Alex Attwood MLA is the Environment Minister for Northern Ireland. You can view his biography below;
The Permanent Secretary, Leo O'Reilly (PDF, 24 KB), is the Minister's principal adviser on all aspects of the Department's responsibilities and is the Accounting Officer for all Departmental expenditure. He is assisted by the Deputy Secretary and by the Chief Executives of, Driver & Vehicle Agency (DVA), and the Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA) who are also Accounting Officers for the expenditure of their respective Agencies; and by Directors who manage the divisions:
Who we are
The Department of the Environment comprises two Executive Agencies and eight supporting policy, operational delivery and resources Divisions. These Agencies and Divisions, which are organised within three functional groups, work in partnership to achieve the Department’s overall vision and strategic objectives.
Environment & Marine Group:
Planning & Local Government Group:
Road Safety, DVA & Corporate Services Group:
The Department’s organisational structure is illustrated in the diagrams below.
Our vision is to make Northern Ireland ‘a better place to live, work and invest’.
To protect and improve the environment, promote well being and deliver a strong and effective local government to support a thriving economy.
DOE seeks to ensure high standards in all it does and from its entire staff in fulfilling their role in supporting the Minister, customers and stakeholders. Our values, developed from the NICS Code of Ethics, identify the behaviours DOE staff will demonstrate both to the Department’s customers and to each other.
What we do
In addition to our role of supporting and advising the Minister, the Department’s main functions include:
How we operate
The Department is headed by a Minister who has overall political responsibility and accountability for all the Department's activities. This role involves making the principal decisions on strategy, business objectives and the policy and legislation framework for the Department. The Minister also agrees the resourcing levels with the Executive and is accountable to both the Executive and the public for all aspects of the Department’s policy and performance.
The Permanent Secretary is the Minister's principal adviser on all aspects of the Department's responsibilities and is the Accounting Officer for all Departmental expenditure. He is assisted by three Deputy Secretaries and twelve Directors who manage the Agencies and Divisions within the Department.
The work of the Department is co-ordinated and monitored by the Departmental Board. The Board provides leadership to the organisation as a whole, takes responsibility for the Department’s performance, provides support for the Department’s Principal Accounting Officer (i.e. Permanent Secretary) and provides advice to the Minister. The Board, which is chaired by the Permanent Secretary, meets monthly to review current and ongoing issues.
The day-to-day operational business of the Department is the responsibility of the Deputy Secretaries and the Chief Executives of the Agencies and Directors of Divisions within the Department who report to them.
The Department produced a Corporate Governance Framework document in 2009 which sets out the arrangements that have been put in place to ensure proper and effective management of the Department’s resources. The document reflects the guidelines set out in HM Treasury’s Code of Good Practice on Corporate Governance in Central Government Departments and outlines the Department’s corporate governance approach and procedures.
These include regular monitoring of Corporate and Agency/Divisional Business plans, stringent financial management arrangements, Departmental policies and procedures for the management of risk, anti-fraud policies and whistle-blowing arrangements and publication of the Department’s Annual Report and Accounts.
To further strengthen its corporate governance arrangements, an Independent Board Member (IBM) sits on the Departmental Board, bringing an independent perspective to corporate decision making.
The Department’s corporate governance processes and arrangements are monitored by the Departmental Audit Committee and the Northern Ireland Audit Office (NIAO), providing assurance and objective advice on issues concerning business risk, internal control and the overall corporate governance of the Department.
The Department will also continue to implement its Equality Scheme to promote equality of opportunity and good relations, and its Disability Action Plan to promotepositive attitudes towards disabled people and to encourage participation by disabled people in public life. The Department is committed to complying fully with its statutory obligations under Section 75 of the Northern Ireland Act 1998 and will screen all of its policies for equality and good relations impacts andwill conduct full equality impact assessments when appropriate.