- Parish Vale
- Experience Current Deputy
Dear Elector, I would like to thank the electorate who have supported me for the last 7 elections, including the 1997 Island Wide Conseiller Election. As the longest serving member of the States I’m the first to have the Parliamentary title “Mother of the House”, which also means I had the honour and privilege of being Acting Presiding Officer to preside over the States when the Bailiff/Deputy Bailiff were unavailable.
- Proposed by: Noel Duquemin, Seconded by Diane Archenoul, with thanks to them both.
- Having served continuously since 1994 I’ve only missed 3 days of States Meetings and I haven’t taken any annual pay increase since 2008.
- I am a committed Deputy and will remain so if re-elected.
Education - The States are no further ahead on resolving how many schools should be built. The teaching and support staff/parents/pupils and the community have had far too many years of uncertainty as a result of the last minute amendment putting on hold rebuilding La Mare de Carteret High School to look at a three school model. We saw a very large protest march, which I supported, as did the teaching/support staff opposing Education Sport & Culture’s one school two site plans. If I get elected, I look forward to the pause and review report being published, but my current preference is for a three school model and combined 6th form. I would welcome feedback once the report is published.
La Mare de Carteret Primary School rebuild has been taken off the prioritisation list until a Primary School review takes place, disappointingly this project has yet to start!
Economy would be improved by having better transport links, both the harbour and airport are gateways to our economy. I accept Covid19 has changed transport links dramatically worldwide on sustainability and environmentally, nevertheless reliable operators creating affordable links to/from Guernsey are desperately needed. Digital connectivity remains vital for our economy. I will not support increasing taxes on individuals until the P&R Review takes place and we know the details, plus the savings accomplished from the States Transformation Programme.
Revive & Thrive document had medium/long term suggestions but lacked many short term which would result in action. I would like to see quick wins such as repairing the Cow’s Horn steps and Fermain Wall, bearing in mind it’s a few months since Guernsey entered our Bailiwick Bubble Phase 5a after lockdown, it’s time for Revive and Thrive action. This States has spent time on strategies, plans and reviews, many have been approved but not implemented as funds are not available. Revive and thrive mustn’t become yet another plan without funding.
Brexit It is accepted changes to legislative provisions and border procedures will be required to comply with any new agreements being negotiated between the UK and EU as part of Brexit. It is vital that government safeguards the Bailiwick’s interests. This includes immigration, trade and the free movement of people in/out of the Island to/from both the UK and Europe as currently enjoyed. As negotiations continue, legislation/amendments are likely to be needed as the situation in relation to the Bailiwick’s participation in future UK free trade agreements becomes clearer.
Justice Review An opportunity next term for major transformation in the area of Justice which meets the needs of our community, from the impact of alcohol and drug abuse on mental health, to serious organised crime, from the links with social policy, criminal and family justice to the streamlining of judicial processes.
Health - My views remain the same as the last election. It is unthinkable if barriers are put in place restricting access to health by wealth. I will continue to oppose any policies/charges that could result in a two-tier health system depending on the ability to pay. Long waiting lists for operations must be addressed.
Long-Term Care Insurance scheme commenced 15yrs ago, ensuring individuals no longer had to worry about their future care needs. I rejected the recent proposal to look at £35,000 payment using equity against care costs, people would find a way around the system as they did years ago. A further review and report will follow.
Pay Negotiations It’s been embarrassing and shameful how we saw nurses protesting over several weeks in desperation at the way P&R have handled their pay negotiations. I hope the next P&R will deal with all the outstanding States pay negotiations with some urgency.
Housing - Reasonably priced affordable homes are needed to address the many wanting to get on the property ladder but not all developed in the north of the Island! Developers are sitting on sites following approval of development briefs, potentially 1500 homes in the north of the Island. Planning Permissions need to stop being given on green field sites.
Parish Douzainiers & Constables are the unsung heroes who, as volunteers, work tirelessly to keep all the Parishes in good order. As an Islandwide Deputy I would offer to attend the Douzaines as a conduit into the States. The Douzaine voice must not be lost with the removal of Parish Deputies.
Island Wide Election, apart from when I stood in the last Island Wide election, I have always walked the Vale Parish calling on the electorate, meeting as many as possible, unfortunately it’s impossible to visit everyone across the Island on the electoral roll within the time allowed. I am disappointed as meeting the electorate has been important to me. I would welcome, if you wish to contact me, with any questions you may have.
