This component
was also contracted under OJEC 2001/s 98-067814 and provided, originally by
COMPAQ and latterly the merged company under Hewlett Packard.
Improvements to the infrastructure for post primary and special schools - This element
of the Measure comprised of 6 projects that extended and refurbished post primary
schools providing accommodation to meet pupils’ educational needs. The facilities, in
the schools approved for funding were judged substandard. Temporary classrooms,
used widely for lessons, varied in age but many were over 30 years old. In some
cases they fell short of Health and Safety requirements. The classrooms were also
spread out throughout the site. This added to the time taken for pupils to move
between lessons. Environmental conditions were also substandard.
The new classrooms are now equipped with adequate power, cabling and data/voice
outlets to facilitate the use of ICT in lesson delivery, providing pupils and teachers with
modern, high quality learning environments. The attainment of ICT competence is
recognised as essential for the future employability of students and the success of the
Northern Ireland economy as a whole. This project removes a major barrier to ICT
competence and educational achievement.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
As the Measure delivered a government Programme, a formal call for applications did
not take place. However, in order to ensure transparency formal applications were
made by the PPP unit (for C2k activities) and the Department of Education’s Building
Branch (for infrastructure activities).
Eight applications were submitted to the Programme. The Programme covered 285
schools under C2k (including the passive infrastructure) and 6 schools under the
improvements to the infrastructure element.
Examples of Projects within Measure 2.5
Under the DE element of the Measure there were eight successful projects under
Measure 2.5.
Initially there were 2 successful projects.
These were: •
C2k for post primary and special schools.
•
Passive Infrastructure for post primary and special schools.
The issues raised as a result of the Major Project Application necessitated some
realigning of the targets. Six projects were added to the original quota. These were:
•
Dominican College.
•
Royal School Dungannon.
•
St. Brigid’s High School.
•
St. Paul’s High School.
•
St. Pius X College.
•
Rathmore Grammar School.
C2k - Internet in Schools
www.c2kni.org.uk.
C2k has been awarded full
accreditation by BECTA (British Educational Communications and Technology
Agency), for the quality of its schools’ internet service provision.
The BECTA Internet Service Provider (ISP) accreditation means that all pupils and
teachers in the Province's 284 post primary and special schools can be assured that
the internet services provided by C2k meet the required guidelines. C2k’s internet
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
service is constantly monitored to ensure that children and teachers in Northern
Ireland are protected against offensive emails and web site content.
The C2k Integration Director, said, “The safety of the C2k online user community is
paramount for C2k and our managed service provider HP. We employ the most up-todate online security technology to protect both our users and the integrity of the online
service. Schools have a statutory responsibility for child safety and C2k’s BECTA ISP
accreditation can assure schools that the Northern Ireland schools’ internet service is
one of the safest in the world.”
C2k not only successfully met all their accreditation requirement, but exceeded them
in 75% of the tests, such as email and web filtering and user support.
School internet services are provided by global technology company HP which provide
the vital infrastructure joining all the online services together and includes Internet
filtering, web hosting and a managed data centre that holds e-learning resources for
schools.
Ensuring the safety of the C2k internet service is a considerable task. For instance,
on a monthly basis, an average of 7 terabytes of data can be downloaded by schools.
The centre can also process over 11 million emails.
The accreditation also included the service provided to Primary Schools.
St Pius X College - www.stpiusxcollege.org - The school has invested heavily in
computer hardware and software over recent years. The C2k allocation added
considerably to this base in order to provide further access to the technology for pupils
and staff. Plans have been made to make best use of this provision.
Every teacher in the school now has a PC on their desk, all of which have C2k MIS
installed. This ensures a high usage of MIS modules by staff. For example all staff use
Assessment Manager to record KS3 and KS4 results and Heads of Year use MIS to
maintain a behavioural log and monitor attendance. In addition, all school
documentation is stored in a central folder, using Whirlpool 1. For teachers this makes
more accessible, schemes of work in all subjects, school and departmental policies
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
and the minutes of school meetings, Application forms for internal appointments are
also posted in this area and are completed online.
Pupils are also supported by the new provision and every pupil in the school has been
given an email address and their own work folder within the network. All Key Stage 3
pupils have timetabled ICT and they all participate in the CCEA ICT Accreditation
Scheme. More than half of the teachers in the school and most subject areas
contribute towards ICT accreditation at KS3. The school boosts a 100% pass rate at
levels 5, 6 and 7 in this scheme.
The school has involved itself in innovative work using ICT. They are participating in a
number of pilots with CLASS (the administrative element of C2k) involving
Requisitions for Heads of Department and also in piloting the new Attendance and
FMS modules. Video conferencing has also been used innovatively and the school
has been involved in a collaborative e-learning pilot at GCSE level in a Virtual
Learning Environment in partnership with a number of other schools in the North
Eastern Education & Library Board.
St Pius X High School has taken full advantage of the restorative building programme,
supported by the Measure that has enhanced the school’s infrastructure. One
consequence of the improvements enabled them to extend their provision of ICT to all
pupils and to all teachers in the school. However, it is not only this which made a
difference. It was the wholehearted commitment of teachers in embracing the new
technology, recognising what it can achieve and incorporating it into classroom
teaching and administration, that has had made most impact. This has been
encouraged by effective leadership and vision within the school.
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Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 2.5
Original Indicator
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Output
All secondary schools (240) to have
0
new PCs at a ratio of at least 1 PC to
9 pupils and local area networks
installed and to be linked to a wide
area network and system integrator
providing a managed ICT service at
a cost of £115.2m.
All successful ESF funded nongovernment projects to have an
adequate level of infrastructural
support as is required to make the
project viable
Result
All schools to be utilising the
managed service providing curricular
resources and internet access with
broadband connectivity
Revised Indicators
Final Position
All secondary schools (233) and special
277
schools (48) to have new PCs at a ratio of
at least 1 PC to 9 pupils and local area
networks installed and to be linked to a
wide area network and system integrator
providing a managed ICT service at a cost
of £115.2m.
ESF
All successful ESF funded nongovernment projects to have an adequate
level of infrastructural support as is
required to make the project viable
Met
Upgrading of school accommodation to
enable use of ICT equipment and
managed service
0
All schools to be utilising the managed
service providing curricular resources and
internet access with broadband
connectivity
Post Primary and special schools using
the managed service
218
277
Met
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 2.5 (contd)
Impact
All pupils (155,000) will experience
the use of ICT across all areas of the
curriculum, including a range of
applications and media and will
spend, on average, 10% of the
weekly timetable using ICT facilities
to support learning across the
curriculum
0
All pupils (155,000) will experience the
use of ICT across all areas of the
curriculum, including a range of
applications and media and will spend, on
average, 10% of the weekly timetable
using ICT facilities to support learning
across the curriculum
Pupils will enjoy the benefits of a modern
ICT enriched curriculum taught in highspecification facilities. Electrical
infrastructure will enable the full use of
ICT equipment and managed service
provided by C2k programme.
219
All pupils using
ICT across all
areas of the
curriculum
(161,000 pupils).
Over 10% of
weekly timetable
using ICT
supported
learning
Met
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Under the DEL element of the Measure 59 projects received funding. Full details
of allocations can be found in Annex 5.
A range of projects was funded by the Department of Employment and learning
(DEL) under this Measure. These complimented projects funded through ESF
Measure 2.3.
Examples of the projects within Measure 2.5
The Orchardville Society – Edgecumbe Catering Project.
The main objective was to create a modern street front coffee shop which would be
compliant with all Health and Safety Regulations which provided best practice
training opportunities for people with learning disabilities.
This contributed to the main Programme in a number of ways:
•
Providing a modern and visible training environment for people with learning
disabilities
Enabling increases in:
•
the number of beneficiaries taking up this form of vocational training;
•
the number of accredited qualifications achieved;
•
the number of beneficiaries accessing external work placements; and
•
the level of income generation and ability of the overall project to move
towards longer term sustainability.
Shankill Open Learning Centre – Skills Training for Employment Progression.
The objective was to fully equip the organisations training facility with equipment to
specifically meet the training needs of individuals and included in this was the
purchase of a specialist auditing and tracking software package for use with the
BSP Projects beneficiaries who were of particular disadvantage.
It complimented the ESF Project which sought to develop and deliver a range of
tailored training and development programmes for 60 people with disabilities
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
employed within the Ulster Sheltered Employment Limited’s (USEL) segregated
employment environment.
Workers Education Association – Essential Skills for Disadvantaged Groups.
The project focused on essential skills provision for adult returners with a specific
emphasis on the needs of those with learning difficulties. To facilitate the learning
of the groups specified the equipment in the centre required updating to provide
access to the computer based learning programmes that came on stream.
Expenditure and Financial Control
Total Expenditure Declared for Measure 2.5
All amounts shown in €
Allocation in
Programme
Complement
Expenditure
Declared in
Claims to the
Commission
EU Amount
Public Amount
Private
Total
61,014,000.00
61,014,000.00
0.00
122,028,000.00
62,174,794.54
62174,795.30
0.00
124,349,589.84
Expenditure
declared as %
of available
Allocation
101.90
Total expenditure declared includes the amount approved by the Commission as a
result of a major project application for C2k in addition to the 6 projects selected for
improving the schools infrastructure and expenditure for the projects supported by
DEL.
Article 4 Activity
All projects in this Measure were subject to an Article 4 check.
Summary of findings as a result of Article 4 activity
(i)
The standard checklist issued by the Managing Authority was used for
all formal Article 4 visits;
(ii)
Visits were carried out to all projects;
(iii)
In addition to the formal Article 4 visits, 82 spot checks (consisting of
vouching visits) were carried out.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Article 4 checks found that projects were managed effectively and consistently with
EU requirements. Financial systems and record-keeping were sufficiently sound to
ensure effective financial management of the projects.
Expenditure samples were successfully reconciled with records held by projects.
The projects’ obligations in such areas as Equality of Opportunity, environmental
impact, and publicising the EU contribution, were being met.
Appropriate mechanisms were in place to collate data on project performance
against Letter of Offer targets, and return this information to the Implementing
Body.
Article 10 Activity
24.37% of declared expenditure is under examination by the Article 10 team with
an error rate of 3.52%.
Spread of Article 10 – 5% checks
% checked
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008
23.2
11
9.6
6.5
63.1
22.8
1.43
9.19
17.9
Summary of Findings as a result of Article 10 Monitoring
The FAST Team, in DEL, completes its risk analysis of projects at the beginning of
the year when its annual programme is being determined. The sample is selected
in line with DFP-EU Guidance Note 02/2005 in order to give a representative
sample of project by size, type and location.
No problems or errors were identified during Article 10 visits.
assurance was given by the FAST Team in all cases.
Eight irregularities were detected through Article 10 Checks
222
A satisfactory
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Audit Activity
A record of all internal audits carried out for Measure 2.5 is available in Annex 12.
Details of Commission audit findings are shown in Annex 13.
Irregularities
A total of 23 irregularities were reported for this part of the Measure all of which
have been cleared. Details of these can be found in Annex 15. Irregularities that
were below the reporting threshold were recorded and can be found in Annex 16.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
CHAPTER 8: PRIORITY 3
8.1
Introduction
Aims and Objectives
This Priority flows from Priority 3 of the CSF – Balanced Regional Urban and Rural
Development and has as its objective the reduction of the socio-economic gap
between disadvantaged urban areas and the wider society by improving the
physical infrastructure of urban areas and thereby enabling community
participation in sustainable economic development. The ERDF funding supported
actions for on-going priorities including infrastructure improvement and skills
enhancement to improve the competitiveness of urban areas.
8.2
Implementation
Four Measures were funded under this Priority:
Measure 3.1
Urban Revitalisation
7 Projects
Measure 3.2
Advice and Information Services
8 Projects
Measure 3.3
Community Sustainability
43 Projects
Measure 3.4
Investing in Early Learning
1 Project
A list of all projects for Priority 3 which incurred expenditure and the ERDF element
can be found in Annex 5.
Publicity
North Antrim Community Network - Ballycastle Community Directory (DSD)
http://www.moyle.mmcsolutions.biz/uploads/publications/Ballycastle%20Directory
%20Final%20Copy.pdf
Fermanagh Trust (DSD)
http://www.fermanaghtrust.org/cms/uploads/1/FCEF_Report.pdf
Assessment of Achievements v Targets
Details can be found within each Measure.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Expenditure and Financial Control
Total Expenditure Declared for Priority 3
All amounts shown in €
Allocation
EU Amount
Public Amount
Private
Total
50,000,000.00
20,900,000.00
0.00
70,900,000.00
21,476,202.41
0.00
70,899,503.52
Expenditure
49,423,301.11
Declared
Expenditure declared by Measure
3.1
34,529,693.44
15,185,897.20
0.00
49,715,590.44
3.2
1,869,169.21
797,880.07
0.00
2,667,049.28
3.3
4,725,407.53
2,024,457.56
0.00
6,749,865.09
3.4
8,013,582.57
3,345,632.26
0.00
11,359,214.83
Expenditure
declared as
% of
available
Allocation
100.00
Article 4 Activity
An Article 4 was carried out on all projects
Article 10 Activity
Details of Article 10 Activity can be found within each Measure.
Summary of findings as a result of Article 10 Activity
EUVU extract information from the EU Central Database on declared expenditure
and total award amounts for all of the measures, within the programme/fund,
subject to examination. Based on this information a risk assessment is completed
taking account of the following factors:
•
Value of eligible expenditure
To address the need to sample expenditure on an annual basis the figure
used is the amount of declared eligible expenditure, as recorded on the EU
Central Database, incurred by a Measure up to the time of sampling. Level of
expenditure is considered to be the major risk factor.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
•
Volume of projects
The number of approved projects within a Measure is considered significant
as a higher volume raises the opportunities for errors and widens the likely
impact of systemic errors. The volume of approved projects within a
Measure was taken as the cumulative number of approved projects at the
time of selection. The risk is perceived as being medium.
•
Type of project
It is concluded that the main issues are the amount of transactions
generated and the associated supporting documentation to be retained. It is
felt that to avoid becoming too diverse, projects could readily be rated in
three main types which reflect the main issues, namely Capital Build the
spend pattern of which is a limited number of sizeable payments and
Revenue Assistance which generates numerous small and frequent
transactions and a combination of both Capital Build and Revenue
Assistance. The significance of the perceived differential between these
types is reflected in the respective ratings. The significance of project type is
considered medium.
•
Project provider
The providers engaged in the implementation of the Measures within the
Department’s remit could readily be rated in three types i.e. Government
(Department for Social Development), Non-Government (Intermediate
Funding Body) and a combination of both Government and NonGovernment. These types are accepted as being sufficient to reflect the
relative level of risk involved. Projects being delivered directly by the
Department and by a combination of Department and IFB will be subject to
the various controls applied under Government Accounting procedures and
internal management checks. Whilst projects delivered by IFBs will have an
additional tier of delivery outside of direct Departmental controls. The
significance of this factor is considered medium to low.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
•
Complexity of funds
Taking account of the respective regulations the complexity factor is
attributable to the two funds being administered. ESF Rules and
Regulations are generally regarded to be more prescriptive than ERDF thus
receiving a greater rating. This category is considered a medium factor.
•
Error rates
Management take account of the results of previous checks including the
level of error identified when selecting operations to be sampled and build this
into the risk assessment process.
These factors were then assessed using an agreed weighting formula. On the
basis of this a priority listing of measures is derived within each programme/fund.
The Verification work plan was then worked out taking account of available
resources.
At this stage a full project list for each Measure was obtained from the EU Central
Database based on award amount and the projects within the Measure were
stratified, based on the amount awarded, into three categories high, medium and
low.
Having carried out the risk assessment and obtained project lists within each of the
three strands for each of the measures, a selection was made up to the prescribed
number of visits, taking account of projects which had been visited previously and
also based on information supplied by the relevant Implementing Body(ies).
Details of Article 4 checks carried out by DSD European Unit and other national
controls were examined, no significant findings were obtained. The selection of
projects took account of obtaining a mix of types and sizes of operations to be
checked. Two projects from the Measure total of 7 were examined.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Once this had been achieved, detailed project expenditure reports were obtained
from the EU Central Database to enable a selection of expenditure declarations be
examined which equated to at least 5% of declared expenditure for that particular
year.
The Main Implementing Body was checked at least once before closure the
verification check on each project encompassed a compliance check on the
Implementing Body.
Irregularities detected through Article 10 checks are detailed under the following
measure level reports.
Audit Activity
Details are available within Annex 12.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
8.3
Measure Details for Measure 3.1 – Urban Revitalisation
Aims and Objectives
The aim of this Measure was to promote individual and community well-being by
creating the physical, social and economic environment conducive to encouraging
additional employment, education and other opportunities in towns and cities,
particularly targeting disadvantage or socially excluded communities. To provide
safe and neutral space for all sections of the community and to offer support to
local community stakeholders engaged in the renewal of urban city areas.
Implementation
Seven projects were approved under this Measure.
A list of all projects for Measure 3.1 which incurred expenditure and the EU
element can be found on Annex 5.
Building Sustainable Prosperity Measure 3.1 was slow in getting off the ground but
when up and running became a very successful Measure, expending its total
budget – both original and revised. There were two main beneficiaries - Laganside
Corporation and the Social Security Agency (SSA)/Department for Employment
and Learning (DEL).
The original intention had been to target a larger number of small projects but lack
of evidence/accounting issues around these highlighted difficulties which may have
had an adverse effect on the Measure and these projects were not awarded
funding. However applications made by the two larger organisations proved
successful with 7 projects receiving funding.
The Measure allocation was
increased and indicators were revised mid-way through the Programme, approved
by the Monitoring Committee and the impacts/results of both the original and
revised indicators are reflected below.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
The issue of an initial lack of publicity was addressed by the provision of EU
plaques in each public area in all 23 Jobs and Benefits Offices - 93 plaques in all
were erected.
Examples of Projects including Targets achieved
Laganside Corporation received funding of £4.65m for 5 successful Projects. Four
of these were capital build schemes adding to the regeneration of Belfast, in
particular the Cathedral Quarter. The fifth, an environmental scheme involved the
dredging of the River Lagan. There were no problems highlighted with the
implementation of these Projects. All were successful, both in the redevelopment
of the area around the Lagan and in contributing to the increase in tourists visiting
the area. Jobs were also created both in the completion of the capital projects and
latterly, for example, 10 jobs were created in units within the Royal Avenue
Managed Workspace where initially 350 visitors were attracted.
A total of 187,000 square metres of area were enhanced within the Laganside
Projects and a daily footfall of 837 was recorded for the area around Lanyon Place
Public Realm.
One example of one Laganside Projects was - Open Space at Cathedral Close.
Previously this area of open space in front of St Anne’s Cathedral was regarded as
unattractive and unsafe. It provided a gathering place for those engaged in antisocial behaviour i.e. glue sniffing and vandalism.
The redevelopment of Cathedral Close has revitalised one of Belfast’s oldest areas
and linked it to the already successful waterfront developments. The enhancement
of an area of 1,370 square metres has provided an attractive setting for St Anne’s
Cathedral - a prominent landmark and tourist destination in the City Centre. The
new versatile outdoor performance space known as Writers’ Square is now
capable of accommodating up to one thousand people and attracts groups of
performing and visual artists to the area. The Cathedral Quarter is now more
accessible with residents and those working in the area have been encouraged to
enjoy the benefits of a unique urban renaissance.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Jobs and Benefits - Two applications from SSA/DEL involved improvements to 23
Jobs and Benefits Offices throughout Northern Ireland. Initially a total of £26m was
spent on these 2 Projects resulting in the budget for the Measure 3.1 being
exhausted. However due to a shortfall in Measure 3.3 spend the Monitoring
Committee approved a transfer of surplus funds into BSP Measure 3.1 and the
Department was then able to increase funding to SSA/DEL up to the amount of the
original 2 applications.
The aims and objectives of both of the applications were the same – the
establishment of a network of Jobs and Benefits Offices providing a high standard
of accommodation to meet the joint needs of the SSA/DEL. Twenty three of the
total 35 Jobs and Benefits Offices located throughout Northern Ireland were
supported providing a range of customer services with improved service delivery in
a safer, more user friendly environment for customers and staff. This has led to a
seamless customer focused service with the introduction of an enhanced Work
Focused service.
Ten Offices were funded in the original application and 13 in the latter application.
A total area of 21,419 sq metres was enhanced in the completion of Project Jobs
and Benefits Offices and 25,219 sq metres in Jobs and Benefits Offices (2). As a
result of the joint working of SSA and DEL the long term unemployment register
was reduced by 27.6%.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 3.1
Original Indicator
Position at Mid-Term
Evaluation
Revised Indicators
Final Position
Output
Number of schemes funded – 20
Initial progress was slow
on BSP 3.1 with no spend Number of jobs/training enquiries/referrals
incurred by the date of the
mid term evaluation.
Number of organizations supported – However
retrospective
40
projects were identified
and funded by the end of
2004.
Number of projects assisted
Number of projects assisted - 40
Result
Square
metres
of No spend or results by the
commercial/industrial
community date of mid term evaluation
space enhanced
but
in
retrospective
projects completed by
2004 a total of 233,638 sq
metres were enhanced
Private sector financial leverage
None
Increase in gross employment
232
None
Reduction in number of long term
unemployed, women, 16-17 year olds,
disabled persons and single parents
registering as unemployed.
Increased numbers of people, particularly
women, single parents, disabled, referred
for employment/training.
Increase
in
gross
employment
opportunities
Increase of 76%
from 2000-04
7 projects
comprising 5
Laganside and 2
Jobs and Benefits
Schemes
covering 23 Jobs
and Benefits
offices administrative
barriers meant
larger projects
were targeted
instead of smaller
more
cumbersome
ones.
27.6% reduction
from 2000-04
8% increase from
2000-04
27.7%increase
from 2000-2004
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 3.1 (cont’d)
Impact
Increase in Net employment.
Reduction in unemployment
Reduction in crime and vandalism
Increase in commercial space
available
Evidence of positive impact
attributable to schemes eg increase
in visitor numbers and increase in
residents satisfaction levels
Initial progress was slow Increase in Net employment.
on BSP 3.1 with no spend
incurred by the date of the
mid term evaluation
Reduction in unemployment
233
Not available in
this format
24.3% reduction
from 2000-04- all
projects
completed by the
end of 2004
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Expenditure and Financial Control
Total Expenditure Declared for Measure 3.1
All amounts shown in €
Allocation in
Programme
Complement
Expenditure
Declared in
claims to the
Commission
Expenditure
declared as
% of
available
Allocation
EU Amount
Public
Amount
Private
Total
35,306,153.00
14,850,000.00
0.00
50,156,153.00
34,529,693.44
15,185,897.20
0.00
49,715,590.64
99.12
Article 4 Activity
All projects in this Measure have received an Article 4 check.
Summary of findings as a result of Article 4 activity
•
Most project operators had good policy documents in place. Of those that
did not, the main areas of weakness were a lack of policy documents in the
areas of document retention and publicity;
This was addressed by the production of draft policy documents which were
supplied to project operators, who were advised to tailor the content to their
organisation.
The Article 4 Monitoring team carried out follow-up action to validate compliance.
Article 10
7.66% of declared expenditure was examined under Article 10, with an error rate of
zero.
Spread of Article 10 – 5% checks
% checked
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
0%
0%
8.30% 7.23% 9.68% 0%
2006
2007
2008
0%
0%
0%
In Measure 3.1 no common problems, significant weaknesses or systemic errors
were identified by the Article 10 activity. Only 1 recommendation was made and it
234
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
was in relation to the required document retention period. The measure consisted
of seven projects which had a total grant awarded of £35,622,428.00. Of this
approximately 87% was spent on 2 SSA sponsored Jobs & Benefits projects with
the remaining 13% being spent on 5 Laganside Corporation sponsored projects.
One project from each of the groups was visited for Article 10 inspections covering
the years 2002–2004. Coverage achieved against this Measure was well above
the Commission target of 5% at 7.66% overall. Control work concentrated when
most expenditure occurred. Control work focused on main Implementing Bodies
(2 bodies). The same systems were used for all payments. The fact that the
projects within the Measure were entirely delivered directly by a constituent part of
the Department or a Departmental sponsored body and were subject to the various
controls
applied
under
Government
Accounting
procedures
and
internal
management checks explains the absence of error, financial or otherwise and
confirm the effectiveness of the management and control systems in place.
No irregularities were detected through Article 10 Checking
Audit Activity
Details so Internal Audit activity can be found in Annex 12.
Irregularities
There were no reported irregularities for Measure 3.1 and any recorded
irregularities can be found in Annex 16.
235
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
8.4
Measure Details for Measure 3.2 – Advice and Information Services
Aims and Objectives
High long-term unemployment rates and a quarter of the adult population at the
lowest levels of literacy, hindered Northern Ireland in its transition to a stable,
prosperous, fair and outward looking society.
This Measure was aimed at:
•
Improving local advice services by developing and implementing a
strategy.
•
Working in partnership with the statutory sector, local government, social
partners and the independent sector examining the quality of and access
to services in areas of social need.
•
Stimulate new provision in areas where none existed and achieve a more
coherent approach to advice provision in areas where there were
indications of duplication.
Implementation
The Measure improved local advice services by developing and implementing a
strategy to stimulate new provision in areas where there is none and to achieve a
more coherent approach to advice and support in the case of duplication of
provision. 8 projects were initially funded. 1 project ended in 2005 and the
remaining 7 projects were funded to March 2007, with 3 of those having funding
extended to September 2007.
A list of all projects for Measure 3.2 which incurred expenditure and the EU
element can be found on Annex 5.
The objectives of the projects were to improve access to advice and information for
disadvantaged groups, improve the quality of advice through the development of
236
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
staff and (in the case of the Citizens Advice Bureau and the Association of
Independent Advice Services), to introduce and provide support for new
standardised electronic statistical recording and information systems for their
networks.
The projects targeting the disadvantaged groups, though not exclusively, included
those providing:•
access to housing;
•
advice for immigrants;
•
improved access for the deaf and hard of hearing; and
•
the development of an information strategy for those affected by domestic
violence.
Independent post-project evaluations were carried out on all projects. The
findings, both qualitatively and quantitatively were that all projects exceeded
targets. Overall the findings showed that accessibility to advice services have
improved during the lifetime of the Programme, particularly for those with special
needs. A significant positive outcome from the Measure is that much of the work
carried out under it will feed in to the new DSD Advice Services Strategy.
Measure Indicators all were achieved or exceeded. They did not change during
the period of the Programme although the specific numeric targets were added for
the purposes of clarification in later reports.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 3.2
Original Indicator
Output
Reviews and Assessments
completed
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
258
Revised Indicators
2 Reviews and Assessments of existing
services completed
Not reported
New common recording
Support for rationalization of
recording system
Support given to 2 organisations to
provide and promote a common
statistical system
Support given to 4 organisations to
provide advice and information
Result
Develop strategy
80% of IAS and CABs operating a 20%
common statistical system
Not reported
Increase by 50 hours per week
provision of advice and information
in areas of greatest need
Not reported
7 post project
evaluations
completed with
recommendations
about future
delivery of service.
2
7
Implementation of the recommendations Some
from the reviews/assessments
recommendations
implemented. Work
to be taken forward
within DSD’s Advice
25 IAS and CAB operating a common strategy.
statistical system
All independent
CAB affiliated
advice
organizations now
using 1 of 2
Increase of 40 hours per week in the
accredited systems.
provision of advice and information in
312 in year 2007
areas of greatest need
with total of 3046
since start of the
programme
90% of DSD funding committed on Not reported
basis of strategy
Effective comparisons and
monitoring possible
Final Position
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 3.2 (contd)
Impact
Improved provision
Improved awareness
Cohesive and cost effective
provision of services
Not available
Improved utilization of available
funds
Improved service and distribution of
funding
Better informed community and
improved access to services
239
3 pilot schemes undertaken
3
Evidence of improved accountability for,
and delivery of, advice services
Post project
evaluations show
evidence of more
integrated delivery
of advice services
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Examples of Projects within Measure 3.2
Community Housing Advice Project (CHAP) - The Department for Social
Development supported this project which was delivered by the Housing Rights
Service, an independent charity working to protect and promote the rights of people
in housing need in Northern Ireland.
This project was developed against a backdrop of escalating homelessness and
rising consumer debt levels and in recognition of the need for housing advice,
advocacy and representation to help prevent homelessness and alleviate poor
housing conditions. A partnership approach was adopted involving Housing Rights
Service, Citizens Advice and Advice NI with the aim of increasing the capacity of
frontline advice agencies throughout Northern Ireland. Other funding was secured
from the NI Housing Executive and the Community Fund.
The key objectives of the CHAP project were to:
•
Prevent homelessness by enabling people to sustain existing accommodation
through debt counselling services and dealing with issues threatening their
security of tenure;
•
assist people to access suitable accommodation by exploring the full range of
options available including social housing, low cost home ownership and the
private rented sector;
•
provide advice on issues associated with affordability; and
•
assist clients to challenge adverse housing decisions.
The project was delivered through 24 frontline voluntary advice agencies who were
able to deliver a dedicated advice and support on housing issues, a wide range of
information materials, free training and bursaries for accredited training. Housing
Rights Service received a prestigious National Training Award in recognition of its
training services provided through this project.
Support was given to 2 organisations (AIAC and CAB) to provide and promote a
common statistical system. This output target related also to the work on improving
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
advice provision through better use of IT. This was achieved with the independent
advice services and local citizens’ advice bureaux, who now operate new age
statistical systems. In relation to improved accountability, the new IT systems used
by the groups allows for tracking of advice given and development of historical
information on clients. This has also enabled managers to print off relevant
information to clients and ensure that all information and advice given is trackable,
particularly for quality assurance. Another benefit shown in the CAB report is that
the improved information systems has helped to strengthen discussions with
Government and rising media interest through the provision of specific examples
and the rapid identification of patterns and collation of examples – good examples
include the problems with housing benefit, problems and issues regarding tax credits
and overpayments. Managers embraced the whole planning and implementation of
the system, with work being carried out with their involvement and agreement at all
stages and that changes requested by them were carried out when it was cost
effective to do so. They were also positive that the systems provided one
standardised way of providing information and advice and that this ensured they
could operate and monitor a more efficient office network.
Expenditure and Financial Control
Total Expenditure Declared for Measure 3.2
All amounts shown in €
EU Amount
Public Amount
Private
Total
Allocation
2,000,000.00
830,000.00
0.00
2,830,000.00
Expenditure
Declared
1,876,934.47
801,208.06
0.00
2,678,142.53
Expenditure
declared as % of
available Allocation
94.63
Article 4 Activity
All projects in this Measure have received an Article 4 check.
Summary of findings as a result of Article 4 activity
•
An Article 4 inspection was carried out on all projects during their lifetime with
one project visited twice.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
•
Most project operators had good policy documents in place. However, some
did not – most notably in the areas of financial procedures document retention
and publicity. Recommendations asked projects to draft policy/procedures
documents and templates were provided to project operators to adapt.
•
Follow-up action was undertaken by the Article 4 Monitoring team to validate
compliance in liaison with Voluntary and Community Unit to verify this work
had been undertaken and all issues were now resolved.
Article 10 Activity
8.14% of declared expenditure was examined under Article 10, revealing an error
rate 1.53%.
Spread of Article 10 – 5% checks
% checked
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008
Nil
Nil
8.72% 7.16% 7.87% 9.24% 8.28% 7.67% Nil
Summary of findings as a result of Article 10 Activity
From a review of findings of the Article 10 inspections carried out by the DSD EU
Verification Unit where examination of areas of control weakness and the necessary
remedial action were carried out, it was concluded that this Measure of the
programme had been implemented satisfactorily and that the management and
control systems are adequate.
Although 28 recommendations to strengthen and improve management and control
systems were made, no significant weaknesses were identified. None of the issues
raised in the Article 10 inspections were considered systemic.
Of the 7 projects
examined, 5 gave rise to potential ineligible expenditure below the de mimimis level
and were treated in accordance with set down procedures.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Irregularities Detected through Article 10 Checks
Organisation/
Project
Assoc of
Independent
Advice Centres
Chinese
Welfare
Association
Action Mental
Health
NI Association
of Citizens
Advice Bureaux
Foyle Women’s
Aid
UK
Case
No
002251
Total
irregularity
£’s
14.39
EU
Element
£’s
10.07
Nature of
irregularity
(code)
325
Date
identifie
d
17/12/04
Date
reported
to EC
Below de
minimis
002741
627.91
439.54
210
03/08/07
Below de
minimis
31/10/08
003527
150.00
105.00
325
01/08/06
28/12/07
003736
127.96
89.57
325
02/07/07
Below de
minimis
Below de
minimis
004244
1,345.00
941.50
210
29/11/07
Below de
minimis
20/10/08
Total
Date
cleared
22/10/08
24/10/08
2265.26
Irregular funding amounts (as above) were identified and all issues raised during the checks have now been resolved
and recovery / clawback actioned as appropriate, none of the irregularities identified in the table are included in the
eligible expenditure details on the database and therefore any amounts being claimed from the Commission are eligible.
The irregularities have been classified within the database as “ Clawback / Recovery to enable DFP European Unit to
identify and action to ensure any irregular funding has been removed from the Programme Final Statement of
Expenditure
Audit Activity
Support was given to 2 organisations (AIAC and CAB) to provide and promote a
common statistical system. This output target related also to the work on improving
advice provision through better use of IT. This was achieved with the independent
advice services and local citizens’ advice bureaux, who now operate new age
statistical systems. In relation to improved accountability, the new IT systems used
by the groups allows for tracking of advice given and development of historical
information on clients. This has also enabled managers to print off relevant
information to clients and ensure that all information and advice given is trackable,
particularly for quality assurance.
Another benefit shown in the CAB report is that the improved information systems
has helped to strengthen discussions with Government and rising media interest
through the provision of specific examples and the rapid identification of patterns
and collation of examples – good examples include the problems with housing
benefit, problems and issues regarding tax credits and overpayments. Managers
243
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
embraced the whole planning and implementation of the system, with work being
carried out with their involvement and agreement at all stages and that changes
requested by them were carried out when it was cost effective to do so. They were
also positive that the systems provided one standardised way of providing
information and advice and that this ensured they could operate and monitor a more
efficient office network.
An audit review in the early stages of the Measure (2004-2005) identified systemic
weaknesses which led to an irregularity being raised for the whole Measure.
However a follow-up audit in 2005-2006 showed all systemic weaknesses had been
addressed and a substantive assurance was given.
After that the Measure
encountered no major difficulties.
The table detailing key internal audit recommendations and subsequent actions is
available in Annex 12.
Irregularities
Nine irregularities were reported for this Measure, all of which were resolved. A
detailed list of all reported irregularities for Measure 3.2 can be found on Annex 15.
Irregularities below the reporting threshold were recorded, details of these can be
found in Annex 16.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
8.5
Measure Details for Measure 3.3 – Community Sustainability
Aims and Objectives
The objectives of BSP Measure 3.3 were to consolidate strategically placed support
agencies and structures relevant to meeting local needs and the interests of socially
excluded groups and to pioneer new opportunities for interagency and inter-sectoral
alliances and mergers where appropriate. Funding under the Measure successfully
supported 30 sub-regional support organizations to develop and support smaller
community organizations in their area where community infrastructure was weak.
They did this by providing quality support services including assistance in identifying
funding opportunities, accessing technical knowledge, skills and problem solving in
financial management, planning, policy influence, staff management and support for
management committees. Project objectives under this Measure included providing
advice, newsletters and training as well as assisting in bringing new and emerging
community Groups in to contact with funders.
Implementation
A total of 43 projects were approved under this Measure.
However, 13 were
terminated with 30 going on to complete successfully.
A list of all projects for Measure 3.3 which incurred expenditure and the EU element
can be found in Annex 5.
Independent evaluations were carried out on all projects and all objectives were
achieved and in many cases exceeded. In addition, 17 of the projects succeeded in
gaining longer term strategic funding under the DSD’s Community Investment Fund
to continue providing infrastructure support.
Given the nature of this Measure in providing support to smaller grass roots Groups,
all publicity was generated by the Groups themselves in developing and informing
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
the networks of events and services.
Empowerment Programme.
