The election for a Senator is on Wednesday 7th September 2016. We put the following questions to all the candidates. Here are the (unedited) answers so far, given in alphabetical order of candidate; if it is blank, assume no answer given yet. Click on a title to open the full question and the answers we have been given. (Click to close again.)
The candidates, in alphabetical order, are: Alvin Aaron, Mike Dunn, Guy de Faye, Sarah Ferguson, Nick Le Cornu, Stevie Ocean, Christian May, Sam Mézec, Mary O’Keefe Burgher, Hugh Raymond and John Young.
Living on an island which is fragile, with all the problems caused by a growing population, what are your specific policies to protect our environment, built or natural? (We note a lack of an environment heading on most candidates’ manifestos, now, and in candidates’ manifestos in the last general elections)
Alvin Aaron: I’m a very strong believer in preventing building on our shorelines . I never want to see any more structures built on our west coast bay area. I would like to see us plant more trees on land that has not been used for any purpose for some time . And even an attempt to link woodlands so as to return some of the natural beauty of our island back for future generations to enjoy. We must also have a government that is serious about protecting the waters around our islands. And a government that really drives forward the necessity to recycle waste.
Mike Dunn: The “environment” is protected primarily for those who can afford it. The Island Plan is an absurd document that perpetuates discrimination by manipulation of largely arbitrary “zones” and so the Island is gradually being divided into rich and poor/north and south territories with more and more gated activities. That farming is inevitably favourable to the “environment” is one of the many myths that prevents a genuinely harmonious Island.
Guy de Faye: If we fail to tackle population growth, there is not much point having any environmental policy. Jersey will be concreted over.
We have a Planning Department that does not seem to do much forward planning. Instead the department presides over the Island Plan, which is a variant on painting by numbers, such that every few years parts of the map that were green change colour. The demand for residential accommodation, property ownership, letting rentals and all the rest are the primary drivers of all planning matters. Even so called “protected open spaces” lose their protection if the Planning Department decides an exemption can be granted.
At the same time, Jersey seems to support farming mono-culture, which is not environmentally freindly. Land around dairy farms is allowed to be diverted to other use, even though we all know that cows cannot walk across the Island to get milked! Our green fields are no longer wild flower meadows supporting diverse flora and fauna. Instead they are industrial units that have become repositories for assorted chemicals and crop munching nematodes.
Back on the shoreline, a recent study demonstrated that sport fishing was most beneficial to the the local economy, but new regulation has restricted the catching of bass to one per day, unless you have a commercial licence. Such a policy is essentially back to front. What is Jersey doing about trawling in local waters, which indiscriminately wrecks the sea bed? Can we actually enforce the rules relating to fishing in our waters?
I could go on at some length…..
Sarah Ferguson: As you may or may not know I have got a couple of environmental projects going on – the Le Marais Organic garden and the St Brelade Bay Development Group. The St Brelades Bay Development Plan one was approved by the States in 1968, 2011 and 2014. Planning have tried to ignore it and now say that they do not have the budget that was allocated to it despite the fact that the Minister has found £300k to cover the Countryside Access Strategy. In St B Bay we are wanting to have proper planning rules for building density, landscaping and tourist amenities. In the meantime planning are ignoring the Green Backdrop Zone and the Coastal National Park and their policy for requiring landscaping plans seems non-existent.
The pressure on the environment is increased by the rapidly increasing population and so the population policy is an integral part of the environmental policies. It is essential that Planning understand the balance they need to hold between environmentally friendly policies and necessity for housing development. I also consider it essential that the environment department must also preserve the balance between the environmental pressures and the human pressures. I am a trustee of Age Concern and we observe significant pressures on the senior population who are often facing the choice between eating and heating. This is an area where the departments must work together rather than working in their silos.
Nick Le Cornu:
Stevie Ocean: I HAVE PLANS TO MAKE JERSEY GREATER THAN EVER AND OUR SISTER ISLAND AS WELL THIS WILL BECOME CLEAR ON SEPT 5TH HUSTINGS
Christian May: I am proud to have included a specific environmental section in my Manifesto. Predominantly this applies to ensuring that the States puts into effect the ‘Future-Proofing Jersey’ recommendations to ensure we are taking appropriate action to protect our coastline and infrastructure against the threats of Climate Change. I believe we need to take significant steps to protect our local environment including: incentives to change to electric vehicles or car-sharing; vastly increased recycling; investigate the viability of geothermal, wind and tidal power generation; enforce planning policies that require green space within urban development; pursue local organic farming to reduce nitrate run-off.
Sam Mézec: In the long term I would like to see investment in big projects to become an Island which is self-sufficient at producing our own energy from renewable sources.
More short term, I would support improvements to building regulations so that all new properties are built with completely modern specifications on energy efficiency.
Getting a proper population policy in place will help protect our environment by reducing the need to build so many new properties. I would also support introducing an empty property tax to encourage the 3,000 empty properties we have back onto the market.