2016-2020 As Home Affairs President, I have taken to the States and led 64 policy letters, items of legislation and reports, plus attended countless Home Affairs meetings, Civil Contingency Authority, sub-groups on Brexit, Covid Recovery Action Group, CYPP Supervisory Group, Oversight Board and many more.
I hope, should I get re-elected, I can continue to use my many years experience and give some continuity and stability during these challenging times towards the well being of the Island. I would like to ask you, please consider my nomination when placing your vote.
Thank you for taking the time to read my brief manifesto, more available on my website www.marylowe.gg
Answers to questions proposed by the public:
Most of the detailed work of the States is done in committees, like the Committee for Environment and Infrastructure. What experience do you have of being on a committee and how did you contribute?
I have been President, Minister, Chairman & member of numerous committees during my time in the States and seen through successful Reports.
With unemployment currently running at an all time high, what measures would you like in place to ensure local people are offered jobs before license holders ?
Unemployment is not at an all time high, however Population Management work closely with Employment & Social Security when issuing work permits
What concrete measures would you like to see implemented in Guernsey during the next term to achieve net zero carbon by 2050?
A meaningful programme with timelines of what’s achievable and monitored on a regular basis
I live in St Peter Port but have interests in the Vale, St Peters and Castel. Will you be looking at Island Wide issues or more so in your Parish of residence?
I have always worked across all the Parishes assisting those who contact me. Most decisions taken in the States are Island wide.
Are you concerned about the large amount of agricultural land that is being lost for private gardens?
Yes very much so. A review of this particular policy under the Island Development Plan needs amending.
You will make many commitments as a politician, but how will you actually ensure these are achieved? If you have been a deputy before, what will you do differently this term to improve achievements?
Do my utmost to see the States working more collectively and with harmony.
What are your opinions on climate change and Guernsey's role in tackling it?
Guernsey as a community I believe have recognised climate change exists and are playing their part with recycling, electric vehicles, solar to name a few.
What are the attributes and skills you will be looking for in the next President of the Policy & Resources Committee?
Somebody who will work with all States members in a meaningful way and recognise we have a consensus system of Government, no silos or egos
If the independent Cost Benefit Analysis supports lengthening the airport runway, would you vote in favour of investing in this key element of island infrastructure?
Do you believe that diversification of the island's tax base is an important consideration for Guernsey in today's volatile and fast-moving global economy? If so, how can this specifically be achieved for Guernsey?
Policy & Resources are currently carrying out a tax review, once this detail becomes apparent it will need a public consultation if any changes are to be considered. The States also need to ensure enablers are in place to assist diversification.
What are the candidates' views on maternity pay and leave and how would they improve the current arrangements, if at all?
Unless I hear otherwise I understood the changes made have been accepted by the public.
I believe Guernsey needs a vision; a forward-thinking concept for the future of the island’s infrastructure, community wellbeing and economy. What’s yours?
The States have had several visions, strategies and plans, I’m not sure if we need anymore. I’d rather resources are now given to get on with it.
Do you agree that people should be encouraged to use cars less and if so what measures would you like to see introduced to achieve this?
More of the same message, wherever possible if convenient share vehicles, use the bus service or cycle but recognising many do need their vehicles as a form of transport. Educate and not dictate.
Do you support outsourcing of States services?
In some cases this has worked but equally it must be cost effective and that hasn’t always been the case!
What will you do to educate the islanders about the reality of the climate crisis which is the biggest threat currently facing the world?
Most have recognised climate change, the school education programme continues highlighting what we can all do better.
Most environmental problems are caused by the love of growth. Would you consider de-growth?
If we want the planet to survive, growth must be taken seriously. Businesses, Governments and individuals have to take some responsibility of how, or if, growth affects the planet in decision making.
What intra island transport strategy would you support to ensure safe and ‘clean’ travel on island for all road users, pedestrians, cyclists and motorists? And how do you plan to deliver that plan financially?
People need to be more tolerant of all road users whether walking, cycling or driving, recognising we have a large population for a small Island with very small roads. Wherever possible if convenient share vehicles, replace the current buses with hybrid or electric ones, cycle or walk but recognising and accepting many do need their vehicles as a form of transport. A financial plan would need to be considered of what could be achieved and in what order.
