I am a solicitor with over 40 years’ experience (mainly as a partner and principal) in a career which has included appointments as director and trustee. These appointments have provided me with the ability to listen and consider views of all parties and to make independent and impartial decisions, an ability which I found invaluable when I was elected as Deputy of St. Mary in 2014.
The position of Deputy is a full-time occupation and I have no hesitation in offering to enter into this commitment for a further term. I set out below my views on certain of the issues on which, if re-elected, I would then focus.
THE PARISH: For many years, the dominant issue has been the question of road safety and speed limits within the Parish; this has now largely been addressed by the introduction of various measures but, as your Deputy, I would continue to seek your views as to their effect.
EDUCATION: States Members have approved university funding over the next two years and I will vigorously support its continuation. Locally, I look forward to seeing the plans for St Mary’s school come to fruition for the benefit of our children.
THE ENVIRONMENT: The percentage of St. Mary’s land falling within the category of ‘Built Environment’ is the lowest of all the parishes. I am committed to maintaining this position by opposing development on greenfield sites and protecting our countryside and coastline.
AGRICULTURE: Agriculture land occupies approximately 57% of the island’s area and the industry remains an integral part of our way of life. Potatoes remain the island’s main crop in monetary value and I will actively support measures to diversify so as to reduce over-reliance on this one crop.
FINANCE INDUSTRY: The finance sector continues to be the bedrock of the island’s economy and it is imperative that States Members understand its ongoing concerns and requirements so as to maintain the island’s position in the international market. My personal background makes me ideally placed to play an active role in this area and, indeed, my position on the Economic Affairs Scrutiny and the Brexit Review Panels has enabled me to do so. I support the ongoing efforts to expand this sector into other areas such as Digital; equally, I appreciate the need for expansion and diversification of other industries.
TOURISM: In its widest sense, ‘tourism’ continues to play an important role in island life. It should not simply be regarded as a ‘stand-alone’ industry but, rather, also complement other areas of economic activity such as the finance sector, heritage, culture and sport.
HOUSING: The shortage of housing generally, and affordable housing in particular, continues to be one of the island’s main challenges. I support the present policy of concentrating future development in St. Helier where possible.
It is not possible in this brief manifesto to cover my views on every subject that might come before the States but, if you care to contact me, I shall be delighted to discuss other issues.