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Speech – Residence Test on Supplementary Benefit

Sir, I will limit my speech to one main item. As Deputy Le Clerc indicated in her opening speech, Deputy Gollop and I have – in his words, I believe – gone rogue on Proposition 23 of this report. I can only apologise to my fellow Committee members for the hard time I have given them in several Committee meetings, and am now giving them – one last time – in this debate. There are few States Members I esteem more highly than my President and fellow Committee members at ESS. There are few whose integrity, generosity and dedication is so far beyond question. I cannot find a single logical or moral argument in favour of this proposition, as will no doubt become apparent — I find it intolerable.

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Speech – Budget 2017

Sir, The progressive intention of this Budget is welcome, although its progressive credentials hang entirely on two measures: Document Duty, which is being reorganised in a way that should reduce the cost of buying housing at the lower and mid-range of the market; and the withdrawal of personal allowance, which will touch only 3 in 100 islanders, with six-figure incomes. It is a good start, but there is more to be done. Perhaps the time for debate on that will be in a fortnight, when we come to debate the Fiscal Framework within the Policy and Resources Plan.

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Billet Blog: 1-2 November 2016

The first of three States Meetings in November (we meet again on 15 November to talk about the Policy & Resources Plan, and on 30 November to debate other business, no doubt including the future of secondary education) will begin with the Budget, and will also include the Committee for Employment & Social Security’s annual report on Benefit and Contribution rates. In addition, there will be business carried over from the last meeting, and a few other small items.

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Voting Record – October 2016

Voting Record – October 2016

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6 Households, 3 Reports, 1 Budget

The States is considering three really important policy letters in November: the 2017 Budget, which raises taxes and directs government spending for the year ahead; the annual report on Social Security Benefit and Contribution Rates for 2017; and the Policy & Resources Plan (which I’ll only touch on briefly in this update), which aims to provide a framework and a goal for all policy development during this political term and which, through the Fiscal Framework, directs how government finances can be raised and spent in future.

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Speech – Affordable Housing Amendment

Sir, Deputy Ferbrache began by urging us to make the right decision, having carefully considered the arguments. I fully agree with him. I therefore rise simply to add a couple of items to the evidence he laid before us, which I would ask members to consider before reaching their conclusion.

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Billet Blog: 12 October 2016

The October States Meeting will be dominated by the Island Development Plan – which I have blogged about separately here. There are a few other items of business, which I have covered briefly below.

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Island Development Plan

The Island Development Plan, or IDP, is a baptism of fire for us new States Members – over a thousand pages, spread over two reports and eleven appendices, plus extensive supporting guidance and technical background. It is also the first time, for many of us, that we have experienced sustained lobbying over the propositions we will be debating.

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Statement – Supplementary Benefit

The front page of today’s Guernsey Press carried the news that Deputy John Gollop and I dissented from one proposal in the Committee for Employment and Social Security’s annual policy letter on Benefit and Contribution Rates. For the avoidance of doubt, we fully support all the other proposals in the report (and, of course, I’ll blog on them in due course). The full statement I gave to the Press, explaining my position on this issue, was as follows.

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Voting Record – September 2016

Voting record – September 2016

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