One example was the South Tyrone
All projects funded under this Measure provided a
similar range of services with an element of targeting at the particular needs of their
area. Given that 13 of the projects initially funded under this Measure were
withdrawn, there was a significant amount of support provided to the community
sector in Northern Ireland which was prompted by European funding support but no
longer forms part of the implementation review. http://www.stepni.org/
The number of Groups supported under this Measure declined during the period as
they were withdrawn from the Measure due to an Internal Audit exercise. This had
an affect on the outputs. However, one of the targets appears to have been
substantially underestimated irrespective of withdrawals from the Measure. The
number of direct support hours of 2,000 for the Measure was significantly below
what was achieved (approximately 20,000). It is difficult to determine whether this
was an misinterpretation of the information used to make the projections and
assessment of need or whether there was an increase in community activity in the
changing social and political climate in Northern Ireland where people at a local level
were coming together to form community groups needing greater levels of support
from the established sub-regional groups funded under the Measure.
Regarding the Measure Indicators, as stated above, there was a reduction in the
number of organisations assisted due to an Internal Audit review. However,
consultations with statutory agencies were significantly exceeded as most of the
funded Groups formed partnership working relationships with statutory agencies on
an ongoing basis. The project evaluations refer to the relationships and the policy
work rather than the actual number of hours. For example, the North West
Community Network’s lobbying has been their participation in the NW Stakeholder
Alliance - an informal grouping of senior figures from public and private sector
bodies and departments (OFMDFM, DSD, UU, Local Councils etc.) tasked with
overseeing the implementation of the Regional Development Strategy in the NorthWest. Another example is the Fermanagh Trust’s role in supporting the local
voluntary cross community pre-school play group sector to lobby for their rights to,
and allocation of, the Pre School Expansion Programme (PEAG) places. In 2002,
the Department of Education wanted to introduce more free pre-school places in
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
primary schools. There was widespread concern that this would undermine the
extensive cross-community play group provision in Fermanagh, by re-segregating
children in mostly single identity schools. A successful campaign was made to the
Department by many of the county's cross community play groups, facilitated by the
Fermanagh Trust.
The project evaluation reports provide a wide range of evidence of the sustainability
of the community organizations assisted and improved inter-agency working and
policy development in areas of need. In addition to the examples above, the North
West Community Network significantly increased the number of paying members
from 17 to 98 – an increase of 476%. The Fermanagh Trust was able to increase
their links with other groups, such as Fermanagh Development Forum, Fermanagh
Local Strategy Partnership and Enniskillen Neighbourhood Renewal Partnership
through the Networking Centre. Improved links with organisations such as those,
will provide increased knowledge of the sector and allow the Trust to put in place
better structures and to represent the community and voluntary sector at both
strategic and grass roots level.
The South Tyrone Empowerment Programme (STEP) is used below to show the
types of activities and services delivered to the smaller community groups, is also
provides a good example of improved inter-agency working. STEP’s examples of
consultations include Pathways for Change (2004), the Review of Public
Administration (2005), A Shared Future (2005), and Promoting Good Relations
(2007). In response to the closure of services at the local Dungannon and South
Tyrone Hospital, STEP facilitated consultation with a range of local community
organisations which led to the funding of a pilot Health Action Zone for the Armagh
and Dungannon area.
Statutory Agencies that STEP has worked with include
Southern Health and Social Services Trust, Children and Young Peoples
Committee, Southern Health and Social Services Board Community Development
Panel, DSD, The Health Action Zone, DEL Migrant Worker Forum, OFMDFM Race
Equality Forum, DCAL Language Forum.
The management of the Measure was reviewed by DSD Internal Audit. As a result
of the findings of this exercise DSD were forecasting a significant underspend in this
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Measure due to 13 of the initial 43 projects being withdrawn from the Measure as
well as the withdrawal of part of the costs for some of the remaining projects due to
unresolved irregularities caused by significant weaknesses in processes and control
systems.
It was agreed by the Programme Monitoring Committee in December
2007 to transfer the surplus funds to Measure 3.1. As a result of this action there
was be no loss to the voluntary and community sector as the weakness was
identified in the management controls.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Examples of Projects within Measure 3.3
Project
Project Name
EU Funding
Match Funding
Total Expend
002115
Armagh Confederation of Voluntary Groups
£159,615.96
£68,406.90
£228,022.86
002125
North Down Community Council
£173,335.65
£74,286.85
£247,622.50
002149
East Belfast Community Development Agency
£138,744.22
£59,461.71
£198,205.93
002169
Lower North Belfast Community Council
£104,215.12
£44,625.04
£148,750.16
002177
Bogside and Brandywell Initiative
£145,134.14
£62,200.39
£207,334.53
002212
Falls Community Council
£275,778.35
£118,190.81
£393,969.16
002230
South Tyrone Empowerment Programme
£146,481.54
£62,777.93
£209,259.47
002384
Developing Networks – Building Community
£141,042.43
£60,446.80
£201,489.23
002303
Coleraine Rural and Urban Network
£199,311.41
£85,419.32
£284,730.73
002445
Community Finance Training and Advice
£22,303.38
£9,558.51
£31,861.89
002545
Ards Development Bureau and Community Network
£218,281.15
£93,549.17
£311,830.21
002654
FOCUS
£150,204.04
£64,373.20
£214,577.24
003183
Larne Community Development Project
£95,597.38
£40,970.43
£136,567.81
003210
Women in Action
£77,414.01
£33,177.47
£110,591.48
003360
Women’s Resource and Development Agency
£55,071.64
£23,602.20
£78,673.84
003440
North West Community Networks Core Projects
£187,345.45
£80,291.08
£267,636.53
003445
Community Connections
£73,897.01
£31,670.20
£105,567.21
004079
Banbridge District Community Partnership
£107,591.36
£46,110.58
£153,701.94
004242
Research and Policy Information Unit
£83,823.84
£35,924.53
£119,748.37
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Project
Project Name
EU Funding
Match Funding
Total Expend
004301
Building Sustainable Communities
£88,729.10
£38,026.83
£126,755.93
015951
Moyle District Networking Programme
£71,226.15
£30,525.57
£101,751.72
016577
Down District Networking Programme
£83,649.31
£35,849.80
£119,499.11
017002
Oakleaf Rural Community Network
£74,889.62
£32,095.70
£106,985.32
023548
Ballymoney Community Network
£49,171.82
£21,073.69
£70,245.51
023769
Core Carrickergus
£57,136.19
£24,487.02
£81,623.21
023840
Lisburn Partnership
£75,598.47
£32,399.45
£107,997.92
023843
BCDA Core Support and Strategy Fusion Project
£117,240.39
£50,245.98
£167,486.37
023912
Building Community Sustainabilty in South Belfast
£106,319.49
£45,565.56
£151,885.05
023993
Newtownabbey Community Voice
£119,607.05
£51,260.21
£170,867.36
024064
Castlereagh Sustainable Community Network
£72,445.97
£31,048.32
£103,494.29
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 3.3
Original Indicator
Output
No of organizations assisted – 40
Result
Increase support hours delivered by
2500 hours
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Revised Indicators
177
Support given to 35
organisations
17 assisted up to March
2007
508
2000 direct support hours
delivered
20,500 to March 2007
100 consultations with statutory
agencies
Impact
Enhanced support structures and
increased sustainability
Final Position
Not available
251
107 consultations with
Councils, Housing
Executive, H&SSTs.
Education Boards and
Government Depts
Evidence of sustainability in the
community organisations
assisted
In addition to the subregional support Groups
gaining sustainable
funding from the
Neighbourhood Renewal
Programme and Regional
infrastructure funding. 17
Groups have secured
sustainable mainstream
funding form the
Community Investment
Fund.
Evidence of improved interagency working and policy
development in areas of need
Post project evaluations
show evidence of
increased voluntary /
statutory sector
partnerships working
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Expenditure and Financial Control
Total Expenditure Declared for Measure 3.3
All amounts shown in €
Allocation in
Programme
Complement
Expenditure
Declared in
claims to the
Commission
EU Amount
Public Amount
Private
Total
4,693,847.00
1,880,000.00
0.00
6,573,847.00
5,003,090.63
2,143,464.89
0.00
7,146,555.52
Expenditure
declared as % of
available Allocation
108.71
Article 4
All completed projects in this Measure have received an Article 4 check.
Summary of findings as a result of Article 4 activity
•
Most project operators had good policy documents in place. Of those that did
not – the main areas of weakness were lack of policy documents in the areas of
document retention and publicity.
This was addressed through the production of policy documents which were supplied
to project operators, with guidance on how to adapt same to fit their organisation and
follow-up action was undertaken by the Article 4 Monitoring team to validate
compliance.
Article 10 Activity
7.88% of declared expenditure was examined under Article 10, revealing an error rate
of 0.71%.
Spread of Article 10 – 5% checks
2000 2001 2002
% checked
0%
0%
2003
2004
2005 2006
2007
2008
6.88% 10.69% 10.19% 6.1% 5.57% 10.98% 0%
Summary of findings as a result of Article 10 Activity
Article 10 selections were made from 43 Projects awarded Grant within this Measure.
Departmental checks external to the Article 10 process resulted in all expenditure for
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
all projects within the Measure being classified as “at risk” pending further
investigation of potential systemic issues. After full investigation 13 projects were
removed from the Measure which left 30 funded projects.
Although 85 recommendations to strengthen and improve management and control
systems were made across 19 of the 23 projects inspected no significant weaknesses
were identified.
Of the total of 23 projects examined 6 projects gave rise to potential ineligible
expenditure below the de minimis level and were treated in accordance with set
procedures.
Irregularities detected through Article 10 Checks
Organisation/
Project
Ballymena
Community
Forum
Ards
Development
Bureau &
Community
Forum
Roe Valley
Women’s
Network
Ballymoney
Community
Resource
Centre
Newtownabbey
Community
Voice
Total
002384
114.03
79.82
325
28.03.07
Date
reported to
EC
Below de
minimis
002545
94.60
66.22
325
02.02.04
Below de
minimis
16.12.04
003210
2,418.38
1,692.87
325
22.03.05
Below de
minimis
01.08.08
023548
124.41
87.09
325
22.03.07
Below de
minimis
17.10.08
023993
35.68
24.98
499
5.04.08
Below de
minimis
15.09.08
UK Case
No
Total
irregularity
£’s
EU
Element
£’s
Nature of
irregularity
(code)
Date
identified
Date
cleared
12.06.08
2787.10
Irregular funding amounts (as above) were identified and all issues raised during the checks have now been resolved and
recovery/clawback actioned as appropriate, none of the irregularities identified in the table are included in the eligible
expenditure details on the database and therefore any amounts being claimed from the Commission are eligible. The
irregularities have been classified within the database as “ Clawback / Recovery to enable DFP European Unit to identify and
action to ensure any irregular funding has been removed from the Programme Final Statement of Expenditure
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Audit Activity
Details of audit activity can be found in Annex 12
Irregularities
44 irregularities were reported for this Measure, all of which have been cleared. A
detailed list of all reported irregularities for Measure 3.3 can be found on Annex 15.
Irregularities below the reporting threshold were recorded, details of these can be
found in Annex 16.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
8.6
Measure Details for Measure 3.4 – Investing in Early Learning
Aims and Objectives
The aim of this Measure was to support the progressive expansion and development
of the infrastructure necessary to provide a year of pre-school education for all
children in Northern Ireland, with the initial focus on providing places for the oldest
children in areas of greatest social need.
The Pre-School Education Expansion
Programme (PSEEP) was developed with the objective that in the longer term all
children throughout Northern Ireland would have access to pre-school education.
Implementation
One project was funded under this Measure – the Pre-School Education Expansion
Programme (PSEEP). The EU-funded component of the programme has enabled the
creation of a significant number of pre-school places and posts for teachers and
classroom assistants. This complements a number of initiatives which, as a whole,
have enabled every four-year-old child in Northern Ireland to avail of a year’s nursery
education. Pre-school education has a beneficial effect on children’s future prospects,
especially the socio-economically disadvantaged.
In addition to the direct benefits for the children themselves, associated benefits were
derived from the creation of additional employment (e.g. for teaching staff) and by
enabling parents to take up employment, education and training opportunities.
There have been no significant difficulties in implementing the project and various
checks found no major failures of management or control systems. A small number of
units listed in the Letter of Offer were not actually constructed but the introduction of
additional units to the Measure enabled the target to be exceeded.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 3.4
Original Indicator
Output
48 Capital schemes across all the
ELBs in controlled, maintained,
integrated and Irish medium sectors
Result
1768 additional places made
available for children in their
immediate pre-school year,
especially the socially disadvantaged
and 4 year olds.
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Revised Indicators
Final Position
36
85 Capital schemes across all the ELBs
(Revised to 51 – original target was based
on additional expenditure in the
performance reserve)
1400
2,200 additional places made available for 1928 full time and
children in their immediate pre-school
part time places
year, especially the socially
disadvantaged and 4 year olds.
Consequential opportunities for the
parents of the above children to take
up employment, education or training
0
Up to 136 additional posts for
teachers and classroom assistants
created.
130
Up to 220 additional posts for teachers
and classroom assistants created.
(Revised to 130 – original target was
based on additional expenditure in the
performance reserve)
256
55
51 Nursery units
complete at end
2004)
62 teachers and
84 classroom
assistants
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 3.4 (contd)
Impact
Taken together with other initiatives,
this measure will enable all parents
who wish to have access to a funded
place for their children in their
immediate pre-school year.
Research shows that children who
have had pre-school education are
better prepared to take up the
advantages of education and hence
their prospects of employment are
increased. Pre-school education can
be particularly beneficial for the
socially disadvantaged.
Not available
Taken together with other initiatives, this
Data not
measure will enable all parents who wish
available
to have access to a funded place for their
children in their immediate pre-school
year. Research shows that children who
have had pre-school education are better
prepared to take up the advantages of
education and hence their prospects of
employment are increased. Pre-school
education can be particularly beneficial for
the socially disadvantaged.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Expenditure and Financial Control
Total Expenditure Declared for Measure 3.4
All amounts shown in €
Allocation in
Programme
Complement
Expenditure
Declared in
Claims to the
Commission
EU Amount
Public
Amount
Private
Total
8,000,000.00
3,340,000.00
0.00
11,340,000.00
8,013,582.57
3,345,632.26
0.00
11,359,214.83
Expenditure
declared as % of
available
Allocation
100.17
Article 4 Activity
During the life of this Measure, all projects received an Article 4 check.
Summary of findings as a result of Article 4 activity
(i)
The then current edition of the standard checklist issued by the Managing
Authority was used for all formal Article 4 visits;
(ii)
Visits were carried out to the project approximately one year after
acceptance of Letter of Offer;
(iii)
In addition to the seven formal Article 4 visits stated above, 80 spot checks
(consisting of vouching visits) were carried out.
Article 4 checks found that the project was being administered effectively and that
management and control systems were sound.
Financial systems, procedures and record-keeping were adequate.
A sample of
expenditure in each Education and Library Board was reconciled successfully with
project records.
The project was found to be performing satisfactorily against Letter of Offer targets,
and arrangements were in place to gather performance data.
Required standards in areas such as publicity, equality of opportunity, and
environmental impact were being met.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Article 10 Activity
19.12% of declared expenditure is under examination by the Article 10 with an error
rate of 0.01%.
Spread of Article 10 – 5% checks
% checked
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
77.7
16.2
14.0
35.9
44.1
2005
2006
2007
2008
One Irregularity has been detected through Article 10 Checks
Audit Activity
Details of Internal Audit activity can be found in Annex 12.
Irregularities
Six irregularities were reported for this Measure all of which were cleared. A detailed
list of all reported irregularities for Measure 3.4 can be found on Annex 15.
Irregularities below the reporting threshold were recorded, details can be found in
Annex 16.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
CHAPTER 9: PRIORITY 5
9.1 Introduction
Aims & Objectives
This Priority consisted of one Measure – Measure 5.1 Sustainable Management of the
Environment and Promotion of the Natural and Built Heritage.
Respect for the environment is a key emphasis both of EU Structural Funds and of UK
Government policies, which seek to place the environment at the heart of decisionmaking. Environmental sustainability has been identified in the CSF as a cross-cutting
theme applying to all Measures of both Operational Programmes. In recognition of
this, the Northern Ireland Programme for Building Sustainable Prosperity contained
actions intended to promote balanced and equitable development.
Implementation
This Measure was administered through two government departments:
Department for Regional Development
-
(DRD)
-
(DOE)
through the Water Service; and
Department of the Environment
through Environment and Heritage Service
Each of these Departments played a key role in the implementation of the Lisbon
Strategy through Priority 5, Measure 5.1 by addressing the growing pressures on the
environment and aimed to develop a proper awareness and understanding of the
environment. Included in the implementation of this Measure were the completion of
4 water treatment plants, 2 sewage treatment plants, a waste awareness campaign
and an air quality project which have assisted Northern Ireland meet the EU Directives
on the drinking water, sewerage and purification and the Air Quality strategy.
The air quality project referred to in the impact indicator is only one aspect of a
number of projects that have been supported. The projects funded covered a range of
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
activities including environmental quality research, contaminated land recovery, waste
management, biodiversity conservation, built heritage conservation, environmental
education and countryside access. Whilst not directly reflected in the current impact
indicator, these activities will in the long term make an important positive impact on the
environment.
Publicity
Examples of publicity are available in Annex 18.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
9.2
Measure Details for Measure 5.1 - Sustainable Management of
the Environment and Promotion of the Natural and Built
Heritage
Aims and Objectives
•
To focus on those themes which supported activities aimed at raising the
quality of water supply and waste-water treatment in Northern Ireland to current
standards.
•
To develop sustainable development within Northern Ireland, protecting and
managing environmental resources and the maintenance of healthy living
environments. The strategy for the environment sought to support proper
stewardship of the Region’s environmental resources, its good quality air and
water, its natural vegetation and wildlife, its relatively unspoilt countryside and
its built heritage.
•
Through the funding of appropriate projects, to support the promotion of better
water management by the implementation of water quality strategies including
that to control eutrophication.
Implementation
A total of 23 project applications were approved under this Priority, 6 were approved
by DRD and 17 were approved by DOE.
A list of all projects for Measure 5.1 which incurred expenditure and the ERDF
element can be found in Annex 5.
Examples of Projects within Measure 5.1 funded by DRD
•
Newry WWTW – The objective of this project was to increase capacity of
the Sewerage Treatment works by on average 275%. This target has been
met with effluent quality now complying with EC Directive standards.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
•
Kilkeel WWTW – The objective of this project was to increase capacity of
the Sewerage Treatment works by on average 275%. This target has been
met with effluent quality now complying with EC Directive standards.
•
Lough Fea WTW – The objective of this project was to increase capacity of
the Water Treatment works by on average 30%. This target was met with
Water Quality now compliant with EC Directive standards.
•
Lough Bradan WTW – The objective of this project was to increase
capacity of the Water Treatment works by on average 30%. This target was
met with Water Quality now compliant with EC Directive standards.
•
Lough Macrory WTW – The objective of this project was to increase
capacity of the Water Treatment works by on average 30%. The treatment
works is now producing drinking water to EU standards to meet demand in
the supply zone.
•
Carran Hill WTW - The objective of this project was to increase capacity of
the Water Treatment works by on average 30%. The treatment works is now
producing drinking water to EU standards to meet demand in the supply
zone.
Examples of Projects funded by DOE
Refinement of a novel method for measuring re-aeration in surface waters - The
project relates to the capability of rivers to recover from oxygen-depleting pollutants,
such as wastewater discharges and agricultural runoff. It involves the refinement of a
practical and “environmentally friendly” method to measure the rate of re-aeration, the
natural process which determines whether receiving waters will return to their normal
state. The work is required to evaluate the precision of the novel technique, which as
proven as viable in preliminary field trials on the River Lagan in 2000/01. The outcome
of the work was valuable in river quality management and in particular, the
assessment of applications for consent to discharge.
The project helped by providing a reliable technique to ensure that rivers will not
become oxygen-starved – a problem that can lead to incomplete degradation of
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
discharged wastewater (with the associated health risks and foul odours, both of
which discourage recreational use of waterways) and the loss of drinking water
resources.
Enhanced natural attenuation of hydrocarbon contaminated land - The aim of the
project was to develop a novel cost-effective low technology to deal with domestic and
small scale oil spills using an environmentally friendly approach, leading to initiation
and acceleration of natural attenuation through the addition of the rate limiting
nutrients and alteration of conditions to enhance the bio-availability and degradation of
oil pollutants in soil utilising existing naturally occurring micro-organisms in the soil.
The project resulted in outlining such a technology though a series of publications
mainly utilising thermophilic soil microbial communities and though amendments with
limiting nutrients and temperature elevation.
The project also led to exposure of the project and team on the National and
International arena through publications and conference presentations.
Ultimately research and exposure in this area has helped the group at Ulster
University secure funding from other resources in similar areas of research to further
benefit studies into reduction of water pollution.
Local Air Quality Grant Scheme - The LAQMG scheme was intended to support
positive initiatives under Article 18 of the Environment Order 2002 which aimed to lead
to improvements of air quality. These initiatives included;
•
Air quality review and assessments;
•
Preparing and implementing air quality action plans; and
•
Management of local air quality
The scheme enabled improvement in ambient air quality through the identification of
areas subject to poor air quality and the development of plans to reduce emissions
from domestic, industrial and road traffic sources. This was achieved through the
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
promotion of actions and activities such as the use of smoke control, transportation
measures and cleaner fuels.
The LAQMG scheme assisted District Councils in reviewing and assessing local air
quality. From this review and assessment, health based air quality objectives and
targets unlikely to be met were pinpointed. A variety of tools to aid this process such
as monitoring equipment and modelling contracts were availed of through the scheme.
As a result, air quality action plans were prepared and implemented by the council in
partnership with relevant authorities in order to attain the targets within specific
timescales. This ultimately improved the quality of air and public health in areas where
a problem was identified.
Nine District Councils have now declared Air Quality management areas (AQMAs).
Those councils with AQMAs are developing action plans; two final plans and three
draft plans have been received and appraised by the Department. BSP part funding is
contributing towards enabling councils to achieve the EU and UK standards and
objectives.
Waste Management for refrigerated products - The object of the project was to set
up a processing plant and storage facility to recycle all types of refrigerated/electrical
waste and associated products. This equipment would have the capacity to handle the
recycling required for all of Ireland.
The proposal aimed to assist with the increasing amounts of old waste refrigeration
equipment. Fridges and freezers manufactured before a certain date contain
damaging gases, in particular CFCs which are harmful if released into the
atmosphere.
New EU legislation (the Waste Electrical, Electronic Equipment Regulations) required
that all Member States ensure the safe removal of gases, foams containing gases and
the recycling of fridge/freezer component parts.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
There were no such recycling facilities available and therefore this project was seen to
be worthwhile on a number of counts; as a demonstration project, to provide
employment in a less advantaged area and to ensure the waste was recycled and
Northern Ireland met EU requirements.
The project has been successful and met all of these objectives. Most importantly, it
remains the only plant of its kind on the whole island of Ireland.
Waste Management Grant Scheme for District Councils - The introduction of a
system of environmental regulation and legislation – The Waste Framework Directive
75/442/EEC, the Waste and Contaminated Land (Northern Ireland) Order 1997 (aka
WCLO) and the Landfill Directive 1999/31/EC – prompted the DOE to issue a
Northern Ireland Waste Management Strategy.
As part of this strategy, a Waste Management Grant Scheme for District Councils was
devised. The Environment Protection Department had proposed the provision of grant
aid for District Councils to aid them in the implementation of their Waste Management
Plans (WMPs).
The Waste Management Grant Scheme to District Councils was set up and the
respective councils incurred both staff/revenue and capital expenditure. The project
resulted in Northern Ireland remaining on target to achieve EU targets of a decrease in
amount of waste sent to landfill. The councils are also on target to reach targets set
out in IAP’s for the increase in levels of waste being recycled. Finally the councils are
on target in the attempt to raise awareness of the need to increase levels of recycled
materials and decrease in tonnage of waste to landfill.
Conservation of genetics of NI seagrass bed - The aim of the project was to
elucidate levels and patterns of genetic diversity in Northern Ireland Seagrass Beds
and to use this information as the basis for a rational, sustainable conservation plan.
The project contributed to a better understanding of the effective management of this
threatened habitat with special reference to the protection of Strangford Lough as both
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
a tourist facility as well as a living ecological attribute of International Standing. Sea
grass is the stable over-wintering diet of Pale-bellied Brent Geese.
The project contributed further to our understanding of species migratory pathways
and hence to the knowledge of invasive/non-native species.
This knowledge will
contribute to a better understanding of the protection measures needed to sustain rare
and threatened species.
Conservation genetics of NI peat bogs - This project looked at peat bog
ecosystems, many of which are considered to be under threat from habitat
fragmentation due to peat cutting and agricultural practices and are subject to
conservation measures under the EU Habitats Directive and Northern Ireland habitat
action plans. Genetic difference had been detected in bog plants and this could be
caused by habitat fragmentation. Information on the impacts of habitat fragmentation
on the genetic variability of plant species could have an important influence on how
peatland habitats – which occupy 17% of Northern Ireland – are managed.
The study planned to look at other plants and analyse in more detail the levels and
patterns of genetic diversity in both intact and fragmented populations to determine
the effects of fragmentation. Heather Calluna vulgaris was the plant selected for detail
examination.
Significant genetic variation was expected but only limited genetic variation was found
highlighting the difference in response of different taxonomic groups to the effects of
fragmentation.
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Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 5.1
Original Indicator
Output
Water Treatment schemes
Sewage Treatment schemes
Environmental Quality Research
Projects
Contaminated land recovery project
Waste Management Projects
Biodiversity conservation projects
Scheduled monument conservation
projects
Access / tourism/ environmental
education projects
Projects to entail partnership
Project per county
Result
Average 30% increase in capacity
and Water quality improvement
(variable up to 100%)
Average 275% increase in capacity,
with effluent quality improvement
(variable up to 100%)
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Revised Indicators
2
2
0
3 Water Treatment schemes
2 Sewage Treatment schemes
Environmental Quality Research Projects
–1
Biodiversity conservation projects - 10
Access / tourism projects - 4
Waste Management Projects – 5
1 Air Quality project for the 26 District
Councils
0
0
268
Final Position
4
2
0
4
1
4
1
Built Heritage conservation projects – 2
1 Waste Management project for the 26
District Councils
1
Average 30% increase in capacity
30%
Average 275% increase in capacity
275%
Publication and appropriate dissemination
of research conclusions - The availability
of at least 6 pieces of research
information to environmentalists and
7505 - Quercus
Project,
7734 – Direct
measurements of
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
scientists by the end of the Programme.
269
aeration using
noble gas tracers
in the River Lagan
NI, Water &
Environment
Journal Vol 21
issue 3 Sept 07
7501 – 1.
QUERCUS
Report;
Conservation
Genetics of
Northern Ireland
seagrass beds 0406;
2. Peer reviewed
scientific paper in
Conservation
Genetics,accepted
23 April 2007.
7784 –
1.QUERCUS
Project; Molecular
basis for a
Species Action
Plan for the Red
Alga Ahnfeltiopsis
sp.;
2. Draft scientific
paper currently
being circulated
for publication in
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
peer reviewed
scientific
publication.
Production of recycling, research and
waste information
4959 – monitoring
data in relation to
fridges recycled
and glass
collected. 7473 –
3 to 4 items. 7938
– Drama
production for
children. 30793 –
indicator met.
Capital infrastructure projects to enable
District Councils to measure, monitor and
improve air quality
The scheme has
enabled
improvement in
ambient air quality
through the
identification of
areas subject to
poor air quality
and the
development of
plans to reduce
emissions from
domestic industrial
and road traffic
sources.
Staff resource projects to enable District
Councils in the carrying out of all
appropriate air quality activities
Development of 2 databases – industrial
heritage sites and stone masonry
270
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
buildings
1 database
developed
Capital infrastructure projects to support
the recovery of recyclable waste
28 Capital projects
were approved.
Examples include;
the provision of
Recycling Bins,
Civic Authority
Site provision,
Collection
Vehicles, and
various smaller
projects, eg.Bin
Tagging/
Composters.
Staff resource projects to support waste
management activities
271
25 councils
claimed for
Revenue Projects.
For example;
expenditure
incurred in support
of Regional Waste
Groups,
Promotional and
Educational
Awareness
Activities, Site
Leasing,
Recycling Bin
delivery and
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Waste Collection/
Processing
Impact
Improved understanding of
sustainable environmental
management
Correction of an environmental
problem
Improved environmental
management
Improved environmental
management
Correction of environmental
problems through conserving
monuments at risk
Developing environmental
awareness and understanding
Community involvement
Not available
Water quality improvement (variable
up to 100%)
Water quality
complies with EC
directive
standards.
Effluent quality improvement (variable
up to 100%)
Effluent quality
complies with EC
directive
standards.
Improved and enhanced access to the
natural heritage.
Good geographical spread of
support
Evidence of enhanced environmental
awareness
272
Enhanced
educational
understanding of
the Mourne
environment and
production and
distribution of
interpretative
publications.
4959 – large
quantity of fridges
recycled and CFC
gases captured.
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
7473 – research
of assistance to
academics.
7838 – To
encourage the
appreciation of
sustainable
environment
principles by
children across NI.
30793 – Recycling
rates have
increased from
18.2% in 2004/05
to 28.8% as a
result of initiatives
by District
Councils which
received BSP
funding.
Contribute towards the objectives of the
Air Quality Strategy
273
The scheme has
assisted Councils
to assess local air
quality and to
submit the various
reports that are
required under air
quality policy
framework. In
addition it is more
likely that air
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
quality objectives
and EC limit
values will be
achieved by the
relevant dates.
Enhanced information leading to
improved management of the built
heritage
Contribute towards the objectives of the
NI Waste Management Strategy
274
Seminars
conducted in
Belfast and
Edinburgh. Book
on stone
identification and
all Ireland
geological map
produced.
Recycling and
waste information
produced Municipal Waste
Management
Reports for
2005/06 and
2006/07, and the
NILAS Reports for
2005/06 and
2006/07. All
viewable on the
EHS Website.
The District
Councils’
contribution
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
towards the
objectives of the
NI Waste
Management
Strategy is
ongoing. Statistics
indicate positive
reduction in waste
to landfill and
increased levels of
recycling.
Recycling rates
has increased
from 18.2% in
2004/05 to 28.8 %
in 2007/08 as a
result of initiatives
by District
Councils which
received BSP
funding
275
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
276
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Expenditure and Financial Control
Total Expenditure Declared for Measure 5.1
All amounts shown in €
Allocation in
Programme
Complement
Expenditure
Declared in
Claims to the
Commission
Expenditure
declared as % of
available
Allocation
EU Amount
Public
Amount
Private
Total
46,350,400.00
15,499,000.00
300,000.00
62,149,400.00
46,845,173.47
18,364,127.20
378,942.72
65,588,243.39
105.53
Article 4
All projects were subjected to an Article 4 check.
The Article 4 checks were carried out on the Promoter after payments of
claims had been made. Desk checks were carried out on each claim made
and followed up with a verification visit when the original documentation had
not been included or if further clarification was needed.
Summary of findings as a result of Article 4 activity
In all but one visit, a standardised template was used. Prior notice was given
to the projects so that appropriate staff and documentation would be available
at the time of the visit.
All projects complied with Article 4 requirements. After the visit, feedback was
given to the project, highlighting good practice or areas for further action or
missing information. Issues that were not resolved at the Article 4 visit were
resolved either through a follow-up visit or explanatory correspondence.
A number of projects did not have asset registers completed at the time of the
visits but these were pursued so that, compliance was achieved.
Some
projects did not open dedicated bank accounts for reception of the grants but
opted to successfully use cost centres for the same purpose.
Where full
publicity requirements were not met at the time of visit, additional publicity
277
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
materials (plaques, stickers and logos) were supplied and erected at sites and
premises and placed on websites.
Article 10
16.02% of declared expenditure was examined under Article 10 with all of the
expenditure fully verified.
Spread of Article 10 - 5% Checks
% checked
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
14
14
12
58.97 20.44 27.48 15.93 17
2008
0
Summary of Findings as a Result of Article 10 Activity
Systems in operation within projects were working effectively and any
weaknesses identified were addressed and followed up to ensure compliance.
No irregularities were detected through Article 10 Checking.
Audit Activity
Details of internal audit work are available in Annex 12. Commission audit
findings are detailed in Annex 13.
Irregularities
No irregularities were reported for this Measure.
Irregularities below the
reporting threshold were recorded, details can be found in Annex 16.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
CHAPTER 10: PRIORITY 6 – TECHNICAL
ASSISTANCE
10.1 Introduction
Under the Structural Funds Regulations, the impact of Operational
Programmes must be evaluated, publicised effectively and studies undertaken
into specific aspects of the Programmes.
The Operational Programme provides Technical Assistance to cover costs of
management and monitoring, control, information and publicity as well as the
mid-term Evaluation of the Operational Programme. The Technical Assistance
Measure provides the resources required for these requirements to be met.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
10.2
Measure Details for Measure 6.1 – Technical Assistance
The Technical Assistance Sub-measures were intended for the use of the
Managing Authority, (DFP), in implementing and publicising the BSP
Programme. It was therefore not open for general application by outside
organisations.
However, DFP commissioned applications for Technical
Assistance based upon management and publicity needs of the Programme
and ensured that, normal Procurement Service rules regarding competitive
tendering procedures were observed
Implementation
For administrative purposes this Measure was split into (a) Programme
administration and support and (b) publicity actions.
European Division,
Department of Finance and Personnel (DFP,) as the Managing Authority, was
responsible for implementing this Measure.
Sixteen projects were assisted and full details of activities carried out are
detailed on the following pages.
A list of all projects for Measure 6.1 which incurred expenditure and the EU
element can be found on Annex 5.
Assessment and Summary of Achievement v Targets
Details can be found within the sub-measure reports.
Publicity
Details of publicity can be found in Annex 18.
280
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Expenditure and Financial Control
Total Expenditure Declared for Technical Assistance
All amounts shown in €
Allocation in
Programme
Complement
Expenditure
Declared in
Claims to the
Commission
EU Amount
Public
Amount
Private
Total
3,000,000.00
1,150,000.00
0.00
4,150,000.00
3,020,916.24
1,158,011.00
0.00
4,178,927.24
Expenditure
declared as % of
available Allocation
100.70
Article 4 Activity
Details of Article 4 activity can be found within each sub-Measure.
Article 10 Activity
24.89% of declared expenditure was examined under Article 10, with a zero
error rate.
Spread of Article 10 – 5% checks
2000
% checked
2001
24.65 6.99
2002
2003
68.68 8.83
2004
2005
21.60 6.60
2006
2007
2008
10.72 16.19 0
Summary of findings as a result of Article 10 Activity
No irregularities were detected through Article 10 Checks
In a number of cases the Implementing Body’s (IB) financial procedures were
not being fully complied with in terms of the recording of authorisation codes
and the full signing and countersigning of authorisation forms etc. This was
raised with the IB Management who accepted the relevant recommendations
and highlighted the use of the new Accounts NI system and the new
authorisation procedures which were introduced subsequent to the payments
identified. These more robust procedures were accepted as addressing the
issues raised.
281
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
It was initially found that some supporting documentation could not be viewed
and this resulted in further checks being carried out. On the basis of these
further checks the EU Verification Unit was satisfied with the level and quality
of supporting documentation for the selected claims.
Further checks were also carried out due to a weakness found in the IB’s
document storage facility. This was raised with the IB who took measures to
separate the EU documentation from the mainstream financial documentation
and this was acceptable to the Verification Unit.
Audit Activity
Details of Internal Audit activity is available in Annex 12.
Irregularities
No irregularities were reported for this Measure.
Irregularities below the
reporting threshold were recorded, details can be found in Annex 16.
282
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Sub-Measure Details – 6.1(a) Administration and Support
Aims and Objectives
To support the effective management and implementation of Programme
structures and achievement of Programme aims.
Implementation
As Implementing Body, European Division, Department of Finance and
Personnel worked in association with other Government Departments, social
partners and District Councils, Universities, Community and Voluntary
organisations and private firms.
European Division was also responsible for co-ordinating the establishment of
the 2007-2013 Structural Funds Programmes in Northern Ireland and the
administration systems to manage them. Systems 2007 is a PRINCE II project
established to procure suitable systems for the Managing Authorities of the
2007-2013 programmes. Funding was provided for the specification stage
where an external consultant was appointed in October 2006 to establish user
requirements and produce a report which may serve as a basis for inviting
tenders.
A total of 16 applications were approved under this Measure.
A list of all projects for Measure 6.1(a) which incurred expenditure and the EU
element can be found on Annex 5.
