Minutes – EGM 2018

Pictfor EGM Minutes

Thursday, 10 May 2018 14:00-15:00

Room R, Portcullis House


  • Alex Sobel MP
  • Chi Onwurah MP
  • Daniel Zeichner MP
  • Darren Jones MP
  • Lord Cromwell
  • The Rt Hon Lord McNally
  • The Rt Hon Stephen Timms MP
  • Vicky Ford MP
  • David McNeilage (Office of Vicky Ford MP)

Supported by the Pictfor secretariat team:

  • Fran O’Leary
  • Casey Calista
  • Philippa Alway
  1. Welcome and Introduction from Pictfor’s Co-Chairs Chi Onwurah MP and Vicky Ford MP
  • Chi Onwurah MP thanked Pictfor officers and the secretariat team and said that she is stepping down from her post as Co-Chair due to her election as Vice President of the Party of European Socialists. Chi Onwurah MP stated that she would be happy to remain involved with Pictfor as an officer.
  • Vicky Ford MP thanked Chi Onwurah MP for her work as Co-Chair of Pictfor.
  • The Rt Hon Lord McNally moved to thank and congratulate Chi Onwurah MP. This was agreed. 

     B. Election of new Officers

  • It was moved that all existing Pictfor Officers will remain officers and that the following additional Parliamentarians be elected as Officers. The Parliamentarian attendees unanimously approved this motion.
  • Alex Sobel MP
  • Lee Rowley MP
  • Bill Esterson MP
  • Gillian Keegan MP
  • John Lamont MP
  • Anna McMorrin MP (proposed by Alex Sobel MP)
  • Election of new Co-Chair and Registered Contact
  • Vicky Ford MP put herself forward to be the Registered Contact for the APPG, replacing Chi Onwurah MP. The Parliamentarian attendees unanimously approved this motion.
  • Darren Jones MP put himself forward to replace Chi Onwurah MP as Co-Chair.
  • The Rt Hon Lord McNally nominated Darren Jones MP as Co-Chair and Alex Sobel MP and Vicky Ford MP both seconded the motion. The Parliamentarian attendees unanimously approved this motion.
  1. Financial and Membership Update from Pictfor Treasurer the Rt Hon Lord McNally
  • The Rt Hon Lord McNally noted that there are lots of good things to report, with new members and the finances looking healthy. He said that the current account covers the cost of operations, including the large expenses for the Summer Reception and the Annual Dinner.
  • The Rt Hon Lord McNally said that in the future Pictfor should continue to look outwards for other events and networks to engage with and suggested that there are challenges related to MPs ability to do work outside of Westminster.
  • Vicky Ford MP said that engaging through outside networks might get easier in the future and recommended that the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona be booked into diaries now to give a longer lead-in time to potentially attend.
    • Note: The next Mobile World Congress is taking place 25-28 February 2019.
  • The Secretariat team, noted that the Mobile World Congress will be added as an agenda point to be discussed at Pictfor’s AGM in July 2018.
  • Vicky Ford MP asked officers for suggestions for events and new ways to communicate more externally and broadly and to bring any ideas to present at Pictfor’s next AGM.
  • The Rt Hon Lord McNally seconded this, encouraging officers to think constructively about reasonably and prudently costed activities.
  • Vicky Ford MP asked the secretariat team to propose billable hours for extra time for working on publications.
  • Darren Jones MP asked the Pictfor secretariat about a budget for drafting time and design.
  • The Secretariat team, said that different options could be applied and that the secretariat will present officers with options.
  • Alex Sobel MP noted that he will put a RegTech company – Equinty – in touch with the Pictfor Secretariat.
  • Chi Onwurah MP suggested that VoIP phones could be a way to engage with members.
  • Vicky Ford MP asked whether Pictfor is still looking for members.
  • The Secretariat team, said that Pictfor continues to engage with stakeholders, industry and academia to build membership and further diversify the organisations involved in the APPGs debates.
  • Vicky Ford MP suggested that there could be an event for Parliamentarians to learn how to facilitate tech within their own areas, including local authorities. She added that this relates to localism as part of the industrial strategy and that it could be something for the LGA to be involved in.
  • Lord Cromwell asked for membership packs to share with prospective members.
  • The Rt Hon Lord McNally suggested that Pictfor delegates could attend the LGA conference and that this discussion could continue at Pictfor’s AGM.
