For the Parish
I am ready to defend the Parish system against further centralisation and hope to carry the voices of the parishioners of St Lawrence to the States Chamber. I welcome communication and would enjoy having well attended surgeries to exchange views about current affairs.
I believe strongly in preserving the identity and independence of Jersey. I am dismayed at the efforts to change it in a misguided hope that being more like the UK or more like France will make us better. We can find a Jersey solution to Jersey problems without calling in UK consultants.
For the economy
My experience is that businesses work better when left alone. For example, I don’t think we need to fund start-ups, we just need to make it easy for them to start, which is less and less the case. Our Chamber of Commerce is a remarkable asset and I would be very attentive to their recommendations.
While I don’t agree with 0-10 and think that local companies should pay a local tax, singling out selected members of the severely ailing retail industry with a 20% tax was probably not the best way to help them recover from their worst year since 2008.
Tourism has a new future in front of it. I would be happy to help develop event-led tourism and there are more inexpensive ways to encourage people to visit our beautiful island.
We will have to work hard to reduce the impact of Brexit on Jersey and, possibly, take advantage of its opportunities. I am ready to become a part of the solution and help negotiate for our side.
Finally, we do need to find our next success. I have experienced first hand the e-economy boom of the turn of the century and I know that you cannot decide which business is going to flourish and try to finance them. That should be left to the venture capitalists, of which there are more than enough in the Island, private or institutional. What must be done is to create the environment in which new ideas can be tried without impediments, where resources are easily available and the risks are minimised. It is more a problem of regulations than money.
We are told that some businesses have trouble finding employees with the right qualifications in the Island. There are many reasons for that, but one that we can work on is the quality and availability of higher education for the people of Jersey. I applauded the move our government made to help finance the higher education of Jersey residents abroad and I would continue to help if I could.
There are some projects to offer more graduate and post-graduate courses in the Island which also need to be encouraged. Not only will they help the people of Jersey, it can also be an excellent business.
For the environment
Jersey needs to preserve the diversity of its terrestrial and marine environment. Providing for the protection of species and habitats should be a standard feature of any new policy.
Agriculture is essential to the character of our Island. We should support it as much as possible, making sure that the area available for cultivation is not reduced. We should however ensure that it is environmentally friendly and done in a sustainable way.
Electric vehicles have finally come of age and it is high time they took over in Jersey. Maybe we should allow more variety than just “electrically assisted bicycles” and we should certainly favour electric cars over anything with a petrol engine.
Solar panels are also a completely mature technology now and we need to work with the Jersey Electricity Company to develop their domestic use. After all, we are the sunniest place in Great Britain.
As a Centenier going to court almost every week, and as vice president of the Honorary Police Association, I have a good idea of how both our States of Jersey Police and our 12 Honorary Police forces work. They both deserve our respect and they have both obtained extraordinary results in an increasingly difficult environment. Both, however, suffer from decreasing numbers and it seems to me that the States of Jersey Police is now critically short of front-line officers while the Honorary Police, throttled by regulations, has more and more difficulties finding volunteers. I would really like to be able to help both these remarkable organisations.
Pensioners have been singularly left out of the fiscal reforms of the past government. They are an easy target that doesn’t immediately take to the street when challenged but it doesn’t give us the right to abuse them. We need to revisit their situation.
We are a small community and we should embrace the advantages it gives us over the bureaucratic nightmare of having to manage millions. We can still solve people’s problems one by one.