Examples of Activity Funded under sub-Measure 6.1(a) Technical
Assistance
Monitoring Committee and Working Group administration:
Technical
Assistance was used to fund the costs of holding BSP and CSF Monitoring
Committees and Working Groups and the travel claims of members attending
meetings. The grant awarded for the BSP Monitoring Committee was
283
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
£25,135, the CSF Monitoring Committee received £18,169.57 and the
Working Groups £104,414.
Evaluations and Studies (including mid-term evaluation):
The mid-term
evaluation of the 2000-06 Building Sustainable Prosperity (BSP) Operational
Programme as required by Article 42 of Council Regulation (EC) No 1260/99.
The mid-term evaluation (MTE) established how well the Programme was
delivering what it set out to deliver; test the continued relevance of the
strategy and recommend any action necessary to improve quality and
performance.
Other evaluations funded from Technical Assistance included the Equality
Impact assessment of the programme complement, the Ex-ante evaluation of
the programme complement and ESF Participant Leavers’ Surveys.
The total grant awarded to Evaluations and Studies was £111,358.
Procurement of computer systems for programme administration: To
meet the Commission’s data requirements for the 2000-2006 round, DFP
commissioned a website based applications system, which was later
expanded into a complete applications and projects monitoring system and
coverage extended from the BSP and PEACE programmes to cover the four
Community Initiatives as well. A ‘Successful Projects’ public website was
subsequently developed to display details of EU Funded projects. The grant
awarded to this project was £852,560.
Economic appraisals and verifications: The current rules state that
Economic Appraisals of projects must be undertaken or commissioned and
paid for by Implementing Bodies and not by the project promoters. These
costs qualify as eligible expenditure under Technical Assistance and was
awarded assistance of £1,131,955.
Development Path Analysis review and training:
The research project
commissioned on behalf of the Environmental Working Group and carried out
by consultants, recommended a number of key actions be taken to improve
284
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
the understanding of the use of DPA.
New Guidance was circulated to
Implementing Bodies (IBs) and training was given to officers applying DPA.
After the training, an analysis of the Database showed that of the 1,009
projects under BSP approved on or before 31 December 2005, 100% had a
DPA score, representing 100% of total funding awarded. Funding for this
research was provided by the Working Group project.
Support to social partners participating in Monitoring Committees:
Following Northern Ireland Local Government Association:
(NILGA)
successful application, supported under this Measure, the European Officer in
her role in assisting local government representatives on the monitoring
committees has enjoyed a productive year. She has met with Councils,
Councillors and stakeholders throughout the year and attended events in
Brussels and the UK on current EU issues which are of interest to local
government. Her support of the local government representatives’ is evident
as attendance at monitoring committee meetings has greatly improved.
Assistance of £115,010 was awarded.
In the autumn of 2006, the Social Partnership organisation Concordia applied
for technical assistance support to help fund a European Officer to support
Concordia members on the Monitoring Committee and this application was
approved in December 2006 with assistance of £54,080.
Programme preparation and consultation 2000-2006 round:
Technical
Assistance funded consultation on the development of the NI Structural Funds
Plan, the Community Support Framework and the Building Sustainable
Prosperity programme as well as expenses incurred in consultation and
negotiation.
Programme preparations 2007-2013 round:
In January 2007 a consultant
was appointed to carry out the Strategic Environmental Assessment of the
Competitiveness Programme. The report was issued for public consultation in
April. Only one response was received, comments from which were
considered and the Programme amended accordingly.
285
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
The Consultative Partnership Group, set up to facilitate discussions with
Social Partners on issues in developing the Programmes 2007-13, held their
final meeting in April, after the end of the Programme consultation, at which
responses were discussed.
Assistance in the preparation of the 2007-13 round of funding was £103,342.
286
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Assessment and Summary of Achievements v Targets for Measure 6.1(a)
Original Indicator
Output
30 Technical Assistance projects to be
funded
Result
75% of recommendations of studies to
be accepted
Impact
50% of Technical Assistance studies
judged to have improved
implementation of CSF or OP
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Revised Indicators
Final Position
7
30 Technical Assistance projects to be funded
14 projects funded
0
75% of recommendations of studies to be
accepted
Part funding for 4
studies under the
NICSF
(1)
evaluation
of
Information Society
activity
(2)
research on use of
Development Path
Analysis (3) impact
of EU programmes
on
Section
75
groups (4) good
practice in delivery
of ESF –financed
operations in BSP
and
Peace
II
programmes.
All
were reported to
and accepted by
the CSF Monitoring
Committee
Not available
50% of Technical Assistance studies judged
to have improved implementation of CSF or
OP
No survey of the
effects
of
the
studies
on
implementation has
yet been carried
out
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Expenditure and Financial Control
Article 4
The checklist issued by DFP – EU Finance Guidance Note 01/2005 was used in all Article
4 checks to ensure that all relevant areas were addressed. Checks were made after
receipt of the first claim or later.
All projects in this Measure were subjected to an Article 4 check.
Summary of findings as a result of Article 4 Activity
NILGA
•
No time sheets were kept for officers recording time spent on the project. Officers
asked to keep time sheets to enable match funding to be verified.
•
Computerised purchasing system was not password protected. Project advised to
introduce security passwords into the system to maintain a proper segregation of duties
and prevent possible fraud.
•
BSP Logo not on project officer’s stationery. Logo was requested to be added to all
stationery used by the project officer.
•
No mention of BSP funding of European Officer in NILGA annual report – to be
included in following year’s report.
•
Quarterly update reports not signed – to be done so.
Agri-rural
•
BSP logo not used – to be put on all material associated with project.
•
Time sheets show no distinction between administrative duties and expert advice –
these roles have different daily rates. Project advised to keep separate time sheets for
Admin and expert advice.
•
Invoices not date stamped – to be stamped and matched with the order.
•
No purchase forms were used and there was a non-compliance with public
procurement rules. Advised to ensure that all purchase orders for products/services are
properly recorded to facilitate the matching of the invoice on receipt and public
procurement rules should be complied with.
288
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Concordia
•
Not all invoices were date stamped. Advised to stamp all invoices.
•
Time sheets not present for supporting staff. Recommended to keep time sheets to be
signed and to accompany claims.
•
BSP logo not on website – to be added.
•
Claims signed by project officer instead of finance officer – all claims to be signed by
finance officer
•
Invoices submitted for claim not authorised nor paid therefore claim could not be
processed. Advised to submit claims for expenditure paid.
Article 10
Details of Article 10 activity are included in the Measure Summary.
Audit Activity
Details of Internal Audit activity can be found in the Measure in Annex 12.
Irregularities
Details of recorded irregularities can be found in the Measure Summary. There were no
reportable irregularities.
289
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Sub-Measure Details – 6.1(b)
Programme Information and Publicity
Aims and Objectives
The aim of this sub-measure was to publicise the contribution of the Programme in
reinforcing progress of Northern Ireland towards a state of sustainable prosperity in a
competitive modern economy.
DFP commissioned applications for Technical Assistance based upon management and
publicity needs of the Programme and ensured that normal Procurement Service rules
regarding competitive tendering procedures were observed.
Implementation
Two projects were approved under this Measure.
A list of the projects for Measure 6.1(b) which incurred expenditure and the ERDF element
can be found on Annex 5.
Examples of Projects within Sub-Measure 6.1(b)
Information & Publicity activities - Technical Assistance (grant awarded £234,197) was
used:
•
to support the production of promotional goods, news.letters, guides and leaflets;
•
for a Translink Bus Wrap campaign and Bus shelter advertisements;
•
for the production of a publicity insert in the main newspapers;
•
for the production of twice-yearly newsletters publicising the achievements of the
programme;
•
to support the Launch Event for the programme in 2001 and the printing of copies of
the programme; and
•
to produce a Guide to Funding from Europe
290
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Agri-rural Forum
The Technical Assistance support to the Agri-Rural Forum (£36,443) was to establish a
communications programme for their work in relation to the EU programmes. The AgriRural Forum brought together all the stakeholders to provide a central communications
and information channel for the agri-rural sector in relation to EU programmes.
291
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 6.1(b)
Original Indicator
Output
Quarterly report on media coverage
Number of publicity and information
enquiries
Number of website visits
Number of promotional events held
Result
Access to information on the
Programme and an understanding of the
benefits to the region
Impact
Increased awareness of the EU support
and the overall aim of funding
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Not available
56
13775
Not reported on
Revised Indicators
Final Position
Quarterly report on media coverage
Number of publicity and information enquiries
Number of website visits
Number of promotional events held
Visits to the
Managing Authority
website rose from
1,125 in 2001 to a
maximum of
30,343 in 2005.
total number of
visits in the period
2001 – 2007 was
118,527
Not available
Access to information on the Programme and
an understanding of the benefits to the region
Not available
Increased awareness of the EU support and
the overall aim of funding
292
Annual
Implementation
Reports included
details of
information and
publicity. Specific
questions were
included in the
Northern Ireland
Omnibus survey to
measure public
awareness of EU
support and
benefits
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Expenditure and Financial Control
Article 4
Two Article 4 checks were undertaken on this project.
Summary of Findings as a result of Article 4 Activity
Agri-rural
•
All invoices and time sheets for both Agri-rural projects are in one file
making it difficult to follow audit trails for each project. At the late stage of
the check it was inappropriate to carry out any action, however it was
recommended that a separate file be kept for any future projects.
Article 10
Details of Article 10 activity are included in the Measure Summary.
Audit Activity
Details of Internal Audit activity can be found in Annex 12.
Irregularities
Details of recorded irregularities can be found in the Measure Summary.
There were no reportable irregularities.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Annex 1
Programme Financial Tables (Original and Final)
Original Approved Amended Financial
Financial Ta...
Table for BS...
294
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Annex 2
Programme Complement Financial Table amendments
Version 1.1.pdf (48
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
ANNEX 3
Detail of expenditure declared by year and by Measure
Final Claim Proposed on SFC....
296
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
ANNEX 4
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.1(a)
Original Indicator
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Output
100 high growth potential businesses 242
created (of which 60 in high tech
sectors) (1a)
*3000 locally focused businesses
created
Result
*700 Gross jobs
(100 gross jobs)
Revised Indicators
Final Position
*100 high growth potential
businesses created (of
which 60 in high tech
sectors)
546(1)
*3000 locally focused
businesses created
14,332(2)
882
963 (52)
*700 Gross jobs
*
(100 in high tech sectors)
*6000 Gross jobs
Impact
400 Net jobs
(50 net jobs)
1323
*6000 Gross jobs
*
550
(26)
400 Net jobs
(50 in high tech sectors)
4,302 net employed (3)
2500 Net jobs
551
2500 Net jobs
18,630 net employed (4)
90% survival rate in
assisted businesses after
year 1
End of prog (5)
End of prog (5)
70% survival rate in
See
note below
assisted businesses after
3 years
* Invest NI have been unable to obtain gross job figures at the end of this Programme. Invest NI only has one figure for job creation
for each of the targets i.e. the number of jobs in these start up companies at 2007 – so it is a net change figure.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
The 2001 AIR, highlighted that for this measure, over 90% of the high growth potential businesses created target, had already been
achieved (Target - 100 Position at the end of 2001- 91).
By the end of 2003, and mid term evaluation, this target had been exceeded at 253 as highlighted in the AIR of that year.
This figure continued to grow and by the end of 2007 (and the BSP Programme), 546 high growth businesses had been created; the target
at the outset of the programme had been exceeded by over 300%.
(1)
Only includes start up projects within the following parameters – in receipt of SFA assistance totalling £25k or more to a client employing
less than 250.
(1a)
The table also demonstrates that the original target of 3000 locally focused businesses created, had been exceeded by the end of 2007.
This figure stood at 14,332 locally focused businesses created.
(2)
Invest NI have been unable to obtain gross job figures at the end of this programme. Invest NI only has one figure for job creation for
each of the targets i.e. the number of jobs in these start up companies at 2007 - so it is a net change figure.
The impact of the number of high growth businesses created on the number of Net Jobs created was determined as 4,302 at the end of the
BSP programme
(3)
Again, the resulting gross jobs created cannot be determined, however the number of net jobs created in relation to locally focused
businesses created was 18,630.
(4)
The 2001 AIR, highlighted that for this measure, over 90% of the high growth potential businesses created target, had already been
achieved (Target - 100 Position at the end of 2001= 91). By the end of 2003, and mid term evaluation, this target had been exceeded at 253
as highlighted in the AIR of that year. This figure continued to grow and by the end of 2007 (and the BSP Programme), 546 high growth
businesses had been created; the target at the outset of the programme had been exceeded by over 300%.
(5)
INVEST NI NOTE: 78% of businesses assisted through Start A Business Programme survived at least 3 years.
298
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.1(b)
Original Indicator
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Output
*500 SMEs supported by LEDU
623
20 companies assisted by IDB
?
Result
*1700 jobs (gross)
1856
To maintain turnover and profit levels
at 1998/0999 levels
Impact
8% growth in sales (net) per annum
Figures unavailable at
MTE
Revised Indicators
Final Position
*500 SMEs supported by INVEST NI per
annum
1714 (6)
*1700 jobs (gross)
37,152 (7)
7% growth in sales (net) per annum over
the six years of the programme (as
compared with 5% in 1999/2000)
10.2% increase in
sales over the
period. (8)
8% growth in export performance
(net) per annum
Figures unavailable at
MTE
8% growth in export performance (net) per 15.6% increase in
exports. (9)
annum over the six years of the
programme (as compared with 6% in
1999/2000)
5% increase in net jobs creation per
annum (1300 jobs)
Figures unavailable at
MTE
1300 net jobs at the end of the
programme
Improved productivity within the
companies
Figures unavailable at
MTE
(6) By
1918 net jobs.
the end of 2007, 1,714 SMEs had been supported (relates to locally-owned SME’s offered £25,000 or more)
2002/03 to 2007/08 employment has increased from 33,611 to 37,152 representing a growth rate of 10.5% over the period and 2.0% annually.
(8) Sales grew from £3.1 billion to £5.3 billion resulting in a 62.7% increase over the period and 10.2% per annum.
(9) Exports grew from £889m to £1.8 billion resulting in an 106.5% increase over the period and 15.6% annually.
(7) From
299
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Invest NI Response:
In relation to the achievement of 10 Regional initiatives focusing on SME development against a target of 5 (200% success
rate), Invest NI's has 5 local offices developing a plan to encourage for example export starts, developing an innovative
approach or working with local stakeholders and these have been delivered on the ground by the local office personnel.
This amounts to each regional office having two such initiatives rather than one in the time period. Given changing
economic priorities and reacting to the needs of clients it would sometimes be necessary to do this.
300
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.1(c)
Original Indicator
Output
26 integrated plans
5 Regional Action plans
Result
10strategic alliances formed
10 regional initiatives focusing on
SME development
Impact
Positive change in business base
Positive change in business
performance
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Revised Indicators
Final Position
26
2
5 regional action plans
5
0
0
10 regional initiatives focusing on SME
development
10
Not available
Positive change in business base
Positive change in business performance
No target (10)
No target (10)
Under this measure, there were indicators as opposed to targets to aim towards, such as a positive change in business base and also a
positive change in business performance. The objectives of the measure were documented as continuing to be successful on the whole
although this impact could not be evaluated in terms of figures.
(10)
Invest NI Response:
In relation to the achievement of 10 Regional initiatives focusing on SME development against a target of 5 (200% success
rate), Invest NI's has 5 local offices developing a plan to encourage for example export starts, developing an innovative
approach or working with local stakeholders and these have been delivered on the ground by the local office personnel.
This amounts to each regional office having two such initiatives rather than one in the time period. Given changing
economic priorities and reacting to the needs of clients it would sometimes be necessary to do this.
301
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.2
Original Indicator
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Revised Indicators
Final Position
Output
No of R&D projects supported 220
142
No of Environmental & Innovative
audits Initiated
180
No of graduate placements 256
47
286 R&D projects supported (broken
down by type of research orientation
871 (11)
350 Environmental & Innovative audits
Initiated
393
150 graduate placements
204
Result
80% of supported projects
completing successfully
87%
80% of supported projects completing
successfully
86%
90% of businesses undertake an
audit
86%
90% of businesses undertake an audit
100%
Not reported on as ‘result’
130 projects involving graduates
161
64%
80% of graduates successfully completing
placement
No of projects involving graduates
256
80% of graduates successfully
completing placement
302
95%
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Impact
15% increase in Business
Expenditure on R&D
45%
15% increase in Business Expenditure on
R&D
50% increase in
expenditure on
R&D from £123m
in 1999 to £185m
in 2007.
60% of businesses adopt audit
recommendations
Not available
60% of businesses adopt audit
recommendations
100%
60% of graduates retained by host firm
62%
60% of graduates retained by host
Not available
(11) The 2001 AIR highlighted that there had been 98 R& D projects supported against a target of 220 for the programme. This target was
surpassed by the end of 2004, with 263 projects supported. This figure reached 715 by the end of 2006 and 871 by the end of 2007 with
approximately 86% of supported projects successfully completed against a target of 80%.
Invest NI Response:
Demand for programmes under this measure was much higher than initial reviews suggested.
303
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.3(a)
Original Indicator
Output
15 marketing initiatives supported
per annum across key markets
Result
Increase acceptability of Northern
Ireland as a holiday destination from
2000 baseline
Increased intention to visit Northern
Ireland from 2000 baseline
Impact
Over the period of the programme to
generate on an additional £100m
Over the period of the programme to
create 1300 additional jobs in
tourism
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Revised Indicators
Final Position
22.5
15 marketing initiatives supported per
annum across key markets
23
Increased acceptability
Increase visitor numbers to Northern
Ireland as a holiday destination by 7%
annually by end 2006 (from 2000
baseline)
(2007 - prelim
forecast 174000
increase from
2000 baseline –
56.9% increase
and 6.6% on year
increase) (12)
not available
Over the period of the programme to
create 1400 additional jobs in tourism
5920 (13)
not available
Increase visitor spend by 5% annually by
end 2006 (from 2000 baseline)
Preliminary
forecast of
115,000 increase
from 2000
baseline
representing a
45.8% increase
and 5.5% year on
year increase
Statistics on intentions but
not reported relative to
baseline
(12,13) Over the period of the programme Northern Ireland has experienced significant growth in tourism, both in terms of visitor numbers and revenue
generation. This growth is a direct result of the investments the Northern Ireland Tourist Board has made in developing the tourism market and enhancing
Northern Ireland’s tourism product which has been co-financed by the ERDF through the BSP Programme.
304
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.3(b)
Original Indicator
Output
Accommodation projects assisted
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
28
Revised Indicators
Final Position
50 Accommodation projects assisted 47
Assisted cultural and natural
resource programmes
0
visitor attractions assisted to
enhanced or re-themed
Result
750 new bedrooms
8
10 visitor attractions enhanced or rethemed
15
489
750 new bedrooms
664
Premises with new bedrooms to
show an occupancy rate higher than
relevant regional and sectoral
averages
Not available (reported on
as ‘Impact’)
!0% increase in visitor numbers to
the attractions by the end of the
programme (from 2000 baseline)
5 programmes developed
0
10 visitor attractions enhances/rethemed
Not reported on as ‘result’
increase visitor numbers to
enhanced or re-themed attractions
Increases ranging from 2%
to 59% at 8 attractions
Visitor numbers to
those attractions
assisted by the
programme increased
on average by 78%
(based on figures
provided by those
attractions that made
returns to NITB
between 2000 and
2007) Overall across
all visitor attractions in
Northern Ireland
numbers have
increased by 23%
between 2000 and
2007
305
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.3(b) (contd)
Impact
350 direct jobs created by the end of
the programme
336
350 net jobs created by the end of
the programme
428
50 (direct and indirect) jobs created
by the end of programme
not available
Increase room occupancy by 2%
above the regional average 2 years
after opening
Jobs sustained in enhanced/rethemed attractions
not available
Currently difficult to
assess. It is questioned
whether this is a
reasonable measure in
that increased volume
will normally lead to a
reduction in
occupancy.
Of the 15 enhanced –
14 are still in existence
(93%)
70% of visitor attractions still
existence by the end of programme
306
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.4
Original Indicator
Output
26 district council action plans
Result
List of Programmes detailing costs
and implementation details, including
number and types of action
envisaged
Impact
Increase in employment levels.
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Revised Indicators
26
26 district council action plans
153
List of Programmes detailing costs and
implementation details, including number
and types of action envisaged
DN: these are the indicators reported on:
New businesses created (target 150)
New jobs created (target 1700)
Sq ft of workspace created (target no
target)
Not available
Increase in employment levels.
Number of new business formations
as a result of council participation
not available
Number of new business formations as a
result of council participation
Improved co-ordination of local
economic development actions at
sub-regional and local level.
not available
Improved co-ordination of local economic
development actions at sub-regional and
local level.
DN: these are the indicators reported on:
New businesses still in existence at end of
programme (target 120)
Jobs still in existence at end of prog
(target 1360)
Evidence of improved infrastructure and
co-ordination at local council level
(14,15,16,17,18)
Final Position
26
926 (14)
4072 (15)
250,000sq ft (16)
926 (17)
4072 (18)
Post project
evaluation on 1.4
completed and
endorses this
impact
The explanation for the variance is that when the original targets were set they did not envisage or in incorporate the Business Start
Programme.
307
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.5
Original Indicator
Position at Mid
Term Evaluation
Output
Outputs are based upon progressing NI
companies along the Connectivity Chain
as follows:
Revised Indicators
Final Position
Outputs are based upon progressing NI
business relating to the DTI International
Benchmarking Study report on ICT
making business aware of the benefits of
ICT
2
At least 2 programmes aimed at making
business aware of the benefits of ICT
3
facilitating business access to ICT
1
At least 2 programmes aimed at facilitating
business access to ICT
2
assisting business in the development of
internet presence
1
1 programme aimed at assisting business in
the development of e-business strategies
1
Working with business to develop
websites for on-line trading
Result
Assist 4,600 SMEs by 2005
Not reported on
4,500 engagements with SMEs by 2005
10,224 (19)
Assist 1300 SMEs by 2005
Not reported on
700 engagements with SMEs by 2005
1,251 (20)
70 engagements with SMEs by 2005
99
2175
Assist 70 SMEs by 2005
Not reported on
Assist 80 SMEs by 2005
Not reported on
As a result of the Awareness Programme, there was a reported total of 1,122 SMES assisted by the end of 2001. This represented 23%
of the overall measure target of 4,870. By the end of 2003, and mid term evaluation, this figure had risen to 4,449. At the end of 2007, this
figure stood at unchanged at 10,224 SMEs assisted.
(19)
(20)
The original target encouraging 700 companies to gain access to ICT was exceeded and stood at 1251.
Invest NI update: Demand for ICT awareness and engagement increased slightly above expectations but considering the
duration of the programmes and the economic and technological changes (eg. Broadband) that happened during the life
308
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
time of the projects it is not surprising there is some differences against targets. On the whole Invest NI feel the
programmes have over exceeded and that is to benefit of businesses and down to the delivery of the efficient delivery of
the programmes.
309
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.5 (contd)
Impact
Achieve an increase in the number of
bases businesses using trading ‘ecommerce’ website technology from 24%
in 2000/01 to 40% by 2005
Achieve an increase
in the number of recognised ‘e-business’
businesses in Northern Ireland from 10%
in 2000/01 to 15% by 2005
NB. These impacts are based on the
cumulative effect of all the outputs.
Not available
Not available
Impacts will be accessed by measurement of
the progress of NI business by the DTI
International Benchmarking Study report on
ICT. The key targets are:
Achieve an increase
in the measurement of Northern Ireland
28% in 2004 DTI
based businesses towards sophistication in International ICT
the use of ICTs from 15% to 30%
Benchmarking
Report
NB. These impacts are based on the
cumulative effect of all the outputs.
310
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.6(a)
Original Indicator
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Revised Indicators
Final Position
Output
4 by-pass schemes
Result
14km of new carriageway
2
6.2km
3 by-pass schemes
1 Through-pass scheme
1 Link Road
3
Complete
Not funded
through this
measure
1 Bridge strengthening scheme
Complete
12.1 km of new carriageway
12.4km
Strengthen structure to increase capacity Complete
to carry the maximum 40 tonne HGV
vehicles
Repainting and resurfacing the bridge
Impact
Reduced peak journey times by an Not available
average of 35% for each scheme
measured through surveys held in
advance of the project and after
completion of the project.
Reduced peak journey times by an Newtownstewart
average of 35%.
bypass = 47%
Limavady bypass
= 32%
Comber bypass =
44.5%
Bridge capable of extra carrying capacity
Bridge now has
to meet future demand, which will see the capacity to deal
numbers of HGVs increasing from 2700
with 40 tonne
per day to 3200 per day over the next 10
HGVs and the
years. Painting will provide required
expected future
protection for next 20 years.
demand
311
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.6(b)
Original Indicator
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Revised Indicators
Final Position
Output
Urban/rural public transport
infrasctucture projects including
Ballymena Bus and Rail Station and
other projects serving rural
Communities.
4
Introduction of passenger
Information/Long Line Public
Address system and Global
positioning Satellite system
Not reported on
1 new rural bus station
3 Urban bus depot projects
Introduction of Customers Information,
replacement of management systems and
2 other transport related schemes
1
3
Project
withdrawn
Passenger
information
system/longline
public address
system – project
withdrawn
Refurbishment
of
Falls
Rd
running
repair
shop complete
Replacement of
the mechanical
and
electrical
system at the
Short Strand bus
depot
312
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.6(b) (contd)
Result
New urban/rural bus and rail projects 0
and enhanced services in isolated
communities. Increased patronage
on bus system in key transport
corridors, reduced journey times and
improved reliability
Innovative schemes to complement
high-level strategies to interface with
RTS and the introduction of the
integrated ticketing scheme
New passenger and staff facilities at 1
rural bus station
Compliance with H&S standards and
upgrade of 3 urban bus depots
4 innovative schemes to complement high
level management strategies
Complete
Complete
Translink
accounting
system complete
0
Complete
(reported on
original indicator completed 2006)
Impact
Improvement in accessibility, social Not available
inclusion and more sustainable
movement of people.
Improvement in accessibility, social Compliance with
inclusion and more sustainable movement DDA. The
of people.
purchase of the
new trains
More efficient movement of people and provides a more
improved urban transport systems.
sustainable
movement of
people by
Enhance and modernise the operation of facilitating the
integrated transport across Northern improved
Ireland
timetabling of
services.
More efficient movement of people Not available
and improved urban transport
systems.
Enhance and modernise the
operation of integrated transport
across Northern Ireland
Complete
313
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.7
Original Indicator
Output
Percentage of exchanges capable of
providing enhanced
telecommunications services, rising
from 10% to 70%
Result
The percentage of NI geographical
area with access to advanced
telecommunications rising from 11%
to 60%.
Impact
An increase in the use of enhanced
telecommunications facilities by
business.
Jobs created as a by-product of the
measure
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Revised Indicators
Final Position
5%
Percentage of exchanges capable of
100%
providing enhanced telecommunications
services, rising from 10% baseline in 2000
to 100%by end December 2005.
40%
The percentage of NI geographical area
with access to advanced
telecommunications rising from 11%
baseline in 2000, to 100% by end
December 2005.
100%
Not available
10 new telecoms-intensive firms to be
established
13
Not available
An increase in the use of enhanced
telecommunications, in particular basic
broadband services, from a baseline
figure of 1% in 2000 rising to 12% of
household take up, and 20% of business
take up by the end of 2005
49% NI
households. 76%
have internet
access 65% of
business use
broadband
(December 2007
survey)
314
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.8(a)
Original Indicator
Output
KM of gas pipeline laid:
North/West – 116km
South/North – 140km
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
KM of gas pipeline laid:
North/West – 116km
0
0
Increase level of physical electricity
interconnection between NIE and
ESB systems
Result
Numbers of customers connected:
North/West – 9,000
South/North – 4,500
0
Increased security of supply
0
Revised Indicators
Final Position
116km
(South/North not
funded through
this measure)
0
0
Numbers of customers connected:
North/West – 9,000
1,949(includes
power station)
Reductions in CO2:
North/West – 16,800t
499,671 tonnes
CO2 (includes
power station)
Increased opportunity for crossborder trading of electricity
Impact
Reductions in CO2:
North/West – 16,800t
South/North – 9,600t
Not available
Not available
Fewer interruptions to power supply
Not available
Evolution of larger electricity market
leading to reduced prices
Not available
315
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 1.8(b)
Original Indicator
Output
Information requests from
prospective projects
Result
Projects supported
Impact
20% reduction in number of tonnes
of CO2 consumed per project 10%
reduction in energy cost and
consumption in assisted projects
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Revised Indicators
Final Position
7 (Demonstration projects)
20 demonstration projects supported over
the lifetime of the programme
18
22 (Information requests
per project)
At least 150 information packs issued in
response to requests over the lifetime of
the programme
200
Not available
Specific positive environmental impacts
directly attributable to the projects
including 1,200 tonnes of CO2 emissions
savings over the lifetime of the
programme
End of Prog (21)
Some of the projects had difficulty measuring energy or fuel usage, and in particular reductions in CO2. Some the technologies involved were developing
or not suited to Northern Ireland weather, and in cases broke down. Therefore some figures are not available. From the figures measured and supplied, there
were a total of £9,500 savings in energy costs and 2.3 million litres reduction in CO2 emissions.
(21)
316
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 2.5
Original Indicator
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Output
All secondary schools (240) to have
0
new PCs at a ratio of at least 1 PC to
9 pupils and local area networks
installed and to be linked to a wide
area network and system integrator
providing a managed ICT service at
a cost of £115.2m.
All successful ESF funded nongovernment projects to have an
adequate level of infrastructural
support as is required to make the
project viable
Result
All schools to be utilising the
managed service providing curricular
resources and internet access with
broadband connectivity
Revised Indicators
Final Position
All secondary schools (233) and special
277
schools (48) to have new PCs at a ratio of
at least 1 PC to 9 pupils and local area
networks installed and to be linked to a
wide area network and system integrator
providing a managed ICT service at a cost
of £115.2m.
ESF
All successful ESF funded nongovernment projects to have an adequate
level of infrastructural support as is
required to make the project viable
Met
Upgrading of school accommodation to
enable use of ICT equipment and
managed service
0
All schools to be utilising the managed
service providing curricular resources and
internet access with broadband
connectivity
Post Primary and special schools using
the managed service
317
277
Met
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 2.5 (contd)
Impact
All pupils (155,000) will experience
the use of ICT across all areas of the
curriculum, including a range of
applications and media and will
spend, on average, 10% of the
weekly timetable using ICT facilities
to support learning across the
curriculum
0
All pupils (155,000) will experience the
use of ICT across all areas of the
curriculum, including a range of
applications and media and will spend, on
average, 10% of the weekly timetable
using ICT facilities to support learning
across the curriculum
Pupils will enjoy the benefits of a modern
ICT enriched curriculum taught in highspecification facilities. Electrical
infrastructure will ebale the full use of ICT
equipment and managed service provided
by C2k programme.
318
All pupils using
ICT across all
areas of the
curriculum
(161,000 pupils).
Over 10% of
weekly timetable
using ICT
supported
learning
Met
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 3.1
Original Indicator
Position at Mid-Term
Evaluation
Revised Indicators
Final Position
Output
Number of schemes funded – 20
Initial progress was slow
on BSP 3.1 with no spend Number of jobs/training enquiries/referrals
incurred by the date of the
mid term evaluation.
Number of organizations supported – However
retrospective
40
projects were identified
and funded by the end of
2004.
Number of projects assisted
Number of projects assisted - 40
Result
Square
metres
of No spend or results by the
commercial/industrial
community date of mid term evaluation
space enhanced
but
in
retrospective
projects completed by
2004 a total of 233,638 sq
metres were enhanced
Private sector financial leverage
None
Increase in gross employment
319
None
Reduction in number of long term
unemployed, women, 16-17 year olds,
disabled persons and single parents
registering as unemployed.
Increased numbers of people, particularly
women, single parents, disabled, referred
for employment/training.
Increase
in
gross
employment
opportunities
Increase of 76%
from 2000-04
7 projects
comprising 5
Laganside and 2
Jobs and Benefits
Schemes
covering 23 Jobs
and Benefits
offices administrative
barriers meant
larger projects
were targeted
instead of smaller
more
cumbersome
ones.
27.6% reduction
from 2000-04
8% increase from
2000-04
27.7%increase
from 2000-2004
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 3.1 (cont’d)
Impact
Increase in Net employment.
Reduction in unemployment
Reduction in crime and vandalism
Increase in commercial space
available
Evidence of positive impact
attributable to schemes eg increase
in visitor numbers and increase in
residents satisfaction levels
Initial progress was slow Increase in Net employment.
on BSP 3.1 with no spend
incurred by the date of the
mid term evaluation
Reduction in unemployment
320
Not available in
this format
24.3% reduction
from 2000-04- all
projects
completed by the
end of 2004
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 3.2
Original Indicator
Output
Reviews and Assessments
completed
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
258
Revised Indicators
2 Reviews and Assessments of existing
services completed
Not reported
New common recording
Support for rationalization of
recording system
Support given to 2 organisations to
provide and promote a common
statistical system
Support given to 4 organisations to
provide advice and information
Result
Develop strategy
80% of IAS and CABs operating a 20%
common statistical system
Not reported
Increase by 50 hours per week
provision of advice and information
in areas of greatest need
Not reported
7 post project
evaluations
completed with
recommendations
about future
delivery of service.
2
7
Implementation of the recommendations Some
from the reviews/assessments
recommendations
implemented. Work
to be taken forward
within DSD’s Advice
25 IAS and CAB operating a common strategy.
statistical system
All independent
CAB affiliated
advice
organizations now
using 1 of 2
Increase of 40 hours per week in the
accredited systems.
provision of advice and information in
312 in year 2007
areas of greatest need
with total of 3046
since start of the
programme
90% of DSD funding committed on Not reported
basis of strategy
Effective comparisons and
monitoring possible
Final Position
321
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 3.2 (contd)
Impact
Improved provision
Improved awareness
Cohesive and cost effective
provision of services
Not available
Improved utilization of available
funds
Improved service and distribution of
funding
Better informed community and
improved access to services
322
3 pilot schemes undertaken
3
Evidence of improved accountability for,
and delivery of, advice services
Post project
evaluations show
evidence of more
integrated delivery
of advice services
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 3.3
Original Indicator
Output
No of organizations assisted – 40
Result
Increase support hours delivered by
2500 hours
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Revised Indicators
177
Support given to 35
organisations
17 assisted up to March
2007
508
2000 direct support hours
delivered
20,500 to March 2007
100 consultations with statutory
agencies
Impact
Enhanced support structures and
increased sustainability
Final Position
Not available
323
107 consultations with
Councils, Housing
Executive, H&SSTs.
Education Boards and
Government Depts
Evidence of sustainability in the
community organisations
assisted
In addition to the subregional support Groups
gaining sustainable
funding from the
Neighbourhood Renewal
Programme and Regional
infrastructure funding. 17
Groups have secured
sustainable mainstream
funding form the
Community Investment
Fund.
Evidence of improved interagency working and policy
development in areas of need
Post project evaluations
show evidence of
increased voluntary /
statutory sector
partnerships working
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 3.4
Original Indicator
Output
48 Capital schemes across all the
ELBs in controlled, maintained,
integrated and Irish medium sectors
Result
1768 additional places made
available for children in their
immediate pre-school year,
especially the socially disadvantaged
and 4 year olds.
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Revised Indicators
Final Position
36
85 Capital schemes across all the ELBs
(Revised to 51 – original target was based
on additional expenditure in the
performance reserve)
1400
2,200 additional places made available for 1928 full time and
children in their immediate pre-school
part time places
year, especially the socially
disadvantaged and 4 year olds.
Consequential opportunities for the
parents of the above children to take
up employment, education or training
0
Up to 136 additional posts for
teachers and classroom assistants
created.
130
Up to 220 additional posts for teachers
and classroom assistants created.
(Revised to 130 – original target was
based on additional expenditure in the
performance reserve)
324
55
51 Nursery units
complete at end
2004)
62 teachers and
84 classroom
assistants
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 3.4 (contd)
Impact
Taken together with other initiatives,
this measure will enable all parents
who wish to have access to a funded
place for their children in their
immediate pre-school year.
Research shows that children who
have had pre-school education are
better prepared to take up the
advantages of education and hence
their prospects of employment are
increased. Pre-school education can
be particularly beneficial for the
socially disadvantaged.
