I am Simon Brée. I was born in Jersey and have lived the majority of my life in St. Clement so can say with complete conviction that I fully understand the pressures and issues facing both the Parish and the Island. I was educated at Victoria College. I worked in the local Finance Industry for twenty-five years before setting up my gardening business.
I believe in open, responsible and accountable government.
Many Parishioners feel cut-off from Parish life and Island politics, as shown by the low turnout at the polls in the last election. This must change so that our Parish and our government is working for the benefit of all. No-one should ever feel excluded or not represented.
If elected I would start an open “surgery” on a monthly basis where any parishioner could come and talk to me about any issue.
This election needs to be about the major issues facing Jersey which affect every Islander.
Ministerial government is not working as it should. I do not support a return to the Committee system. What we need are more effective checks and balances on what each Minister is spending, and the decisions they take.
Unemployment and Immigration are major issues facing Jersey. We must not forget that many of us, and our ancestors, were “immigrants”, all of who have contributed to our rich culture and heritage. We need to introduce work permits that are employer and job specific, and time bound. The States needs to ensure that businesses employ locally qualified people wherever possible.
Income tax and GST are hitting middle and low income Islanders the hardest. We need to make certain items, such as food, GST exempt, and undertake a review of our current tax system.
States Overspending is a major concern. We need better control on what is spent on large capital projects. We need a review of how our Civil Service is structured, the high number of civil servants, and salary levels.
Housing & Future Development: Young families trying to buy their first home are finding it nearly impossible. We need a better solution to this than just building new large scale developments. I am against green field development, and, particularly in St Clement, we need to resist any further large scale development.
The Finance Industry is vital to our economy, but any tightening of tax laws by other countries is an ever-present danger, and we need to start looking at alternative industries for the Island. We need to review the proposed Finance Quarter on the Esplanade. In the current global financial climate we should not be embarking on such a major capital project.
We need to encourage more diverse use of the Parish Hall as our community centre and fully support all community based projects.
I have the energy, commitment, knowledge, experience, integrity and ability to tackle the serious issues now facing St. Clement and the Island as a whole.
Working together we can make a real difference to St Clement and the Island.