Oireachtas Joint and Select Committees
Tuesday, 10 December 2019
Joint Oireachtas Committee on Communications, Climate Action and Environment
Future Funding of Public Service Broadcasting: Discussion
I welcome from RTÉ, Ms Dee Forbes, director general, Ms Breda O'Keeffe, chief financial officer, Mr. Rory Coveney, director of strategy, and Ms Eimear Cusack, director of human resources; and from the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment, Ms Patricia Cronin, assistant secretary general, and Ms Triona Quill, principal officer.
Before we begin, I draw the attention of witnesses to the fact that by virtue of section 17(2)(l) of the Defamation Act 2009, witnesses are protected by absolute privilege in respect of their evidence to this committee. However, if they are directed by the Chairman to cease giving evidence in relation to a particular matter and they continue to so do, they are entitled thereafter only to a qualified privilege in respect of their evidence. Witnesses are directed that only evidence connected with the subject matter of these proceedings is to be given and they are asked to respect the parliamentary practice to the effect that, where possible, they should not criticise or make charges against any person, persons or entity by name or in such a way as to make him, her or it identifiable. I also wish to advise the witnesses that any submissions or opening statements they make to the committee will be published on the committee website after the meeting.
Members are reminded of the long-standing parliamentary practice to the effect that they should not comment on, criticise or make charges against a person outside the House or an official either by name or in such a way as to make him or her identifiable.
I remind members and witnesses to turn off their mobile phones or to switch them to flight mode as they will interfere with the television and broadcasting coverage.
I invite Ms Dee Forbes to make her opening statement.