What environmental policies would you support to reduce Guernsey’s reliance on the internal combustion engine, in support of International global warming initiatives?
Continue encouraging less fossil fuels
What measures will you put in place during the next term to ensure that environmental biodiversity will be protected and enhanced?
Leave Belle Greve Bay alone and take on the advice from those with biodiversity knowledge and experience before making any decisions.
The Guernsey Press had an article and a picture of a proposed East Coast development called HYDROPORT. It seemed to me to be a brilliant plan and included a new deep water harbour, a hydro electric supply by enclosing Belgrave bay and changes to St Peter port harbour to accommodate cruise liners and super yachts. It would provide jobs, produce an ongoing and substantial revenue stream and make us to some extent self-reliant on electricity, why has there been no update on this project?
This was a private business scheme and has not been presented to the States for consideration.
Do you agree that there is a climate crisis caused predominantly by the actions of humans?
Longue Hougue has been proposed as a site for inert waste disposal despite it being a site of international importance in terms of wildlife. La Societe Guernesiase and other scientists have advised against this. What will you do to ensure that this valuable habitat is protected?
In this changing world with climate change its important valuable habitat is protected, we’ve seen a large reduction of bird life alone.
Most scientists and experts agree that a target of 2050 to achieve ‘net zero’ carbon emissions is nowhere near ambitious enough and will have catastrophic consequences around the world. What will you do to ensure that Guernsey takes action to significantly reduce carbon emissions during the next term?
Continue encouraging less fossil fuels
What is your view on current spending on Aurigny, is it worth how much we are paying? Is it run efficiently? Did we need new aircraft?
Certainly without Aurigny during Covid the Islands would have been in dire straights. Is it run efficiently, no probably not looking from the outside. A new Chief Executive has been appointed it will be interesting to see if or what any changes will occur.
If elected, would you fully support the retention, repair and ongoing maintenance of the Sea Defences provided by the anti-tank wall at L’Ancresse Bay?
A significant proportion of the concerns about the two college model of secondary education related to the capital costs and space standards: they could have been addressed with higher spending. Would you be prepared to spend more money on the future model of secondary education than previously agreed by the States in September 2019? If so, how much more?
I did not support the two college model and look forward to the pause and review report returning to the States.
With the general increase in costs of running the island and with various capital projects requiring funding; and with limitations on the amount that islanders can be taxed; do you think that it may be time to revisit the 0-10 tax scheme that created a big black hole in the island's finances?
Policy & Resources are currently carrying out a tax review when detailed information will be available for the States and community to consider.
If elected, what priority will you give to the introduction of the already-drafted consumer protection legislation?
This legislation is well overdue and needs to be introduced as a lack of consumer protection exists currently.
Did you know that same-sex families aren't treated equally when it comes to registering the birth of a child? What will you do to change that?
This is no longer applicable, the law has been changed.
Would you support a programme of privatisation of island utilities and other facilities such as Beau Sejour to help reduce record levels of borrowing resulting from the cost of Covid defences?
I would not support privatisation of Beau Sejour and most of the island utilities are commercialised or privately owned.
Increasing home working will likely result in surplus office space. Will you encourage an urgent revision of Planning Policies to facilitate conversion of retail and office space to residential & curb green-field development?
Its too early for an urgent revision of planning policies until a period of a year minimum of home working has been experienced and unused office space known.
What is your attitude towards enhanced and mandatory registration, chipping and DNA recording of dogs and control of their fouling, island-wide?
I support registration and chipping for DNA recordings of dogs for a number of reasons, including fouling.
I have one question for sitting Deputies and one for new candidates. Deputies:- what, in your mind, was your greatest political achievement in the last four years? New candidates:- What is your biggest political goal in the next four years?
For me personally, taking and leading on 64 Policy Letters, Reports and Legislation to the States on behalf of Home affairs Committee.
How good are your mediation and conciliation skills? The key to the islands well-being and progress is in working together to achieve the projects approved - to see sustainable, innovative solutions. Leadership in pulling the team together to move forward, rather than in circles.