Not available
Taken together with other initiatives, this
Data not
measure will enable all parents who wish
available
to have access to a funded place for their
children in their immediate pre-school
year. Research shows that children who
have had pre-school education are better
prepared to take up the advantages of
education and hence their prospects of
employment are increased. Pre-school
education can be particularly beneficial for
the socially disadvantaged.
325
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 5.1
Original Indicator
Output
Water Treatment schemes
Sewage Treatment schemes
Environmental Quality Research
Projects
Contaminated land recovery project
Waste Management Projects
Biodiversity conservation projects
Scheduled monument conservation
projects
Access / tourism/ environmental
education projects
Projects to entail partnership
Project per county
Result
Average 30% increase in capacity
and Water quality improvement
(variable up to 100%)
Average 275% increase in capacity,
with effluent quality improvement
(variable up to 100%)
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Revised Indicators
2
2
0
3 Water Treatment schemes
2 Sewage Treatment schemes
Environmental Quality Research Projects
–1
Biodiversity conservation projects - 10
Access / tourism projects - 4
Waste Management Projects – 5
1 Air Quality project for the 26 District
Councils
0
0
326
Final Position
4
2
0
4
1
4
1
Built Heritage conservation projects – 2
1 Waste Management project for the 26
District Councils
1
Average 30% increase in capacity
30%
Average 275% increase in capacity
275%
Publication and appropriate dissemination
of research conclusions - The availability
of at least 6 pieces of research
7505 - Quercus
Project,
7734 – Direct
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
information to environmentalists and
scientists by the end of the Programme.
327
measurements of
aeration using
noble gas tracers
in the River Lagan
NI, Water &
Environment
Journal Vol 21
issue 3 Sept 07
7501 – 1.
QUERCUS
Report;
Conservation
Genetics of
Northern Ireland
seagrass beds 0406;
2. Peer reviewed
scientific paper in
Conservation
Genetics,accepted
23 April 2007.
7784 –
1.QUERCUS
Project; Molecular
basis for a
Species Action
Plan for the Red
Alga Ahnfeltiopsis
sp.;
2. Draft scientific
paper currently
being circulated
for publication in
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
peer reviewed
scientific
publication.
Production of recycling, research and
waste information
4959 – monitoring
data in relation to
fridges recycled
and glass
collected. 7473 –
3 to 4 items. 7938
– Drama
production for
children. 30793 –
indicator met.
Capital infrastructure projects to enable
District Councils to measure, monitor and
improve air quality
The scheme has
enabled
improvement in
ambient air quality
through the
identification of
areas subject to
poor air quality
and the
development of
plans to reduce
emissions from
domestic industrial
and road traffic
sources.
Staff resource projects to enable District
Councils in the carrying out of all
appropriate air quality activities
Development of 2 databases – industrial
heritage sites and stone masonry
buildings.
328
1 database
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
developed
Capital infrastructure projects to support
the recovery of recyclable waste
Staff resource projects to support waste
management activities
329
28 Capital projects
were approved.
Examples include;
the provision of
Recycling Bins,
Civic Authority
Site provision,
Collection
Vehicles, and
various smaller
projects, eg.Bin
Tagging/
Composters.
25 councils
claimed for
Revenue Projects.
For example;
expenditure
incurred in support
of Regional Waste
Groups,
Promotional and
Educational
Awareness
Activities, Site
Leasing,
Recycling Bin
delivery and
Waste Collection/
Processing
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Impact
Improved understanding of
sustainable environmental
management
Correction of an environmental
problem
Improved environmental
management
Improved environmental
management
Correction of environmental
problems through conserving
monuments at risk
Developing environmental
awareness and understanding
Community involvement
Not available
Good geographical spread of
support
330
Water quality improvement (variable
up to 100%)
Water quality
complies with EC
directive
standards.
Effluent quality improvement (variable
up to 100%)
Effluent quality
complies with EC
directive
standards.
Improved and enhanced access to the
natural heritage.
Enhanced
educational
understanding of
the Mourne
environment and
production and
distribution of
interpretative
publications.
Evidence of enhanced environmental
awareness
4959 – large
quantity of fridges
recycled and CFC
gases captured.
7473 – research
of assistance to
academics.
7838 – To
encourage the
appreciation of
sustainable
environment
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
principles by
children across NI.
30793 – Recycling
rates have
increased from
18.2% in 2004/05
to 28.8% as a
result of initiatives
by District
Councils which
received BSP
funding.
Contribute towards the objectives of the
Air Quality Strategy
331
The scheme has
assisted Councils
to assess local air
quality and to
submit the various
reports that are
required under air
quality policy
framework. In
addition it is more
likely that air
quality objectives
and EC limit
values will be
achieved by the
relevant dates.
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Seminars
Enhanced information leading to improved conducted in
Belfast and
management of the built heritage
Edinburgh. Book
on stone
identification and
all Ireland
geological map
produced.
Contribute towards the objectives of the
NI Waste Management Strategy
332
Recycling and
waste information
produced Municipal Waste
Management
Reports for
2005/06 and
2006/07, and the
NILAS Reports for
2005/06 and
2006/07. All
viewable on the
EHS Website.
The District
Councils’
contribution
towards the
objectives of the
NI Waste
Management
Strategy is
ongoing. Statistics
indicate positive
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
reduction in waste
to landfill and
increased levels of
recycling.
Recycling rates
has increased
from 18.2% in
2004/05 to 28.8 %
in 2007/08 as a
result of initiatives
by District
Councils which
received BSP
funding
333
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 6.1(a)
Original Indicator
Output
30 Technical Assistance projects to
be funded
Result
75% of recommendations of studies
to be accepted
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Revised Indicators
Final Position
7
30 Technical Assistance projects to be
funded
14 projects
funded
0
75% of recommendations of studies to be
accepted
Part funding for 4
studies under the
NICSF (1)
evaluation of
Information
Society activity
(2) research on
use of
Development
Path Analysis (3)
impact of EU
programmes on
Section 75
groups (4) good
practice in
delivery of ESF –
financed
operations in
BSP and Peace II
programmes. All
were reported to
and accepted by
the CSF
Monitoring
Committee
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Impact
50% of Technical Assistance studies
judged to have improved
implementation of CSF or OP
Not available
50% of Technical Assistance studies
judged to have improved implementation
of CSF or OP
335
No survey of the
effects of the
studies
on
implementation
has yet been
carried out
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Summary of Achievements V Targets for Measure 6.1(b)
Original Indicator
Output
Quarterly report on media coverage
Number of publicity and information
enquiries
Number of website visits
Number of promotional events held
Result
Access to information on the
Programme and an understanding of
the benefits to the region
Impact
Increased awareness of the EU
support and the overall aim of
funding
Position at Mid Term
Evaluation
Not available
56
Revised Indicators
Quarterly report on media coverage
Number of publicity and information
enquiries
Number of website visits
Number of promotional events held
13775
Not reported on
Final Position
Visits to the
Managing Authority
website rose from
1,125 in 2001 to a
maximum of 30,343
in 2005. total
number of visits in
the period 2001 –
2007 was 118,527
Not available
Access to information on the
Programme and an understanding of
the benefits to the region
Not available
Increased awareness of the EU support Annual
and the overall aim of funding
Implementation
Reports included
details of information
and publicity.
Specific questions
were included in the
Northern Ireland
Omnibus survey to
measure public
awareness of EU
support and benefits
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
ANNEX 5
List of project applications by Measure
Annex 5 - All BSP
ERDF Projects (includ
All BSP ERDF Projects (including DETI lower level projects)
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
ANNEX 6
MAJOR PROJECT – GAS PIPELINE
Background
Natural gas has been available in Northern Ireland since 1996. It was initially
used to fuel the electricity industry but it has also been made available to
industrial, commercial and domestic consumers in the Greater Belfast area.
Throughout the late 1990s there was a continuous lobby for natural gas to be
available to other areas of Northern Ireland and in 1999 the gas regulator
invited applications for new gas licences in an attempt to have gas made more
widely available. Following their internal studies into the feasibility of the
Northern Ireland gas market, Bord Gais Eireanne (BGE), the Republic of
Ireland Gas Company submitted proposals for a two phase development of a
transmission gas pipeline which will take gas to the North West of Northern
Ireland and also to construct a South North pipeline which will connect the
Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland gas networks. This was known as
the Northern Ireland Gas Pipeline project.
In 1999 the Northern Ireland Executive in its Programme for Government
identified “securing a competitive economy” as one of its five key priorities.
The creation of an appropriate energy infrastructure was acknowledged as a
vital element in achieving this.
In September 2001 the Executive approved the Northern Ireland Gas Pipeline
project.
Aims and Objectives
The key deliverables from this project were:
•
create an interconnected European gas market providing an alternative
source of gas supply to Northern Ireland thereby influencing the resilience of
the gas network;
•
enhance opportunities for inward investment, especially in areas of high
unemployment
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
•
make natural gas available to the main towns along the route of the pipeline,
potentially supplying a further 20% of Northern Ireland’s population.
•
Enable advancement of a major power station project, with consequent
benefit in terms of potential new support businesses and employment
opportunities.
•
Introduce competition through fuel choice and price, and via the power station
project, in electricity prices;
•
Extend the use of a relatively clean fuel with attendant health and
environmental benefits;
•
Provide security of supply for the Northern Ireland gas network through its
links with the Republic of Ireland system.
The development of the gas industry outside the Greater Belfast area and the
improvement of the security of supply situation for Northern Ireland were the
main objectives for this project.
The construction of the pipelines was
intended to facilitate the development of gas distribution networks in the towns
along the pipelines route and the South/North pipeline would remove the
current dependence on a single undersea pipeline from Scotland to Northern
Ireland.
The North West pipeline also had the subsidiary objective of providing gas to
the new Combined Cycle Gas Turbine power station at Coolkeeragh outside
Londonderry and improving business competitiveness in a peripheral area.
The Economic Growth and Competitiveness Priority of the Building
Sustainable Prosperity Programme clearly states that the general policies
regulating the NI approach to energy are security and diversity of supply;
progressive liberalisation and increased competition in the pursuit of lower
prices. One of the purposes of Measure 1.8 is the development of the natural
gas industry outside the Greater Belfast area and in particular to the South
East and North/North West of Northern Ireland. The construction of these gas
pipelines will facilitate the achievement of these objectives and contribute to
the reduction of the structural weaknesses in Northern Ireland created by
regional isolation, peripherality and diseconomies of small market size.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
In September 2002 the Department of Enterprise Trade and Investment
submitted a major project application to the European Commission for this
project.
An Environmental Impact Assessment was completed by Bord Gais which
formed an integral part of the planning application. The Assessment was also
copied to the Commission. State Aid approval was granted in July 2002.
In February 2004 the European Commission informed the Managing Authority
that there were issues which required clarification before they could proceed
to examine the project. As a result the Managing Authority submitted a revised
application in April and June 2004. The Commission responded by indicating
that it had decided to request that the European Investment Bank (EIB)
undertake an in-depth evaluation of the project. A list of additional information
requested by the EIB was forwarded in September 2004 and a telephone
conference held in October 2004 after which a further tranche of information
was supplied in November 2004. The issue was discussed extensively at the
Annual Review meeting on 2 December 2004 when the Managing Authority
outlined the potential implications for the N+2 expenditure targets. However it
was not possible to reach a decision before the end of 2004 due to queries
arising about the evaluation of the environmental impact of the project and the
calculation of the financing gap and the rate of assistance.
Due to difficulties in completing the planning process and obtaining Natura
2000 certificates, the Managing Authority withdrew the South/North element of
the project as it was placing the funding of the entire project at risk.
Accordingly the Managing Authority wrote to the European Commission on
21 April 2005 to request that for technical reasons the request for approval of
this major project application was taken forward only on the basis of the North
West pipeline.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Following this letter a Commission Decision C(2005) 2700 was issued on
7 June 2005 which fixed the ERDF contribution at €16,240,000 corresponding
to 17.12% of the total eligible costs of the North West pipeline from
Carrickfergus to Londonderry, which was €94,700,000. On completion of the
project €16.240m ERDF was claimed. The balance was funded by national
payments.
The first industrial customer, Michelin at Ballymena, was connected to gas
from the North-West pipeline in December 2005, and the first domestic
consumer connected at Strathfoyle outside Londonderry in March 2006. At the
end of 2008 1,949 customers were connected to the pipeline. This figure
includes the power station at Coolkeeragh.
Full details of achievement of the objectives can be found in Chapter 5.
MAJOR PROJECT – CLASSROOM 2000 (C2K)
Background
The European Employment Strategy has recognised the very significant role
that Information and Communications Technology (ICT) plays in terms of job
creation. It was essential therefore that those about to enter the labour force
should be equipped with the appropriate knowledge and skills for the
emerging information age.
Within Northern Ireland’s secondary education system a significant level of
infrastructure support for ICT teaching and learning at the secondary level
was needed. Through the provision of this ICT infrastructure of high quality
resources, those in secondary level education preparing to enter the labour
market would have the opportunity to develop the skills to use ICT and the
effectiveness and standards of learning would be improved.
Aims and objectives
The aim of C2k was to provide, for Northern Ireland’s schools, a world class
Learning Technology service and optimise its use throughout the Community.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
It was a regional scheme operating under the auspices of the Education
Technology Strategy Management Group of the Department of Education. It
was funded by the Department, through the Western Education and Library
Board, as part of its Education Technology Strategy, to deliver to schools high
quality, sustainable infrastructure, connectivity and resources. The Strategy
set out to ensure that young people were well prepared for their life and work
in the information economy of the 21st century, and that ICT was used to raise
educational standards.
The principal objective of the Employment Priority was to tackle specific
labour market needs of those in education who are about to enter the labour
market, for those who are unemployed and those who are in employment.
At the time of approval of the C2k project, the Department of Education (DE)
and the Managing Authority considered whether this project should be
considered a ‘major project’ within the provisions of Article 25 of EC
Regulation 1260/1999 and subjected to the particular requirements that would
follow. The view at the time was that the project did not fulfil the criteria set out
in Article 25.
During a visit by DG REGIO auditors in April 2006 questions were raised
concerning the expenditure certified under C2K. The auditors took the view
that the project should have been subject to Major Project Approval by the
European Commission. Following discussion, in order to safeguard the
eligibility of the expenditure from challenge, DE drew up a major project
application which the Managing Authority then presented to the Commission
on 1 November 2006. DE subsequently provided further information and
clarification to the Commission.
On 21 December 2006 the Commission adopted Decision No. C(2006)7159,
approving a contribution from ERDF to C2K of €42m, 50% of the total eligible
expenditure of €84m. On completion of the project €39,753,711 ERDF was
claimed with total expenditure of €79,507,423.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
During 2007, the Managing Authority, the ERDF Paying Authority and the
Department of Education (DE) worked together to complete an exercise to reexamine the expenditure which had already been declared for this project and
re-submit only eligible expenditure that ensured compliance with the
Commission Decision.
The C2k project has delivered a world-class ICT-based learning environment
which has been internationally recognised and has been awarded full
accreditation by BECTA (British Educational Communications and Technology
Agency), for the quality of its schools’ internet service provision.
The BECTA Internet Service Provider (ISP) accreditation means that all pupils
and teachers in the Province's 284 post primary and special schools can be
assured that the internet services provided by C2k meet the required
guidelines. C2k’s internet service has been constantly monitored to ensure
that children and teachers in Northern Ireland are protected against offensive
emails and web site content.
The C2k Integration Director, said, “The safety of the C2k online user
community is paramount for C2k and our managed service provider HP. We
employ the most up-to-date online security technology to protect both our
users and the integrity of the online service. Schools have a statutory
responsibility for child safety and C2k’s BECTA ISP accreditation can assure
schools that the Northern Ireland schools’ internet service is one of the safest
in the world.”
C2k not only successfully met their entire accreditation requirement, but
exceeded them in 75% of the tests, such as email and web filtering and user
support.
Full details of the achievement of measure targets can be found in Chapter 5
of this report.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
ANNEX 7
Monitoring Committee Meeting minutes
BSP Monitoring Committee Minutes
344
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
ANNEX 8
BSP Annual Implementation Reports
Below are Links to the DFP EUD website where the BSP Annual Implementation
Reports are available for download.
BSP Annual Implementation Report 2001
BSP Annual Implementation Report 2002
BSP Annual Implementation Report 2003
BSP Annual Implementation Report 2004
BSP Annual Implementation Report 2005
BSP AIR 2005 Annexes
BSP Annual Implementation Report 2006
BSP AIR 2006 Annexes
BSP Annual Implementation Report 2007
BSP AIR 2007 Information Complement
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
ANNEX 9
Article 4 Guidance and checklist (original and updated)
Original Guidance
DFP – EU FINANCE GUIDANCE NOTE 01/2004
COMPLIANCE WITH EC REGULATION 438/2001
‰
MANAGEMENT AND CONTROL SYSTEMS/AUDIT TRAIL
‰
MONITORING VISITS
‰
5% INSPECTIONS
Introduction
This Guidance Note sets out the action that must be taken to ensure compliance with the
requirements for Management and Control Systems, Audit Trail, Monitoring Visits and 5%
Inspections laid down in EC Regulation 438/2001.
EC Regulation 438/2001 sets out detailed rules for the implementation of EC Regulation
1260/1999. This requires Member States to take a number of measures to ensure that
Community Funds are used efficiently and correctly and in accordance with the principles of
sound financial management.
The guidance is set out in three sections:
Section 1:
Management and Control Systems/Audit Trail (Articles 2, 3, 7, 8, 9)
Section 2:
Monitoring Visits (Article 4)
Section 3:
5% Inspections (Articles 10-14)
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Plus four Annexes:
1. Sample checklist for Article 4 Monitoring visits
2. Audit testing strategy - Project selection
3. Sample Article 10 checklist
4. Article 10 - 5% inspections. Progress report
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
SECTION 1: MANAGEMENT AND CONTROL SYSTEMS/AUDIT TRAIL
Provision of Guidance
1.
EC Regulation 438/2001 defines ‘Intermediate bodies’ as all public or private
bodies or services acting under the responsibility of Managing or Paying Authorities
or performing tasks on their behalf in relation to final recipients. ‘Intermediate
Bodies’ include Government Departments and their agents, Intermediary Funding
Bodies, Local Strategy Partnerships and District Councils.
2.
In order to comply with Article 2 there must be adequate guidance for Managing
and Paying Authorities and Accountable Departments/Implementing Bodies on the
systems required to ensure sound financial management of the Structural Funds
and to provide assurance of the correctness, regularity and eligibility of claims on
Community assistance.
3.
Guidance that has issued to Intermediate Bodies and which they must comply with
includes the EU Structural Funds manual and related Guidance Notes issued by
European Division, DFP for the BSP Programme and in the case of PEACE II and
the Community Initiatives similar and related Guidance issued by SEUPB
Separation of Functions and Performance
4.
In order to comply with Article 3 the management and control systems must ensure
that there is an adequate separation of functions within and between both the
Managing and Paying Authorities and Intermediate Bodies by ensuring that:
a. There is a clear separation of roles between project development, appraisal
and approval. Those who develop a project, or will be responsible for its
implementation, should never be solely responsible for appraising the project.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
b. Officers authorising payments to a project must be different from those who
approved the grant and ideally be different from those involved in any of the
earlier stages of work.
c. Claims should be checked by one officer and payments authorised by
another.
d. Officers carrying out Article 10 Inspection work must:
i.
be functionally and operationally independent from those carrying out
implementation and payment functions;
ii.
not have been part of the appraisal team for the project being
inspected;
iii.
be separate from those carrying out routine monitoring visits under
Article 4;
iv.
if Article 4 and Article 10 checks are subcontracted to private audit
firms, there should be separate contracts made with separate
principals in the subcontracting organisation;
v.
functions are performed in a satisfactory manner. This is outlined in
the Structural Funds manual and the Article 5 Description for each
programme
e.
Intermediate Bodies report on the performance of their tasks and must
ensure that:
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
i.
Grant offer letters set out reporting and monitoring requirements for
individual projects.
ii.
Each project must agree a detailed plan setting out intended outputs,
results and impacts and a profile of expenditure. These plans,
including on-site verification must be monitored by Intermediate
Bodies.
Audit Trail
5.
In order to comply with Article 7 (as amended by Regulation 2355/2002)
management and control systems must provide a sufficient audit trail. An audit trail is
considered sufficient where it permits:
•
Reconciliation of the summary amounts certified to the Commission with
individual expenditure records and supporting documents (see paragraph 8
below) held at the various administrative levels and by final beneficiaries
including, where the latter are not the final recipients of funding, the bodies or
firms carrying out operations; and
•
Verification of the allocation and the transfers of the available Commission
and national funds.
6.
Intermediate Bodies must ensure that the following supporting documents are
retained by them for each of the projects being supported:
Claim forms and supporting documentation
Details of expenditure withheld or clawed back
Methods of allocating expenditure between EU Funded projects and other
projects
Technical specifications and financial plan of the project
Progress reports
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Grant applications
Offer letters
Records of Article 4 visits
Records of Article 10 verification inspections
Final Recipients (Projects)
Original documentation supporting its claims to Intermediate Body e.g.
Invoices/Timesheets etc
Calculations demonstrating use of methods of allocating expenditure between
EU Funded operations and other operations
Original documentation supporting measurement of outputs
Bank records
7.
Where there is more than one Intermediate Body between the final recipient and the
Paying Authority, it is the responsibility of each Body to ensure that it keeps all the
supporting documentation for its own accounting records. This will enable it to
provide at least a summary of the expenditure on each individual operation to the
Body above it.
8.
All accounting records should show the date they were created, the amount of each
item of expenditure, the nature of the supporting documents and the date and
method of payment.
9.
Documents must be held either as originals or on commonly accepted data carriers.
Commonly accepted data carriers include:
•
Photocopies of original documents;
•
Microfiches of original documents;
•
Electronic versions of original documents on optical data carriers (such
as CD-ROM, hard disk or magnetic disk);
•
Documents existing in electronic version only.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
10.
Copied documents, invoices/microfiches etc must be certified true copies by an
independent auditing body (or independent accountant).
11.
Intermediate Bodies should ensure that information kept on commonly accepted data
carriers are kept secure and can be relied upon for audit purposes.
Where
documents exist in electronic version only, the underlying computer system on which
the electronic versions are held must meet accepted security standards, which
ensure that, the documents held meet with national legal requirements and can be
relied upon for audit purposes. Guidance on the evaluation of electronic systems is
being prepared and will be issued by DFP European Division in due course as part of
its EU Finance Guidance series.
Irregular Payments
12.
Records must be kept of the recovery of irregular payments and these must be
reported to the Commission (Article 8). Guidance on dealing with irregularities is
given in DFP EU Finance Guidance Note 01/2003.
Certification of Expenditure
13.
Certificates of statements of interim and final expenditure must be drawn up in a
prescribed format (Article 9). Guidance on the drawdown of receipts from the EC is
being prepared and will be issued by European Division, DFP as part of its EU
Finance Guidance Series.
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SECTION 2: MONITORING VISITS – ARTICLE 4
1.
Programme management and control systems must include procedures:
-
to verify the delivery of products and services funded by EU Funded (i.e.
projects and schemes).
-
to verify the eligibility of expenditure (projects should provide lists of the
transactions that make up a claim in enough detail to verify that what is being
claimed is eligible expenditure).
-
to ensure compliance with the terms of Article 28 of EC Regulation 1260/99.
-
to ensure compliance with applicable community rules, in particular, eligibility of
expenditure under assistance concerned, public procurement, state aid,
protection of environment and equality of opportunity.
2.
The procedures must include the review of individual operations on the spot. The
records must state the results of the visits and the measures taken in respect of
discrepancies.
3.
All projects should be visited at least once in their lifetime by their respective
Intermediate Body. Initial visits should be used to assess the level and reliability of
the processes proposed. Further visits may be necessary to validate and assure
Intermediate Bodies of the robustness of the processes – this will be for individual
Intermediate Bodies to determine depending on the nature of the project.
4.
The following information, outlines the purpose of a monitoring visit, the format
such visits will take and the requirements for projects being monitored.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Purpose of Monitoring Visits
5.
The aims of the on-site monitoring visits are:
•
To ensure that the project conforms to the work plan and content as
agreed in the application/ offer letter and is progressing as stated in the
last claim
•
To identify possible problems as early on as possible and make
suggestions for improvement measures
•
To identify successful elements of the project for possible use in the
common publicity efforts and to share best practice
•
To encourage greater understanding between the Project officer and
applicant on the nature of each others work
The best time to monitor a project
6.
Projects receiving EU assistance must be visited at least once during its lifetime.
The first visit should not be too early in the start of the project as it may not be
possible to form an opinion on the systems in place conversely it should not be at
too late a stage that if records are poor there is insufficient time to put things right.
Visits should be prioritised taking into account the projects grant allocation,
progress reports and claim history. Increases in the frequency of visits will be at
the discretion of the Intermediate Body and will depend on the level of financial
control and/or number of discrepancies found.
Projects that are complete
7.
Where projects have closed, Project Officers should examine the records of the
project – these have to be kept by the applicant for at least 3 years after the final
payment on the programme has been received from the European Commission
(current advice is to retain documents to at least 2013).
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Format of Monitoring Visits
8.
The information provided on the approved application form and claims statement
will form the basis for the on-site visit. In addition to checking the physical
existence of the project, the visits can also be used to collect more detailed data
than is available from the applicant’s claims reports, to provide a thorough check
of progress against targets and to check that the applicant is providing accurate
information. It should be remembered, however, that the onus is on the applicant
to provide basic monitoring information and that visits should not be seen as the
primary method of obtaining data that would more sensibly be included in their
regular claim reports.
9.
In order to have successful visits, it is vital that key members of staff involved in
the project are available during the monitoring visit. Any visit should be arranged
at least two weeks in advance to ensure that this is the case, and in order that
the organisation has time to prepare for the visit. The date and timing must be
confirmed in writing. The letter must detail the documentation and personnel that
need to be available. If possible try to meet some of the recipient/beneficiaries.
Sometimes the project may involve several locations or the records may be kept
at a location other than the project site; in this case visit the project site.
10.
The sample checklist at Annex 1 should be seen as the minimum requirement for
the monitoring visit. Intermediate Bodies may however add additional items for
inspection if it is deemed necessary. The checklist can, however, also be used as
a guide for applicants to aid them in the preparation of the information, which will
be required during the monitoring visit.
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SECTION 3: 5% INSPECTION VISITS - ARTICLE 10
5% Sample
1.
A minimum of 5% of eligible expenditure of programmes and Community
Initiatives must be examined (Article 10) so as to: -
“verify the effectiveness of the management and control systems in
place;
-
verify selectively on the basis of risk analysis, expenditure declarations made
at the various levels concerned.”
2.
The minimum 5% sample must take into account the need to examine an
appropriate mix of types and sizes of projects; any risk factors; and the
concentration of projects under certain Intermediate Bodies. The 5% checks
must cover each year in which that expenditure takes place. The Commission
has recently emphasised the importance of the sample being representative,
covering all types and sizes of projects. These factors should be built into the
Article 10 work Programme for EU Structural Funds projects.
3.
The objective of risk analysis is to direct audit resources to high-risk areas and
projects whilst also ensuring adequate coverage of lower risk areas. Risk
should considered in two categories:
-
Inherent risk – the risk related to the nature of the activities and
management structures that errors will occur; and
-
Control risk – the risk that internal controls will fail to prevent, detect and
correct errors that do occur
4.
Different approaches to risk analysis should be used depending on the
sophistication of the information system available. Where detailed information on
risks associated with individual operations is not available, a more global
approach to risk analysis can be used. This may involve identifying risks
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
associated with the main Intermediate Bodies and final recipients, the complexity
of the rules and structure of a particular measure, and the overall level of
Community assistance. The high-risk priorities or measures having been
distinguished, sampling should then be carried out on the basis of the assessed
level of risk but taking account of the requirement for the sample to be
representative.
5.
In more sophisticated computerised systems which have an integrated risk
register, with risk factors recorded at individual operation level, it should be
possible to combine the risk analysis function and the sampling of projects to
ensure that the sample gives adequate consideration of risk and representivity
6.
It is essential that sampling be done by or under the supervision of the
designated Article 10 Team, not by the Intermediate Body.
7.
In assessing risk, the track record of the applicant, the nature of the project and
the amount of grant/total project value are all factors that should be taken into
account. A simple risk assessment proforma is attached to this guidance note as
Annex 2. The EC audit manual, which gives further guidance, on how risk can be
assessed and reflected in the selection of projects to be visited, which has
already been circulated to Departmental Heads of Internal Audit, should also be
considered.
8.
Those reviewing programmes with large numbers of projects may chose to
approach risk assessment by focusing initially on the project applicant. This is
acceptable as long as it does not obscure the risk posed by individual projects
which by their nature are high risk even though they may be managed by an
otherwise ‘low risk’ applicant.
9.
It is vital that whatever system for assessing risk is used provision is made for
those Intermediate Bodies staff with knowledge of the applicant and/or project to
feed in their views to those doing the assessment of risk. Examples include: a
low risk rating generally applied to District Council applicants may not be
appropriate where it is known a specific project has lost experienced staff or is
having other difficulties in its administration or Intermediate Body programme
staff may have information about a project which conflicts with its reputation
among audit colleagues for submitting well documented and accurate grant
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
claims. In both cases the additional information provided might prompt a higher
risk rating.
10.
The 5% checks must be carried out on the original documentation wherever that
is held in a project. If the project applicant does not hold the original documents,
the checks must be extended to a reasonable sample of grant recipients.
11.
In order not to be too prescriptive the Article 10 checklist and supporting
document checklist at Annex 3 provides an outline of areas to be covered and
from this Article 10 Team can plan their visits which will be further refined in light
of their own circumstances and agree with their relevant departmental Head of
Internal Audit. A common and consistent reporting system has been developed
for all Article 10 Teams which will be subject to review in September 2004.
12.
As well as examining documents, inspection visits must also include examination
of how the project is being managed as a whole and in particular for compliance
with all the conditions of grant set out in the offer letter including any attachments
or subsequent amendments to it. The visits should cover:
-
for an adequate number of expenditure items, that the nature and timing of
the relevant expenditure comply with Community provisions and correspond
to the including on-site verification.
-
practical application and effectiveness of the management and control
systems
-
for an adequate number of accounting records, the comparison of those
records with supporting documents held by intermediate bodies against
those held by the final recipients.
-
the presence of a sufficient audit trail.
-
approved specification of the operation and the works actually executed.
-
that the project consistent with the use described in the application for EU
funding and its subsequent offer of grant.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
-
that the EU financial contributions are within the limits provided for in
Article 29 of Regulation 1260/99 and any other applicable Community
provisions and are paid to final recipients without any unjustified
reductions or delay.
-
that the appropriate national match funding has in fact been made
available; and
-
that the EU funded projects have been implemented in accordance with
Community rules and policies, including the rules on competition, on
award of public contracts, on environmental protection and improvement
and the promotion of equality of opportunity.
Calculating the 5% sample
13.
The 5% should be applied to the total eligible expenditure for “each form of
assistance” (i.e. measure or that part of a Community Initiative for which the
Intermediate Body is responsible). Only expenditure declared up to the date of
the audit can potentially be counted, not later expenditure for the same project.
Audits by the Commission or the European Court of Auditors cannot be counted.
In planning the implementation of the inspection strategy the total for eligible
expenditure should be taken from the most recent financing plan that has been
agreed with the Commission. This is intended to take account of indexation.
14.
However, the Commission stipulates that sampling should be spread evenly over
the lifetime of the programmes and Community Initiatives concerned, but in
proportion to the amounts actually paid. The simplest way to achieve this is to
ensure that a minimum 5% sample is drawn from expenditure declared, by the
relevant Paying Authority, for each year of the Programme or Community
Initiative.
15.
There is no requirement to check 5% of eligible expenditure in each measure
within a programme although sampling should aim to take at least some samples
from each over the lifetime of the programme concerned.
16.
The purpose of checking is to verify the effectiveness of the systems in use in the
project and to verify expenditure declarations that have been made. Verification
of systems points toward spreading the sample of checks at random over a
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
number of claims. Verifying expenditure declarations implies that all the
transactions making up an individual claim must be checked back to primary
documentation.
17.
Once a project has been selected for monitoring by the application of risk based
criteria set out in the monitoring strategy, a detailed examination of all
transactions within a single selected claim (or claims) made by that project will be
the most effective way of meeting both monitoring objectives. Supporting
documents should as a rule be checked 100%. However, where there are large
numbers of similar and repetitive supporting documents such as invoices or
proofs of payment it is accepted audit practice to check a random sample of
adequate size (say 25%) rather than 100%. The sampling method and
confidence level attained should be recorded in the audit report in such cases.
However, if the check reveals errors the sample should be widened to establish
how widespread these are.
18.
The amounts of expenditure counted toward the 5% total may include all the
expenditure making up a claim for which a satisfactory sample of primary
documentation has been examined (i.e. not just the expenditure actually included
in the sample). Such checking should be done ‘on the spot’ (i.e. at the project
concerned) as part of an inspection visit. This is not intended to prevent
documentation being checked, exceptionally, ‘offsite’ where there is no other
practical option available.
Monitoring progress towards 5% sample
19.
Delivery of the 5% sample is a key control in Regulation 438/2001 and failure to
meet it could result in the Departmental Internal Audit Services providing the
Commission with qualified Programme/Community Initiative closure statements.
This could result in the Commission disallowing expenditure and the UK incurring
a direct additional cost. It is therefore necessary for Intermediate Bodies, the
Article 10 Teams, Internal Audit Services and European Division, DFP to monitor
progress toward achieving the sample. The proforma at Annex 4 is intended to
provide the data necessary to do this.
20.
Article 10 Teams should complete the proforma at Annex 4 (or their own
equivalent), covering each six month period i.e. end June and end December, of
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each calendar year, by the 21st of the month following the end of each six month
period.
The returns should be sent to Philip McCartney, EU Division, DFP and
copied to the relevant departmental Head of Internal Audit.
21.
When carrying out 5% inspection visits the Article 10 Team should:
-
check a sample of grant claims and verify the eligible expenditure against
original primary documentation (see paragraph below) recording sufficient
detail to enable the amounts of expenditure actually checked to be readily
identified and the relationship to specific claims to be clearly discernible.
-
complete the attached proforma (Annex 4). This will enable detail of progress
toward completing the 5% sample to be reported, to help provide an audit trail
and to calculate error rates.
22.
Primary documentation is the documentation held by the project that supports the
amount of eligible expenditure claimed in enough detail to provide a clear audit
trail (paragraphs). In summary the project must be able to show that the eligibility
of all expenditure used to calculate the grant claimed can be shown clearly from
the documentation it has to hand. Usually this will mean original invoices for work
done or purchases made, set out in enough detail to confirm the eligibility of the
items listed; time sheets for the calculation of staff costs and details of any inkind contributions. Documentation that does not make the eligibility of
expenditure clear should be questioned.
23.
For capital projects involving building and construction, as a general rule,
expenditure should be checked against certificates provided by an appropriately
qualified Quantity Surveyor.
Architects’ certificates are not usually detailed
enough to provide an adequate check.
24.
The Regulation requires the sample to be a minimum of 5% of expenditure that
has been declared i.e. declared to be eligible. It is therefore clear that if
expenditure is found to be ineligible as a result of substantive checking this does
not prevent the amount checked to be counted toward the 5% sample total.
25.
However, where expenditure is found to be ineligible checking should be
extended to widen the sample to test for further ineligible expenditure and to
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further test the relevant systems. The extended checks should include further
claims at project level and further projects undertaken by the same final recipient.
Any further ineligible expenditure found in such extended testing should not be
included in the 5% total because of the risk of biasing the sample as a whole.
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Records of checks
26.
In addition to completion of the proforma described in paragraph 17 above it is
vital that details of the documentation checked in on-site visits be recorded by the
Article 10 Team in such a way as to provide an audit trail. Each item (invoice,
time sheet etc) should be listed along with a brief description and the amount of
expenditure to which it relates. It is not sufficient to just record the total value of
the invoices etc checked. This is particularly important since such records will be
needed to demonstrate to Commission auditors that the requirements of the
Financial Control Regulations have been met.
27.
The completed checklist and record of transactions should form the basis of a
report on the visit which should include; an explanation of how the examination of
the project was conducted; the reason the project was selected; a description of
the project and how it is managed, the findings of the visit and details of any
irregularity uncovered; the agreed action for correcting these including the
amount of any ineligible expenditure. The report should conclude with
recommendations for action and arrangements for follow-up, if any.
28.