Mary O’Keefe Burgher: To be absolutely honest environment projects are hugely expensive and it is difficult to propose large capital projects.
I have the environment under my action plans on my website mary.je
We actually have to address this now as we can see what harmful effects our activities i.e. the Nitrates in our water has had on the sea lettuce!
- I would be supporting the new sewage treatment works on the MTFP
- I also believe that experts could come in and talk to our finance industry and talk about Green finance and investment in green projects.
- We need to also make our children more environmentally aware in our schools.
Hugh Raymond: The environment is a huge issue with such a confined space and it is
paramount that open spaces and the shore line are kept for all to
enjoy. A policy on car use must be looked at with so many registered
in such a small space.
John Young: Strengthen Island Plan , enforce the planning policies , protect the countryside and coasts from development , improve the quality of urban environment , priority for a town development plan , more open space by buying land and restoring to parks, manage traffic , improvement areas in town , wind up SOJDC , review the waterfront masterplan , progress renewable energy initiatives , support electric vehicles , work with the French in utility scale wind power , encourage micro renewables , press JEC to adopt feed in tariffs , develop a marine protection zone , enforce anti pollution laws etc
Are you aware of SOS Jersey and of our work over the last 24 years? If elected would you support our programme? If so, in what way?
Alvin Aaron: Yes I’m aware of .SOS . I did get involved holding hands along the five mile beach some years back. I imagine all candidates will answer yes to the question ”if elected would you get their support ”. But for me, you are all doing a great job and i will support you and put myself forward ,as one of your spokesman even if I’m not elected but as a Senator in government i would be a very strong voice for SOS.
Mike Dunn: I am aware of SOS but wonder if its members are aware of the campaigning that I have undertaken over more than 50 years on a very wide remit?
Guy de Faye: I have been aware of the Save Our Shoreline group for some time. I consider most of your activities generally creditable and usually well researched. For example, I consider that your programme to test water quality going into a number of our bays has considerable merit.
Sarah Ferguson: Yes but I didn’t realise you had been going as long as that!. I have been putting in nice words about your sea lettuce programme in the hustings! Once the election is over – whether I am elected or not – I will be taking a more active role – if you will have me.
Nick Le Cornu:
Stevie Ocean: BELIEVE ME IM BEING HONEST NO I DID KNOW & I WOULD SEE WHATS ON OFFER BEFORE I DECIDE
Christian May: I am well aware of the significant programme of work carried out by SOS Jersey (in relation to the reclamation site, Energy from Waste, JIFC, etc) and was delighted that the group supported the protection of People’s Park when I led that campaign. I would be delighted to work with the group if elected, as I see its executive and members as passionate, well-informed, working off a scientific basis and ready to actively debate changes that will have a long-term benefit for the Island.
Sam Mézec: Yes, I have met with members of SOS Jersey many times to discuss population policy and the International Finance Centre development on the Esplanade. In the early days I was not very focused on environmental issues as it was primarily economic policies which inspired me to stand for election, however recently I have become more keen on supporting measures to protect our environment. I accept that it is not my area of expertise and I choose not to take a lead on many of these issues, instead I work closely with my party colleague Deputy Montfort Tadier who speaks for Reform Jersey on these issues.
Mary O’Keefe Burgher:
Yes, I am aware of SOS and yes I do support your projects .
- I would love to see if your sea lettuce solution with the furrows in the sand would work.
- We need to have education on the environment in our school curriculum from an early age.
- More collection sites for paper and bottles.
Hugh Raymond: I was aware but in all honesty had not realised how much work you
do behind the scenes. Again I would support your programme but also
question some elements but that is where my strengths will come to the
fore. I think it is so important to talk and communicate and with all
the roles I play in the Island I still find communication sometimes
John Young: Am very aware from SOS campaign on following issues since being CO of Planning from 1991- 2004 and chair of the Environment scrutiny panel from 2011-14 .Land Reclamation, ash disposal , Ramsar site , the Havre des pas marina ( Falle Carter scheme ), west of Albert , EFM plant at La Collette , reuse of La Collette , International Finance Centre , SOJDC. (You know my views on this from my submissions to the planning appeals- I want to see the masterplan reviewed and mixed use scheme) .You have my 100% support, if not 110 %. SOS have made a big difference and gone from an unstructured lobby group to a powerful, well resourced organisation which is greatly respected and listened to throughout Jersey. You have well earned your place at the table.
Have you a specific policy idea to limit immigration? If elected how would you implement it?
Alvin Aaron: Immigration could be controlled by reintroducing work permits. The population will naturally grow and with an ageing population we do need a younger workforce to sustain a buoyant economy.
Lets make no mistake we must have a buoyant economy .Only from a buoyant economy can we expect jobs ,housing,education,pensions,health care and a reasonable chance of happiness and security .
Mike Dunn: My campaign is specifically based upon Jersey after BREXIT and is described in my manifesto etc. BREXIT has the potential to affect everybody in Jersey and almost all aspects of life here.