As President of Home Affairs my leadership skills have resulted in listening, working and coming to a consensus outcome with my members which saw me lead 64 Policy Letters, Reports and Legislation to the States on behalf of the Committee.
Would you support not giving Local Market licenses to those earning above a set level to support both LM and OM?
First time buyers are encouraged to buy new build developments taking up green space, while there are vast amounts of listed properties facing dereliction on the island - buildings ripe for restoration, renovation and to be lived in. Currently, people are put off as they are greeted with stringent and outdated views by The Planning and Heritage Department - it takes too much time and money so are immediately put off. What will you do to change the process for the better?
I would welcome a review on listed properties as there are some which are questionable why they are on the list.
Would you support changes in the law to make cannabis for personal use legal?
No. Home Affairs are carrying out a justice review which consists of a cross-committee panel, part of that review is looking at sentencing, fines and cannabis legalisation and regulation.
In 1945, the generosity of people outside Guernsey enabled the delivery of Red Cross parcels to the island on the SS Vega. What is your view on the statement that ‘charity begins at home but should not end there’? How can we best show our care for people in need in other parts of the world?
The States have the Overseas Aid Committee plus there are numerous charities who also raise money for those in need in other parts of the world.
Considering the mounting public pressure against the way our current justice system deals with cannabis offences, what is your stance on the legalisation and regulation of cannabis in Guernsey?
Home Affairs are carrying out a justice review which consists of a cross-committee panel, part of that review is looking at sentencing, fines and cannabis legalisation and regulation
In a review last year into drugs and treatments and States debate in January, HSC acknowledged that the disparity between life changing NICE TA drugs available in Guernsey compared to the NHS had become too great to be justified, with nearly 4000 patients now on sub-optimal treatments. The Guernsey Health Reserve was identified as the funding source. HSC announced last week a delay of at least a year to the implementation of this policy. How do you propose to tackle the pace at which change takes place within the States? Should you be held accountable for delivering on commitments you make individually, as a committee or collectively as the States?
I was extremely disappointed to be told by Health & Social Care of the delay and would hope a new States will speed things up and get this sorted.
What ideas do you have to ensure there is affordable housing including support for first time buyers and ensure affordable rental property is available for locals so they can continue to live here? What is your stance on mortgage tax relief and shared ownership initiatives?
Encourage developers to consider building more for first-time buyers, even more so when there are currently many newly built in the more expensive price range still empty after 2 – 3 years. The States working with the Guernsey Housing Association, or any other Association, who would be prepared to develop houses/flats on States owned land if necessary.
Earlier this year, the States passed the introduction of life-saving and life-changing NICE-Approved drugs & medicines by a massive 32-1 vote; these drugs are readily available under the NHS and SHS in the UK. HSC have now announced that the implementation of this is now to be delayed by a year or so. Out of all projects the States have on their list - this has to be THE single most important one because it will affect up to 4,000+ residents of our island. How do you intend to bring forward the delay of this incredibly important topic to a much quicker implementation date?
I was extremely disappointed to be told by Health & Social Care of the delay and would hope a new States will speed things up and direct Health & Social Services to get this sorted.
What would you do to address traffic noise pollution from vehicles speeding and backfiring along St Georges Esplanade/Les Banques and towards town?
There is legislation in place but it needs to be reviewed and modernised to cater for noisy vehicles/bikes.
In January 2020 the States passed a policy to make all NICE TA drugs and treatments available to Islanders. Do you see this as a priority and if so how would you expedite implementation?
Yes I do see this as a priority and would hope a new States will direct Health & Social Care to get on with it.
The recent Frontier report on the runway extension summed up that "the economic benefits of extending the runway are likely to outweigh the costs" with net benefits over 40 years of up to £687m (over £20k per household). Post COVID, do you support continued investigation into the potential for a runway extension to improve Guernsey's infrastructure, air links, and sustain the visitor economy?
The aviation world has changed since Covid came along with more people considering the environment and climate change. It may be larger planes will be more economical to run but less frequent. I have supported a longer runway in the past and would look forward to a further investigation post Covid.
Have you been made aware that every report that the SOG has commissioned for 20 years has flagged the need to extend the runway to circa 1700m+ and the commercial benefits it will bring for the island as a whole?
Yes I have.