The checks should establish whether any problems encountered are of a
systemic character, entailing a risk for other or all projects carried out by the
same Intermediate Body/final recipient or in the Member State as a whole. They
should identify the causes of such situations, any further examination, which may
be required, and the necessary corrective and preventative action. Remedial
measures must be recorded and actioned to correct systemic deficiencies.
29.
The findings of the visit, the report recommendations and details of the follow-up
required should all be made known to the final recipient and the visit report
should be made available to those managing the project, the departmental Head
of Internal Audit and the relevant Fund Paying Authority.
Articles 15-17: Declaration at Winding-up of Assistance
30.
Detailed guidance on the closure of the EU Funded elements of the 2000-06
main Objective Programmes and Community Initiatives will be provided by
European Division, DFP on receipt of same from the European Commission.
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Article 18: Form and Content of Accounting Information
31.
Article 18 stipulates that the accounting records referred to in the audit trail
requirements at Section 1 paragraph 11 should be held in computerised form as
far as possible and should be made available to the Commission on request. The
scope of the information that may be requested by the Commission and the
preferred technical specifications for the transfer of computer files to the
Commission are indicated in Annexes IV and V of the Regulations. The EU
database has been set up in accordance with the requirements of Annex IV of
the Regulations.
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ANNEX 1
ARTICLE 4 CHECKLIST
Programme:
Measure:
Organisation named in Letter of Offer:
Project Title/Reference No:
Contact Person:
Period of Grant Aid:
Date of Issue of Letter of Offer:
Date of Acceptance:
Visiting Officer(s) Name(s)
Signature(s)
1)………………………………………
1)……………………………………………
2)………………………………………
2)……………………………………………
3)………………………………………
3)……………………………………………
Date of Visit:
Approved Expenditure - Letter of Offer details
Eligible
Expenditure
EU Grant
Match
Funding
Expenditure
Declared
Revenue
Capital
Total
Has the Project formally accepted the Offer of Grant and is the signed Acceptance on
file? YES/NO
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
PROJECT OBJECTIVES/MONITORING AS DETAILED ON GRANT APPLICATION
FORM
Please provide brief description of the project Objectives
Brief Outline of Project Management Structure
Is there evidence to show that this management structure is in operation?
YES/NO
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
A
(1)
(2)
(3)
(4)
Project Management and Administration
YES
Are the project's aims consistent with those of the
parent organisation?
Is the project performing against objectives/targets
agreed with the funder? Obtain evidence and record
details of any significant deviations.
Are procedures in place to ensure retention of all
documentation until 31 December 2013?
Is the project aware its obligations in relation to
European and National statutory requirements on:
a)
b)
c)
Equal Opportunities
Fair employment
Health & Safety
(5)
In establishing the legitimacy of the operation, has
the project insurance in respect of:
a)
Employer's liability?
b)
Public Liability?
c)
Buildings and Contents Insurance?
d)
Employees' fraud and dishonesty Insurance
(not obligatory)?
B
Financial Management
(1)
Are the project’s financial procedures documented?
a)
Are they adequate?
b)
Is a proper segregation of duties
maintained?
c)
Are there appropriate authorisations for bank
accounts and delegated actions?
d)
What processes are in place to ensure
appropriate cash management of the project
e.g. account reconciliation, petty cash, filing
of documentation etc?
(2)
Does the project have a separate bank account for
the grant/project or are codified arrangements in
place?
Record details.
(3)
Do accounting records maintained allow for easy
identification of project/grant income and expenditure
to the project?
(4)
Is petty cash operated in accordance with the
project’s policy? (As appropriate)
(5)
Is the project or parent organisation registered for
VAT?
Provide VAT registration details or reason why not
registered
367
NO
COMMENTS
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
(6)
Are there procedures in place to ensure that any
costs that are required to be apportioned are carried
out correctly?
Detail processes
C
Physical Progress & Indicators
(1)
Have arrangements been put in place to ensure the
project is monitored and runs to time and costs, i.e.
what method does the project management use to
monitor:
a) Progress on the project, i.e. review
performance against indicators?
b)
Outputs and results, i.e. assessment of
achievements against targets?
c) Budgetary information, i.e. is
expenditure in line with projection?
[Record details as to nature, accuracy and
timeliness of reports produced]
D
Partnership
(1)
Are there any partners in this project?
What role will each partner play in the
implementation of this project?
Provide details of the partner and whether the
support is direct funding or indirect support and
what form it takes
E
(1)
Linkages
Has the project any links to other publicly funded
projects?
How will this benefit the project and are any other
linkages planned?
F
(1)
Publicity
Is the project promoter ensuring that the obligations
with regard to publicity (EC No 1159/2000) are being
complied with?
Has the project a policy about the delivery of the
publicity requirements for the project?
G
Horizontal Principles
(1)
Are there management systems in place to report on
the horizontal principles of the Programme?
a)
b)
c)
d)
Balanced Intervention/Equal Opportunity
New TSN
Transparency/Publicity
Environmental Stability
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
(2)
Has the project agreed a set of horizontal principle
outputs and results?
Has the project the necessary systems in place and
are they recording them in the right way?
(3)
Does the project have an impact on the
environment? Is it:
a)
b)
Positive
Neutral
Developmental Path Assigned
1 2 3 4 5
Circle as appropriate.
Projects with a negative environmental impact
should not be assisted.
(4)
Does the project have an exit strategy?
Provide details
H
Public Procurement
(1)
Is the project management aware or the need to
adhere to public procurement policies?
What processes are in place to ensure compliance?
NB: The foregoing areas are deemed to be the minimum required to satisfy the
requirements of Article 4 of Regulation (EC) No 438/2001, however, if considered
appropriate, during the visit a more detailed check may be conducted on any of
the areas highlighted.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
ANNEX 2
ARTICLE 10 CHECKLIST
Department / IFB
Implementing Body details
Name
Address
Contact Name
Tel No
Fax No
E-mail
Project details
Name
Address
Contact Name
Tel No
Fax No
E-mail
Operational Programme
/ Community Initiative Name
Priority No
Measure No
Project Ref No
Total Project Cost
EU Contribution
Public Contribution
Private Contribution
Revenue
Brief Project Description
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Name of Visiting Officer
Date of Visit
Signature of Visiting Officer………………………………………………………….
COVERAGE OF ARTICLE 10 CHECKS
Calendar
year
Period covered by
expenditure claim (tick
as appropriate)
Amount of eligible
expenditure claimed
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
Total
371
% of total
eligible
expenditure
checked
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
PRE-VISIT CHECKS ON IMPLEMENTING BODY FILES
1.
Project Application / Letter of
Y
Offer
(a) Has the Application form been
properly completed?
(b) Are Parts ‘A’and ‘B’ on file?
(c) Has the Application been
acknowledged / date stamped / time
received recorded?
(d) Is there a documented project
specification with clear targets?
(e) Does the project meet all of the
Structural Funds’ selection criteria?
(f) Is there a copy of the Weighting /
Scoring matrix on file?
(g) Is there a signed Letter of Offer on
file – with a date prior to the start of
the project? (if signed later than
start date – state reason(s))
(h) Is there a Letter of Offer Acceptance
on file – signed by the identified
person or persons responsible for
this project?
(i)
Is there evidence of receipt &
analysis of business case /
economic appraisal (if appropriate)?
(j)
Were other sources of Funding
declared in the application? [If so,
give details]
(k) Was an Article 4 check carried out?
[If so, is a copy available?]
(l)
Are there procedures in place to
report ineligible expenditure,
financial irregularities and/or
suspected fraud?
(m) Is there a nominated member of
staff within the Implementing Body
designated to authorise payments to
this project?
(n) Has the project provided copies of
the relevant Insurance Certificates?
(if appropriate)
(o) Has the project provided copies of
relevant Building / Planning
permission documentation?
(if appropriate)
(p) Has project data been input to the
Monitoring Database?
372
N
Comments
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
CHECKS ON PROJECT – 1. ORGANISATION STRUCTURE / POLICIES
1.1
Organisational structure and
Y
policies
(a) Is there an organisation structure
showing staff employed on this
project?
(b) Is there a project plan with
financial and monitoring targets as
in the application? (If so, how is
progress monitored?)
(c) Is there a written policy for
retention of documents? (until
December 2013)
(d) Is there a written policy on Equal
Opportunities?
(e) Is there a written policy on Health
and Safety?
(f) Is there a written policy for meeting
EC Regulations on publicity? *
(g) Is there a written policy on
procurement / tendering?
(h) Is there a written policy on data
protection?
(i)
Is there a clear separation of
functions between staff involved in
the EU project and any other
activities of the organisation?
(j)
Have there been any changes to
the project from the original
application?
(k) Have these been as a result of
monitoring / evaluation by the
project managers?
(l)
Was the written approval of the
Implementing Body obtained
before changes were made?
(m) Is there a record of all monitoring
activity carried out?
*
N
Comments
There must be a clear recognition of EU funding in all documentation and
participants must be aware of EU assistance to the project.
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CHECKS ON PROJECT – 2. FINANCIAL INFORMATION
2.1
General and capital costs
Y
(a)
Does the project have an
expenditure profile / budget?
(b) Is there regular monitoring of
actual costs against profiled
expenditure?
(c) Is there a separate Bank account
(or identifiable coding) for this
project?
(d) Is there a clear basis for
apportionment of EU expenditure
in respect of overheads, etc?
(e) Where this expenditure has been
apportioned, is there evidence of
payment from other sources for
the balance?
(f) Is there supporting documentation
for all expenditure claimed?
(g) Are there original invoices for all
expenditure charged to the EU
project?
(h) Where there are non-invoiced
costs are they supported by
relevant official documentation?
(i)
Is there an up to date Bank
Statement?
(j)
Is there evidence of a regular
reconciliation between invoices,
receipts, cheques and Bank
records?
(k) Is there written authorisation for
staff to sign cheques? (specify
name / and the financial limit for
each person)
(l)
Have all the cheques been signed
by the authorised signatories?
(m) Are any cheques pre-signed?
(n) Is there a written policy on the use
of petty cash?
(o) Have petty cash payments been
made in line with this written
policy?
(p) Is the organisation registered for
VAT?
(q) Does all expenditure claimed
exclude VAT?
(r)
Does the project generate
revenue?
374
N
Comments
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
(s)
(t)
(u)
(v)
(w)
(x)
(y)
Is there evidence of receipts in
respect of income and has it been
offset against this project?
Is there an assets register for all
capital items purchased?
Are all capital purchases claimed
identifiable in the register?
Is there a record of the Serial No
of each item of capital equipment?
Is there any capital item not
purchased new?
Has the project complied with the
eligibility Regulations regarding the
purchase of second hand
equipment (as detailed in
Regulation 1685/2000 amended
by Regulation 1145/2003)?
Is the purchase price reasonably
consistent with the overall age /
condition of the asset?
CHECKS ON PROJECT – 2. FINANCIAL INFORMATION
2.2
Staff costs and expenses
(a)
Where staff costs are charged is
there evidence that they were
calculated as outlined in the
Letter of Offer?
Is there evidence that they are
employed exclusively on this
project?
If costs for staff time are
apportioned, is the basis for this
identifiable? (If so, provide
details)
Is there a signed weekly /
monthly timesheet for staff, with
clearly identified time spent on
this project?
Is there a P11 (manual /
computerised) for each member
of staff?
Is there a written policy detailing
travel & subsistence allowance
rates for the EU project?
(b)
(c)
(d)
(e)
(f)
(g)
(h)
Y
Is there a written policy regarding
hospitality? (limits and approval
procedures)
Have all staff expenses included
375
N
Comments
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
(i)
(j)
in the claim(s) been submitted in
accordance with these policies?
Is there documentation to verify
that all staff travel / subsistence
claims have been paid?
Do the amounts paid agree with
the amounts claimed?
CHECKS ON PROJECT – 2. FINANCIAL INFORMATION
2.3
Expenditure claims by projects
(a)
Has the person who signed the
claim been authorised to do so by
the organisation?
Does the same person sign all
expenditure claims?
Is a checklist used for claim
information before it is declared?
Can all match funding be clearly
identified on each claim?
Can all claim information be
verified from the project’s
accounting records?
Are all original invoices endorsed
with cheque / payment details
when paid?
Has an arithmetical check been
carried out on all expenditure
included in the claim?
Was this check carried out by a
person or persons independent of
the person who signed the claim?
Has all, or a sample of
expenditure declared in this claim
been incurred and paid within the
eligible dates for the project?
Does the project produce certified
and audited annual accounts?
(if so, are these submitted to the
Implementing Body?)
(b)
(c)
(d)
(e)
(f)
(g)
(h)
(i)
(j)
Y
376
N
Comments
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
CHECKS ON PROJECT – 3. GENERAL
3.1
Tenders for works or services
(a)
Where a project is required to
tender work or services, is this in
line with procurement policy?
Were tenders recorded and
evaluated against set criteria?
Are decisions to award / refuse
clearly documented and held on
file?
(b)
(c)
Y
N
Y
N
Comments
ESF ONLY – 1. FINANCIAL CONTROL
1.
(a)
(b)
(c)
(d)
(e)
(f)
(g)
(h)
Monitoring & verification
(beneficiaries / participants)
Is there a signed application form
for each participant?
Does each participant meet the
criteria for the project? (age,
length of time unemployed, etc)
Is there a timesheet for each
participant – signed by the
participant and a member of
staff?
Do the starting and finishing
dates for training agree with the
period claimed?
Is there a training needs analysis
for each participant? (if so, note
the date it was carried out)
Is there a record of the outcome
of the training activities carried
out? (certificate, etc)
Is there a weekly / monthly
reconciliation of payments
against signed timesheets
submitted?
Is there a record of payments
made? (cheques, BACS
transfers, etc)
377
Comments
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
ANNEX 3
AUDIT TESTING STRATEGY: PROJECT SELECTION
RISK FACTORS
Category
Risk
Description
Score
(a) Project eligible
Low
Less than £100k
1
Medium
Greater than £100k but less than
2
spend
See Note 1.
£500k
(b) Type of provider
High
Greater than £500k
3
Low
Local authority/business link
1
Medium
FE/HE Institutions
2
High
Other
e.g.
private
companies,
3
Good e.g. claims accurate and
1
voluntary sector, etc
(c) Track record
Low
prompt, no problems identified by
monitoring visits, etc.
Medium
Adequate e.g. most claims accurate
and
prompt,
minor
2
problems
identified by monitoring visits, etc
High
Poor e.g. claims inaccurate and/or
3
consistently late, major problems
identified by monitoring visits, etc.
(d) Overall Risk
Low
3-4
Medium
5-6
High
7-9
Example
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
A project with total expenditure eligible for EU support of £1m is managed by a District Council.
A recent visit by the monitoring team found a number of major problems, including claims
based on estimates rather than defrayed expenditure and the inclusion of ineligible items. The
project was assessed as ' high risk' as follows: -
(a) Project eligible spend
3
(b) Type of provider
1
(c) Track record
3
(d) Overall Risk
7 HIGH
Notes:
The values may need to be varied to reflect the circumstances of individual projects. For
example, a project with an eligible spend of £100k may be relatively large in one of the smaller
programmes.
379
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 2
ANNEX 4
ERDF REGULATION 438/2001 – ARTICLE 10 – 5% SAMPLE – PROGRESS
RECORD
Date:
IAS- Department:
Programme/
Total
Eligible
Amount
Community
Expenditure
5%
Initiative
Per Year
Column 2
of Eligible
(2)
of column 2
Expenditure
checked
(1)
of Column 4 as %
to
date
(3)
(5)
(4)
Year 1
Year 2
Year 3
etc
Year 1
Year 2
Year 3
etc
Year 1
Year 2
Year 3
etc
‰
Column 1 - name of each programme /Community Initiative covered by regulation
438/2001 and for which a 5% sample is required.
In summary this is all
programmes/CIs that require completion of a closure statement.
‰
Column 2 - total eligible expenditure planned to be spent over the lifetime of each
programme/CI included in Column 1 – broken down for each year where expenditure
is planned.
‰
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Column 3 - 5% of the total planned eligible expenditure per year – in effect this is the
target figure for each programme/CI we should be aiming to deliver.
‰
Column 4 – total eligible expenditure per year included in the substantive checking
described above. Data in this column will always be cumulative from the start of the
programme/CI to the end of the reporting quarter.
‰
Column 5 – Column 4 as a percentage of Column 2, which gives the progress, made
toward the target figure for each year.
381
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
UPDATED GUIDANCE
DFP – EU FINANCE GUIDANCE NOTE
01/2006
COMPLIANCE WITH EC REGULATION 438/2001
MONITORING VISITS (Article 4)
Introduction
1.
This Guidance Note replaces the guidance provided in Document EU Finance
Guidance Note 1/2005 on the action that must be taken to ensure compliance with the
requirements for Monitoring Visits laid down in Article 4 of EC Regulation 438/2001.
and the attached Annex provides a model checklist designed to ensure that all relevant
areas are addressed.
2.
Guidance that has issued to Intermediate Bodies and which they must comply with
includes the EU Structural Funds manual and related Guidance Notes issued by
European Division, DFP for the BSP Programme and in the case of PEACE II and the
Community Initiatives similar and related Guidance issued by SEUPB (Websites:
www.europe-dfpni.gov.uk www.seupb.org )
3.
EC Regulation 438/2001 sets out detailed rules for the implementation of EC
Regulation 1260/1999. This requires Member States to take a number of measures to
ensure that Community Funds are used efficiently and correctly and in accordance
with the principles of sound financial management.
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Article 4 of Regulation 438/2001 states:
“Management and control systems shall include procedures to verify the delivery of
the products and services co-financed and the reality of expenditure claimed and to
ensure compliance with the terms of the relevant Commission decision under Article
28 of Regulation (EC) No 1260/1999 and with the applicable national and
Community rules on, in particular, the eligibility of expenditure for support from the
Structural Funds under the assistance concerned, public procurement, State aid
(including the rules on the cumulations of aid), protection of the environment and
equality of opportunity.
The procedures shall require the recording of verifications of individual operations on
the spot. The records shall state the work done, the results of the verification and the
measures taken in respect of discrepancies. Where any physical or administrative
verifications are not exhaustive, but performed on a sample of operations, the
records shall identify the operations selected and describe the sampling method.”
Coverage of Visits
4.
The procedures must include the review of individual operations on the spot. The
records must state the results of the visits and the measures taken in respect of
discrepancies.
5.
All projects should be visited at least once in their lifetime by their respective
Intermediate Body. Initial visits should be used to assess the level and reliability of the
processes proposed. Further visits may be necessary to validate and assure
Intermediate Bodies of the robustness of the processes – this will be for individual
Intermediate Bodies to determine depending on the nature of the project.
6.
Visits carried out before the issue of the Guidance Note and sample checklist, that
comply with the requirements of the Regulation, need not be re-performed
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BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Purpose of Monitoring Visits
7.
The aims of the on-site monitoring visits are:
•
To ensure that the project conforms to the work plan and content as agreed in
the application/ offer letter and is progressing as stated in the last claim – if a
claim has been submitted
•
To identify possible problems as early as possible and make suggestions for
improvement measures
•
To identify successful elements of the project for possible use in the common
publicity efforts and to share best practice
•
To encourage greater understanding between the Intermediate Body and
project on the nature of each others work
The best time to monitor a project
8.
A project receiving EU assistance must be visited at least once during its lifetime.
The first visit should not be too near the start of the project as it may not be possible
to form an opinion on the systems in place conversely it should not be at too late a
stage that if records are poor there is insufficient time to put things right. Visits should
be prioritised taking into account the project’s grant allocation, progress reports and
claim history. Increases in the frequency of visits will be at the discretion of the
Intermediate Body and will depend on the type of project and level of financial
control and/or number of discrepancies found.
Projects that are complete
9
Where projects have closed, the Article 4 check should still be carried out on the
records of the project – these records have to be kept by the applicant for at least
3 years after the final payment on the programme has been received from the
European Commission (current advice is to retain documents to at least
December 2013).
384
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Format of Monitoring Visits
10.
The information provided on the approved application form and any claims
statement will form the basis for the on-site visit. In addition to checking the
physical existence of the project, the visit can also be used to collect more
detailed data than is available from the project’s claims reports, to provide a
thorough check of progress against targets and to check that the project is
providing accurate information. It should be remembered, however, that the onus
is on the project to provide basic monitoring information and that visits should not
be seen as the primary method of obtaining data that would more sensibly be
included in their regular claim reports.
11.
In order to have successful visits, it is vital that key members of staff involved in
the project are available during the monitoring visit. Any visit should be arranged
in advance in conjunction with the project to ensure that this is the case, and in
order that the organisation has time to prepare for the visit. The date and timing
should where possible be confirmed in writing detailing the documentation and
personnel
that
need
to
be
available.
recipients/beneficiaries should be met.
Where
possible
some
of
the
Sometimes the project may involve
several locations or the records may be kept at a location other than the project
site; in this case visit the project site or utilise existing expertise to verify delivery
of services.
Model Checklist
12.
The model checklist attached at Annex 1 should be seen as the minimum
requirement for the monitoring visit. Intermediate Bodies may however add
additional items for inspection if it is deemed necessary and, depending on the
nature of the project, some of the questions may not be applicable. Copies of
alternative Checklists should be provided to European Division, DFP. The
checklist can, however, also be used as a guide for project promoters to aid them
in the preparation of the information, which will be required during the monitoring
visit.
385
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
13.
Where a monitoring visit is being carried out on a Government Department acting
as an Implementing Body, consideration should also be given to existing
assurances from Departmental Internal Audit Branches and the Northern Ireland
Office where these include an inspection of EU-related activities.
14. Article 4 reports should be copied to the Article 10 Teams for information
386
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
ANNEX 1
ARTICLE 4 MODEL CHECKLIST
Programme:
Measure:
Organisation named in Letter of Offer:
Project Title/Reference No:
Contact Person:
Period of Grant Aid:
Date of Issue of Letter of Offer:
Date of Acceptance:
Visiting Officer(s) Name(s)
Signature(s)
1)………………………………………
1)……………………………………………
2)………………………………………
2)……………………………………………
3)………………………………………
3)……………………………………………
Date of Visit:
Approved Expenditure - Letter of Offer details
Eligible
Expenditure
EU Grant
Match
Funding
Expenditure
Declared
Revenue
Capital
Total
Has the Project formally accepted the Offer of Grant and is the signed Acceptance on
file? YES/NO
387
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
PROJECT OBJECTIVES/MONITORING AS DETAILED ON GRANT APPLICATION
FORM
Please provide brief description of the project Objectives
Brief Outline of Project Management Structure
Is there evidence to show that this management structure is in operation?
YES/NO
388
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
A
Project Management and Administration
YES
NO
COMMENTS / EVIDENCE
(1)
Are the project's aims consistent with those of the
parent organisation? (If appropriate)
Mission statement for parent organisation
(2)
Is the project performing against objectives/targets
agreed with the funder?
Compare with Application / Letter of Offer
(3)
Are procedures in place to ensure retention of all
documentation until 31 December 2013?
What type of storage (disc, microfiche, etc)
is being used
(4)
Is the project aware its obligations in relation to
European and National statutory requirements on:
a) Data Protection
b) Equal Opportunities
c) Fair employment
d) Health & Safety
Written policy documents
(5)
How will these be addressed?
In establishing the legitimacy of the operation, has
the project insurance in respect of:
a)
Employer's liability?
b)
Public Liability?
c)
Buildings and Contents Insurance?
d)
Employees' fraud and dishonesty Insurance
(not obligatory)?
B
Financial Management
(1)
Are the project’s financial procedures documented?
Is there evidence of valid certificates
Expiry date(s)
Flow chart of financial procedures
Sample signatures and authorisation limits
e)
Are they adequate?
f)
Is a proper segregation of duties
maintained?
g)
Are there appropriate authorisations for bank
accounts and delegated actions?
h)
What processes are in place to ensure
appropriate cash management of the project
e.g. account reconciliation, petty cash, filing
of documentation etc?
Record Details of Bank A/c etc
(2)
Does the project have a separate bank account for
the grant/project or are codified arrangements in
place?
(3)
Do accounting records maintained allow for easy
identification of project/grant income and expenditure
to the project?
(4)
Is petty cash operated in accordance with the
project’s policy? (As appropriate)
Evidence of signatures / authorisation limits
and procedures
(5)
Is the project or parent organisation registered for
VAT?
Provide VAT registration details or reason
why not registered
389
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
(6)
(3)
C
(1)
(4)
Are there procedures in place to ensure that any
Does that
the project
have an
impact
on the are carried
costs
are required
to be
apportioned
environment?
out
correctly? Is it:
Detail processes
a)
Positive
b)
Neutral
Physical
Progress & Indicators
Evidence of calculation method. Detail
processes
Developmental
Path been
Assigned
Have arrangements
put in place to ensure the
1
2 is3monitored
4 5 and
6 runs to time and costs, i.e.
project
Circle
as appropriate.
what method
does the project management use to
monitor:
Projects with a negative environmental impact
should not be assisted.
a} Progress on the project, i.e. review
performance against indicators?
Does the project have an exit strategy?
Flow charts of management procedures
Details of corrective action – if any – and
timescales
b)
H
Provide details
Outputs and results, i.e. assessment of
achievements against targets?
Public Procurement
(1)
c) Budgetary information, i.e. is
expenditure
in line with
projection?
Is the project
management
aware
or the need to
adhere to public procurement policies?
D
Partnership
What processes are in place to ensure compliance?
(1)
Are there any partners in this project?
Evidence of compliance and
understanding
Provide details of the partner and whether
the support is direct funding or indirect
support and what form it takes
What role will each partner play in the
implementation of this project?
E
Linkages
(1)
Has the project any links to other publicly funded
projects?
Evidence of linkage and context
How will this benefit the project and are any other
linkages planned?
F
(1)
Publicity
Is the project promoter ensuring that the obligations
with regard to publicity (EC No 1159/2000) are being
complied with?
Evidence of publicity material
Has the project a policy about the delivery of the
publicity requirements for the project?
G
Horizontal Principles
(1)
Are there management systems in place to report on
the horizontal principles of the Programme?
a)
b)
c)
Balanced Intervention/Equal Opportunity
Transparency/Publicity
Environmental Stability
Details of Reporting system in place
For example, is the equality questionnaire
issued to final beneficiaries?
How is any publicity action taken by the
project ?
NOTE TO IMPLEMENTING BODY
Following the Article 10 visit the correct postcode for each project must be input
to the database.
390
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
NB: The foregoing areas are deemed to be the minimum required to satisfy the
requirements of Article 4 of Regulation (EC) No 438/2001, however, if considered
appropriate, during the visit a more detailed check may be conducted on any of
the areas highlighted.
An Example of an Implementing Body checklist on next page
391
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
ARTICLE 4 CHECKLIST: FINANCIAL CONTROL VISIT
Project Ref No:
Date of Visits:
Promoter(s):
Project Title:
Project Principle/Contact:
Total Grant (Per LoO)
LoO Date:
Project - Start Date:
End Date:
Date LoO Accepted:
Copy of signed
acceptance on File:
IA Officer:
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF PROJECT:
DESCRIPTION OF OTHER PROJECTS MANAGED BY THIS ORGANISATION
PROJECT TITLE
LoO Details - Approved
Expenditure
MAIN GRANT
FUNDER
Eligible
Total
392
MAIN GRANT
PROGRAMME
MEASURE
AMOUNT
AWARDED
EU Grant
Match
Expenditure
Declared
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
393
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
MANAGEMENT AND SYSTEMS REVIEW
A.0
BUDGETS
A.1
Does the promoter fully agree with the budgets details as set
out in annex 2 of the LoO?
A.2
Has the match funding for the project been confirmed?
YES
NO
COMMENTS
(provide detail)
A.3
Is the promoter conversant with the grant drawdown
procedures?
(a) eligibility of expenditure
(b) regular claims (Quarterly)
(c) invoices to be claimed within 6 month period
(d) annual budgets / N+2
(e) audited claims
A.4
If relevant, is the promoter conversant with the advance
payments system?
A.5
Has the promoter been provided with copies of the relevant
grant claim forms?
A.6
In its monitoring of budgets does the promoter take
cognisance of expenditure deemed ineligible or unvouched
from previous grant claims?
394
TYPE OF EVIDENCE
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
B.0
FINANCIAL PROCEDURES
B.1
Does the promoter have clearly defined procedures for
(a) opening/closing accounts
(b) monitoring budgets
(c) authorising expenditure
(d) issuing payments
(e) reconciling bank statements?
YES
NO
COMMENTS
assess their adequacy
B.2
Is there a defined list of authorised cheques signatories?
provide details
B.3
Does the project have a separate bank account for the
grant/project or are codified arrangements in place?
record details
B.4
Does the promoter have clearly defined ordering and
contract procedures?
assess their adequacy
B.5
Is the promoter aware of the need to provide quotations for
all services/ expenditure over €1,450 (£1,000) as per LoO
guidance (Annex 3)?
B.6
If relevant, has the promoter documented apportionment
policies?
(a) Is the policy reasonable and transparent?
(b) Has it been correctly formulated?
(c) Is it being correctly applied?
assess each such policy
B.7
Evidence of Match Funding, see LoO details
395
TYPE OF EVIDENCE
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
C.0
PAYMENTS
C.1
How will monies paid from the INTERREG IIIA
programme be recorded in the accounting records, e.g. the
cashbook?
C.2
How often does the promoter reconcile their accounts? e.g.
receipts v payments
C.3
Are details of all cheques issued (including cancelled
cheques) recorded in a cheques journal?
C.4
Have the defined ordering and payment authorisation
policies been implemented?
Select a sample of 3 payments and trace them through the
system.
C.5
Are all payments supported by relevant certified
documentation? e.g. invoices, payroll calculations, etc.
C.6
Is all such supporting documentation marked paid and filed
appropriately?
C.7
Is the practice of pre-signed blank cheques prohibited?
C.8
Are all payments (except minor expenses paid from petty
cash) made via the cheque or credit transfer system?
YES
NO
COMMENTS
YES
NO
COMMENTS
TYPE OF EVIDENCE
list any exceptions
D.0
PETTY CASH
D.1
What is the maximum balance retained?
D.2
Do petty cash payments require authorisation?
D.3
Who has access to petty cash?
D.4
Are the invoices/receipts for petty cash expenditure
retained?
D.5
Does the petty cash system operate effectively, i.e. are
IOUs and the cashing of personal cheques prohibited?
396
TYPE OF EVIDENCE
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
E.0
RECORD KEEPING
E.1
Is the promoter aware of the need to retain all records
relating to the project until, at least, 31 December 2013?
E.2
Has the promoter established monitoring systems to
facilitate review of the project’s progress?
Assess their adequacy.
E.3
Are the minutes of all meetings of the board, sub-groups
and committees, retained satisfactorily?
E.4
Are variance reports, i.e. budget v actual, presented to
the board / project management team?
E.5
Do the accounting records facilitate easy identification
of grant & project income and project expenditure?
F.0
PERSONNEL ISSUES
F.1
Is the promoter aware of and implementing its
obligations in respect of:
ƒ
Equal opportunities
ƒ
Fair employment
ƒ
Health & safety
ƒ
Child protection
ƒ
Publicity see I.5; and
ƒ
Other relevant national regulations?
F.2
Is there a policy i.r.o contract of employment/conditions
and service?
F.3
How will the payroll system operate?
F.4
Are there appropriate guidelines relating to travel and
other related expenses?
YES
NO
COMMENTS
TYPE OF EVIDENCE
YES
NO
COMMENTS
TYPE OF EVIDENCE
397
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
G.0
ADVISORS/CONSULTANTS
G.1
What are the selection and appointment procedures i.r.o.
advisors/consultants?
G.2
Do these comply with the public procurement guidelines set out at Annex 3
in the LoO?
H.0
CROSS-BORDER ELEMENT
H.1
Is there evidence of regular liaison between the project promoters?
H.2
Are all partners involved in the management of the project?
H.3
Does the promoter’s monitoring system support ongoing review of the
cross-border impact of the project?
I.0
GENERAL
I.1
Is the project performing against objectives /targets
agreed by the funder and/ or Implementing Agent
(IA)
I.2
Is the group registered as an employer with the
Inland Revenue / Revenue Commissioners?
I.3
Is the group registered for VAT?
If so has VAT been correctly dealt with in the
cheques journal and grant claims?
YES
NO
COMMENTS
TYPE OF EVIDENCE
COMMENTS
TYPE OF EVIDENCE
COMMENTS
TYPE OF EVIDENCE
provide VAT registration details or reason why not
registered
398
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
I.0
GENERAL
YES
I.4
Does the group have appropriate insurance policies,
i.e.
ƒ
Employer’s liability
ƒ
Public liability
ƒ
Buildings & contents
ƒ
Employees’ fraud & dishonesty
(not obligatory) ?
I.5
Has the group been made aware of the publicity
requirements of the programme? Regulation
1159/2000
Is there evidence that the publicity requirements
have been implemented?
I.6
NO
COMMENTS
Is the project management aware of the need to
adhere to public procurement policies?
What processes are in place to ensure compliance?
Does the asset register provide a:
I.7
ƒ
ƒ
ƒ
ƒ
ƒ
full description of the item?
serial number?
purchase price?
date of purchase?
estimated lifespan or date of write - off
I.8
Are EU funded assets listed separately and is the
promoter aware of the conditions relating to their
disposal, etc?
I.9
Is the group able to comply with the conditions
stated in the LoO?
399
TYPE OF EVIDENCE
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
I.0
I.10
GENERAL
YES
NO
COMMENTS
TYPE OF EVIDENCE
Does the project have an impact on the environment?
Is it:
a)
b)
Positive
Neutral
Development Path Assigned
6
Projects with a negative environmental impact
should not be assisted.
I.11
Does the project have an exit strategy?
provide details
YES
NO
DO THE PROJECT MANAGEMENT & CONTROL SYSTEMS APPEAR ADEQUATE?
COMMENTS
Financial procedures are strong. No problems noted from sample testing. No formal project management procedures in place, but this is consistent with the scale and nature of the
project. Segregation of duties evidenced between ordering, payroll, payments systems.
YES
WERE ANY PROBLEMS DISCOVERED DURING THE VISIT?
400
NO
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
COMMENTS
WHAT ARE THE CAUSES OF THE PROBLEMS?
YES
NO
WILL THE PROMOTER RESOLVE THESE PROBLEMS?
COMMENTS
YES
ARE THE PROBLEMS OF A SYSTEMATIC NATURE? (Yes for archiving issue only)
DO THEY CARRY A RISK FOR THIS PROJECT?
DO THEY CARRY A RISK FOR OTHER PROJECTS MANAGED BY THE PROMOTER? (Yes for archiving issue only)
401
NO
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
REVIEWER’s COMMENTS
COMPLETED
BY:
SIGNATURE:
POSITION:
DATE:
REVIEWED BY:
SIGNATURE :
POSITION:
DATE:
402
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
ANNEX 10
Article 10 Guidance and checklist
Article 10 Guidance and Checklist
403
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
ANNEX 11
Paying Authority Record of on-the-spot check
Part 1 – Managing Authority request and Certificate covering the Claim
Yes /
No
1. Is there a request from the
Managing Authority to submit a
claim?
2. Has the Managing Authority
provided a covering Certificate?
3. Is the Certificate signed and
dated?
4. Does the Certificate provide details
of compliance with the following
requirements?
(a) adoption of Programme
Complement;
(b) latest Annual report
Submitted;
(c) mid-term evaluation
submitted;
(d) decisions of MA and
Monitoring Committee;
(e) recommendations made by
the Commission acted
upon; and
(f) requests for corrective
Measures acted upon
5. Is there a Measure level
breakdown of expenditure?
Comments / details
Yes
Request dated 1.11.2007
Yes
Certificate dated 1.11.2007
Yes
Signed by Lynsey Moore 1.11.2007
Yes
Yes
Yes
Signed by Lynsey Moore 1.11.2007
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Shown as Drawdown No 175
404
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
General observations…………………………………………………………………
………………………………………………………………………………………….
………………………………………………………………………………………….
Signed…Philip McCartney………………………. Position…ERDF PA (S.O.)
Date……16/11/2007
405
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Part 2 – Certificate and Statement of Expenditure (provided by IBs)
Yes/
No
1. Does the Certificate from the
Implementing Body / Accountable
Department have an original
signature?
2. Is the Certificate dated?
3. Is there a list of project payments
in support of the Certificate?
4. Are the payments in £ Sterling?
5. Do the project payments
distinguish between EU and national
Funding sources?
3. Is there any Private funding /
income included?
5. Is the intervention rate consistent
with that for the Measure from the
latest Programme Complement?