I have a long established concern for discriminatory immigration matters and the resulting 10,500 working adults who do not have housing qualifications etc. I am amazed that Peter Crill’s judgment in the BBC v Housing case is so little known and never referred to. I am concerned that Jersey has adopted a central economic activity that is structured around schemes to help others avoid their obligations where they live and am ever surprised that there is so little understanding of how this relates to the stresses upon Jersey’s resources.
Guy de Faye: I have a series of policies designed to reduce immigration, BUT – the immigration policies of the Channel Islands are currently determined by the United Kingdom government on our behalf. It is highly likely that the UK will introduce some variant of a work permit system linked to a points compilation which will determine whether the abilities offered by prospective immigrants are required. This may suit Jersey and the UK Prime Minister has indicated that our views will be considered before the UK makes a final decision. The UK policy may be adequate. If it is not, then Jersey should press for an exemption for a Jersey/ Channel Island specific immigration policy in the light of our restricted land space.
However, our population numbers are sufficiently high and apparently so out of control that it is certain that Jersey will need internal social engineering to turn population growth around. This must be done sensitively and after reasonable public consultation and debate, but any delay in determining policy will only make the solutions more difficult to achieve.
Sarah Ferguson: Work permits with a points system – Singapore system has some good ideas – if you import workers you make a payment into a fund for education of the locals. The NZ and Australian points systems ensure that people must have skills and professions which are needed in the Island.
Nick Le Cornu:
Stevie Ocean: I WANT TO IMPLEMENT A PROPER IMMIGRATION POLICY THIS WILL INCLUDE THE FOLLOW VETTING FOR CRIMINAL RECORD WHAT ABILITES A PERSON HAS A CRITERIA LIST
Christian May: I would like to see a practical, effective and enforced immigration policy in place. We need to have a fixed annual ceiling that we keep to with respect to new immigrants – and we should be completely transparent on the number of successful/unsuccessful applicants. I believe that a variation on the Australian system would be most effective; we should be assessing applicants based on their skills as well as their criminal records, to ensure each new member of our community is an asset to the Island. This process should, ideally, take place in advance of any immigrant travelling to the Island and could be completed via an online portal. I also want to see a comprehensive citizenship program established, one that instills an appreciation of traditions, our culture and our values in all new Islanders.
Sam Mézec: We must look to emulate the work permit scheme which operates in Guernsey. There should be a focus on training people already resident in Jersey to take up high skilled jobs and allow people to work their way up the ladder, instead of automatically importing labour.
Mary O’Keefe Burgher:
Absolutely it is the core of my LEGIT strategy, Law, Equality, Immigration, Good Housekeeping and Tourism with Trade.
- We need a new robust policy and implementation.
- I propose for people living here for ten years or less that they have to use the new APP / immigration / housing card.
- We have the technology now and we have to devise the policy.
- We have an ageing population and we need to have enough people to support our tax revenue for the services we all need.
- However we do not need people who are a drain on our society.
Hugh Raymond: First and foremost I still want to know what the true figure is of
our population. That being said we then need to look at every
application of those coming into the Island. We must not discriminate
at either end of the spectrum with regards to salaries as an example
we have a shortage of sous chefs with salaries of circa £30,000 and
salaries in the finance industry at £80,000. The main point of this is
if a company requires an individual to carry out a piece of work then
an application is made to source that individual firstly locally and
John Young: Set a population target and stick to it, meet with the Industries and agree priorities, introduce work permits under Housing and work legislation, allow social as well as economic permits, preferential policies for local returning students.
If elected and you were asked to become an assistant minister before the next election, would you agree, and if so, which department would you want to be involved with and why?
Alvin Aaron: I intend to challenge the current minister in charge of infrastructure for the top job. The management of traffic especially in the center of St Helier is a complete mess. I would take out many of the traffic light junctions replacing them with filter in turn junctions . The result would be steady flowing traffic , less traffic standing idle causing pollution . And end attempts to jump red lights.
I would add much needed street parking .Again helping reduce pollution because currently motorists are driving around in circles trying to find parking .
For pedestrian safety and to help keep traffic flowing i would replace many of the zebra crossings with pelican crossings .Thats were the pedestrian controls the lights to cross. I would also open streets currently closed to traffic for example News street . What should be a 1 minute drive is currently 10 minute diversion. WHY ? Traffic has to go past the markets up and around hill street just to access library place . Again more pollution in town ,more congestion . Totally unnecessary in my opinion .
Mike Dunn: If elected I will serve for the 20 months or so only to focus primarily on BREXIT. I am not a candidate for any ministerial post
Guy de Faye: If elected, I would not seek any ministerial position as such a move would restrict my freedom to act independently by potentially binding me to existing government strategies. Getting involved with the running of a department would simply be a distraction from the over arching political issues that must be confronted. Our economic growth model has failed. Continual population growth is bankrupting Jersey, as opposed to boosting the future finances. Meanwhile, our government continues to “fiddle at the margins”, apparently oblivious to actual events.
