Every activity and policy that government implements depends on the availability of income to fund it.  And new policies depend on income exceeding expenditure – in preference to borrowing.

We have a problem with income falling and our expenditure rising.  We can deal with this but we need to know the facts. .  Last year Scrutiny recommended the urgent need to identify the size of the structural deficit; action has just been initiated by Treasury.   Our Scrutiny report on the 2015 Budget contains some other common-sense actions we need to implement immediately

We are told that we should enter the era of deficit spending.  This must be kept within limits otherwise, like a pay day loan, it runs away from you.

You will hear many promises in these elections, I merely ask you to ask ‘How much will it cost? And where will that money come from?’

Some Future Matters

  • The consultation paper on property taxes suggests centralising Parish Rates.  The current collection system is cheap and effective, don’t change it.
  • We must work with local businesses to implement strategies that help all businesses. The cutting of the current amount of red tape is an obvious start — money isn’t made by excessive form filling. 45 forms to fill in… to earn a living?
  • The arguments for privatising Jersey Telecoms and Jersey Water need to be explored while ensuring sufficient protection is given to the consumer.

Do you think more could be done for Islanders’ health and education?

  • Realistic plans need to be implemented for sustainable funding of primary and secondary healthcare.
  • We should establish a new educational establishment for children of 14 and over, whose skills are practical, and encourage partnerships with trade associations to ensure quality training and apprenticeships for such children.
  • Planned programmes need to be implemented to ensure all children in Jersey have conquered the 3Rs by the time they leave primary school.

Do you care about preserving the beauty of Jersey?

Public support for the proposal that the States divert taxpayers’ money to a private charity to protect the Plémont headland showed a lack of trust in the Island’s planning processes.  How can Planning refuse to allow a tree house to be built in one person’s back garden but allow speculative building to dominate, or encroach upon, treasured beauty spots?

We need sites for housing but the planning laws need to identify what most Islanders wish to preserve, and listen to local communities on matters such as preferred architectural style.

Do you ever feel it’s not worth voting?

No wonder, if you feel that the States has too many politicians who don’t listen to you.

The previous referendum, funded by Jersey taxpayers, was flawed but Islanders now have the chance to vote on whether or not they wish the Connétables to remain in the States Assembly.

I believe States members should listen to the electorate and not dismiss their views out of hand.

Your vote is your voice – it matters. Please use it.