Comments / details
Yes
Signed by Errol Gunning
Yes
15.10.2007
Yes
Payments in Oct, Nov, Dec 06 and Jul, Sept
2007
Yes
Yes
No
Yes
Programme Complement (Oct ’05) shows
0.749999997 Payments shown at same – or
lower - rate
General observations…Selected measure 1.6 because (a) previous problem in 2003 with amount certified for Roads element and (b) the
current value is 51.9% of the total value of declared expenditure in current claim (DD 175)
………………………………………………………………………………………….
………………………………………………………………………………………….
406
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Signed…Philip McCartney……………………. Position…ERDF PA (S.O.)
Date……19/11/2007
407
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Part 3 – For selected project payment records (held by IBs)
Project Details
1. Is there a distinct Project file?
2. Does it show Bank details for the
project?
3. Does it contain a signed and dated
Letter of Offer (LoO) showing start
and finish dates?
4. Is there a signed and dated
acceptance for the Letter of Offer?
5. Is the start date in the LoO before
the date of the first payment?
6. Were all payments made for
expenditure incurred between the
start and finish dates shown in the
LoO?
Yes /
No
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Comments / details
Start date Dec 2000 LoO revised in Nov
2005 to include EU Funding. Finish date Dec
2006
Dated Nov 2005 following revision
Yes
Yes
All details on file agree with dates shown in
printout from database for DD 175
Documentation
1. Is there an original invoice to
reconcile to the payment(s) made?
2. Is there evidence of pre-payment
checks having been carried out?
3. Is there confirmation of receipt of
payment (Bank records / statements,
etc)
Detailed schedule attached to invoice / claim
Yes
Yes
No
Detailed list of items checked before
preparation of payment
PP&T Branch operates on ‘exception report’
basis where payments no made in 30 days
are highlighted
Article 4 checks
4. Has an Article 4 visit been carried
Yes
Visit carried out 7.3.2006 – report dated
408
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
out?
5. If so, have details been recorded
(date, findings, recommendations,
etc) ?
6. Were any weaknesses identified at
that stage?
7. Is there any evidence that follow
up action was carried out to ensure
compliance?
21.3.2006
Yes
Yes
Held in line with ‘model’ checklist issued by
EUD
Need for adequate publicity
Yes
Visit carried out to confirm compliance
(photographs held on file)
Article 10 checks
8. Was an Article 10 verification visit
carried out?
9. Have details been recorded (date,
findings, value of expenditure
checked, recommendations, etc)?
10. Where recommendations were
made is there any evidence that
follow up action was carried out to
ensure compliance?
No
Not in current expenditure but evidence of
previous visits on file
Yes /
Comments / details
No
Yes
As above – related to earlier visits
No
Previous visits showed no recommendations
needed – sufficient systems in place
Irregularities
11. Have any irregularities been
identified?
12. Have these been reported (>€10k
/ fraud) or recorded (<€10k)?
13. If appropriate, has there been any
recovery action taken?
14. Has any recovered amount been
No
N/A
N/A
See 11. above
See 11. above
409
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
deducted from the Statement of
Expenditure?
Compliance with general
Commission Regulations
1. Is there evidence of compliance
with publicity requirements –
Regulation 1159/2000?
2. Is there evidence of compliance
with tendering and procurement
requirements (if appropriate)?
3. Is there evidence of compliance
with environmental requirements (if
appropriate)?
N/A
See 11. above
Yes
Photographs held on file (plaques on train
carriages)
Yes
Copies of assessments and scoring of
applications
Yes
Reference on file to environmental impact
assessment carried out
General observations…Measure 1.6b expenditure selected – project 033691 for replacement rolling stock – comprising the main element of the
Measure spend
………………………………………………………………………………………….
Completed in respect of Claim No…DD 175 …… Dated…22/11/2007….
Programme / Community Initiative…BSP Programme
………………………………………………………………………………………...
CCI No……1999GB161PO007………..
Signed…Philip McCartney…………………. Position…ERDF PA (S.O.)..
Date…22/11/2007………
410
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
ANNEX 12
INTERNAL AUDIT ACTIVITY FOR MEASURE 1.1(a), 1.1(b) and 1.1(c)
The table below provides a record of internal audits carried out for sub-Measures 1.1(a) 1.1(b) and 1.1(c)
Reference
Number
IAS 36/05
IAS 27/07 (A)
IAS 27/07 (B)
Title of Audit
Invest
NI
EU
Compliance
Team - SMP: Internal
Audit Service Report
Invest
NI
EC
Remedial Compliance
Testing
Invest
NI
EC
Remedial Compliance
TestingOther
Matters Arising
Audit Body
Date of Audit
Date Report
received
DETI IAS
9th January 2006
10th April 2006
Date of
Response
3rd May 06
DETI IAS
December 2007/ January
2008
14th April 08
2nd May 08
DETI IAS
December 2007/ January
2008
17th April 08
15th May 08
411
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for sub-Measures 1.1(a), 1.1(b) and 1.1(c)
Reference
Number
IAS 36/05
IAS 36/05
IAS 36/05
IAS 36/05
IAS 36/05
Recommendation
Action Taken
1. Remedial Action concerning Letter of Offer (LoO)
clauses. Recommendation: Management should ensure
that sufficient evidence is available to demonstrate that
addendums have been issued to clients and that same is
associated with the original LoO for all projects in receipt of
or to be used to effect future EC drawdown.
2. Remedial action concerning Article 4 requirements.
Recommendation: Management should ensure that all
appropriate Article 4 checks and associated checklists are
fully completed, signed off and returned to the EU
Compliance Team and / or associated with the project file.
3. Recording of pre-payment irregularities.
Recommendation: Management should conduct an exercise
to determine whether the list of irregularities recorded is
accurate and complete. This exercise should be confined to
those claims which have been used to attract EC drawdown
In order to address the apparent discrepancies,
Invest NI conducted an exercise to determine if
the list of irregularities was accurate and
complete
4. Accuracy and completeness of database entries.
Recommendation: Management, in conjunction with RMA
Systems, should take appropriate steps to identify the extent
of action required to ensure that all essential database fields
are adequately and accurately populated
5. Extent to which trigger point expenditure has been
utilised to draw down EU funds. Recommendation:
Management should provide DETI with the findings from the
trigger point exercise to inform future decision making
regarding this issue.
Invest NI populated the database with
information on project performance indicators.
Staff undertook to include information on project
start and end dates and total eligible project
costs.
In order to establish the element of grant which
paid on the basis of triggers, Invest NI analysed
the Letters of Offers contained in Annex B of the
Report. This has been an ongoing exercise
which has highlighted Irregularities.
Did this
lead to an
irregularity
If so, was it
reported or
recorded.
Invest NI completed an exercise to ensure that
all Letters of Offer, against which EU funds were
drawn down, were issued with addendums.
No
N/A
Invest NI carried out an exercise to ensure that
Article 4 checks were completed for all Letters of
Offer against which EU funds were drawn down.
No
N/A
No
N/A
No
N/A
412
Yes
Reported
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for sub-Measures 1.1(a), 1.1(b) and 1.1(c) (cont’d)
Reference
Number
Recommendation
IAS 36/05
IAS 36/05
IAS 36/05
6. Accuracy of Invest NI internal supporting
documentation used for EC Drawdown.
Recommendation: Management, in conjunction with the
branches responsible for the information contained in the
various databases, should ensure that there are adequate
controls in place to validate the accuracy of figures i.e. a
supervisory check of database entries should be performed
against an Oracle report prior to the database information
being uploaded.
7. Uplifting of Grant Claims
Recommendation: Management should establish whether
this expenditure complies with EC eligibility requirements. If
deemed ineligible then corrective action should be taken.
8. Walter Watson – Interest Relief Grant.
Recommendation: Management should establish from DETI
European Programmes whether this expenditure complies
with BSP EU eligibility requirements. If deemed ineligible
then corrective action should be taken for this and any other
similar grants.
Action Taken
Invest NI carried out various remedial exercises
which helped to ensure the accuracy of
supporting documentation. Along with
supervisory checks of database entries, there
was also the Article 4 compliance exercise and
the Trigger Points exercise.
Claims Inspection Branch policy was to only pay
grant against properly completed claims which
had correct auditor's certificates, where required
( i.e. as set out in more recent offers ). This
meant that during a site inspection the
appropriate company representative could
amend and sign the original claim to reflect any
revision. This procedure could not apply to any
desk or site inspection case where a revised
auditor's certificate would be necessary. To
avoid any doubt, a revised auditor's certificate
will always be required where the original
becomes obsolete because a claim has been
amended, no matter how minor the amendment.
We accepted that all uplifted claims should
conform to this policy.
Invest NI acknowledged that the amount of
£140,000 was ineligible. Invest NI worked with
DETI EU Programmes to resolve this issue in
the next draw down.
413
Did this
lead to an
irregularity
If so, was it
reported or
recorded.
No
N/A
No
N/A
Yes
Reported
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for sub-Measures 1.1(a), 1.1(b) and 1.1(c) (cont’d)
Reference Recommendation
Number
IAS 36/05
IAS 36/05
IAS 27/07 (A)
IAS 27/07 (A)
IAS 27/07 (A)
9. Local Direct Limited – Advance Payment.
Recommendation: Management should establish from DETI
European Programmes whether this expenditure complies
with BSP EU eligibility requirements. If deemed ineligible
then corrective action should be taken for this and any other
grants of this nature
10. General – Roles and Responsibilities.
Recommendation: Management should ensure that staff
have clearly defined roles and responsibilities and that
adequate written operational guidelines are in place to assist
staff in the performance of their duties.
11. Availability of Project Files
Recommendation: Management should ensure that all
project files used to effect the drawdown of EC funding are
available for inspection in a timely manner. Management
should also ensure that the above files which could not be
provided at the time of the review are urgently pursued.
Files / projects which remain unavailable should be reported
as irregularities.
12. Control Sheets Recommendation: Management should
ensure that Letters of Offer are available for all projects in
receipt of EC Funding. The above instances should be
reviewed and, if appropriate, irregularities declared.
13. Article 4 Checklists not on file / not fully completed.
Recommendation: Management should ensure that all
Article 4 Checklists are fully completed, and signed off and
dated by the officer carrying out the check.
Action Taken
Invest NI acknowledged that the employment
grant paid to Local Direct Limited was an
advance. However, when this claim was used to
draw down EC funding all expenditure had been
vouched and approved. Invest NI sought advice
from DETI EU Programmes regarding this matter
and were satisfied that the claim was eligible.
Invest NI worked closely with DETI EU
Programmes to ensure compliance with all the
Regulations governing EU funding. We
acknowledged we must ensure that the
resources are in place to manage and administer
EU funding.
The EU Programmes team investigated the
matter (2 files for review were unavailable).
There is dispute between Serco and Iron
Mountain as to where the files are located. EU
programmes will continue to investigate the
matter. Another Three missing files under the
Green Economy scheme were located and
passed onto the IAS team.
When investigated, All Project files examined
contained a Control Sheet.
The project file in question, ST249-14209 Almac
Diagnostics Cancer Diagnostics Products, was
only included in BSP drawdown in March 2007
and was not part of the compliance exercise.
Invest NI ensured that ensure that an Article 4
check was completed in respect of this project.
414
Did this
lead to an
irregularity
If so, was it
reported or
recorded.
No
N/A
No
N/A
No
N/A
No
N/A
No
N/A
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for sub-Measures 1.1(a), 1.1(b) and 1.1(c) (cont’d)
Reference Recommendation
Number
IAS 27/07 (A)
IAS 27/07 (A)
IAS 27/07 (B)
IAS 27/07 (B)
14. EU Addendum to Letter of Offer.
Recommendation: Management should ensure that
Addendums to Letters of Offer and covering letters are
placed on each project file.
15. Recording of Recordable Irregularities.
Recommendation: Management should ensure that
irregularities are identified and correctly recorded. (Three
Irregularities highlighted in the report should be
recalculated)
16. Database Reconciliation - tests revealed 1 instance
where IAS was unable to reconcile the number of claims
and / or amount paid to the client company with entries
recorded on the database.
• BSP M1.1b Growth Major Moy Park Ltd – 67 claims / 75
entries on database. Recommendation: Management should
investigate the above instance and take corrective action, as
appropriate.
17. Expenditure Pre-Dating 1 January 2000. Tests
revealed one instance where £2,880.42 of expenditure
relating to Xiomateria Limited – Novel Biomimetic
Biomaterials (BSP M1.2 SMART reference number
SM0017P1) is ineligible as it pre dates the starting point for
eligible spend i.e.1st January 2000. Recommendation:
Management should review the above claims and declare
an irregularity, if appropriate.
Action Taken
The Audit revealed 4 instances where the
Addendum to the Letter of Offer was not located
on the project file. However, in these instances
IAS had sight of a M1.1 database mail merge
which included the 4 projects. In all other
instances in the sample, the addendum was
either on the file examined or the original letter of
offer which issued already contained all the key
clauses.
This finding refers to recordable irregularities
which have no impact on ERDF drawdown.
Invest NI took on board the recommendation and
recalculated the amounts.
The 8 additional claims related to a different
letter of offer and were removed from database
and re-entered under a different reference.
Management accepted that the above amount is
ineligible and will declare an irregularity.
415
Did this
lead to an
irregularity
If so, was it
reported or
recorded.
No
N/A
No
N/A
No
N/A
Yes
Recorded
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for sub-Measures 1.1(a), 1.1(b) and 1.1(c) (cont’d)
Reference Recommendation
Number
IAS 27/07 (B)
IAS 27/07 (B)
IAS 27/07 (B)
18. Redeemable Preference Shares. Tests revealed that
on three occasions Invest NI has included expenditure used
to purchase redeemable preference shares as part of EC
draw down. Upon advice from DFP European Division.
Recommendation: Management should consider what
impact the advice has in relation to the projects in question.
19. Write-Offs and Waivers. Tests revealed one client
company included in the database draw down reports
relating to BSP M 1.2 (Compete) which had been the
subject of action taken in respect of a write-off and yet an
irregularity had not been declared. Recommendation:
Management should review the above amount and declare
an irregularity, if appropriate.
20. Comparison of EC Database Entries with Oracle
Financial Records. Tests revealed 6 entries where the
database record could not be matched to an Oracle record.
Recommendation: Management should review the above
entries on the EC Database for accuracy and take action, as
appropriate.
Action Taken
Invest NI is aware of the issue of redeemable
preference shares that has previously been
raised by EC Auditors. As stated above, Invest
NI is currently awaiting advice from DFP
European Division and will take appropriate
action as and when this advice is received.
In regards to this project, the amount £5990.40
is less than the reportable EUR 10,000 threshold
as stipulated in Commission Regulation (EC) No
2035/2005 which came into effect on 1st Jan
2006.
Management accepts it cannot locate any
records in regards to the payments detailed
above. We have searched on Oracle Financials
and through hard copy requisitions without
success. As there are inaccuracies in relation to
the above entries on the EC Database with
those held on Oracle, action will be taken to
rectify this and progress reported to IAS.
416
Did this
lead to an
irregularity
If so, was it
reported or
recorded.
No
N/A
No
N/A
No
N/A
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for sub-Measures 1.1(a), 1.1(b) and 1.1(c) (cont’d)
Reference
Number
IAS 27/07 (B)
IAS 27/07 (B)
IAS 27/07 (B)
Recommendation
Action Taken
21. No supporting documents to support
Claim Form. IAS could not locate any Claims
Inspection Team (CIT) supporting documentation
to substantiate £6,000 of expenditure claimed in
relation to Sysco Software NI Limited - (BSP
Measure 1.2 Growth Major reference number
01/0284).
Recommendation: Management should ensure
that CIT documentation (Calculation Sheets,
Inspection Reports etc) are retained, located and
filed as appropriate.
On investigation, it was discovered that the
£6,000 was an advance payment (50% of
£12,000) made on the recommendation of the
client executive, supported by the report of the
ICT adviser who had inspected work to date (on
site). There was a company claim form for this
payment. The expectation would have been that
a final claim would be submitted, at which point all
documentation would be available for inspection,
however, there is no evidence on file of such a
claim arriving with Claims Inspectorate – further
information was sought from the Client Executive
to ascertain whether the project was completed
and IAS advised of progress.
22. Claim Form corrections not properly
amended. IAS noted that on approximately 20
occasions, the amount of expenditure recorded as
being claimed on official claim forms had been
changed. However, IAS noted that none of the
changes
had
been
properly
evidenced.
Recommendation: Management should ensure
that all changes to amounts on Official Claim
Forms are initialled and dated either by Client or
CIT.
23. Uplifting of Claim Amounts. IAS testing
revealed that on a number of occasions the
amount of expenditure recorded as being claimed
on official claim forms appeared to have been
uplifted by CIT. This subsequently increased the
expenditure on which EC draw down was
calculated. Recommendation: Even if it is clear
that the client has made an arithmetic error, under
no circumstances should CIT uplift amounts
claimed by clients.
Management will reiterate to appropriate staff the
need to adhere to our procedures (detailed below)
for claim form corrections.
There is now a change in policy. A revised
auditor's certificate will always be required where
the original becomes obsolete because a claim
has been amended, no matter how minor the
amendment. It's accepted that all uplifted claims
should conform to this policy.
417
Did this lead
to an
irregularity
Invest NI
obtained
appropriate
timesheets
this claim.
has
the
If so, was it
reported or
recorded.
N/A
for
No
N/A
No
N/A
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
INTERNAL AUDIT ACTIVITY FOR MEASURE 1.2
The table below provides a record of internal audits carried out for Measure 1.2
Reference
Number
IAS 36/05
IAS 27/07 (A)
IAS 27/07 (B)
Title of Audit
InvestNI EU Compliance
Team - SMP: Internal Audit
Service Report
InvestNI EC Remedial
Compliance Testing
InvestNI EC Remedial
Compliance Testing- Other
Matters Arising
Date of Audit
Date Report
received
9th January 2006
10th April 2006
DETI IAS
December 2007/
January 2008
14th April 2008
2nd May 2008
DETI IAS
December 2007/
January 2008
17th April 2008
15th May 2008
Audit Body
DETI IAS
Date of
Response
3rd May 2006
418
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 1.2
Reference
Number
IAS 36/05
IAS 36/05
IAS 36/05
IAS 36/05
Recommendation
1. Remedial Action concerning Letter of
Offer (LoO) clauses. Recommendation:
Management should ensure that sufficient
evidence is available to demonstrate that
addendums have been issued to clients and
that same is associated with the original LoO
for all projects in receipt of or to be used to
effect future EC drawdown.
2. Remedial action concerning Article 4
requirements.
Recommendation:
Management
should
ensure
that
all
appropriate Article 4 checks and associated
checklists are fully completed, signed off and
returned to the EU Compliance Team and / or
associated with the project file.
3. Recording of pre-payment irregularities.
Recommendation:
Management
should
conduct an exercise to determine whether the
list of irregularities recorded is accurate and
complete. This exercise should be confined to
those claims which have been used to attract
EC drawdown
4. Accuracy and completeness of database
entries. Recommendation: Management, in
conjunction with RMA Systems, should take
appropriate steps to identify the extent of
action required to ensure that all essential
database fields are adequately and accurately
populated
Action Taken
Invest NI completed an exercise to ensure that
all Letters of Offer, against which EU funds
were drawn down, were issued with
addendums.
Invest NI carried out an exercise to ensure that
Article 4 checks were completed for all Letters
of Offer against which EU funds were drawn
down.
In order to address the apparent discrepancies,
Invest NI conducted an exercise to determine if
the list of irregularities was accurate and
complete
Invest NI populated the database with
information on project performance indicators.
Staff undertook to include information on
project start and end dates and total eligible
project costs.
419
Did this lead
to an
irregularity?
If so, was it
reported or
recorded?
No
N/A
No
N/A
No
N/A
No
N/A
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 1.2 (cont’d)
Reference
Number
IAS 36/05
IAS 36/05
IAS 36/05
Recommendation
Action Taken
Did this lead
to an
irregularity?
If so, was it
reported or
recorded?
5. Extent to which trigger point expenditure
has been utilised to draw down EU funds.
Recommendation:
Management
should
provide DETI with the findings from the trigger
point exercise to inform future decision making
regarding this issue.
6. Accuracy of Invest NI internal supporting
documentation used for EC Drawdown.
Recommendation: Management, in conjunction
with the branches responsible for the
information
contained
in
the
various
databases, should ensure that there are
adequate controls in place to validate the
accuracy of figures i.e. a supervisory check of
database entries should be performed against
an Oracle report prior to the database
information being uploaded.
In order to establish the element of grant which
paid on the basis of triggers, Invest NI analysed
the Letters of Offers contained in Annex B of
the Report. This has been an ongoing exercise
which has highlighted Irregularities.
Yes
Reported
No
N/A
No
N/A
7.
Uplifting
of
Grant
Claims.
Recommendation:
Management
should
establish whether this expenditure complies
with EC eligibility requirements. If deemed
ineligible then corrective action should be
taken.
Invest NI carried out various remedial exercises
which helped to ensure the accuracy of
supporting
documentation.
Along
with
supervisory checks of database entries, there
was also the Article 4 compliance exercise and
the Trigger Points exercise.
Claims Inspection Branch policy was to only pay
grant against properly completed claims which
had correct auditor's certificates, where these are
required ( i.e. as set out in more recent offers ).
This, in practice, means that during a site
inspection
the
appropriate
company
representative could amend and sign the original
claim to reflect any revision. Obviously this
procedure could not apply to any desk inspection
case or to any site inspection case where a
revised auditor's certificate would be necessary.
To avoid any doubt, a revised auditor's certificate
will always be required where the original
becomes obsolete because a claim has been
amended, no matter how minor the amendment.
We accepted that all uplifted claims should
conform to this policy.
420
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 1.2 (cont’d)
Reference
Number
IAS 36/05
IAS 27/07 (A)
IAS 27/07 (A)
Recommendation
Action Taken
8. General – Roles and Responsibilities.
Recommendation: Management should ensure
that staff have clearly defined roles and
responsibilities and that adequate written
operational guidelines are in place to assist
staff in the performance of their duties.
9.
Availability
of
Project
Files.
Recommendation: Management should ensure
that all project files used to effect the
drawdown of EC funding are available for
inspection in a timely manner. Management
should also ensure that the above files which
could not be provided at the time of the review
are urgently pursued. Files / projects which
remain unavailable should be reported as
irregularities.
Invest NI worked closely with DETI EU
Programmes to ensure compliance with all the
Regulations governing EU funding. We
acknowledged that going forward we must
ensure that the resources are in place to
manage and administer EU funding.
The EU Programmes team investigated the
matter (2 files for review were unavailable).
There is dispute between Serco and Iron
Mountain as to where the files are located. EU
programmes will continue to investigate the
matter. Another Three missing files under the
Green Economy scheme were located and
passed onto the IAS team.
10. Control Sheets
Recommendation: Management should ensure
that Letters of Offer are available for all When investigated, All Project files examined
projects in receipt of EC Funding. The above contained a Control Sheet.
instances should be reviewed and, if
appropriate, irregularities declared.
421
Did this lead
to an
irregularity?
If so, was it
reported or
recorded?
No
N/A
No
N/A
No
N/A
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 1.2 (cont’d)
Reference
Number
Recommendation
Action Taken
Did this lead
to an
irregularity?
If so, was it
reported or
recorded?
IAS 27/07 (A)
11. Article 4 Checklists not on file / not fully
completed. Recommendation: Management
should ensure that all Article 4 Checklists are
fully completed, and signed off and dated by
the officer carrying out the check.
The project file in question, ST249-14209
Almac
Diagnostics
Cancer
Diagnostics
Products, was only included in BSP drawdown
in March 2007 and was not part of the
compliance exercise. Invest NI ensured that
ensure that an Article 4 check was completed
in respect of this project.
No
N/A
IAS 27/07 (A)
The Audit revealed 4 instances where the
Addendum to the Letter of Offer was not
12. EU Addendum to Letter of Offer. located on the project file. However, in these
Recommendation: Management should ensure instances IAS had sight of a M1.1 database
that Addendums to Letters of Offer and mail merge which included the 4 projects. In all
covering letters are placed on each project file. other instances in the sample, the addendum
was either on the file examined or the original
letter of offer which issued already contained all
the key clauses.
No
N/A
IAS 27/07 (A)
13. Recording of Recordable Irregularities.
Recommendation: Management should ensure
that irregularities are identified and correctly
recorded. (Three Irregularities highlighted in
the report should be recalculated)
No
N/A
This finding refers to recordable irregularities
which have no impact on ERDF drawdown.
Invest NI took on board the recommendation
and recalculated the amounts.
422
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 1.2 (cont’d)
Reference
Number
IAS 27/07 (B)
IAS 27/07 (B)
IAS 27/07 (B)
Recommendation
Action Taken
14. Expenditure Pre-Dating 1 January 2000.
Tests revealed one instance where £2,880.42
of expenditure relating to Xiomateria Limited –
Novel Biomimetic Biomaterials (BSP M1.2
SMART reference number SM0017P1) is Management accepted that the above amount
ineligible as it pre dates the starting point for is ineligible and will declare an irregularity.
eligible
spend
i.e.1st
January
2000.
Recommendation: Management should review
the above claims and declare an irregularity, if
appropriate.
15. Redeemable Preference Shares. Tests
revealed that on three occasions Invest NI has
included expenditure used to purchase
redeemable preference shares as part of EC
draw down.
Recommendation:
Management
should
consider what impact the advice has in relation
to the projects in question.
InvestNI is aware of the issue of redeemable
preference shares that has previously been
raised by EC Auditors. As stated above,
InvestNI is currently awaiting advice from the
Managing Authority and will take appropriate
action as and when this advice is received.
16. Write-Offs and Waivers. Tests revealed
one client company included in the database
draw down reports relating to BSP M 1.2
(Compete) which had been the subject of
action taken in respect of a write-off and yet an
irregularity
had
not
been
declared.
Recommendation: Management should review
the above amount and declare an irregularity, if
appropriate.
In regards to this project, the amount £5990.40
is less than the reportable EUR 10,000
threshold as stipulated in Commission
Regulation (EC) No 2035/2005 which came
into effect on 1st Jan 2006.
423
Did this lead
to an
irregularity?
If so, was it
reported or
recorded?
Yes
Recorded
No
N/A
No
N/A
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 1.2 (cont’d)
Reference
Number
Recommendation
Action Taken
IAS 27/07 (B)
17. Comparison of EC Database Entries
with Oracle Financial Records. Tests
revealed 6 entries where the database record
could not be matched to an Oracle record.
Recommendation: Management should review
the above entries on the EC Database for
accuracy and take action, as appropriate.
IAS 27/07 (B)
18. No supporting documents to support
Claim Form. IAS could not locate any Claims
Inspection
Team
(CIT)
supporting
documentation to substantiate £6,000 of
expenditure claimed in relation to Sysco
Software NI Limited - (BSP Measure 1.2
Growth Major reference number 01/0284).
Recommendation: Management should ensure
that CIT documentation (Calculation Sheets,
Inspection Reports etc) are retained, located
and
filed
as
appropriate.
Management accepts it cannot locate any
records in regards to the payments detailed
above. A search was carried out on Oracle
Financials and through hard copy requisitions
without success. As there are inaccuracies in
relation to the above entries on the EC
Database with those held on Oracle, action will
be taken to rectify this and progress reported to
IAS.
On investigation, it was discovered that the
£6,000 was an advance payment (50% of
£12,000) made on the recommendation of the
client executive, supported by the report of the
ICT adviser who had inspected work to date
(on site). There was a company claim form for
this payment. The expectation would have
been that a final claim would be submitted, at
which point all documentation would be
available for inspection, however, there is no
evidence on file of such a claim arriving with
Claims Inspectorate – further information was
sought from the relevant Client Executive to
ascertain whether the project was completed
and IAS advised of progress.
424
Did this lead
to an
irregularity?
If so, was it
reported or
recorded?
No
N/A
Invest NI has
obtained
the
appropriate
timesheets for
this claim.
N/A
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
The table below details the key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 1.2 (cont’d)
Reference
Number
IAS 27/07 (B)
IAS 27/07 (B)
Action Taken
Did this lead
to an
irregularity?
If so, was it
reported or
recorded?
Management will reiterate to appropriate staff
the need to adhere to our procedures (detailed
below) for claim form corrections.
No
N/A
No
N/A
Recommendation
19. Claim Form corrections not properly
amended. IAS noted that on approximately 20
occasions, the amount of expenditure recorded
as being claimed on official claim forms had
been changed. However, IAS noted that none
of the changes had been properly evidenced.
Recommendation: Management should ensure
that all changes to amounts on Official Claim
Forms are initialled and dated either by the
Client or CIT.
20. Uplifting of Claim Amounts. IAS testing
revealed that on a number of occasions the
amount of expenditure recorded as being
claimed on official claim forms appeared to
have been uplifted by CIT. This subsequently
increased the expenditure on which EC draw
down was calculated. Recommendation: Even
if it is clear that the client has made an
arithmetic error, under no circumstances
should CIT uplift amounts claimed by clients.
There is now a change in policy. A revised
auditor's certificate will always be required
where the original becomes obsolete because
a claim has been amended, no matter how
minor the amendment. It's accepted that all
uplifted claims should conform to this policy.
425
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
INTERNAL AUDIT ACTIVITY FOR MEASURE 1.3(a)
The table below provides a record of internal audits carried out for sub-Measure 1.3(a)
Reference
Number
Title of Audit
Audit
Body
Date of Audit
Date Report
received
Date of Response
IAS 49/03
Marketing
Communications
DETI IAS
February 2004
24 April 2004
21 January 2005
IAS 06/05
Marketing
Communications
DETI IAS
June 2005
20 September 2005
17 November 2005
426
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 1.3(a)
Reference Number
IAS 49/03
IAS 06/05
IAS 06/05
IAS 06/05
IAS 06/05
Recommendation
7.2 – Remedial action to be taken
by NITB to reconcile payment
records
against
details
of
expenditure reported by them to
European Programmes.
4.6 - Memo of Understanding
(MoU) should be put in place with
Tourism
Ireland
on
the
organisation of Familiarisation
(FAM) Trips.
4.8 - Improvement of evaluation
procedures for FAM trips.
4.11- Separation of duties in
payment process.
4.13 – File notes to cover
departures from Finance Manual.
427
Action Taken
Did this
lead to an
irregularity?
Agreed – remedial action
undertaken.
No
Agreed – MoU put in
place.
No
Agreed –Put in place as
part of MoU.
Agreed
–
Process
reinforced to all staff.
Agreed
–
Process
reinforced to all staff.
No
No
No
If so, was
it
reported
or
recorded?
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
INTERNAL AUDIT ACTIVITY FOR MEASURE 1.3(b)
The table below provides a record of internal audits carried out for sub-Measure 1.3(b)
Reference Number
Title of Audit
Audit Body
Date of Audit
Date Report
received
Date of Response
IAS 55/03
NITB Business
Development
DETI IAS
April 2004
28 June 2004
21 January 2005
IAS 08/05
NITB Funding &
Monitoring Unit
DETI IAS
April 2006
9 June 2006
10 July 2006
IAS 29/06
NITB Monitoring
DETI IAS
March 2007
30 April 2007
12 June 2007
428
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 1.3(b)
Reference
Number
IAS 55/03
IAS 08/05
IAS 29/06
Recommendation
Action Taken
Article
4
visits
undertaken and files and
checklists completed
Standard EU conditions of Revised LoO template
grant to be included in Letters developed and amended
of Offer
LoOs issued to relevant
projects
Completion of Post Project Programme of PPE work
Evaluations
developed
and
implemented
Completion of Article 4 checks
429
Did this lead If so, was it
to an
reported or
irregularity? recorded?
No
N/A
No
N/A
No
N/A
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
INTERNAL AUDIT ACTIVITY FOR MEASURE 1.4
The table below provides a record of internal audits carried out for Measure 1.4
Reference Number
IAS 7/03
IAS 41/05
VU BSP 03/07
BSP 01/2005
BSP 03/2008
Title of Audit
European
Programmes –
Building
Sustainable
Prosperity
European
ProgrammesBuilding
Sustainable
Prosperity
Start
a
Business
Programme
District Council
Action Plans
Audit
Body
Date of Audit
Date Report
received
DETI IAS
June/July 2003
17 October 2003
3 March 2004
DETI IAS
2005
May 2006
May 2006
2006
March 2007
March 2007
August 2004March 2005
July 2005
July 2005
2008
November 2008
February 2009
DETI
Verification
Unit
DETI
Verification
Unit
Local Economic DETI
Development
Verification
Unit
430
Date of
Response
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 1.4
Reference
Number
IAS 07/03
IAS 07/03
IAS 07/03
IAS 07/03
IAS 07/03
IAS 07/03
IAS 41/05
Recommendation
Did this
lead to an
irregularity?
Action Taken
4.3 – European Programmes to Agreed
–
establish a programme of Article 4 established.
checks.
Visit
schedule
5.3 -5.6 – Recommendations on
retention of signed Selection
Committee forms; approval of Agreed – All actioned.
claims checklists by supervisors;
date stamping of claims; and
full/valid invoice details are
entered on claims forms.
5.8 – Items of expenditure should
fall within period specified in claim
6.2 – European Programmes
should provide clear guidance to
District Councils on irregularities.
7.4 – Ensure that checks on the
accuracy of data input to
expenditure spreadsheets are
evidenced.
7.5 – Ensure that constant values
within expenditure spreadsheets
are protected.
1 – Outstanding Article 4 checks
on Implementing Bodies should
be completed as a matter of
urgency.
No
No
Agreed – New system put in No
place.
Agreed – Improved systems put
in place.
No
Agreed – Supervisory checks put No
in place.
Agreed – Implemented.
No
Agreed – Visit schedule put in
place.
No
431
If so, was
it reported
or
recorded?
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 1.4 (cont’d)
Reference
Number
Recommendation
Action Taken
Did this
lead to an
irregularity?
Systems and procedures should
be amended to ensure that
payments are made on the basis
actual
expenditure,
not
achievement of targets.
Specific recommendations were
brought to attention of District
Councils, irregularities raised and
ERDF recovered as appropriate.
Systemic failings relating to
document retention, irregularity Yes
reporting, Management Checks,
Database
monitoring
requirements and Third Party
LoO compliance were raised and
followed up as appropriate.
Procedures amended, monies
recovered in respect of two
councils. For other councils, Yes
additional business start-ups
were identified to cover shortfall
That Councils be reminded to
retain project documentation until
2013
BSP 03/08 That recovery action be instigated
– Finding 3 in respect of double funding.
All Councils reminded by e-mail
in Feb 09 to retain documentation No
until 2013.
Claw back sought from Armagh Yes
City Council
BSP 01/05
VU BSP
03/07
BSP 03/08
– Finding 1
Systems operated by European
Programmes were found to be
compliant with EC Regulations.
Systems operated by District
Councils were not fully compliant,
at both project and systemic level.
432
If so, was
it reported
or
recorded?
Recorded
and
reported as
appropriate.
Recorded
Recorded
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
INTERNAL AUDIT ACTIVITY FOR MEASURE 1.5
The table below provides a record of internal audits carried out for Measure 1.5
Reference Number
IAS 36/05
IAS 27/07 (A)
Title of Audit
Audit Body
Invest NI EU DETI IAS
Compliance
Team
–
SMP:IAS
Report
Invest NI EC DETI IAS
Remedial
Compliance
433
Date Report
received
Date of
Response
9 January 2006
10 April 2006
August 2008
December 2007/
January 2008
17 April 2008
August 2008
Date of Audit
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 1.5
Reference
Number
IAS 36/05 and
IAS 27/07 (A)
Recommendation
Action Taken
- Incomplete Article 4
checks/visits
- File
documentation
incomplete
- Lack of supporting
documentation to back up
claims.
- Incorrect expenditure
recorded
on
the
database.
Invest NI formed an EU
Compliance Team and
undertook
a
major
exercise of remedial
work to address issues
raised during audits.
This report was copied
to DG REGIO.
434
Did this lead to
an irregularity?
