Thursday, 16 August 2012

Douglas Bain - quadruple jobber

At times there has been comment in the media about double-jobbng but in the Parades Commission there is actually a case of quadruple-jobbing and yet it has received little attention.

Douglas Bain is recorded on the website of the Parades Commssion as a member of the commission but it also notes that he was appointed on 1 February 2012 as an independent member of the Northern Ireland Assembly Commission's Secretariat Audit and Risk Committee (SARC).  Then on 25 April 2012 he was appointed a lay member of the National Security Certificate Appeals Tribunal for Northern Ireland.

A check with the register of interests on the website of the Assembly Commission's SARC however reveals that he is also an examiner of the Association of Electoral Administrators, an organisation based in Staffordshire.  So in fact Douglas Kinloch Bain is a quadruple-jobber.

As a member of the Parades Commission he is paid £250 a day with an average of two days a week.  That amounts to an average of 104 days in a year at £250 per day, or £26,000.

As a member of SARC he will receive a few thousand pounds for around six meetings.  The SARC meets at least four times a year but in 2011-12, the last full year, it met six times.  For those six meetings the total fees of the three committee members were £8,221.

As regards the National Security Certificate Appeals Tribunal (NSCAT) for Northern Ireland and the Association of Electoral Administrators, I have not yet been able to ascertain his income, if any.

However Douglas Bain is a good example of a class of people in Northern Ireland who seem to be able to get appointed to a number of public bodies.  That is an unhealthy situation and raises a number of questions.  Is it that there are not enough people with the skills to fill these roles?  Is it that there are those who are familiar with the system and know  how to get appointed?  Is it that some people build up a cv of public appointments that help them to get further appointments?  It is certainly something that needs to be considered and there is a need to expand the number of suitable people seeking public appointments.

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