Friday, 14 October 2011

St Helier 1

1 (a). Is it right that the number of Senators has been reduced, thus limiting
the choice for Islanders as a whole to choose their political leaders?

1 (b). If no, what would you seek to do about it?

2. The States Pension age is going to be progressively increased over the next few years. Would you support legislation preventing employers from compulsorily retiring people who have not yet qualified for their pension, to prevent them being left without any income other than such welfare as they may qualify for?

3 (a). Would you support measures to stabilise the population at current levels?

3 (b). If not, how do think Jersey can accommodate further population growth?

4. Who will have your support to be the next Chief Minister?

5. Would you like Jersey to move towards a more progressive tax system?

6. Do you think GST should be retained in its present form, abolished, reduced or increased?

7 (a). Is Ministerial Government working the way it was envisaged?

7 (b) If not, what would you do to remedy the situation?

8. With the long-term stagnation of the housing market, the private rental sector is once again growing in importance. Would you support an overhaul of tenancy law to strike a fairer balance of rights and duties between residents and landlords?

9. Do you have a view on whether the extensive importation of UK Civil Service managers on short contracts is beneficial, or whether there should be more emphasis on career development for local civil servants?

10. Which, if any, public services would you like to see the States cutting?

Would you support increased Social Security contributions, ring fenced to protect future pension & health benefits, but not as a way of raising income for the Treasury.

Judy Martin:-

1.(a). Yes

1.(b). But we need one type only of States member

2. Yes

3. (a). Yes

4. Alan Breckon

5. Yes

7.(a). No
7.(b). We need more people in the Ministers, but all assistants should be voted by House

8. Yes and have

9. Progression Training

11. Yes
Keith Shaw – St Helier 1:-

Keith Shaw - St Helier 1

1 (a ) Whether it is right or not, we now have a democratically reached decision. My personal preference would have probably been to remove the Connetables from the States Chamber.

2. This is a difficult and not easily answered question but I will try my best to consider the options.
We currently have a high number of unemployed people, especially young people who desperately need work. Unless there is a "reasonable" retirement age for employees, there is going to be tension between the jobs that are available, and the opportunities for the unemployed. The raising of the retirement age however could no doubt cause problems for those who, if made to retire before they had planned, may suffer difficulties and hardship. It will not be easy for them to secure employment during that interim period and they may have to pay Social Security contributions in order that their final pension is not affected (unless these are covered by the Social Security Department because of their circumstances)
I think the way to proceed would be to;
1. Make it automatically unfair for an employer to dismiss on retirement grounds unless it can be objectively justified.
if an employee is compulsory retired before the normal retirement period, cover their stamp until they can secure other employment
3. In the event that an employee is compulsory retired there must thereafter be a job filled within the company for a period of no less than 2 years or financial penalties imposed.
What is more important is that those employees who are able to retire early e.g. Fire Service, Police, Ambulance etc are prevented from doing so, or at least are not re employed within the Public sector. The normal retirement age should apply to all the service sectors, far too many skills are lost too soon.

3 (a) No. I would seek to reduce it by making the following changes to the law/s.
Repatriate any non - local (e.g. less than 5 year residency) who has been awarded a custodial sentence in the courts of more than 6 months.
Tie employment into accommodation rights and make employment conditional upon secure and permanent accommodation.
Anyone registered in Guest houses, lodging houses or temporary accommodation only hold specific jobs e.g. temporary hospitality/ agriculture for max 9 month period in any 12 month period.
Look carefully at what impact immigration has had on employment and all services; e.g. health, housing and benefits.

4. My initial preference for Chief Minister would be either Paul Routier or Ian Le Marquand but I am not impressed that Ian le Marquand has voted against an open vote as transparency is crucial in the States. I am gaining more of a positive impression of Ian Gorst but would reserve my final decision until I have more knowledge of each candidate that puts themselves forward.

5. There is an imbalance in general taxation which must be looked at urgently to create a more level playing field. It cannot be right that businesses that are not local are allowed to escape taxation.

6. My preferred tax system would be "user pays" especially in relation to luxury items. If GST has to stay at 5% on essential items we should be looking to reduce that as quickly as possible. Luxury items could be taxed at 10% to provide revenue to allow for a gradual decrease on essential items. Items which would attract 10% would be; perfumes and makeup, spa services, beauty services, meals out, alcohol, cigarettes etc. I would also tax boat fuel at 10% other than fishing boats which should be taxed anyway at the lower level. Tax should also be added to tractor diesel fuel and incrementally increased for large vehicles with high cc's and carbon emissions.

7. (a) The island "cherry picked" the Clothier recommendations and has got the government it deserves at this time. No, it is not working as too many important decisions are being taken by too few people.
7 (b) I would prefer not to answer this as I do not have sufficient knowledge at this time to make an informed statement. (My initial preference however would seek to involve all states members across all Departments to ensure decisions are more democratically made.)