If so, was it
reported or
recorded
Yes
Reported
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
INTERNAL AUDIT ACTIVITY FOR MEASURE 1.6 (a)
The table below provides a record of internal audits carried out for sub-Measure 1.6(a)
Reference Number
Title of Audit
Audit Body
Date of Audit
Date Report
received
Date of Response
2003 Period
EU Article 10 DRD IAS
Checks
April 2005
5 April 2005
6 April 2005
2004 Period
EU Article 10 DRD IAS
Checks
December 2005
13 December 2005
11 January 2006
2005 Period
EU Article 10 DRD IAS
Checks
April 2007
23 April 2007
2006 Period
EU Article 10 DRD IAS
Checks
April 2008
30 April 2007
N/A
(no recommendations
made)
19 May 2007
435
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 1.6(a)
Reference
Number
Recommendation
2003 Period
Report Ref - 2.1.3
& 2.2.3
2004 Period
Report Ref - 2.1.2
& 2.2.2
2005 Period
Carry out Article 4 checks
2006 Period
Report Ref - 2.1.2
& 2.2.2
Review procedures
document retention
Action Taken
Did this lead
to an
irregularity?
If so, was it
reported or
recorded?
No
N/A
No
N/A
No
N/A
No
N/A
Completed Feb 2005
for Reviewed Dec 2005
No Formal Recommendations Made - satisfactory
Reconfigure EU Database Completed May 2008
entries to reflect the year
in
which
expenditure
occurred
436
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
INTERNAL AUDIT ACTIVITY FOR MEASURE 1.6 (b)
The table below provides a record of internal audits carried out for sub-Measure 1.6(b)
Reference
Number
PPT15/02/04/01
PPT15/02/04/01
PPT15/02/04/02
PPT15/02/04/04
PPT15/02/04/05
Title of Audit
IA review of EU
Structural
Funds
BSP
Article 10
Verification of EU
Project
Expenditure 2004
Article
10
Verification of EU
Project
Expenditure 2005
Article
10
Verification of EU
Project
Expenditure 2006
Article
10
Verification of EU
Project
Expenditure 2007
Audit Body
Date of Audit
Date Report received
Date of Response
DRD IAS
28 October 2004
8 November 2004
19 November 2004
DRD IAS
29 November 2005
26 May 2006
31 May 2006
DRD IAS
23 January 2007
1 May 2007
8 May 2007
DRD IAS
25 September 2007
17 October 2007
19 October 2007
DRD IAS
11 January 2008
25 November 2008
22 December 2008
437
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 1.6(b)
Reference
Number
PPT15/02/04/01
PPT15/02/04/01
PPT15/02/04/02
PPT15/02/04/03
PPT15/02/04/04
Recommendation
Action Taken
Management to provide formal
feedback on findings from
Article 4 visits.
Recommendation
implemented
To ensure that third parties
are fully aware of their
obligations
on
reporting
irregularities
Recommendation
implemented
No formal recommendations None Required
were made
No formal recommendations None Required
were made
No formal recommendations None Required
were made
No formal recommendations None Required
were made
438
Did this
lead to an
irregularity?
If so, was it
reported or
recorded?
No
N/A
No
N/A
N/A
N/A
N/A
N/A
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
INTERNAL AUDIT ACTIVITY FOR MEASURE 1.7
The table below provides a record of internal audits carried out for Measure 1.7
Reference
Number
Title of Audit
Audit Body
Date of Audit
Date Report
received
Date of
Response
IAS 34/03
Telecommunications DETI IAS
Policy Branch
2003
2003
March 2004
IAS 04/05
Telecommunications DETI IAS
Policy Unit
2005
2005
2005
BSP02/2005
Article 10
DETI IAS
May-August 2005
September 2005
BSP02/2008
Article 10
DETI IAS
August- December 2007
March 2008
439
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 1.7
Reference
Number
IAS 34/03
IAS 34/03
IAS 34/03
IAS 04/05
BSP02/2005
BSP02/2005
BSP02/2005
BSP02/2005
Action Taken
Did this lead
to an
irregularity?
Accepted – Letters of Offer amended.
No
Accepted – Article 4 checklist obtained.
No
Accepted – Procedures adopted.
Accepted – Processes put in place
regarding monitoring reports.
Data reviewed and corrected on
databases. Advice accepted and work
plan in place to update monitoring data.
In-house procedures updated. Training
updates implemented.
Discussion with DETI EU Branch. IN
house procedures updated.
Training updates given to relevant staff.
TPU to begin process to recover
expenditure.
Article 4 programme for supported
projects
was
organised
and
commenced based on DFP and EU
Branch guidance. Training for relevant
staff in undertaking Article 4 checks
completed.
Notification sent to projects re key
clauses.
No
No
Recommendation
4.3 All future Letters of Offer should contain all
standard clauses and sufficient information on
key deliverables/timetables.
6.2 Liaise with European Programmes Branch
on Article 4 requirements.
6.3 Liaise with European Programmes Branch
on responsibilities relating to irregularities.
4.2 Conditions of contract should be met
before payments are made.
BSP DATABASE: Full review and update of
data held on databases. Procedures to be put
in place to record performance monitoring data
on a regular and timely basis.
NOTIONAL LABOUR COSTS: Branch to liaise
with EUPB to resolve Notional labour charges
with 16 projects, this expenditure was not
eligible.
MANAGEMENT CHECKS:
Established monitoring controls not compliant
with EC Reg Article 4 and DFP guidance.
Partly due to the delay in obtaining clarification
on the requirements.
LETTERS OF OFFER:
Did not contain all the standard clauses as
required in the Operating Manual for Structural
Funds. To notify projects.
440
If so, was it
reported or
recorded?
No
Yes
No
No
Yes
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 1.7 (cont’d)
Reference
Number
BSP02/2005
BSP02/2005
BSP02/2005
BSP02/2005
Recommendation
Action Taken
No payments in relation to WC for
monitoring of BS delivery have been
logged on the BSP database. TPU
PAYMENTS TO WESTERN CONNECT:
Costs should not be drawn down against discussed with EU Branch and no
programme costs and the branch should allocation available to match this
discuss with EP if these costs could be expenditure under technical assistance.
TPU no seeking support from EU for
charged to technical assistance.
technical assistance.
INFORMATION ON DATABASE:
The branch should liaise with EP Branch about
adjusting the database to show that this direct BSP database updated.
spend by telecoms and not an application for
grant by BT
Investigation conducted. Project was 1st
project submitted for consideration and
STATE AID LIMIT: BBF001/02
influenced decisions on how to support
This project exceeded limit of fund and is in further projects. No state issues
breech of state aid rules. Branch to discuss regarding support for this project and is
with EP Branch.
compatible
with
EU
guidelines.
Financial limits were set after agreeing
to support this project.
TENDERED SERVICE: BBF025/02
Initial proposal was made by invest NI
LoO should have been issues to Invest NI for who procured the project as outlined. It
a % of the eligible costs who would have then was agreed that TPU would administer
funded Western Connect directly. TPU to liaise the project more efficiently and so was
with EP Branch.
transferred to TPU.
441
Did this lead
to an
irregularity?
If so, was it
reported or
recorded?
No
No
No
Yes
Yes
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
INTERNAL AUDIT ACTIVITY FOR MEASURE 1.8(a)
The table below provides a record of internal audits carried out for sub-Measure 1.8(a)
Reference
Number
Title of Audit
Audit Body
Date of Audit
Date Report
received
Date of
Response
Gas Pipeline Project
NIAO
15/07/2004
16 December 2004
Not applicable
as no issues
raised
IAS 37/04
NI Gas Pipeline
DETI IAS
2004
2004
2005
BSP 04/2007
NI Gas North West
Pipeline Project
DETI
Verification
Team
18 September 2007
See detail of
issues raised
below
May – July 2007
442
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 1.8(a)
Reference
Number
IAS 37/04
IAS 37/04
IAS 37/04
Recommendation
4.1 Letters of Offer should detail eligible
expenditure.
4.2 Confirm that there is no overlap
between costs incurred on overhead
charges and ‘Serviced Offices’ costs.
Technical Monitoring – Provision of
documentation in respect of technical
fitness of pipeline.
IAS 37/04
4.4 Audit Certificates should provide
copies of certificates as set out in Letter
of Offer.
IAS 37/04
4.5 Clawback; Disposal of publicly
funded assets.
IAS 37/04
4.6 Eligibility of items claimed.
BSP 04/2007
Grant and ERDF Percentage - An overdeclaration of £3,340,538 has occurred
and an irregularity should now be
declared unless further claims can be
obtained and vouched
Action Taken
If so, was
Did this
it reported
lead to an
or
irregularity?
recorded?
Accepted – Verified forecast of capital expenditure agreed with
project. Future LoO’s will reference items of eligible expenditure.
No
Accepted. Agreed with project that ‘heat and light’ costs were
not eligible under overheads.
No
Accepted – The Department’s technical advisors were satisfied
with documentation from project.
No
No
Accepted – Documentation provided.
Accepted – Future Letters of Offer will take account of the
revision in guidance in DAO 16/05.
Accepted – Review of claims completed.
Management is not content to accept this finding. The ERDF
was drawn down against public expenditure as per the BSP
Complement. There is sufficient public expenditure to justify the
£11.1m of ERDF claimed at the agreed intervention rate of
74.66%. EU Programmes Branch advise that the ERDF rate of
17.14 % quoted was shown to the Commission for purely
presentational purposes to demonstrate how small the ERDF
contribution was in terms of the overall project.
443
No
No
No, this is no
longer
an
issue.
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 1.8(a) (cont’d)
Reference
Number
IAS 37/04
BSP 04/2007
BSP 04/2007
Recommendation
4.1 Letters of Offer should detail eligible
expenditure.
Action Taken
Accepted – Verified forecast of capital expenditure agreed with
project. Future LoO’s will reference items of eligible expenditure.
ROI Contribution - Energy Branch
should confirm that the calculation of
the ROI contribution to the North West
Pipeline as set out at Appendix 2
Section 2 is correct.
If so, and if as recommended at Finding
No1 additional claims are obtained and
vouched, an irregularity of at least
£1,223,216 will remain.
Management do not accept the basis for this calculation at
Appendix 2 Section 2, but more importantly, do not accept that
the contribution from the Irish Republic should impact on the
amount of ERDF drawdown against the project. EU
Programmes advise that the EC were unable to approve the
overall SN/NW pipeline because the SN pipeline went through
another Member State i.e. the Irish Republic. This was the
reason that the EC only approved the NW element. It would be
unreasonable for NI to be penalised again by reducing the
ERDF further because of the RoI contribution. This contribution
was towards the overall SN/NW pipeline project and there
should not simply be a pro-rata calculation between the two
elements of grant paid.
- The database should be adjusted to
record only eligible grant at the effective
grant rate of 22.9574% of final vouched
expenditure.
Management is not content to accept this finding. The ERDF
was drawn down against public expenditure as per the BSP
Complement. There is sufficient public expenditure to justify the
£11.1m of ERDF claimed at the agreed intervention rate of
74.66%. EU Programmes Branch advise that the ERDF rate of
17.14 % quoted was shown to the Commission for purely
presentational purposes to demonstrate how small the ERDF
contribution was in terms of the overall project.
444
If so, was
Did this
it reported
lead to an
or
irregularity?
recorded?
No
DFP,
as
Managing
Authority,
is
content
that
following
communication
s
with
the
Commission
that the RoI
Government
contribution
should not be
taken
into
consideration in
calculating the
grant due to NI.
No – this is no
longer an issue
as the DETI
IAS Verification
Unit has now
accepted
the
rationale
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 1.8(a) (cont’d)
Reference
Number
BSP 04/2007
IAS 37/04
BSP 04/2007
BSP 04/2007
BSP 04/2007
Recommendation
Did
this If so, was it
lead to an reported
or
irregularity? recorded?
Action Taken
Verification of Declared Expenditure The relevant grant amount of £108.35
(at an effective grant rate of 22.957%)
should be recorded as an irregularity
and removed from the database
An amount of £108.35 will be recorded as an irregularity
and removed from database.
4.1 Letters of Offer should detail eligible
expenditure.
Accepted – Verified forecast of capital expenditure agreed
with project. Future LoO’s will reference items of eligible
expenditure.
No
A copy invoice in pdf format for the amount of £5,708.72
based on 22.957% of €35,142.77 has been received from
BGE. This will be recorded as an irregularity and removed
from the database, if a certified copy invoice, is not finally
received from BGE.
No
A certified copy invoice in pdf format for the amount of
£934,990.44 based on 22.957% of £4,072,717.99 has
been received from BGE
No
Verification of Declared Expenditure The grant amount of £5,708.72 (at an
effective grant rate of 22.957%), should
be reported as an irregularity and
removed from the database pending
receipt of the certified copy invoice
Verification of Declared Expenditure The grant amount of £934,990.44 (at an
effective grant rate of 22.957%), should
be reported as an irregularity and
removed from the database pending
receipt of the certified copy invoice.
Verification of Declared Expenditure The grant amount of £23.54 (at an
effective grant rate of 22.957%), should
be recorded as an irregularity and
removed from the database
An amount of £23.54 will be recorded as an irregularity
and removed from database.
445
Yes
Yes
Recorded by EU
Programmes for
Energy Division
Recorded by EU
Programmes for
Energy Division
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
INTERNAL AUDIT ACTIVITY FOR MEASURE 1.8(b)
The table below provides a record of internal audits carried out for sub-Measure 1.8(b)
Reference
Number
IAS 48/03
BSP 02/2004
Title of Audit
DETI
–
Energy
Demonstration
Scheme
Article 10 Check of
BSP Measure 1.8b
Energy
Demonstration
Scheme.
Audit Body
Date of Audit
Date Report
received
Date of Response
DETI IAS
2003
2004
DETI
Verification
Unit
November 2004
September 2005 September 2005
446
2005
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 1.8(b)
Reference
Number
IAS 48/03
IAS 48/03
IAS 48/03
IAS 48/03
IAS 48/03
IAS 48/03
IAS 48/03
IAS 48/03
BSP
02/2004
BSP
02/2004
BSP
02/2004
Recommendation
Action Taken
Agreed – The Energy Demonstration Scheme has
finished in its current format and DETI now seeks
4.2- Clear guidelines to be produced to to encourage the efficient demonstration of
assist selection panels.
renewable energy technologies on a more
selective basis with major organisations.
4.3 – Selection Panel Decisions should Agreed – Appeals procedure similar to Interreg
be fully documented and a formal IIIA will be introduced.
appeals procedure introduced.
4.5 – Economic Appraisals – should full Agreed – All energy schemes will conform in
conform with DETI Guidance
future.
5.3 – Improvements to Letters of Offer.
Agreed – Letters of Offer will comply with EC
Structural Funds Manual
6.2,6.3 &6.4 – Improvements to claims Agreed – All recommendations on stamping
procedures/forms/verification
invoices, standardising claim forms and checks on
second hand equipment will be implemented.
7.2 – Establish a system for Agreed- Programme of visits will be developed
management checks on projects and and outcome data collate.
recording outcomes.
8.2 – Ensure that all projects comply Agreed – Energy to liaise with European
with EC publicity requirements
Programmes.
8.3- Ensure that Article 4 and Agreed - Energy to liaise with European
Irregularity requirements are met.
Programmes.
No evidence of Environmental Impact System put in place to ensure that all project
Assessments (EIA) having been carried appraisals include an EIA.
out.
Some standard clauses not included in Energy Division agreed to undertake remedial
Letters of Offer.
work.
Erne Graphics project - Ineligible Irregularity raised
expenditure.
447
If so, was
Did this
it reported
lead to an
or
irregularity? recorded?
No
No
No
No
No
No
No
No
No
No
Yes
Recorded
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
INTERNAL AUDIT ACTIVITY FOR MEASURE 2.5
The table below provides a record of internal audits carried out for sub-Measure 2.5
Reference Number
None
None
Title of Audit
Audit Body
Internal
Audit DE IAS
Report
on
EU
Structural Funds
Internal
Audit DE IAS
Report on EFU
(BSP Section)
448
Date of Audit
Date Report
received
Date of
Response
April 2004
25 May 2004
8 June 2004
March-May 2008
22 May 2008
30 June 2008
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 2.5
Reference
Number
Recommendation
Action Taken
DE Internal Audit
Ref. 6.3
That a supervisory process should be Branch
checking
put in place for the database and project procedures reviewed
files
DE Internal Audit
Ref. 6.7
That branch working practices should be A
branch
procedures
reviewed and appropriately documented manual was developed by
December 2004
That Article 4 checks should be begun
as soon as possible
Article 4 checks began in
July 2004
That arrangements should be made to External auditors were
commission Article 10 checks
engaged and Article 10
work began in late 2004.
That
evidence
is
retained
to
demonstrate
the
decision-making Processes were formally
process in assessing applications
documented
That processes and procedures for As closure continues, the
programme closure should be put in branch will ensure that
place
appropriate processes are
developed
DE Internal Audit
Ref. 6.10
DE Internal Audit
Ref. 6.12
DE Internal Audit
Ref. 6.14
DE Internal Audit
on BSP 2008
Ref. 10.6
449
Did this
If so, was
lead to an
it reported
irregularity?
or
recorded?
No
N/A
No
N/A
No
N/A
No
N/A
No
N/A
No
N/A
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
INTERNAL AUDIT ACTIVITY FOR MEASURE 3.1
The table below provides a record of internal audits carried out for sub-Measure 3.1
Reference
Number
Title of Audit
Audit
of
Measure 3.1
Audit Body
Date of Audit
Date Report
received
Date of Response
BSP
DSD IAS
8 April 2003 –
9 May 2003
18 November 2003
25 February 2005
Follow up Audit of
BSP Measure 3.1
DSD IAS
20 May 2004 –
21 December 2004
27 February 2008
28 February 2008
SAN 5180
Article 4
Arrangements
DSD IAS
2004-2005
12 November 2005
17 February 2006
Approx
SAN 5180
Follow-up Article 4
arrangements
DSD IAS
2006-2007
15 February 2007
28 February 2007
SAN 5160
EU Verification Unit
DSD IAS
2006-2007
30 March 2007
25 May 2007
SAN 5160
Review of EU
Verification Unit
DSD IAS
2003-2004
28 April 2004
25 May 2004
Approx
SAN 5162
EUVU
Repeformance
Testing
EU Irregularities
Process
DSD IAS
2004-2005
20 January 2005
18 February 2005
Approx
DSD IAS
2006-2007
15 February 2007
23 May 2007
450
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 3.1
Reference
Number
Measure 3.1
Follow-Up to
M3.1
SAN 5180
Audit Of Article
4
Arrangements
Recommendation
Did this
If so, was
lead to an
it reported
irregularity?
or
recorded?
Action Taken
Timeliness of Delivery
(a) Management should urgently seek to progress
action taken to date with regard to the
identification of suitable projects.
(b) Senior management support should be sought
to assist with this task and consideration
should be given to the establishment of formal
protocols setting out targets for exchange of
information, etc.
Issues regarding:
Accountability for Programme Spend
Maintenance of Financial Records
Management Information
Programme Monitoring.
Four of the previous recommendations were
implemented and operating effectively, 2 were
implemented in part, and 2 were no longer
applicable.
Management
should
review
the
management/supervisory checks conducted over
Article 4 visits completed by the DSD Article 4
team. It is important that the checking regime in the
unit provides management with assurance that
Article 4 visits are being conducted in a complete
and accurate manner.
451
Work continued
suitable Projects
to
identify
Issue raised with GMB and a
letter sent to all Departments
seeking support.
No
Accepted implemented
10 November 2003
Implemented Dec 2003
Implemented 17/11/2003
Cleared
Of the 7 recommendations made
in the Article 4 Audit, 4 have
been implemented and are
operating effectively, and 3 have
been implemented and are not
operating effectively.
N/A
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 3.1 (cont’d)
Reference
Number
Follow-up of
Article 4
arrangements
SAN 5180
Audit of EUVU
Reperformance
Testing
(Final Report
Issued
18/02/05)
Recommendation
Action Taken
Recommendations on Article 4 Visits to External All High Risk recommendations
Implementers.
cleared.
No High Risk Issues were found and Substantial
Assurance was given. Medium Risk Issues were
identified in relation to Project Inspection Record, All recommendations accepted
Review and Issue of Draft Reports, Management
Letter information, Monthly Work Reports, Substantive assurance
Verification Process Targets, and Monitoring of 6
Month Target.
Issues around: Sampling Methodology
EU Verification Effectiveness of Management and Control System –
Unit.
Systemic Issues – IB Level
(Final
Report Error Rates – Analysis
Issued 1/06/07) Error Rates – Analysis
Extended Testing.
452
Recommendations accepted and
implemented immediately or at
next appropriate opportunity –
substantive assurance given
Did this
If so, was
lead to an
it reported
irregularity?
or
recorded?
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
INTERNAL AUDIT ACTIVITY FOR MEASURE 3.2
The table below provides a record of internal audits carried out for sub-Measure 3.2
Reference
Number
Title of Audit
Audit Body
Date of Audit
Date Report
received
SAN 5102
BSP Measure 3.2
DSD IAS
2004-2005
SAN 5102
Follow-Up BSP
M3.2
DSD IAS
2005-2006
SAN 5180
Article 4
Arrangements
DSD IAS
2004-2005
12 November 2005
17 February 2006
Approx
SAN 5160
EU Verification Unit
DSD IAS
2006-2007
30 March 2007
25 May 2007
SAN 5180
Follow-up Article 4
arrangements
DSD IAS
2006-2007
15 February 2007
28 February 2007
SAN 5162
EUVU
Repeformance
Testing
Review of EU
Verification Unit
DSD IAS
2004-2005
20 January 2005
18 February 2005
Approx
DSD IAS
2003-2004
28 February 2004
25 May 2004
Approx
SAN 5160
453
16 September 2004
Date of Response
07 February 2005
Approx
21 July 2005
Approx
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 3.2
Reference Number
Recommendation
2005-06 Main high risk area’s were in
relation
to
Duplicate
Funding,
Selection
Panels,
evidence
of
SAN 5102 Measure 3.2
decisions, letters of offer, monitoring
visits, approval prior to issue of CFF,
and the entire measure to be raised
as a systemic irregularity
2005-06 All recommendations had
been
implemented
except
that
regarding the systemic error of BSP
3.2.
SAN 5102 Measure 3.2 Further recommendation was raised
follow-up
– VCU Management (following audit
of BSP 3.2) should ensure same
corrective action taken in respect of
BSP 3.3
Action Taken
Did this lead to an
irregularity?
If so, was it
reported or
recorded?
Yes- A systemic
irregularity
was
All
accepted
and raised for each Reported
implemented
Project and sent to
DFP
and
the
Commission
Implemented after being
A
systemic
put
on
Outstanding
irregularity was
Recommendation
Yes
raised for each
Database
Project
and
Recommendation
then cleared
accepted
–
to
be
Both
reported
implemented as soon as Yes – on each and
recorded
possible after report
Project
irregularities
raised on all
BSP
3.3
Projects.
2006-07
The
High
Risk
recommendations were in relation to
Audit of EU Verification the Accuracy of the Population, the All
recommendations
Unit
reconciliation with actual spend on the accepted
and No
Final Report Issued EU Central Database, the Risk implemented immediately
25/05/04 – SAN 5160
Assessment
Process
and
documentation, and visits to the main
implementing and final beneficiary
before closure
454
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 3.2 (cont’d)
Reference Number
Recommendation
Action Taken
Audit of EUVU – Reperformance Testing
No High Risk Issues were found and All
recommendations
(Final Report Issued Substantial Assurance was given.
accepted
and
18/02/05 – SAN 5162
implemented
The main High Risk Issues were in
EU Verification Unit.
relation to sampling Methodology,
(Final Report Issued Effectiveness of Management and
1/06/07 – SAN 5160
Control Systems, the analysis of error
rates, the process of de-selection of
projects, and the extended testing of
Article 12
Recommendations
accepted
and
implemented immediately
or at next appropriate
opportunity – substantive
assurance given
455
Did this lead to an
irregularity?
No
No
If so, was it
reported or
recorded?
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
INTERNAL AUDIT ACTIVITY FOR MEASURE 3.3
The table below provides a record of internal audits carried out for sub-Measure 3.3
Reference
Number
Title of Audit
SAN 5103
Audit
of
Measure 3.3
SAN 5180
Article 4
Arrangements
SAN 5160
Audit Body
Date Report
received
Date of Response
May 2007
May 2007
To confirm
DSD IAS
2004-2005
12 November 2005
17 February 2006
Approx
EU Verification Unit
DSD IAS
2006-2007
30 March 2007
25 May 2007
SAN 5180
Follow-up Article 4
arrangements
DSD IAS
2006-2007
15 February 2007
28 February 2007
SAN 5162
EUVU
Repeformance
Testing
Review of EU
Verification Unit
DSD IAS
2004-2005
20 January 2005
18 February 2005
Approx
DSD IAS
2003-2004
28 April 2004
25 May 2004
Approx
SAN 5160
EUVU
DSD IAS
2000-2001
27 March 2001
6 June 2001
Approx
N/A
Report to Those
Charged with
Governance
NIAO
2006-2007
2007
SAN 5160
BSP DSD IAS
Date of Audit
456
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 3.3
Reference Number
Recommendation
Action Taken
Did this lead to an
irregularity?
SAN 5180
Audit of Article 4
Arrangements
The High Risk Recommendations were in All recommendations
relation to the Completion of the Article 4 accepted and
Monitoring Visits, the Article 4 visits to implemented.
external Implementers, and the Article 4
workplans
No
Follow-up of Article 4
arrangements
Accepted and
All
previous
recommendations implemented
implemented except one in relation to
Article 4 visits to external implementers
No
SAN 5180
Audit of EU Verification
Unit
Final Report Issued
25/05/04)
SAN 5160
The main high risk issues and
recommendations
revolve
around
Accuracy of the Population, the
reconciliation with actual spend on the EU
Central Database, the Risk Assessment
Process and documentation, and visits to
the main implementing and final
beneficiary before closure
Audit
of
EUVU
– No High Risk Issues were found and
Reperformance Testing
Substantial Assurance was given.
(Final Report Issued
18/02/05)
SAN 5162
457
All recommendations
accepted and
implemented
immediately
No
All
recommendations
accepted
and
implemented
No
If so, was it
reported or
recorded?
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 3.3 (cont’d)
Reference Number
Recommendation
Action Taken
EU Irregularities Process The High Risk recommendations were in
(Final Report Issued relation to the Clearance of irregularities,
23/05/07)
the reporting of irregularities, the nature
of irregularities identified, succession
planning, the absence of management
checks over management information,
the reporting of irregularities to DFP, and
Article 8 – Debtors Ledger
SAN 5103
Internal Audit
recommended, due to
systemic weaknesses identified in the
management and control systems in
operation over this Measure, an exercise
should be undertaken to determine the
scale of the weaknesses identified and to
assess
their
impact
within
the
Management and controls systems.
458
Recommendations
accepted and
implemented
Management
undertook an extensive
exercise as outlined in
the recommendation
which was reviewed by
Internal Audit who
were satisfied that all
necessary steps were
taken to implement
recommendations
made
Did this lead to an
irregularity?
No
Yes
As a result of this exercise
13 of the 43 original
Projects were withdrawn
in full resulting in £2.7m
being
decommitted.
Irregularities were raised
for each of the withdrawn
projects.
A number of
smaller irregularities were
detected in the remaining
projects and irregularities
were
raised
as
appropriate. Any irregular
expenditure
was
withdrawn from claims to
the Commission.
If so, was it
reported or
recorded?
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 3.3 (cont’d)
Reference Number
Recommendation
Action Taken
NIAO
The Department’s Internal Audit work in
Report to those charged URCDG highlighted significant failings in
with Governance
the management and control of grants
made under Building Sustainable
Prosperity (BSP) Measure 3.3 and
considered them to be so significant that
a limited assurance rating was applied to
the Group as a whole. The work has
been reviewed by Northern Ireland Audit
Office and they agreed with the
conclusions reached
Did this lead
to an
irregularity?
A review to establish
the number of older As above
cases in that unit
where payments are
still being made was
undertaken to provide
assurances
that
similar weaknesses
identified
in
the
administration
of
Building Sustainable
Prosperity 3.3 were
not prevalent in those
cases. Internal Audit
was asked to validate
the findings of that
review (see above)
459
If so, was it
reported or
recorded?
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
INTERNAL AUDIT ACTIVITY FOR MEASURE 3.4
The table below provides a record of internal audits carried out for sub-Measure 3.4
Reference
Number
None
None
Title of Audit
Audit Body
Internal
Audit DE IAS
Report
on
EU
Structural Funds
Internal
Audit DE IAS
Report
on
EFU
(BSP Section)
460
Date Report
received
Date of
Response
April 2004
25 May 2004
8 June 2004
March-May 2008
22 May 2008
30 June 2008
Date of Audit
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 3.4
Reference Number
Report May 2004 Ref. 6.3
Report May 2004 Ref. 6.7
Report May 2004 Ref. 6.10
Report May 2004 Ref. 6.12
Report May 2004 Ref. 6.14
Recommendation
Action Taken
Supervisory process should be put in
place for the database and project
files
Branch working practices should be
reviewed
and
appropriately
documented
Branch
checking
procedures reviewed
Article 4 checks should be begun
asap.
Arrangements should be made to
commission Article 10 checks
Article 4 checks begun in
July 2004
External auditors were
engaged and Article 10
work began in late 2004.
A
Branch
procedures
manual was developed by
December 04
Evidence is retained to demonstrate
the decision-making process in Processes
assessing applications
documented
If so, was it
reported or
recorded?
No
N/A
No
N/A
No
N/A
No
N/A
No
N/A
No
N/A
formally
Report on BSP 2008 Ref. Processes
and
procedures
for As closure continues, the
10.6
programme closure should be put in branch will ensure that
place
appropriate processes are
developed
461
Did this lead to an
irregularity?
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
INTERNAL AUDIT ACTIVITY FOR MEASURE 5.1
The table below provides a record of internal audits carried out for sub-Measure 5.1 (Water)
Reference
Number
Title of Audit
Audit Body
Administration of EU DRD IAS
Structural Funds –
Water Service
Water Service EU DRD IAS
Article 10 checks
Date of Audit
September/October
2004
April 2005
December 2005
December 2007
462
Date Report
received
Date of
Response
28 February 2006
August 2008
August 2008
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 5.1 DRD
Reference
Number
Recommendation
Action Taken
Administration of EU Structural Funds – Water Service 2004-05 and December 05
Accounting systems and financial reporting – Recommendation
‘Reasonable Assurance’
implemented
Processing of applications including project Recommendation
assessment – ‘Reasonable Assurance’
implemented
Project monitoring and control – ‘Reasonable Recommendation
assurance’
implemented
Compliance with EC publicity requirements – Recommendation
‘Reasonable Assurance’
implemented
Compliance with EC Regulation 438/2001 and Recommendation
1681/1994 (management checks/verification implemented
checks/irregularities) – ‘Reasonable Assurance’
Water Service EU Article 10
Ensure adequate and effective systems for
compliance with Article 7 of EC Regulation
438/2001
Provide supporting documentation for Lough
Macrory WTW EU Database payments
Source original EU project letters of offer for
Carran Hill WTW
Ensure copies of irregularity reports are
maintained on EU project files
Ensure relevant training for staff responsible for
management and co-ordination of EC Structural
Funds
Did this
lead to an
irregularity?
If so, was it
reported or
recorded?
No
N/A
No
N/A
No
N/A
No
N/A
No
N/A
Implemented
No
N/A
Implemented
No
N/A
Implemented
No
N/A
Implemented
No
N/A
Implemented
No
N/A
463
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
INTERNAL AUDIT ACTIVITY FOR MEASURE 5.1
The table below provides a record of internal audits carried out for Measure 5.1 (DOE)
Reference
Number
BSP Rpt 1
BSP Rpt 2
BSP Rpt 3
BSP Rpt 4
Title of Audit
Audit Body
Date of Audit
Review
of DRD IAS
Administration of EU
Structural Funds
Follow-up Review of DRD IAS
Administration of EU
Structural Funds
Article 10 Audit of DRD IAS
BSP
March-November
2005
Article 10 Audit of DRD IAS
BSP
June-December
2008
September 2007
January 2007-May
2007
464
Date Report
received
Date of
Response
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 5.1 - DOE
Reference
Number
Review
EU
Structural
Funds
2005
Follow-up
Review
2007
Audit of
Article 10
2007
Recommendation
Action Taken
Targets are established for the timely Targets established.
processing of claims.
Feedback be given to Promoters on
the findings of the Article 4 visit
regards weaknesses found and follow
up
A proforma be developed for
recording of site visits and monitoring
responsibilities are documented.
Did this
lead to an
irregularity?
If so, was it
reported or
recorded?
No
N/A
No
N/A
Feedback given to Promoters and issues
followed up.
Partially implemented with proforma
developed
but
responsibilities
not
documented as projects substantially No
completed.
Management should issue a revised There is a clear audit/management trail to
letter of offer which clearly stipulates show
specifically
the
expenditure
the amount of financial assistance to attributed to the Department and EU
be paid under the BSP Programme.
No
Any subsequent changes to the grant
amount element offered should be
formalised with appropriate revisions
to the letter of offer.
465
N/A
N/A
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
INTERNAL AUDIT ACTIVITY FOR MEASURE 6.1
The table below provides a record of internal audits carried out for Measure 6.1
Reference
Number
IA 17/04
IA 56/05
Title of Audit
Audit Body
Internal
Audit DFP IAS
Report on Structural
Funds
Policy
Management Team
Follow up of IA DFP IAS
17/04
Date of Audit
23 August 20043 September 2004
Date Report
received
Date of Response
Draft report
10 December 2004
Final Report
24 March 2005
6 Jan 2006
None
14 December 2004
IA 57/06
Follow up review of DFP IAS
IA 56/05
30 October 2006
None
IA 76/06
Internal
Audit DFP IAS
Report on Structural
Funds
Policy
Management Team
Draft report
23 May 2007
Final report dated
1 August 2007
23 July 2007
31 July 2007
466
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 6.1
Reference
Number
IA 17/04
IA 17/04
IA 17/04
IA 17/04
Recommendation
Management should ensure that all
appraisal
decisions
are
fully
documented, evidenced and retained
on file
Management
should
liaise
with
Departmental Economists to obtain
advice on the areas of the ‘Green Book’
that need to be addressed in these
cases and indeed if they are necessary
at all.
EUD, as the Managing Authority, should
seek to obtain, without delay, the
outstanding annual reports and audited
accounts in accordance with the LoO
and should consider withholding further
funding until these have been provided
All requested changes to LoOs should
also be made in writing and retained on
file. Additionally, management should
ensure that changes in conditions of
grant are revised in the LoO and
supported by evidence of the decisionmaking process
Action Taken
Management accept that all appraisal decisions should
be fully documented, evidenced and retained on file.
Management have obtained the fully completed
appraisal forms and these are now on file
Management has complied with existing procedures in
the Structural Funds Manual but will ensure future
economic appraisals focus on areas of concern, if
concerns are raised by Assessment Panels
Did this lead
to an
irregularity?
No
No
Management at the time of the audit were fully aware of
the requirement to furnish audited accounts and had
requested copies on several occasions. An on the spot
Article 4 check is to be carried out in the near future and
the audited accounts will be a priority
No
This requirement is detailed in the Letter of Offer. EUD
was asked to provide advance payments at a meeting
held on 10 May 2004. This request was rejected by
EUD, but to be helpful management agreed that claims
could be made on a monthly basis. This was a
management decision taking account of the branch
workload. A note of the meeting when the request was
made is held on file. It should be noted that since the
meeting no monthly payments have been received and
there has therefore been no variation to the LoO. When
a claim is received the LoO will be amended
No
467
If so, was it
reported or
recorded?
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 6.1 (cont’d)
Reference
Number
IA 17/04
IA 17/04
IA 17/04
Recommendation
Action Taken
Did this lead
to an
irregularity?
Management should review the applications
process for “in house” Technical Assistance.
Adequate separation of duties should be
introduced to provide transparency for the
approval process and should be extended to Adequate segregation of duties is now in place.
include the authority to purchase and the
authorisation of payments.
Delegated limits are not an issue for SFPMU as
the Finance section has now taken over the
Management should ensure adherence to the authorisation of the “pinks”
delegated limits allocated to each officer or
consider revising the limits should this be more
appropriate
No
Where no formal Letter of Offer (LoO) is
required, management should reconsider the
method of input to the database to ensure that
current controls are not overridden or made
redundant
No
As the individual responsible for the order of
goods/services should not partake in further
elements of the payment process, the order
form for goods/services should be retained in a
secure central location, and not retained by the
individual placing the order. This will allow the
officer receiving the goods to reconcile the
forms on a timely basis.
The ‘Authority To Pay’ should be clearly
separated from the ‘Goods Received’ section
in order to clearly separate the activities
At the time of the audit review new staff were
being trained on the Structural Funds Database,
for future training we will endeavour to ensure
that controls are not circumvented.