Sarah Ferguson: I would be more use in Scrutiny and I would not want to be bound by the collective responsibility rule. Having seen what has happened to Le Fondre and the Deputy of St John I think I can do more from outside the Council of Ministers.
Nick Le Cornu:
Stevie Ocean: I HAVE A MAJOR ANNOUNCEMENT TO MAKE AT ST.HELIER HUSTINGS & YES I WOULD A JIB WOULD BE CREATED FOR ME WITH MY CONTACTS AND CONNECTIONS
Christian May: I would not agree to take on the role of Assistant Minister before the next election. I believe that I could offer the most to the Assembly and the people of the Island by fulfilling a role in Scrutiny or Public Accounts, as well as pursuing the 10 key pledges that I have laid out in my Manifesto.
Sam Mézec: I will not serve under any Chief Minister who bases his programme for government on a string of broken election promises, cuts to public services and stealth taxes.
Mary O’Keefe Burgher: Yes,
- I would like to be in the Chief Ministers Department
I would like to be involved with Post Brexit negotiations, as per my LEGIT strategy (Good Housekeeping) which I believe are vital before article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty is evoked by the UK. Even though we have a Minister covering this role I believe that there is a lot to do and I would like to be in a position to do it.
I would also like to work with Digital Jersey and Fintech as we need diversification in our island for our economy.
- My second choice I would go for is Health. I would like to see the hospital project completed.
To also see my LEGIT strategy (Law ) to allow Centeniers, Lawyers & Police officers to
Refer people with depression directly to Mental Health Services.
- My third choice would be with Economic Development, Tourism Sports and Culture.
My LEGIT strategy on (Tourism and good Housekeeping) I want to continue supporting the finance industry and diversifying the economy in digital industry and setting up Jersey as an independent destination for International Arbitration and conferences.
Hugh Raymond: I have repeated said that for someone to come in for this short
period of time then I very much doubt one will be asked to fill such a
role however I do know a lot about Home Affairs and my experience
could be of some value. However there will be an opportunity to put
your marker down from the back benches to ask those pertinent
questions about the finances of the Island and how we best deal with
the problems facing the Island.
John Young: This is extremely unlikely for the following reasons even though I feel the new Senator would have to take every opportunity to be effective in the States to pursue their policies.
In principle, I could work with Steve Luce (Env) and Andrew Green (Health) both of whom I have worked with before , but have big political differences with Ian (CM) Philip (Ext), Lyndon (Econ), Suzie (Soc Sec), Alan (Finance ), Rod (Educ) & Eddie (TTS or IS) . I get on with most people including states members, but have political differences with the Ministers. I also don’t like COM closed door and spin style at all and would communicate openly with the public. The Com would have to accept this and my not accepting their policies on user pays charges, cuts , etc , tax policies , letting immigration run – and I cannot accept collective responsibility . So it is extremely unlikely this would happen.
More likely, if a minister had to resign, which is possible because of their very shaky policies and performance, I would feel a duty to be put forward for election to a Ministerial position because of the strength of the by-election mandate if I were to win and press reform from within the COM. In doing so would make my policy differences clear to the States and explicit that I not be prepared to adopt COM policy under collective responsibility, even if it meant getting sacked by the CM because of my refusal to accept Collective responsibility. If this happened and I got elected by the States to a Ministerial position despite the COM’s views , I think they would be so weakened they would have to put up with my doing my best to achieve change , who knows I might even persuade some of them of the merit in new thinking. I would also challenge the chief officers.
Do you ascribe to the idea of Ministerial collective responsibility? If so why? If not, please expand.
Alvin Aaron: In my opinion All elected members of government must take responsibility .There can not be a selected few making decisions .All must participate ,And there must be consequences when bad decisions cause damage to our island ,its environment and its well being.
Mike Dunn: It creates a party out of people with no shared philosophy and effectually amounts to a “democratic dictatorship”.
Guy de Faye: I was one of the first people to speak out against this iniquitous concept borrowed from government procedures elsewhere and totally unsuited to Jersey’s consensus style politics. It is so anti-democratic that I stated that anyone who voted in favour of it should never be allowed into the States Assembly ever again. That remains my view, but – clearly – voters at the last elections must have thought it was a great idea. It is not.
Collective responsibility has created a Council of Ministers Establishment Party ably assisted by craven camp followers eager for executive preferment. It has almost totally destroyed meaningful debate in the States Assembly, as there is little point in trying to vote out a ministerial policy. This was demonstrated when Deputy Geoff Southern attempted to restrict a 15% increase in bus fares – way above inflation and at a level when the minister would previously been required to bring a proposition to the Assembly. Apart from Deputy Southern and the Minister for Transport and Technical Services no other States Member spoke on the subject, either for or against. So what is a parliament for exactly?!!
