Appointments to the Board of the Utility Regulator announced

Finance Minister Arlene Foster MLA has announced the appointment of two new members to the Board of the Northern Ireland Authority for Utility Regulation (the Utility Regulator)

The new members are Mr Jon Carlton and Mr Alex Wiseman. They have both been appointed to serve on the Board for a five year term commencing on 1 November 2015.

The new Board members will receive annual remuneration of £9,616.

Notes to editors:

1. The Utility Regulator is the non-ministerial government department responsible for regulating the electricity and gas industries as well as water and sewerage services in Northern Ireland. It protects the interests of consumers with regard to both price and quality of service.

2. Mr Jon Carlton is an experienced Director and Chartered Engineer, who has run large-scale complex businesses and key functions in engineering, commercial, regulation and support services. He has extensive experience working in the regulated electricity and gas sector including at National Grid Plc and has non-executive and advisory positions such as Non-Executive Director of ENTRUST (the Regulator of the Landfill Communities Fund) and Vice Chair of the Board of Governors of an Academy. Mr Carlton does not hold any other Ministerial public appointments.

3. Mr Alex Wiseman specialises in utility regulation and strategy and has extensive experience in the regulated utility sector as an executive. He has completed interim assignments for Regulators and Government as well as numerous consultancy projects, recently across gas, water and electricity, but previously across a range of industries including Government, the financial sector, manufacturing, media and retail. He has over ten years non-executive director experience across public, private and not-for-profit sector organisations including as non-executive director for a large NHS Trust. His last full time role was as Regulatory Director of a gas network and previously as Strategic Planning Manager for an electricity and water utility. Mr Wiseman does not hold any other Ministerial public appointments.

4. The appointments were made in accordance with the Commissioner for Public Appointments for Northern Ireland’s Code of Practice. All appointments to the Board of the Utility Regulator are made by the Minister for Finance and Personnel. Board members are expected to each devote around 20 days per year on average to Utility Regulator business.

5. All appointments are made on merit and political activity plays no part in the selection process. However, the Commissioner for Public Appointments for Northern Ireland requires the political activity of appointees to be published. Mr Carlton and Mr Wiseman declared that they had not engaged in any political activity in the last five years.