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  • Parish Vale
  • Experience New Candidate
What do you think?
Yes No Maybe

Personal Statement

I’m Melanie, a Guernsey Girl to the core, always asking “what if?”, and prepared to listen to the answers – not just a stubborn Donkey! I’ve not had a privileged upbringing, I’ve worked hard and experienced people coping with disabilities, mental health and abuse issues. As well as being your Deputy I’ll still be living life - birdwatching, photographing wildlife and pier jumping at Rousse.

  • We need to work to diversify business but currently the finance industry needs to be nurtured, as it affects the whole of the island economy.
  • A quick decision on education is required after the results of the reviews are
    known – let’s stop messing around and
    get things done.
  • Taxes may need to be reviewed following COVID 19 expenditure – but collection of revenue needs to be efficient.

Manifesto

My Mission

Guernsey must be able to thrive. No u-turns on policies unless in exceptional circumstances. Freedom of information is essential to ensure that the public may be better informed and make transparent government a reality.

Why Me?

I have a background in both accounting and forensic accounting and will dig as deep as necessary for the answers. I worked in Fiduciary for over 10 years and understand not only the reading of the numbers but the different ways they can be presented.

The Plan

I want to keep you fully updated! Better communication with the public is paramount. As we saw with Covid, the States are very keen to be open and tranparent so I want to ensure that continues. I also want to challenge - Deputies should not shy away from ‘awkward questions’ or stand on their own agendas – I’m here for you. The assembly should be accountable and properly held to account – this is my plan.

Education

We are in a phase of pause & review. The States are waiting for reports to be completed and independently reviewed. It is imperative that we act on the findings of those reports urgently, make decisions and get things done. We must restore some stability and certainty for the children of the Island.

Finance Industry

Throughout the COVID 19 crisis the finance industry has been able to trade with little or no support. This unexpected benefit has been a massive bonus to the island and something the whole economy has benefitted from. With ongoing scrutiny from outside organisations, it is essential that our laws are amended as required to ensure that we can maintain international standards. The States must support these changes early on in the new term to protect this key income earner for the island. The GFSC has high standards which must be carefully managed to ensure they do not lead to business prevention. The SOG and the GFSC need to work together to find a workable balance.

Travel and Air Routes

It is easy to forget that we bought Aurigny to protect essential air routes. This is still the case, losing Gatwick slots would be disastrous. Aurigny will always be a cost centre. I would propose looking at Aurigny in a different way. Let’s sell Guernsey from the moment you buy your ticket and make travelling pleasant again - fixed fares, minimum change fees, no baggage fees, a free drink and a paper. It will still be a cost to the island – but will set us apart as different from the start.

Environment

Sarnia Cherie – gem of the sea – it needs to be just that. We have all done a fabulous job with waste and recycling and we need to keep this up! All aspects of nature, climate change and sustainability need to be addressed promptly. We can become leaders in these areas and further promote our Island from it.

Nurses/Carers

Pay them more, they are worth it!

Taxes and expenditure

We all know that Guernsey’s economy has suffered during COVID and taxes may need to be addressed in this term. It is imperative that every pound we collect from the public is used effectively and therefore the cost of collection must be taken into account when considering how to maximise our revenues. I am not in favour of GST.

Equality Legislation

I was pleased to see the proposal pass through the States in the current term. It is now imperative that we consider the detail as it is presented to the States again. I fully support equality and I think it is essential on the Island. However, the cost of implementation and practicality for businesses must be carefully considered with our limited infrastructure and numerous old buildings. A careful balance needs to be struck.

Cannabis

I hear the noise being made about legalisation of cannabis and I do understand that for some people this could make a difference to their lives. As a priority, however, I think it’s important that we focus on getting medicinal cannabis and cannabinoid products prescribed legally and safely to those in need. Complete legalisation/decriminalisation of cannabis should be considered at a later date and in line with other matters of importance.

Please don’t be a 1 topic voter. I’ll represent your views across the spectrum of issues.
I’d be honoured to serve you this coming term.

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 sat on company and charity committees in the past so I fully understand the issues that can arise and impacts that your decisions have. My main contribution was either the finance side or investigating the feasibility of the matter at hand.