Sarah Ferguson: No. I voted against it because we end up with a dictatorship. Jersey has usually worked with a consensus and this undermines it. What we do need is some form of accountability available to the public directly. States Members have votes of no confidence but there is no direct access for the public. I am researching this.
Nick Le Cornu:
Stevie Ocean:YES I DO AND BELIEVE IF YOU WASTE TAX PAYERS MOINEY IN AN IRRESPONSIBLE WAY LIKE ALAN MACLEAN THEN YOU SHOULD PAY IT BACK
Christian May: Whilst I understand why Ministerial Responsibility was introduced, ostensibly to ensure decisions were made quickly and there was unity in the CoM, I believe that it has significantly affected the independence of Members and has led to scenarios where it is almost impossible for the Assembly to challenge decisions of the CoM. States Members are elected on an individual basis, for their personal qualities and independent positions – they should be able to vote their conscience in each Proposition.
Sam Mézec: Collective responsibility does not work without party politics. As it stands, I will support any motion to repeal the rules on collective responsibility because it has only served to centralise more power in the hands of a small number of politicians who are largely unaccountable and out of touch with the public they are meant to serve.
Mary O’Keefe Burgher: There are pros and cons to Ministerial government.
On the pro side you have a group of people who make decisions and this has been more efficient than the out-dated committee system.
However on the negative side many politicians and the public are feeling isolated in the decision making process and that they are being used to simply rubber stamp decisions.
My solution to this would be to use the Connetables in an oversight role (see Q7).
Hugh Raymond: Ministerial Government works if all the facts are available with
all the appropriate information as to how the decisions were made but
their seems to be a reticent to let the population know all the
detail. I am not sure a committee system works either because of the
number of people involved but there is a better opportunity to discuss
the problems and a much better openness of all the facts.
John Young: Absolutely opposed to collective responsibility – would bring a proposition to remove it from the SOJ law at the earliest opportunity.
If you had to describe yourself on the political spectrum where would you place yourself?
Alvin Aaron: This is a hard question . I can agree with some things Conservative , labour and even liberals fight for . But i can not be put into a box. People who have known me well have called me a free spirit .
I love nature and i love people . And in debates I’m always eager to hear two sides of the argument before i make my decision .
Mike Dunn: My campaign is about BREXIT which has no political alignment. In so far as I am a life-long Socialist and 5 feet 9 inches tall that does not change.
Guy de Faye: I have abandoned trying to describe myself on the political spectrum as it is an irrelevant and misleading concept in respect of Jersey’s political system. You might as well ask me about my favourite colour or the football team that I support. If elected, I will consider policies on their individual merits and vote in a pragmatic manner in the public interest.
Sarah Ferguson: Depends on the topic. I support care in spending, support for the needy but I want as small a government as possible. Our current number of States employees has increased by 33% over the past 15 years but the net revenue expenditure has increased by 98%. At the same time pre zero/10 those paying tax at 20% paid 59% of the income tax collected. At the last full tax year those paying tax at marginal rate paid 53% of the income tax collected. This is totally unfair and must be redressed.
I want small government, value for money and fairness.
Nick Le Cornu:
Stevie Ocean: IM A MAN OIF ACTION AND OF THE PEOPLE I SAY WHAT I MEAN AND ACT ACCORDINGLY
Christian May: I am a true centrist. I am fiscally conservative in that I want to see reduced taxation and efficiency in our spending, whilst being socially liberal – pursuing equal rights, environmental concerns and improved education.
Sam Mézec: Centre-left.
Mary O’Keefe Burgher: Centre a shade to the right.
Hugh Raymond: I would have to say that I am slightly right of centre but fully
appreciate the need for all political views to be heard. When in
politics in the UK the best debates were always between the left and
the right and in a lot of cases friendships were formed because you
knew where you stood politically. You could then have a debate about
the goal that was missed and what an awful television programme was on
John Young: Independent, Centre Left, socially progressive, green, not in that order
Do you think we need political reform? If so, which measures are most urgently required?
Alvin Aaron: I do believe political reform is needed . Party politics may be good for the island .But we need to bring power back to the people of the island . The people of Jersey must not be ignored .
Mike Dunn: Yes – substantial political reform is needed and would follow if I was elected as part of the BLEXIT debate. I led the NO to Constables Referendum virtually single handed and self funded and with no support from SOS that I can remember.
Guy de Faye: Yes – Jersey needs urgent reform. Firstly – Council of Ministers collective responsibility must go. Secondly – we must end the system that limits voting choice according to where you live. That means Island Wide voting and abolishing Deputies (Do not be fooled by multi-constituencies, which are being described as providing equal voting. It will still restrict your choice of candidate).
The public have shown a preference for retaining the Constables and they can continue to represent the parishes in place of the Deputies.
Sarah Ferguson: Two things – Bring back Committees – you can call the president the Minister but he/she needs 4 or 5 members to support them against the civil servants. Also cut the numbers to 30 single class member elected from 3 large constituencies or all Island. There seems to be equal support for either option by the people to whom I have spoken.