Brexit presents a unique opportunity for Guernsey to strengthen its ties with other Commonwealth countries and stand on its own two feet on an international scale. Would you be willing to make an effort to strengthen our diplomatic ties to countries like New Zealand, Australia, and Canada?
I would encourage investigations and dialogue with any jurisdiction that Guernsey can do business with that will bring benefits to the island and our economy.
The current states assembly has approved proposals for a Discrimination Ordinance, but much work needs to be done. How committed are you to ensuring that LGBTQ+ people, people of colour, people with disabilities and people of faith are protected on this island?
I remain committed to see this work done.
What criteria do you use for decision making?
Reading all paperwork, look for reasons why recommendations are being made and why others have been rejected in preparing proposals.
In the last two years two pieces of legislation have come to the States which specifically target the most vulnerable members of our society - euthanasia and abortion - where a person’s fundamental and basic right to life is overridden in the name of lesser rights. Do you believe that disposing of a person’s life is a sign of progress? Do you believe that failing to protect human life at any age or stage of development is the mark of a civilised and enlightened and caring society?
I am a politician and not a professional in the field of medicine whereas Doctor’s are once they’ve completed several years before becoming qualified. I take advice from those professionals and look at their evidence on why they recommend certain laws need to be changed.
It is beyond time to invest in our people, infrastructure and public services. Do you plan to make the island's tax system more fair and progressive, so that more businesses and the wealthy pay a fairer share?
Policy & Resources are currently reviewing the tax regime with a report coming back to the States once consultation has taken place. Until that review takes place I am not in a position to add anything further.
In light of covid-19 and the hit that the tourist industry has taken what plans (if any) would you try to put in place to make Guernsey more attractive to tourists after travel bans are lifted? And do you feel tourism should play a more crucial role in Guernsey? If not, why?
I fully support our tourism industry and have felt the last few years pre-Covid the unreliable air and sea links have damaged the reputation of our Islands with too many delays and cancellations. Our ports are the gateway to our economy. So yes I do believe tourism should play a crucial role not only in Guernsey but our Bailiwick.
Please list in order of importance: - driving Guernsey’s economy - addressing social needs - protecting the environment - invest in Guernsey’s infrastructure and improve - sort out the schools - focus on air and sea links - extend the runway - implement revive and thrive as a priority - open our closed borders as a priority - reduce states expenditure
This would be easy to answer if the States had an open cheque book or borrowed an obscene amount of money which has to be paid back by generations to come. I’ve seen too many reports this term, and previously, approving many of these ideas without any costings whatsoever, would I go out on a spree with no idea what limits of funds I have but spend anyway? No. Prioritisation around the funds available remains key for me as all those listed here are of importance.
List your achievements to date which have been a benefit to Guernsey.
As I’ve been in the States for some years there have been many achievements that have benefitted our community, the Long-Term Care Scheme, the 300+ who I have assisted with objections/applications to planning, the 64 Reports/Policy Letters/Legislation I have led this term as Home affairs President on behalf of the Committee will benefit Guernsey in many ways.
Do you support a reduction in the cost of running the civil service? If so, how would you do that and over what timescale?
I support more efficiencies across the States, including through the transformation programme, once completed there should be savings.
As we subsidise the airline, should Aurigny have a monopoly over all air routes to and from the Bailiwick, with a regulator to ensure fair pricing and a policy of not for profit?
I am not sure that would be a good idea, who would make the decision what and how many airports Aurigny would service, how frequent the flights, what would the ‘fair’ pricing be if no competition? This raises numerous questions that I do not have the answers to assist.
What is your view regarding commercialisation with respect to States owned entities?
Most of the States owned entities are commercialised. As an example, Guernsey Post has been successful trading in a difficult environment with technology taking over from letters being sent in the post, they had the foresight to broaden their service into other areas.
Should the island be spending tax payers money on maintaining air and sea links?
At this moment in time with Covid-19 if it means spending taxpayers money on maintaining air and sea links I don’t think we have any other choice.
What is your view on future funding for long term care as current funding will be insufficient by 2040?
I voted against the recent report from Employment and Social Security for a £35,000 equity release against an individual’s property. The scheme was designed 15 years ago so people would no longer have to sell their home to pay for their care. We saw how some had played the system previously by putting the property in a company name or transfer to other family members. It was an unfair system pre-Long Term Care Scheme. Long-Term Care Contribution rates need to be increased if more funds are required, any increases can be staggered, leaving property ownership alone.