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 ?

To follow on website, please visit www.melanieharvey-alan.com  for details

What concrete measures would you like to see implemented in Guernsey during the next term to achieve net zero carbon by 2050?

I would like to see a move to electric heating, travel etc. The change to domestic heating and vehicles needs to be affordable for all.

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?

Definitely island wide.

Are you concerned about the large amount of agricultural land that is being lost for private gardens?

Yes this must be looked at and hopefully stopped.

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?

I will only commit to something that is evidenced as the best thing for the island and will then give my full support to.

What are your opinions on climate change and Guernsey's role in tackling it?

Whilst Guernsey can make only physically make a small contribution to reducing global emissions we as an island must forge ahead and become an ambassador for combatting climate change.

What are the attributes and skills you will be looking for in the next President of the Policy & Resources Committee?

Someone who sees the importance of the need for infrastructure in order for Guernsey to grow.

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?

Due to Covid 19 and the impact it has had and indeed continues to have on the airline industry as a whole, the initial findings of the report that were shared in May 2020 as stated by the president for Economic Development there will be a need to have the findings updated. There must be an investment in air travel as soon as Guernsey gets back to business in order to help recovery and sustainability. Now is not the time to be dealing with this.

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?

To follow on website, please visit www.melanieharvey-alan.com  for details

What are the candidates' views on maternity pay and leave and how would they improve the current arrangements, if at all?

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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?

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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?

People should be given the choice of how to travel but focusing on the safest way for themselves and the environment. We need to have a bus service that operates within the timeframes and frequency for workers to be able to use which it currently does not.

Do you support outsourcing of States services?

Until elected and I have a view of all the relevant information I cannot make a decision.

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?

I do not have any strategy at the moment, that would come from talking to all the relevant parties and the public to ensure it is covering all needs. The money I would hope would be part of the capital expenditure that is needed and has not been used as the strategy report mentions.

What environmental policies would you support to reduce Guernsey’s reliance on the internal combustion engine, in support of International global warming initiatives?

A move to electric that is affordable for all.

What measures will you put in place during the next term to ensure that environmental biodiversity will be protected and enhanced?

Continue with the strategy for nature and work towards policies being agreed timely.

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?

As a new candidate I shall defer to one of the current deputies who has hopefully provided the answer.

Do you agree that there is a climate crisis caused predominantly by the actions of humans?

Yes.

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?

I am against the Longue Hougue site exactly for those reasons. Other ways of dealing with inert waste need to be addressed but I am afraid that it currently looks like a battle that will be hard to win. That will not stop me trying to prevent it.

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?

2050 based on the global footprint is a very long time, Guernsey must strive to be seen to be rapidly advancing in this area and sharing the way things can b done with the world.

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?

Aurigny is vital for our air links and we always knew it would have ongoing costs to the island. Current deputies will have more idea as to the need of new aircraft. There is also the opportunity of collaboration with Harrisson Aviation with environmentally friendly aircraft.

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?

No, it is best to let the natural shingle/sand dune system regenerate. It was never built as a sea defence. The scare stories about losing the Common is unfounded and will aid in encouraging biodiversity.

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?

By the time that the Pause and review report is published and debated no doubt there will be an increase in funding needed. The amount I cannot even begin to estimate.

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?

We do indeed need to revisit zero ten but be mindful that it does not impact the finance industry to an extent that we lose business. We need to remain tax neutral.

If elected, what priority will you give to the introduction of the already-drafted consumer protection legislation?

The consumer protection legislation is far overdue and needs to be implemented as soon as possible. and everything should be all inclusive including birth registrations.

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?

I was not aware of that. Everything should be all inclusive.

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 need to know more before making a decision.

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?

I feel it is too early to measure the impact of people working from home on a permanent basis to require an urgent revision. It does need to be carefully monitored as the island recovers from Covid.

What is your attitude towards enhanced and mandatory registration, chipping and DNA recording of dogs and control of their fouling, island-wide?

I would need to know more before making a decision.

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?

Freedom of information and the public being more aware and informed.

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.

I am an inquisitor and do not knee jerk, I encourage people to see both sides and have a sensible discussion.