Keep the Connétables in at the moment but remind them that their first duty is to their Parishes. They don’t seem to have noticed that the proposed charges aka stealth taxes – are in fact moving Parish responsibilities to Central Government. If they are not careful this type of action will kill the Parish system. They have let the welfare system go – it was not meant to all be done by Soc Sec – that was slipped in.
Nick Le Cornu:
Stevie Ocean: NO I DONT I WAS CHAIRMAN OF THE JRA AS WELL AS ITS FOUNDER IN THE 80S I CHANGED PEOPLES LIVES NON LOCAL AND LOCAL PEOPLE ALIKE
Christian May: We do need political reform. I would like to see the electoral boundaries of the Island changed (in line with the successful Option B result from the referendum) to ensure equality of representation as regards the deputies. I respect the role of the Constables and, for the time being, believe they must remain in the States by virtue of the most recent Referendum result. I am also keen to explore the viability of the States pursuing a hybrid Committee/Ministerial system, akin to the new Guernsey system, that allows all Members to contribute significantly to the government of the Island.
Sam Mézec: Our whole democratic system is a shambles and needs reform urgently.
I want to see our electoral system reformed so that we have just one category of States Member, elected in equal sized constituencies where every voter has an equal vote.
Nobody should have a seat in the States Assembly without facing a robust election.
Mary O’Keefe Burgher: I think an awful lot of time is given to this question. We have a constitution that has evolved since the mid 13th century it has worked well and I would not be keen to see huge changes.
What I would propose is that Connetables do not take jobs such as ministerial or assistant minister or scrutiny roles. I believe they should attend the states assembly but their parishes should be their top priority.
The Connetables in certain circumstances could possibly be used to veto propositions put forward by the Council of Ministers if there was objections by other politicians before the vote is open to the States of Jersey Assembly.
In other words could they have a House of Lords type of role as a check on the States of Jersey Assembly.
Hugh Raymond: Without doubt, 100,000 population average size of a town in the UK,
we need to look at our numbers in the States, more Island wide voting
and constituencies that are similar with regards to voters. A review
is necessary as to the way we select politicians.
John Young: Wow, a big question. The States structure is truly broken – The Ministerial system which relies on a party system and an opposition which Jersey lacks to make it work, is not right for Jersey as implemented, with its absence of checks and balances. The system has to be modified to reverse the unchecked centralization of power, either by establishing Ministerial Boards , or equivalent as I proposed in my amendment to the SOJ law , to require Ministers’ to work with other members elected by the States when forming policy . This would restore the advantages of the Committee system and make government more open and accountable.
St Helier (with the waterfront), including the urban part of St Saviour and St Clement should have devolved planning powers, it is important that the community has the opportunity to shape their environment – and adopt the principles of community planning
The Senators role has been undermined by the States reducing to eight from twelve Senators and having them all elected at the same time, and for the same term as Deputies. The public love the island wide vote but Senatorial elections are unmanageable with so many candidates. Yet we have 17 Deputies and Constables members returned to the States unopposed, which undermines our democracy. I am not in favour of the Constables remaining in the States but this issue is now decided with the referendum and we have to respect the decision to retain them for at least a decade.
I would support a move towards having larger deputy’s constituencies (perhaps east, west, central 1 & 2) to ensure all seats are contested and to give the public a closer system to the all island vote. I would retain the all island vote for a smaller number of positions including the Chief Minister. I would now support a modified Option B proposal if I come forward from PPC, because this would be a big step towards long term reform. But no single member can progress this in the next twenty months. Who knows whether PPC will be brave enough to propose any electoral system change before the next election, it sounds if there may be moves afoot from the progressives towards an option B modified, but don’t hold your breath.
We need to make all chief officers accountable and restructure the civil service and reduce fat cat chief officer salaries, pensions. Lots more ideas, will leave this for another day.
Do you think the time has come to require UK firms to pay tax? If so, how will you progress this?
Alvin Aaron: Tax must be payed by all. Currently there are loopholes and exemptions . If a company or individual, using jersey as its or theirs base and are not contributing to the islands, than we simply do not want them here .
Mike Dunn: The avoidance of taxation is part of the malaise that BREXIT will inevitably examine and hopefully change whether it is avoidance by businesses or people here or elsewhere. It is an international problem.
Guy de Faye: I would not limit the tax net to UK firms. It seems to me that any profitable business in Jersey should make a contribution in taxation at some level. However, the obvious mechanism of corporation tax is currently coming under intense international scrutiny, so it would not be prudent for Jersey to make an early move in that respect.
Sarah Ferguson: Yes – first an amendment to the Medium Term Finance Plan – no charges until there is a tax review and cost benefit analysis of zero/10. Get together with IoM and Guernsey – who are both hurting financially – and get the evidence of the effect of the proposed change. Also consider what sort of flat rate of income tax is necessary to meet gov obligations. Thirdly, get an analysis of the long term (40 years) in the same format as that used by the New Zealand Treasury. Work on the basis that all companies making profits in the Island pay tax in the Island.