What is your opinion of introducing a goods and sales tax?
I wouldn’t support a goods and sales tax as the Policy & Resources are carrying out a tax review, add this alongside the States need to stop spending unless we have the money. There are far too many people struggling financially and somebody has to pay. Need or want always at the front of my mind, nice to have or a necessity?
Would you support the ‘listing’ of all remaining historic military structures, as Jersey has done, to ensure their ongoing protection, repair and maintenance?
Yes I would.
What initiatives would you put in place to grow our economy?
See what unnecessary hurdles, if any, are a hinderance. It is important the States are able to put enablers in place for new or existing businesses to thrive.
Do you believe that the rates of income support are a) too low b) about right or c) too high? Explain your answer in some detail.
About right at this moment in time, if though it becomes apparent changes need to be made a report would be produced explaining why and at what cost.
How will you support and encourage young people coming to the island with regards to housing and licencing to ensure the island has more stable tax base as the population ages?
What I would like to see are many of the local young people who leave the Island to attend University return with their skills and contribute, equally Guernsey continues to welcome young people who choose to work and live here. Affordable housing for first time buyers needs to be addressed as more and more people are extending their first time property rather than move to a larger premise.
How will your religious faith influence your voting decisions?
It hasn’t and it wont.
What are your views on the cost of Primary Healthcare locally and what innovative ideas do you have that don’t simply involve ‘redirecting funding from a different states pot’ to create fair, equitable and affordable access to Primary Care for all islanders?
Primary Healthcare are private businesses who work with the States and Health & Social Care in particular. Discussions have been taking place of late with I believe HSC and progress has been made.
Do you support developing end of life care (including palliative care) or would you look to introduce a form of euthanasia as in assisted dying (assisted suicide)?
I support palliative care but the States have previously rejected on more than one occasion euthanasia. I voted against euthanasia.
Education - Do you know what T levels are and if you do, would you be enthusiastically demanding that they are available here in Guernsey?
Yes I do know what T levels are and would, from what I’ve read, welcome they become part of our education system.
What will you do to help Guernsey businesses revive and thrive and make Guernsey a 'smarter' and technologically advanced place to do business, and to encourage new start up businesses?
The States have seen success from the Digital Greenhouse initiative assisting new start up businesses. Guernsey needs a faster broadband if we want to compete with our competitors, the telcos are promoting this as happening.
There is a lack of mental health support available - particularly to those who seem to fall into the apparent gap between the secondary and primary mental health services. What will you do to address this?
Seek answers from Health & Social Care how they intend to address gaps in the mental health system between secondary and primary services.
How would you as a deputy ensure emotive proposals such as, change to abortion law or assisted dying law would be publicly debated? And allow Islanders to have more of a say in these emotive issues.
The States had a debate on abortion law and assisted dying this term.
What is your position on the opportunity to debate the abortion issue more openly and fairly with more balanced representations to the Deputies?
The States had a very recent debate on abortion law with decisions made following professional advice.
How do you see the way forward for secondary education in the island? Do you favour a particular model and if so which one?
The Education Sport & Culture Committee were directed to pause and review their one school two site model and revisit other options. My preference at the moment is for 3 Secondary Schools and one Sixth Form model.
Recognising the importance of our natural environment and our hospitality industry how would you propose to move forward essential repairs and any development at St Peter Port harbour, securing access to our beaches (e.g. Petit Port, Divette, Soldiers bay), the maintenance of our cliff paths and the important access from the bathing places to the Clarence battery? Does this essential maintenance take priority over the development of the East Coast/Town seafront?
Yes it does take priority. I asked for the repair to the Cows Horn steps and the Fermain wall to be two of the revive and thrive projects, cliff path maintenance and other areas mentioned here should I believe be before any future seafront development that's if the seafront development goes ahead at all.
What are your views about the proposed way forward with regard to Probate, recognising that the age-old system has been efficient, pastoral, and inexpensive? Are you of the view "if it ain't broke don't fix it"?
The States have approved the transfer from the church to the royal court. I voted against it because the system has worked well for centuries and is efficient with Guernsey being one of the quickest jurisdictions for issuing probate. This was change for changes sake.