The order form will in future be stored in a
secure central location and available to the
receiving officer.
The order form will be redesigned
468
No
If so, was it
reported or
recorded?
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 6.1 (cont’d)
Reference
Number
Recommendation
Action Taken
Did this lead
to an
irregularity?
The following refers to a Report on Structural
Funds Policy Management Team 2007
IA 76/06
IA 76/06
Management should approach all relevant
departments and obtain a list of signatories
authorised to sign the certificates. A cross- A list of authorised signatures
check should be made to the list prior to the completed and will be maintained
authorisation of the drawdown
Management should review the procedures
and ensure they are updated in line with
current practices
has
been
No
These procedures have been updated reviewing
the current practices/responsibilities undertaken
by SFPMT and Departments
No
IA 76/06
With the advent of closure it is not cost
effective at present to make changes to the
database to address this issue. However, a
RMA has added this report to the drawdown
printout of the screen page recording the list of
section of the Central Database
authorising officers should be obtained before
submission and held with the hard copy
certificates. The problem should be noted and
addressed in the new round of funding, if
appropriate
469
No
If so, was it
reported or
recorded?
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 6.1 (cont’d)
Reference
Number
IA 76/06
IA 76/06
Recommendation
Management should remind all projects/
departments being funded of the need to
provide sufficient details of expenditure to be
recouped. They should assure themselves that
amounts claimed are in accordance with terms
and conditions of funding and explanations
should be sought where required. Relevant
documentation should be signed as checked/
authorised where appropriate. Where possible,
outstanding documentation should be sought
retrospectively to provide a transparent audit
trail
Action Taken
Accepted. Originals are now stamped and
apportioned amounts stated where applicable.
2. Accepted. All invoices for the NILGA Admin
costs are now requested and details of the split
are held on file.
3. The copy on file is not of good quality although
the amount was legible; the original was received
and passed to Finance Branch for payment.
However it is accepted that all copy invoices
should be of good quality.
Did this
lead to an
irregularity
?
No
4. Although supporting documentation for the
payment is held and available for checking it is
accepted, for completeness of the audit trail,
documents should be cross referenced
Accepted. Copies of signed Letters of Offer will
Management should ensure that all relevant be made and filed.
documentation is signed and dated by the 2. Accepted. Staff have been reminded to date
appropriate officer(s) in order to provide an stamp all invoices.
adequate management/audit trail
3. Accepted. A note will be held on file
470
No
If so, was it
reported or
recorded?
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Key recommendations and subsequent actions for Measure 6.1 (cont’d)
Reference
Number
IA 76/06
Recommendation
Management should initiate a review of files.
An index system at the front of the files should
be developed providing a clear indication of
what documentation is required and being held.
This will ensure completeness of the
documentation and provide audit/management
trail.
Action Taken
Partly accepted. Papers within the technical
assistance files are held in chronological order of
documents and key documents are tabbed for
ease of identification. The files for internal
projects
contain
few
key
documents.
Management will inspect files and create an
index sheet on the left-hand side of the latest
volume identifying key documents, commencing
with external projects, NILGA, Concordia and
Agri-Rural forum, and following with internal
project files.
The external files should be
completed by end-July and the internal projects
will be indexed by end-September
471
Did this lead
to an
irregularity?
No
If so, was it
reported or
recorded?
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
ANNEX 13
Commission Audit findings
Systems Audit 24 -28 September 2001
BSP System Audit
Sept 2001 - response
Systems Audit 20 -24 June 2005
BSP systems audits
June 2005 and Septe
Project Audit 3 -7 April 2006
BSP Project Audit
April 2006 - Closure re
Project Audit 17-21 September 2007 (follow up)
472
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
BSP systems audits
June 2005 and Septe
473
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
ANNEX 14
Irregularities Guidance Note
Irregularity Guidance
Note - July 2008.DOC
474
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
ANNEX 15
Reported Irregularities – details as reported to OLAF by the UK authorities
REPLACEMENT
Annex 15 to Closure R
475
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
ANNEX 16
Recorded irregularities
BSP Recorded
Cases.xls
476
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
ANNEX 17
Equality Guide
Guide to
Mainstreaming Equalit
477
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
ANNEX 18
General Publicity/Newsletters
MANAGING AUTHORITY INFORMATION AND PUBLICITY
EC Regulation 1159/2000 sets down the EC requirements for publicity. It
states that information and publicity is to be provided “to increase public
awareness, assist transparency and create a coherent picture of the
assistance”.
The Managing Authority issued a Guidance Note to Implementing Bodies
suggesting ways on how to meet the regulatory requirements together with a
pro-forma to monitor details of publicity activities at measure level. This
information is collated into reports which are used by the Structural Funds
Monitoring Committee to monitor the effectiveness of Publicity Measures
undertaken and also provide the Management Authority with assurance that
there is compliance with EC Regulation 1159/2000. Publicity activities have
also been reported in the BSP Annual Implementation Reports.
Regulatory Article 4 verification checks also examine the publicity
activities of projects to ensure adherence to the EC Regulation.
The Managing Authority has undertaken a variety of activities to promote the
BSP Programme to citizens in Northern Ireland which include:
•
A Website to disseminate information relating to the BSP Operational
Programme (including all EU Structural Funding to NI). The website,
www.europe-dfpni.go.uk, was designed to provide access to all parts of
the Community and has taken significant steps to meet its equality
obligations under Section 75 of the Northern Ireland Act 1998. The
website provides access to material ranging from programme
documentation, the Structural Funds manual, to minutes of Monitoring
Committee meetings and logos. Guidance to Implementing Bodies on
publicity
requirements
is
http://www.dfpni.gov.uk/publicityguidelines.pdf ;
478
available
on
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
•
issue of two guides – Guide 1 ‘An Introduction to Structural Funds in
Northern Ireland’ which provides information on structural funds, their
purpose and aims, how the money will be used, managed and how to
access it. Guide 2 ‘Building Sustainable Prosperity in Northern Ireland
through European Union Structural Funds’ provides more information
on the BSP Programme which would be of interest to those seeking
general information on the programme. The booklet also explains how
the BSP Programme fits into the wider picture of European Funding in
Northern Ireland (front page examples below. Original copies included
with hard copy version of report);
479
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
•
production of a BSP Newsletter issued in Spring and Autumn which
showcases a wide range of projects from the Programme (front page
example below. Original copy included with hard copy version of
report);
480
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
•
a selection of BSP promotional materials was distributed to project
promoters via the Implementing Bodies. The promotional materials
included mugs, pens, key-rings, pens, pencils, mouse mats, all with full
colour BSP logo;
•
2004 and 2005 calendars with photographs of various projects were
produced and distributed to projects and key contacts;
•
an advertising campaign was run for six months using buses in main
towns throughout Northern Ireland. This coincided with a four week
advertising campaign at bus stops;
•
European Division in its role as CSF Managing Authority produced a
CSF leaflet highlighting projects. 220,000 copies were issued in the 4
main newspapers in Northern Ireland (front page example below.
Original copy included with hard copy version of report);
481
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Good News stories from across the Programme
Measure 1.1 - Belfast Aircraft Stress Engineers
This company based in Dundonald was supported under Measure 1.1 Growth
Start–Up, with a grant of £17,283. Benefiting from the strong aerospace
tradition which has grown up around Belfast, the company has attracted highly
trained engineers focusing on stress engineering, structural design and
systems. The company is an expert consultancy providing stress analysis and
other services to the global aerospace industry, has worked on projects for
most of the main aerospace companies including Boeing, Airbus and
Bombardier.
BASE has also established strong links with the Aeronautical Engineering
Department at Queen’s University Belfast, through placement of graduate and
undergraduate engineers in research based initiatives. Staying at the forefront
of technology and supporting new talent coming into the industry is very
important to the company and BASE is committed to the continual
development and promotion of the Northern Irish engineering industry.
482
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
The success of this company showed that a smaller business could do very
well with innovative products. It won the First Time Exporter of the Year Award
2005 hosted by Invest NI.
Measure 1.2 - New World Developments
Invest NI Helps Company Develop Doorway to Success
With R&D assistance from Invest Northern Ireland, a Ballymena company has
developed a composite door product that is set to make it a leader in its field
and significantly boost sales.
The company’s new product, called Apeer, has many advantages over a
uPVC panel door as it uniquely combines the strength, look and feel of a
wooden door yet its modern materials perform to the highest industry
standards.
New World Development’s managing director, Austin McGillian, says:
“Composite doors have been identified as a growth area of the overall door
market so we decided to research and develop a composite door with features
not currently offered by competitors. With Invest NI’s support we were able to
develop a highly technical product that has given us a very strong advantage
in the marketplace. We anticipate that Apeer will generate up to £3 million in
sales over next couple of years.”
New World Developments benefited with support from Invest NI’s Compete
programme, which helps companies develop innovative market-led products
and manufacturing processes.
To build the capability required to fully exploit the potential of the new product,
Invest NI has also given the company support to employ a factory manager,
two regional sales and marketing managers and an IT manager.
Production of the Apeer composite door range is expected to create 25 new
jobs in the company.
The Invest NI Compete Programme is part funded by the EU Building
Sustainable Prosperity Programme and provided this project with assistance
of £210,284.
483
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Measure 1.3 - Belle Isle School of Cookery - The Ultimate destination for
food lovers.
Discover the delights of creating modern cuisine in a food-lovers paradise. It's
a world apart, in one of the most charming and unspoilt areas of the Irish
countryside. How better to enjoy the delights of Irish cooking than at the Belle
Isle School of Cookery. Embark on a journey that stirs the imagination and
excites the senses in one of the most beautiful settings in Ireland. You will
discover the delights of cooking in a relaxed atmosphere, with expert tuition,
using top quality seasonal Irish produce. The hands-on cookery courses and
demonstrations will introduce you to some of Ireland’s most exciting and
innovative culinary ideas.
The Cookery School received funding of £44,500.84 from the BSP
programme through the Northern Ireland Tourist Board. Visit their website at
www.irishcookeryschool.com
Measure 1.4 - Derry Old Fire Station
The Old City Fire Station project is a key action within Derry City Council’s
Economic Development Plan. The project cost c. £950,000 and received
£475,000 through the European Union’s Building Sustainable Prosperity
programme administered by DETI, with the balance of funding coming from
Derry City Council.
484
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
The economic objectives of regenerating the property are to support the
growth of creative and knowledge-based industries within the historic Walled
City generally and the Cathedral Quarter particularly. This is based on the
current presence and continuing growth of such industries within the
Cathedral Quarter vicinity and their positive impact upon the area in terms of
economic/physical regeneration, their growing tourism appeal and the
complementary benefits of clustering within a defined geographical area.
The property is a Grade B2 listed building located on the edge of the City
Centre and has recently undergone extensive restoration and renovation
work, which has also included the addition of a two-storey building extending
along to Fountain Street. In June 2006 the property was badly damaged by
fire and was very close to being demolished due to the serious structural
damage that it suffered. Derry City Council appointed a project team which
managed to secure the building from demolition, through a series of efforts to
ensure that it was shored up prior to the actual renovation works taking place.
The regeneration of the building is now complete and provides 2,750 sq. ft of
high
quality
office
amenities/specifications
accommodation
including
equipped
telecommunications
with
modern
infrastructure,
air
conditioning and full disabled access throughout including the provision of an
elevator.
The property has significant architectural and historical significance given that
it remains the only late 19th Century Fire Station building in Northern Ireland
as well as being on the edge of the Walled City immediately adjacent to the
City Walls. Evidence of the building’s former use can be seen in terms of the
moulded crests on the front façade of the property depicting it as a fire station.
The building has a tenant and is providing employment for up to 10 people in
the creative industries sector.
The Minister of Environment officially opened the building on 8 May 2008.
http://www.northernireland.gov.uk/news-doe-100508-foster-unveils-old
485
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Measure 1.5 - ICT SUPPORT STEERS LOCAL FIRM TO GREATER
SUCCESS
Northern Ireland continues to lag behind much of the UK in terms of both
connecting
to
the
Internet
and
general
Information
Communication
Technology (ICT) usage. This trend is not restricted to small businesses;
many larger companies across the region also report a shortfall of appropriate
resources to implement effective e-business plans.
E-business is rarely considered as a core element of business strategy in
Northern Ireland so it seldom appears on business plans. However, there are
a number of forward-thinking companies which have actively incorporated ICT
programmes and e-business activities into their business plans and have
found that their profits have increased as a result. In reality, most small
businesses in Northern Ireland are limited in terms of time and resources and
strategy development is often hampered by the day-to-day practicalities of
running a business. Consequently, there is little time to investigate ICT fully,
keep on top of the latest technologies and learn about the real business
benefits of effective ICT. Local companies therefore frequently lack the
confidence and sufficient know-how to make informed buying decisions on
ICT technologies.
486
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
The good news is that the Invest NI ICT Advisory Service, a team of experts
with in-depth knowledge of the full range of IT technologies, is accessible to
all Invest NI client companies across Northern Ireland. The team can guide
you through the maze of ICT and e-business technologies and demonstrate
how it can improve your company’s performance. Frylite, a leading distributor,
collector and processor of vegetable oils with premises throughout the island
of Ireland has been in contact with the Invest NI e-Business team on a
number of occasions. Speaking from their head office in Strabane, Managing
Director Eamon McCay said: “Over the past number of years, Frylite has
experienced tremendous growth. As the business grew, so did the volume of
paper work that needed to be processed. We invested in technology in the
past but we were never satisfied with the outcomes so, determined to avoid
making the same mistake twice, we called in the experts from Invest NI’s ICT
team. An
ICT Advisor, paid us a visit and looked at our entire business
process and training needs to advise us of a suitable solution. The advice and
guidance given to us was invaluable in making our decision. Based on this
independent advice, we had the confidence to choose from a range of
suppliers offering varied solutions.
We selected a product provided by a local supplier. It not only allowed us to
better manage the administration function more efficiently but actually helped
us to streamline our overall process. Our drivers were able to produce delivery
dockets via handheld terminals and each night we could download the fleet’s
information from the handheld terminals directly into our system which meant
that the invoices could be produced automatically too. The difference is very
noticeable. We had enough work to be getting on with and didn’t need to be
worrying day-to-day about computer issues. We have witnessed the benefits
of this initial investment to our customers, staff as well as the all important
bottom line.”
Frylite contacted Invest NI for a second time when they moved to new
premises last year. On this occasion, the company installed broadband with
advice from an Invest NI Broadband Advisor. This allowed the firm to link
together their three sites in Strabane, Dublin and Galway. The broadband
advisory service is open to all businesses in Northern Ireland and is not
restricted to Invest NI client companies.
487
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
“From these positive experiences of ICT investment, we are now very open to
learning how ICT and e-business can improve the business further and now
actively seek ways of benefiting from new technologies. The key to success
for us was in knowing what we wanted to achieve and having an Invest NI ICT
Advisor to point us in the right direction” concluded Eamon.
Unsurprisingly, demand for Invest NI’s services to date has been very
encouraging with over 2,000 client companies having already contacted the
team. Invest NI has put in place five ICT Advisors, split regionally across
Northern Ireland, to work with client companies to improve their understanding
of ICT issues and the latest range of technologies currently available.
Measure 1.6a - A5 Newtownstewart By-pass
The Newtownstewart Bypass project was completed in December 2002. It has
been welcomed by both road users and Newtownstewart residents for the
reduction of traffic congestion and the associated reduction in pollution within
the town.
The bypass, which extends to 2.6km of single carriageway, includes two
major bridge crossings of the River Strule, an environmentally significant and
important angling river with local fish farming interests.
488
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
The strategically important A5 trunk road previously passed through the town
centre on a twisting alignment exacerbated by severely restricted road widths
causing considerable delay to through traffic.
This resulted in traffic
congestion and an unacceptable environment for pedestrians and impeded
the function of the town as a service centre to a wide rural hinterland.
The Scheme is a 2.5km single carriageway which crosses the floodplain of the
Strule River, mainly on embankment. There are two at-grade junctions and a
compact grade-separated junction and five principal structures, including two
major river crossings. Scott Wilson, as advisors to Roads Service, took the
Scheme from assessment of route options, through public consultation,
statutory procedures and Specimen Design to the procurement and
supervision of construction as a Design & Build contract.
Significant measures were adopted to integrate the road into the scenic and
environmentally sensitive landscape of the Strule River valley and to mitigate
environmental impacts both during construction and when the road is in
service.
Flooding was a major design issue with the objectives both to protect the road
itself and to ensure that flooding elsewhere was not exacerbated. This was
ascertained by a flood modelling study of the river during the development of
the Scheme.
Protection of water quality in the Strule was a another significant factor given
the presence of a commercial fish farm a short distance downstream and its
importance as a major fishing river in its own right. An automatic water quality
monitoring and alarm system was specified and implemented during
construction to guard against contamination.
The project received £7.5 grant assistance.
489
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
Measure 1.6B - Lisburn Bus Centre
Lisburn Bus Centre, which received a grant of £373,449, was officially opened
by Minister Conor Murphy, MLA, on the 30 September 2008. The modern,
fully accessible bus centre is a new addition to the Lisburn City Centre
landscape and provides a considerable enhancement in service quality for
both the local people and visitors to the area. The investment should help to
grow passenger numbers. It is well located opposite the Lisburn Square
Shopping Centre and within close walking distance of the busy city centre and
social facilities.
Passenger comfort and safety have been of paramount importance. There is
comfortable passenger seating in the waiting area, which overlooks nine new
covered bus stands allowing passengers to see clearly, when buses are
coming and going. There is an external PA system and induction loop system
used to announce departures and arrivals. Other facilities include public
toilets, a dedicated parent and baby room, refreshment area with vending
machines, covered cycle shelter, a range of information displays including
large electronic monitors carrying bus timetable information and real time
information for train services at the nearby Lisburn rail station. CCTV is in
operation throughout the complex at all times to help ensure passenger
safety.
In line with the operational opening (30th September) of the new Bus Centre,
local bus services were also improved in order to make the network easier to
use and to provide better integration with the rail station for bus/rail
490
BUILDING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY PROGRAMME VERSION 3
connections. This included the use of easy to use clock-face city service
timetables and improved passenger information including colour coded route
maps and new modern bus stops. Low floor fully accessible vehicles operate
on all city services.
The facilities for drivers, staff and management have improved with the
opening of the new centre. Located on the first floor, accessed by stairs or lift,
are new administration offices, a training/meeting room, a kitchen and toilet
facilities.
For press release see http://www.northernireland.gov.uk/news/news-drd080908-transport-minister-opens.
Measure 1.7 - Northern Ireland first in Europe with 100% Broadband
Over the last 5 to 10 years Government in Northern Ireland has been
committed to “working with the private sector, to develop and begin to
implement a strategy that will ensure that all of Northern Ireland has a world
class telecommunications infrastructure in terms of broadband capacity,
access and cost”.
Northern Ireland is a small peripheral regional economy. If we are to compete
successfully in Europe and the wider global marketplace, it is essential that NI
has access to competitively priced telecommunications services to allow our
indigenous businesses to remain competitive.
The Government’s goal for telecoms is improved communications networks
maintaining pace with those in Europe. In recent times the emergence of
broadband connectivity is regarded as a key component for the development
of knowledge-based economies. It is of strategic importance because of its
ability to accelerate the contribution of other information and communication
technologies to economic growth, and facilitate innovation recognised at local
national and European levels.
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The specific importance of broadband as an enabler of economic activity in
Northern Ireland is well established. Broadband is a communication channel
of immense power and importance. It makes it possible for Northern Ireland to
compete in the global marketplace.
In 2004, the NI Government launched a competitive tender to deliver 100%
broadband coverage in Northern Ireland funded by the EU Building
Sustainable Prosperity Programme. In December 2005, following award of a
contract to BT, Northern Ireland became the first region in Europe where
broadband was available to every home and business at equitable prices.
Almost £10 million was invested in delivering broadband across Northern
Ireland, with EU assistance of £6.27m, and this provision is key to ensuring
that the infrastructure, necessary to compete successfully in the global
market, is in place
Under the terms of the contract, a broadband service of at least 512 kbps is
available to every household and business should they wish to avail of it. The
contract is service-driven, technology neutral and includes price caps for the
various domestic and commercial product offerings to ensure equitable
access (although the supplier can make lower charges depending on market
conditions).
Currently the maximum charges the suppler can impose are
approximately €90 for installation and €35 per month for service provision,
slightly higher than the average urban commercial broadband charges of zero
for installation and circa €24 per month to ensure there is no displacement.
Furthermore under the terms of this contract the supplier is obliged to offer a
wholesale product to other resellers. There are estimated to be 370,000
broadband accounts in NI.
News release - http://archive.nics.gov.uk/eti/060116d-eti.htm
Measure 1.8 - Belfast Energy Agency - 'Hard to Heat Homes'
The project was a pilot study of four Northern Ireland Housing Executive
properties to include energy efficiency audits and the installation of monitoring
equipment to raise awareness of hard to heat homes, fuel poverty and
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renewable energy. The project received £16,000 of funding from the BSP
Programme. This represented 25 per cent of the total cost of the project.
The aims and objectives of the project were:
•To identify four appropriate NIHE properties and tenants to be included in the
pilot study by May 2003;
•To undertake property audits in order to identify appropriate energy efficiency
measures/renewable technologies for each house by July 2003;
•To install real time monitoring equipment in order to monitor pre and post
installation data for the period of one year;
•To install appropriate measures/technologies by January 2004 (revised to
April 2005 due to unforeseen delays);
•To educate tenants on the correct use of equipment and importance of
energy efficiency by April 2004;
•To evaluate project results and produce a published report outlining
experiences gained and a comprehensive breakdown of running costs by
March 2005 (revised to March 2006 due to unforeseen delays); and
•To raise awareness of hard to heat homes, fuel poverty and renewable
energy through on an ongoing basis.
The project objectives were achieved: properties were identified; property
audits
were
undertaken;
and
the
technologies
were
installed.
The
technologies installed in the properties included: ground source heat pumps;
wind turbines; solar water heating; PV panels; and ventilation systems.
Monitoring of the projects did occur, but the desired information relating to the
impact of the project was difficult to obtain.
This project has installed a number of renewable technologies in ‘real life’
housing situations and has raised awareness of renewable energy and energy
efficiency amongst a wider audience.
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The project was delivered at its planned cost and is delivering savings to the
residents of the selected houses both in terms of fuel savings and
unmeasured carbon savings. As such, the identified output could not have
been achieved at less cost.
This project aimed to demonstrate the benefits of renewable technologies and
energy efficiency measures in ‘real life’ housing situations. As such, a pilot
study was required in order to develop knowledge around the technologies
and their installation before a project could be carried out at a wider scale.
The desired outputs could not have been achieved in an alternative way.
The pilot study has reached an end and the project has delivered its
objectives. However, the pilot study has since evolved into the Bryson House
CLEVER Homes project which has taken the lessons from this project, and
has developed them into a wider reaching project involving the installation of
the technologies in more homes.
The Post Project Evaluation determined that the ‘Hard to Heat Homes’ project
achieved its objectives and outputs, was value for money, had a strategic fit
and would achieve project continuation.
Given that this project involved the generation of energy from renewable
sources, the project links into existing NI and UK Energy Policy, such as
targets for the reduction of CO2 emissions, and for electricity generated from
indigenous renewable sources.
Measure 2.5 - Major Project - C2k
The Mission of C2k is to provide, for Northern Ireland’s schools, a world class
Learning Technology service and optimise its use throughout the Community.
C2k is a regional scheme operating under the auspices of the Education
Technology Strategy Management Group of the Department of Education. It is
funded by the Department, through the Western Education and Library Board,
as part of its Education Technology Strategy, to deliver to schools high quality,
sustainable infrastructure, connectivity and resources. The Strategy set out to
ensure that young people are well prepared for their life and work in the
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information economy of the 21st century, and that ICT is used to raise
educational standards.
The C2k element of the measure has numerous components that include: ‰
Passive infrastructure to support C2k activities
‰
An infrastructure of approximately 23,000 networked computers
connected to the Internet and linked to legacy systems;
‰
Access to a wide range of content and services to support the Northern
Ireland Curriculum and the professional development of teachers;
‰
Connection of schools' networks onto a single education network
across Northern Ireland, with tools to facilitate the development of online teaching and learning; and
‰
Full service support through a central help desk.
C2k has been awarded full accreditation by BECTA (British Educational
Communications and Technology Agency), for the quality of its schools’
internet service provision.
The BECTA Internet Service Provider (ISP) accreditation means that all pupils
and teachers in the Province's 284 post primary and special schools can be
assured that the internet services provided by C2k meet the required
guidelines. C2k’s internet service is constantly monitored to ensure that
children and teachers in Northern Ireland are protected against offensive
emails and web site content. Further information can be found at
www.c2kni.org.uk/.
The project received £75.449m in EU assistance.
Measure 3.1 - Open Space at Cathedral Close
Previously this area of open space in front of St Anne’s Cathedral was
regarded as unattractive and unsafe. It provided a gathering place for those
engaged in anti-social behaviour i.e. glue sniffing and vandalism. The project
received £355,237 of grant assistance.
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The redevelopment of Cathedral Close has revitalised one of Belfast’s oldest
areas and linked it to the already successful waterfront developments. The
enhancement of an area of 1,370 square metres has provided an attractive
setting for St Anne’s Cathedral - a prominent landmark and tourist destination
in the City Centre. The new versatile outdoor performance space known as
Writers’ Square is capable of accommodating up to one thousand people and
has attracted groups of performing and visual artists to the area. The
cathedral Quarter is now more accessible and residents and those working in
the area have been encouraged to enjoy the benefits of a unique urban
renaissance.
Writer’s Square
Measure 3.2 - Community Housing Advice Project
The Department for Social Development supported a Community Housing
Advice Project (CHAP). This project was delivered by the Housing Rights
Service, an independent charity working to protect and promote the rights of
people in housing need in Northern Ireland. It received £175,622 grant
assistance.
This project was developed against a backdrop of escalating homelessness
and rising consumer debt levels and in recognition of the need for housing
advice, advocacy and representation to help prevent homelessness and
alleviate poor housing conditions. A partnership approach was adopted
involving Housing Rights Service, Citizens Advice and Advice NI with the aim
of increasing the capacity of frontline advice agencies throughout Northern
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Ireland. Other funding was secured from the NI Housing Executive and the
Community Fund.
The key objectives of the CHAP project were to
•
Prevent homelessness by enabling people to sustain existing
accommodation through debt counselling services and dealing with
issues threatening their security of tenure;
•
Assist people to access suitable accommodation by exploring the full
range of options available including social housing, low cost home
ownership and the private rented sector;
•
Provide advice on issues associated with affordability; and
•
Assist clients to challenge adverse housing decisions.
The project was delivered through 24 frontline voluntary advice agencies who
were able to access dedicated advice and support on housing issues, a wide
range of information materials, free training and bursaries for accredited
training. Housing Rights Service received a prestigious National Training
Award in recognition of its training services provided through this project.
Measure 3.3
South Tyrone Empowerment Programme
Although South Tyrone Empowerment Programme (STEP) is used below to
show the types of activities and services delivered to the smaller community
groups, it also provides a good example of improved inter-agency working.
STEP’s examples of consultations include Pathways for Change (2004), the
Review of Public Administration (2005), A Shared Future (2005), and
Promoting Good Relations (2007). In response to the closure of services at
the local Dungannon and South Tyrone Hospital, STEP facilitated consultation
with a range of local community organisations which led to the funding of a
pilot Health Action Zone for the Armagh and Dungannon area. Statutory
Agencies that STEP has worked with include Southern Health and Social
Services Trust, Children and Young Peoples Committee, Southern Health and
Social Services Board Community Development Panel, DSD, The Health
Action Zone, DEL Migrant Worker Forum, OFMDFM Race Equality Forum,
DCAL Language Forum. The project received grant assistance of £146,481.
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Community
Group
Activity
All Grassroots
Organisations
Provision of a STEP Drop-in Advice and Signposting Service
of all community groups and individuals to support their
capacity building and training needs and provide advice for
problem solving. This service operates on Mondays 9am9pm and Tuesday 9am – 5pm and is staffed a range of
specialist staff. It operates at full capacity and supports an
average of 10 groups per week.
All Grassroots
Organisations
STEP developed an Essential Skills Programme for
members of local community organisations and has enabled
more than 3,500 participants to secure accreditation of their
learning and skills development
All Grassroots
organisations
STEP developed and delivered training materials on antiracist / sectarian practice to 39 organisations across the
community and statutory sector
Rural Women’s
Project
STEP provided support and training to 25 women victims of
the Troubles and helped them secure funding for 3 part-time
temporary facilitators.
Migrant Worker
Support Groups &
Community
Groups
STEP provided community development mentoring support
to local community groups on a range of issues e.g.
language barriers, racism, sectarianism, reducing funding
opportunities and networking.
Dungannon West
Forum; Migrant
Workers Forum;
Volunteer Centre;
Willowbank;
Naiscoil Ui Neill;
The Peace
Factory Victims
Group
Provision eight training sessions on management roles and
responsibilities; financial accountability; monitoring and
evaluation to enable them to effectively manage their staff
and activities and their legal and financial responsibilities.
STEP staff also continued this support on an ad hoc basis
throughout the lifetime of the BSP Project.
Disability Arts
Forum
300 +
Organisations
Annually
Dissemination of policy news, funding opportunities, events
etc. through monthly newsletters.
All Organisations
Advice and support to 79 funding applications.
Dungannon Sure
Start
Facilitated strategy planning sessions for 37 Non-English
speaking families and assisted in successful funding
applications to the Southern Early Years Partnership to meet
the need
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Measure 3.4 - St Malachy’s Nursery Unit
The nursery unit is in the South Eastern Education and Library Board area,
situated in St Malachy’s Primary School, Bangor. It was opened in
September 2001. It provides part-time nursery provision for 52 children who
come from the surrounding area. Twenty-five of the children are in their preschool year. One teacher and two classroom assistants are employed with
general services being shared with the host primary school (St Malachy’s
Primary School).
The total cost of the nursery unit was £82,571.96 (inclusive of ‘kitting out’
costs) out of an initial estimate of £95,000. The EU support provided was
£41,285.98.
As a precursor to an Education and Training Inspectorate (ETI) inspection (of
the Primary School and Nursery Unit) ten parents submitted a written
comment about the nursery; the written comments indicated that the parents
were satisfied with all aspects of the nursery’s provision.
The inspection
findings endorsed the grounds for their confidence in the nursery’s work.
Summarised findings of the Education and Training Inspectorate
evaluation: o
There is a happy, caring and welcoming atmosphere throughout the
nursery and relationships between the staff and the children are very
good.
o
The staff are hard-working and dedicated and encourage the children to
attempt new activities.
o
The staff work very well as a team in the best interests of the children
o
The playroom is bright and interesting and good use is made of
photographs and of a wide range of the children’s art work to create
colourful displays.
o
Interest areas, supported by appropriate books and pictures, stimulate
the children’s curiosity and increase their knowledge of the environment.
o
The parents are welcomed into the life of the nursery
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o
There are good opportunities for the parents to assist in the nursery and
to participate in school trips.
o
The curriculum is broad and balanced
o
A good range of play opportunities is provided; the activities are well
developed and make use of some unusual and interesting resources to
stimulate the children’s imagination.
o
The children enjoy a variety of creative experiences involving painting,
printing, cutting, sticking and modelling.
o
Appropriate mathematical language is developed through the children’s
play
o
Elements of science and technology are also introduced effectively
through the play activities
The strengths of the nursery include:
o
the happy, caring and welcoming atmosphere;
o
the hard-working and dedicated staff;
o
the good relationships between the staff and the children;
o
the thoughtful and unobtrusive organisation of the daily routines;
o
the planning for, and the monitoring and evaluation of, the children’s
learning;
o
the behaviour of the children.
Overall, the quality of the education provided in this nursery unit is very good;
the needs of the children are being well met.
Nursery Unit Play Area
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Measure 5.1 (DOE) - Mourne Interpretation & Information Strategy
The project aimed to produce information packs on the Mourne Area of
Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) for the use of schools, universities, local
communities and visitors. The pack produced information cards giving details
on such topics as biodiversity, farming, fishing and cultural heritage. The
project received £6,468 in grant assistance.
The Mourne Education Sheets were launched by the Chief Executive of the
Mourne Heritage Trust. The sheets, which are aimed at Primary Schools for
Key Stage 1 and 2, cover seven key themes about the Mourne Area. The
Themes – ‘Mountains of Mourne, Evidence of the Past, Food from the
Mournes, Living in the Mournes, Biodiversity, Mourne Coast, The Mournes a
Place to Visit’, each have a pupil sheet specifically aimed at Key Stage 1 and
Key Stage 2 as well as a teachers advisory sheet. These can be found at
www.mournelive.com/publications/index.asp
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Measure 5.1 (DRD) - Carran Hill Water Treatment Works
Carran Hill Water Treatment Works was officially opened by Regional
Development Minister Conor Murphy MP MLA, on 26 July 2007. This project
was part funded by Building Sustainable Prosperity (BSP) Programme which
provided £3.95 million funding to the overall project cost of £10.4 million.
The new state-of-the-art treatment works will supply up to 6.8 million litres of
water every day and will serve a population of 20,000 from Crossmaglen and
the surrounding area in South Armagh.
In recognition of its environmental efforts in terms of design, construction and
commissioning, the Carran Hill project was recently awarded ‘Excellent’ status
in
the
environmental
2006
Civil
Engineering
Environmental
Quality
(CEEQUAL) Awards.
Carran Hill Water Treatment Works (WTW) is situated on the outskirts of
Crossmaglen in County Armagh. The Works treats water from nearby Lough
Ross, which historically has been plagued with algae problems. The existing
works was reaching the end of its useful life and was struggling to deal with
the level of algae produced during the warmer summer months.
In November 2004, the joint venture partnership of Farrans (Construction) Ltd
and Earth Tech Engineering was awarded a £10m contract to construct a
modern new treatment works that would produce high quality drinking water in
line with the latest EU directives.
Being the fifth in a series of water treatment works to be built as part of
Northern Ireland Water’s ‘Water Quality and Treatment Framework’, the
contractors at Carran Hill were able to adopt many of the lessons learnt from
previous contracts.
At the core of the framework is innovation and best
practice, with Northern Ireland Water working with its supply chain to
implement ‘lean thinking’ modern construction techniques to drive out waste in
the design construction and commission of water treatment facilities.
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The new Carran Hill WTW has been carefully designed so that its exterior
blends in with the surrounding countryside. Curved roofs and green cladding
are two of the aspects which have been adopted to make the building more
aesthetically pleasing in a rural environment. Inside the works the treatment
process has been set up to allow all the water entering the plant to be
recycled. This means that all water used during each of the treatment stages
i.e. water used to wash out filters, or water that is produced from the sludge
process, is put back to the source of the works.
The project is designed to minimize the amount of concrete. Cast in situ
concrete tanks, usually used in the final stages of water treatment process,
were replaced by stainless steel tanks which were fabricated off site and set in
place prior to the roof construction.
The footprint of the building was
substantially reduced and finish levels reviewed to minimize the amount of
rock excavation.
Adoption of Respect for people Initiatives and benchmarking performance of
key suppliers/sub-contractors on site with respect to site safety, quality,
workforce satisfaction, working environment and team effectiveness, allowed
continuous feedback and improvement measures to be incorporated during
delivery of the project.
The open book partnering approach adopted by the team, through the
fostering of good relationships with key strategic and local suppliers, is clearly
one of the major factors why this project has proved to be a success, being
delivered under budget, to appropriate quality and two months ahead of
schedule.
Conor Murphy – MP MLA
Katharine Bryan – Chief Executive NIW
Trevor Haslett – Director of Engineering Procurement
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Measure 6.1 – Technical Assistance
Technical Assistance provides the resources to cover costs of management
and monitoring, control, information and publicity. Examples of the types of
activities which were undertaken include: ™ Studies to develop appropriate monitoring and evaluation approaches
for the BSP Programme and the Community Support Framework
(CSF);
™ Mid term and other evaluations of Measures, Priorities, the
Programme and the CSF;
™ Cross-cutting studies commissioned by the CSF working groups
™ Expenses associated with the Programme and CSF Monitoring
Committees and other management activities; and
™ Information and publicity in relation to the Programme, its impacts,
including the dissemination of best practice.
Technical Assistance has also been used to support officers who assist social
partners and local government representatives on the Programme Monitoring
Committees.
504
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