Nick Le Cornu:
Stevie Ocean: NO UNLESS YOU WANT TO SHOOT YOURSELVES IN THE FOOT WE NEED TO HAVE THE SET UP WE DO OUR ISLAND WAS BASED ON THIS AND WE CAN DIVERSFY BUT WE STILL NEED AND BREAD & BUTTER
Christian May: We need a comprehensive review of taxation in the Island, including 0/10. Whilst the opportunity arises to expand those businesses falling into the 10% bracket, I would want to be sure – especially if we include certain retail businesses that are UK based – that we are not going to adversely effect local retailers or create a situation that leaves empty shops in our high street and makes it difficult for low and medium earners to access cost-effective goods. The tax review should also look carefully to the benefit of taxing businesses operating under financial services structures, but must balance the risk to our financial services industry which currently employs a significant number of Islanders.
Sam Mézec: I think the time for UK firms to pay tax came 8 years ago! With Brexit on the horizon, it is possible that this could provide Jersey an opportunity to reform our corporation tax code without having to regard EU rules in the way we currently do. This would allow us to choose which businesses do and don’t pay tax in Jersey. I have always believed that UK firms trading in the Island should pay tax.
Mary O’Keefe Burgher: Yes, I want to look into this and have spoken about it at the hustings. however is not right and fair that one shop has to pay corporation tax and another doesn’t.
UK companies are paying tax anyway, so it should be to our government though we have to negotiate this through HMRC, we have double tax exchange agreements so it should work. Full due diligence needs to be carried out on this.
Goods bought online should be subject to GST which would be fairer to small businesses in Jersey and increase our take .
Hugh Raymond: A question I could spend a lot of time on but you cannot take it in
isolation because I believe the tax structure within the Island needs
an overhaul. One of which would be the discussion on UK firms and
John Young: Absolutely yes, zero ten was ill thought out and forced on us (with Guernsey and IOM). This has shifted tax unacceptably from Corporate to personal – we have now reached the limit for personal tax. Although our tax rate is lower than the UK, our costs of housing and living here are all way higher. Zero Ten allows off island corporates to extract economic value from Jersey and our people by exporting their local profits to other jurisdictions free of Jersey tax, and they pay tax in their home jurisdictions, if at all.
That this is done by companies trading locally and employing people on low wages relying on income support paid locally by taxpayers subsidizing their employees, is nothing less than a scandal. It also is an incentive to local business owners to sell their businesses off island and by accumulating profits in the business enhances their selling price and avoids tax. None of these avoidance opportunities are available to personal taxpayers who under 20 means 20 no longer receive personal allowances. Also buy to let landlords get tax relief on mortgage interest but those who live in their houses do not.
These examples of unfairness shows we need to carry out the review of the whole tax system as the States decided in 2014 – Guernsey introduced an intermediate tax rate for local trading corporate businesses in their 2016 budget – they have applied it to trading businesses with a turnover greater than 500K pa. We should introduce an intermediate tax for non local trading businesses that employ local people. I will bring a proposition to do so in the MTFP if elected.
If unsuccessful in the by-election will you be standing in the 2018 General elections?
Alvin Aaron: I would consider standing but only if i had substantial support and it was a close call . There is absolutely no point in putting yourself forward if the public do not agree with your views .
Mike Dunn: NO
Guy de Faye: Possibly.
Sarah Ferguson: At the moment I am fighting this election.
Nick Le Cornu:
Stevie Ocean: I DONT INTEND TO BE
Christian May: I would seriously consider standing in 2018 if I felt that I had been able to make sufficient progress in the Assembly, had been able to deliver against my pledges (or made headway) and that I had something to offer the people of Jersey by continuing to represent them.
Sam Mézec: God-willing, I will be.
Mary O’Keefe Burgher: I am very passionate about Jersey and politics. Yes, I intend to stand again in 2018.
Hugh Raymond: Having lost by 16 votes at the last general election to a sitting
minister I would have to say at the present time I would consider
standing again. However 18 months in politics is a long time!!!!!!
John Young: I don’t know. It depends on my health and the result. I have bags of energy but one cannot take this for granted in the future. Also If I am unsuccessful I will have been rejected twice by the public. I am arguing strongly, government should listen to people, so I will do just that. If I loose by a big majority or am well down the list, then it is likely to be time to put my efforts into something else and support others who take up the challenge.
Is there anything else you may wish to add?
Alvin Aaron: As a young jersey boy i feel lucky to have lived and enjoyed life in the 60’s 70’s and early 80’s here in Jersey. In the mid 80’s i set off to see the world and saw many wonderful places and met some fabulous people . In 1991 i returned to jersey my home penniless .But with a mind for business and driven by strong ambition i have become successful and currently have 31 employees. I’ve seen many of jerseys landmarks torn down , ugly apartment blocks popping up all over . and the decline of our environment and unchecked pollution . I want to help protect this island i call home . And i hope i can succeed in doing so .