Would you support not giving Local Market licenses to those earning above a set level to support both LM and OM?

To follow on website, please visit www.melanieharvey-alan.com  for details

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?

To follow on website, please visit www.melanieharvey-alan.com  for details

Would you support changes in the law to make cannabis for personal use legal?

No.

Question for New Candidates: During the COVID-19 lockdown States Meetings were held virtually. On 24th of June Meetings resumed in the Royal Court Chamber. As a prospective States Member have you spent any time at all in the public gallery observing our Parliament (potentially your future workplace) in action? If not, why not?

I did a long time ago and have walked around it when it was empty. Most people do not get to see their workplace properly prior to starting a new job so that is a bonus.

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?

To follow on website, please visit www.melanieharvey-alan.com  for details

This is a question for new candidates; do you agree with the principle of scrutiny of government and if so how would you ensure that it was fairly carried out ?

Yes I do. It is imperative that we have the Freedom of Information passed, all of government should be able to be scrutinised where needed. You have to be independent and know when an investigation is needed or whether it is just inhouse politics.

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?

The public pressure appears to be coming from a vocal minority. I believe that legalisation should be brought before the States but I don't consider it a priority.

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?

The pace is long and complicated. There are multi layers of individuals, committees, privy council and law officers all involved at different stages. I am unsure as a first time candidate how or indeed if the pace can be improved. Due to all the above persons involved I believe it has to be the States collectively.

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?

To follow on website, please visit www.melanieharvey-alan.com  for details

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?

To follow on website, please visit www.melanieharvey-alan.com  for details

What would you do to address traffic noise pollution from vehicles speeding and backfiring along St Georges Esplanade/Les Banques and towards town?

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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?

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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 president for Economic Development has stated in their policy letter in May 2020 that there will be a need to have the findings updated. There must be an investment in air travel as a whole as soon as the world gets back to business in order to help recovery and sustainability. This report has been requested so therefore we should continue investigating.

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?

I am aware of the current Frontier report and the initial findings but was not aware that this went back 20 years.

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?

To follow on website, please visit www.melanieharvey-alan.com  for details

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?

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What criteria do you use for decision making?

Balanced evidence and questioning.

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?

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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?

I believe that with the correct infrastructure and growth that there will not be a need to increase taxes. If there is to be a tax review then it needs to be done in a way to protect the lower income earners and take into account the cost of collection.

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?

One way to try and attract the tourists is to use Aurigny as an ambassador. We always knew that Aurigny was bought as a loss making concern but we can mitigate this by setting set prices with free changes, free baggage, a drink and the paper. The little extras go a long way. Sea links are a worry and need addressing, as it stands you cannot even guarantee that your vehicle will stay dry. Tourism should play a big in Guernsey's future, especially as we gat greener.

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

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List your achievements to date which have been a benefit to Guernsey.

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Do you support a reduction in the cost of running the civil service? If so, how would you do that and over what timescale?

Until elected and I have a view of all the relevant information I cannot make any of those decisions.

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?

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What is your view regarding commercialisation with respect to States owned entities?

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Should the island be spending tax payers money on maintaining air and sea links?

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What is your view on future funding for long term care as current funding will be insufficient by 2040?

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What is your opinion of introducing a goods and sales tax?

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Would you support the ‘listing’ of all remaining historic military structures, as Jersey has done, to ensure their ongoing protection, repair and maintenance?

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What initiatives would you put in place to grow our economy?

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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.

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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?

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How will your religious faith influence your voting decisions?

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Have you read the recommendations contained in the Frontier Economics Report in which they state that the long term benefits of extending the runway far outweigh the environmental and capital costs? If so, are you in favour of extending the runway?

To follow on website, please visit www.melanieharvey-alan.com  for details

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?

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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)?

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Education - Do you know what T levels are and if you do, would you be enthusiastically demanding that they are available here in Guernsey?

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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?

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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?

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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.

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What is your position on the opportunity to debate the abortion issue more openly and fairly with more balanced representations to the Deputies?

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How do you see the way forward for secondary education in the island? Do you favour a particular model and if so which one?

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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?

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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"?

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