8 There is still unacceptable accommodation in the island although the situation has improved vastly in the last ten years. See answer 3(a) which would alleviate some of the pressure on the market.

9 It is not just the civil service which is guilty of importing staff on contract but the private sector too. There should be a benefit to an employer to train and put in place succession planning. it may be a "tax break" of some kind, reward or recognition. There is some perverse belief that local people are not "up to" the job but some of the biggest mistakes and problem we have seen, have been caused by UK appointed personnel. In addition, those that do not relocate their families have little to lose when things go pear shaped on their
watch; they simply go back to the UK or elsewhere. Any appointment which is made to a non local must be conditional upon ;
a. The person actually lives on the island all the time and not commute backwards and forwards
b. The Appointment is for a specified period of time in order that they train someone to do the job
c. If b is not achieved, no new person can be appointed to that or a similar position for a period of 3 years.

10 Every user of public services believes theirs should be untouched but hard decisions have to be taken. I would make more use of community probation orders and use Prisoners to do certain types of work. Parks and gardens, road maintenance, beach clearing etc. A reduction in sentence could be considered for those who participate. There could also be public/ private partnerships for some services which are appropriate eg cleaning services but only if robust and proper service level agreements are in place. If the service provider does not deliver quality service, terminate the contract and give it to another provider.

11 Yes and raise the upper limit.

Please bear in mind that my. responses are based upon my knowledge at this-time and I reserve the right to change any opinion in the light of new or different information coming to my attention.

Mary O'Keeffe-Burgher – St Helier 1:-

I would like to reinstate the senators but as it has gone to the prive council in Westminster it would be almost impossible to revert in the near future.


3(a) The estimated growth in population over the last years should come in at 5000 people .. This will be confirmed when the recent census results are available.
Population growth is a sign of a growing economy. However I believe that there should be entrance and exit visas for everyone and work permits.
I also firmly believe that the Draconian non qualified housing category should be abolished. All people after living here for 5 year should be allowed to buy, with limits i.e. you cant work for 5 years prior to retirement the buy and retire etc.
The rental market should be open to everyone with a work permit.

3(b) By having a work permit people would be expected to leave the islands when the time runs out. For example if you needed to bring in contractors for large development everyone brought in would understand that when the work permit runs out it would be time to leave.
People working in Jersey weather born here or not should not be made to feel like second class citizens.

4. re the next chief minister
The process laid down for electing the Chief Minister is set out in Standing Orders. In summary: following an election, any candidate should:

i) Be nominated by at least 6 elected members;
ii) Set-out the candidate’s vision for a Strategic Policy;
iii) Set-out the manner in which he or she would propose to discharge the responsibilities as Chief Minister; then later,
Iv) Address the Assembly for 10 minutes;
V) Be questioned by elected members for 40 minutes

At that stage a ballot or ballots of members will be taken.

The appropriate time to discuss the Chief Minister role is after the elections. The real question here is who I want to be affiliated with..I want people to decide on me as an independent candidate. Mary O'Keeffe-Burgher.

5 I think we need to look at UK companies operating out of Jersey who pay no tax. This needs to be examined and a tax structure amended accordingly.

But when it comes to taxing high net worth earners remember that these people are extremely mobile and will move somewhere else. £135K a year is better than nothing!!

6 I do not want to see GST raise beyond 5%. People in the parish hate GST but I do understand the value of it and why it is in place.

5% GST gives us £85 million in to the States pot. The GVA has reduced in the last 2 years y nearly £500 million and we need to make up this extra income. So until we come up with new and innovative solutions I believe it is here to stay but hopefully in the short term.

GST has many features that make it an attractive revenue-raising option for Jersey:

It is a more stable revenue source than many other taxes.
Substantial amounts of revenue are generated, even at relatively low tax rates.
It is fair, since it affects the broadest range of taxpayers - ensuring that those who benefit from public services also contribute to their funding. (Previously, about 25% of eligible taxpayers did not pay any tax in Jersey).
It is an efficient and relatively inexpensive tax to administer - with operating costs typically in the region of only 1% of the tax yield.
The compulsory issue of tax receipts and invoices provides an audit trail that makes the system less susceptible to fraud and evasion.
GST does not tax investments and savings. It encourages saving rather than spending and indirectly rewards enterprise and encourages economic resilience.
Since GST only applies to the domestic consumption of goods and services, the GST incurred in the process of producing exports can be identified and refunded, assisting exporters to be competitive in the world market.
Visitors to Jersey will contribute to the Island’s revenue.

7 Ministerial government is not working as well as it could. Ostensibly because only elements of the Clothier report were followed.
It this it needs an internal review.

8 Yes absolutely, a priority.

9 I would prefer career development for the local civil servants first.

10 I would not like to see ANY services being cut in the states.

11 Yes

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