Mike Dunn: I wish you well with your work but feel that you should expand your TOF to include many more social and other problems that exist or arise.
Guy de Faye: Jersey faces numerous issues of varying natures, but the single primary problem is the size of the Island’s population. Almost every other pressure stems from the number of people Jersey is attempting to support; – the number of cars on the roads, the effectiveness of public services, growing class sizes and the requirement for additional school premises, the cost of residential accommodation etc.
Not only is the Island hosting more people than it can reasonably support, but there is no coherent population policy, which is allowing the population numbers to continue to increase. The longer this situation continues, the more radical the solutions will need to be. Tighter control of immigration will not be sufficient and Jersey must consider some form of social engineering to redirect current policies that allow or even encourage population growth. Post the 2nd World War Jersey was under populated and both immigration and large families were encouraged and actively supported, but what was once considered an attribute is now a potential negative factor.
Sarah Ferguson: (see my manifesto)
Nick Le Cornu:
Stevie Ocean: I HAVE HAD A AWESOME TIMNE DOING THIS MY 500 WORDS WAS NOT FULL OF PROMISES OR A WISH LIST JUST FACTS AND WHATS TO BE DONE AND HAS BEEN A DOCUMENTARY IS BEING MADE OF MY JOURNEY TO THE STATES ASSEMBLY I HAVE AGREED TO DO THIS WITHOUT FEE IT WILL BE SCREEN ON NATIONAL TV AND ALSO I HAVE SUGGESTED THAT THIS IS A VITAL TOOL TO POST ON THE GOIV WEBSITE AS HAVING A VIDEO OF THE EXPERINCE,PROCESS,HIGHS AND LOWS ,AND INSIGHT I WANT TO ENGAGE THE YOUNG PEOPLE OF OUR ISLAND AND LIVE THIS EXPERINCE THROUGH ME THIS MAY FIND SOME BUDDING TALENT FOR 2018 SINCE I HAVE DECIDE TO STAND THIS HAS ENGAGED THE YOUNG PEOPLE OF OUR ISLAND AND THIS ELECTION GOES FAR BEYOND OUR SHORES AND IS BEING FOLLOWED IN THE USA,CANADA TOO THIS IS DUE TO ME AS IM KNOWN THROUGHOUT THE WORLD THIS ELECTION HAS MADE HISTORY THE HUSTINGS WILL NEVER BE THE SAME AND I GIVE ANSERS FROM MY HEAD AND MY HEART NOT GOOGLED ON LAPTOPS THTS CHEATING AND NOT VERY HONEST EITHER MIGHT LOOK GOOD BUT ITS NOT YOUR WORDS FINALLY I AM VERY PROUD TO BE A FINALIST IN THE PRIDE OF JERSEY AWARDS CATEGORY AMBASSADOR SEOT THE 11TH AT GOV HOUSE WILL FIND OUT ALREADY DECIDED FINALLY I WAS INDUCTED INTO THE SHOWBIZ RING OF FIRE AND EXCELLENCE BY THE LATE MARLON BRANDO
I WAS PROPOSED BY PHIL COLLINS 16 THOUSAND APPLICANTS FOR SIX PLACEMENTS AND I WON A PLACE ALONG WITH BUZZ ALDRIN,BABARA WINDSOR,PETER NOONE (HERMANS HERMITS) H FROM STEPS AND SO SOME PERSON I CAN NEVER REMEMBER THAT WAS BACK IN APRIL 2000 WHEN I FIRST CAME INTO CONTACT WITH SIMON COWEL AND EVERYBODY ELSE I WAS SIMON’S DEPUTY AND MY SUCCESSOR WAS KEVIN BACON THATS MY LEVEL OF EXPERTISE AND I HAVE BEEN ASK BY EQUITY TOI STAND FOR THE EXECUTIVE COUNCIL TWICE
Christian May: Some people have said that one new voice can’t achieve anything in the States Assembly. I don’t believe that’s true. One voice can make a difference; through scrutiny, through debate and through constructive criticism. I would ask your members to seriously consider giving me the opportunity to bring a new perspective to the States Chamber, and to visit my website www.christianmay.je to read ore about my vision for Jersey.
Sam Mézec: When casting your vote in this election, consider what message you want to send to the Council of Ministers.
We have a government which lied to the public at the last election and is now pursuing a programme of savage cuts to public services and stealth taxes.
I am the candidate they least want to win because it will be a demonstration that they have lost the support of the public and will be urged to change direction.
Mary O’Keefe Burgher: Please look at mary.je for details on the LEGIT Strategy and action points.
Please use your vote. I am worried about a very low turn out.
Thank you SOS for engaging with candidates in this election.
Hugh Raymond: Hustings are very important but would like to see more interface
with the public during question time.
John Young: Please have a look at my website www.johnhyoung.com – there is much more detail on my policies , my background , quals etc.