    • Note: The LGA Annual Conference is taking place 3-5 July 2018 in Birmingham.
  • Darren Jones MP noted the work of SmarterUK at techUK and suggested engaging with them on smart cities.
  • Vicky Ford MP said that she would welcome more MPs engaging as officers of Pictfor.
  • The Secretariat team, stated that they believe Pictfor is now the APPG with the most officers and that it may be the APPG with the most diverse funding sources.
  1. Approval of website redesign proposal
  • The Secretariat team, presented a proposal for the redesign of Pictfor’s website, saying that there has been negative feedback on the current website stating that it currently looks out of date. The Secretariat team drew officers’ attention to the scoping work where multiple quotes from multiple different design agencies had been sourced. The secretariat’s recommendation is to commission Orca to do this work for £5,000 + VAT.
  • Lord Cromwell and Vicky Ford MP asked about management and maintenance of site.
  • The secretariat team confirmed they would have access to manage the website content, and that photos of officers would be updated.
  • It was agreed and approved that the secretariat will seek the services of Orca as outlined in the proposal.
  1. Approval to change accountants
  • As instructed at the previous Pictfor AGM, the secretariat presented a review of the current accountancy service and provided quotes from multiple accountants.
  • The Secretariat team, noted that a higher level of service is possible and that following a comprehensive review that there are three companies that are recommended with Bishop Fleming as the proposed first choice.
  • It was approved that Pictfor will change accountants to Bishop Fleming after the completion of the annual accounts.
  1. Updated 2018 events programme and discussion around future themes
  • The Rt Hon Stephen Timms MP reviewed Pictfor’s 5G event and discussed the change in room booking and the high level of interest in this topic.
  • Vicky Ford MP suggested that Pictfor could host a drop-in session on connectivity and how to make it work in a city. She suggested that it last for two hours and focus on constituency data if possible to ensure its relevance to MPs.
  • It was suggested that, given the current busy legislative and select committee agenda, Pictfor might want to consider hosting early evening events.
  • Vicky Ford MP said that Pictfor’s Women in Tech event was phenomenal and that she is keen to get the energy from meeting into gathered thoughts.
  • The Secretariat team suggested that the team look into options to capture attendee input to events in multiple ways,  for example recording opening statements from attendees.
    • Vicky Ford MP suggested that the audio could be recorded.
    • Darren Jones MP suggested that Seenit be used by attendees.
    • The Secretariat team, proposed using postcards for attendees to fill in comments and other approaches enabling digital capture of comments.
    • Vicky Ford MP suggested that comments from events could be collated and formatted to be sent to parliamentarians not in the room.
  • The Secretariat team sought suggestions of themes for Autumn events.
    • The Rt Hon Lord McNally suggested the Chair of Ofcom as a speaker.
    • Vicky Ford MP recommended Information Commissioner Elizabeth Denham as a speaker for the Annual Dinner.
    • Darren Jones suggested the new chair of the AI Data Ethics centre as a speaker at a future event. He also suggested the following as event topics:
  1. Grid flexibility for electric vehicle rollout, focusing on a conversation about grid management
  2. Blockchain and potentially partnering with the new APPG on Blockchain
  • Vicky Ford MP noted that she is the Chair of the APPG on Cybersecurity.
  • The Secretariat team suggested that the Summer Reception on cybersecurity be co-branded.
  • Vicky Ford MP suggested that an angle for the Summer Reception be how to keep constituents and their data safe.
  • Vicky Ford MP suggested that the Security Minister, the Rt Hon Ben Wallace MP, be invited to speak on cybersecurity.
  • Darren Jones MP noted that there could be an opportunity to engage with the work for the British-American Parliamentary Group on the geopolitics of data.
  1. AOB
  • Vicky Ford MP recorded her thanks to David McNeilage, who will be leaving her office and who has provided great assistance to Pictfor’s work.
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