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Simon Peter James Vermeulen

Contacts
07781 157972
  • Parish Castel
  • Experience New Candidate
  • Party The Guernsey Party
What do you think?
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Personal Statement

I want to secure Guernsey’s future for generations to come. I’m an experienced businessman with a proven track record, a father, grandfather and husband. I have a vested interest in future proofing Guernsey’s success. I am a Guernseyman who is passionate about our island and its people. I want to use my skills and experience to set Guernsey on the right course and make the island’s economy prosper for all

  • We need to stop ruining our island and focus on the growth of the economy.
  • Guernsey needs to thrive, be built back better post Covid-19 and provide the best possible services and education for all.
  • This needs to be underpinned with one
    of the strongest economies in the world.
  • A thriving economy will mean lower taxes and the ability to pay back our borrowing. No GST.

Manifesto

Here are my thoughts on a few key issues, please visit www.simonv.gg for a much more detailed manifesto (including my views on Sustainability, Connectivity, Infrastructure, Health, Population and Governance).

The Economy

  • No to GST. We need to keep our taxes low and be internationally competitive;
  • We need to reduce the costs of Government without reducing front line services;
  • I fully support the Revive & Thrive Strategy but believe we need to make sure we develop and fulfil the action plans swiftly to enable economic growth to happen;
  • I would support suspending the internal capital expenditure processes and place the process with individual committees, under direct or delegated control from Policy & Resources with specified budget limits;
  • This is the right time to review current commitments which carry significant capital costs and re-evaluate the priorities or those that need to be withdrawn from. We need to focus on investment which provides significant, measurable social or financial benefit;
  • Review the duty on alcohol brewing and distillation to encourage local production and exports. Support local;
  • Review the effectiveness of the GFSC as the regulator;
  • Our digital connectivity is vital, and we need to put in place the best digital infrastructure possible.

Education

  • Guernsey school children deserve to have clarity and certainty on what the future holds for education and this should be a priority for the new States;
  • Everyone deserves access to the best education;
  • If we were debating a two versus three school model, I would support a three-school model plus a sixth form college;
  • I would like to see the re-introduction in some form of bursaries for academic excellence given on a means tested basis to States educated children to attend the Colleges;
  • I believe the College of FE is of vital importance to the local economy and is more important than ever as we are facing the largest skills gap in generations. The redevelopment of CoFE should be treated as a priority.

Tourism

  • The value of the Tourism sector needs to be properly recognised and should be at the heart of Government. The sector alone employs 2,000 people and retail, a supporting sector employs 4,000 islanders. These jobs need to be protected;
  • Guernsey needs sustainable, reliable and affordable air and sea links;
  • We need to build on the recently approved Sports Strategy and develop a coordinated strategy for the music and arts which could further enhance Guernsey as an attractive destination. Sports tourism is a massively undervalued area;
  • We need to improve our offering as a destination, and I would support an enterprise grant scheme to support start-ups and entrepreneurs wanting to create new attractions or services aimed at the visitor economy.

Traffic

  • We need to halt the removal of parking spaces in Town. We need to increase parking facilities to help St Peter Port thrive;
  • I would support extending all parking to five or ten hour spaces, thus encouraging people to spend longer in Town and make it a more attractive location for businesses to base their businesses;
  • A multi storey carpark needs to be considered, albeit sympathetic to the surroundings to provide additional parking;
  • We need to encourage islanders to transition to electric vehicles and provide the supporting infrastructure and potential grants for low-emission cars;
  • Reduce fuel duty to make it competitive with the UK and Jersey.

Housing

  • Introduce new schemes to help first time buyers and increase the affordability of property ownership including a review into re- introducing a “help to buy” deposit loan scheme.

Infrastructure

  • The island needs to invest in its island infrastructure in particular at the Harbour and Airport;
  • Consideration needs to be given to investing in infrastructure funds to fund capital projects;
  • There needs to be a greater focus on the use of Public Private Partnerships;
  • Guernsey needs to protect its existing infrastructure and maintenance needs to happen in a timely manner. Fix it and fix it fast. The steps at the Bathing Pools, the Fermain sea wall, the Japanese pagoda at Saumarez Park - just a few examples;
  • Island wide fibre broadband connectivity by 2025.

Regulation

  • Guernsey needs as few constraints as possible to thrive and I advocate as little regulation as possible. The island has a habit of creating unnecessary legislation which is both time consuming to produce and costly to execute. We need to think before we legislate.

I’m an independent candidate and have grouped with other independents in The Guernsey Party.

It’s aim is to create a political organisation which provides a rallying point for Deputies and candidates who are minded to deliver cooperative, reliable and cohesive government at the centre-right of Guernsey politics, focused on delivering value for money, a thriving economy and a high standard of living and quality of life for all residents of the Bailiwick.

Let’s #GetGuernseyGoing - Vote Vermeulen. Please do get in touch, to have a chat.

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 worked on Committees and Boards. Both have individuals of conflicting views to my own. I have listening skills to engage in productive debate, the experience to offer a valued opinion and the skill of persuasion to argue my point. Team work and ambition are central to working productively towards a common goal.

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 ?

Guernsey has the potential to reach nearly full employment levels. We need to address our skills gap to match the vacancies with those who are employed. Guernsey does though have diverse sectors and some which require specialist skills and sometimes more importantly experience. There will always be a need for licence holders who are very welcome but as in the past jobs do need to be advertised locally first.

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

We need to improve our island infrastructure to allow for more islanders to be able to access mutual or their own electric charging points to enable them to consider using electric vehicles. I would also like to see a solar fund put in place to enable householders to access free solar panels.

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 will absolutely be looking at islandwide issues. I am a proud Castel resident however I believe the States role has to be focused on the wider issues. Our Douzaines do a fantastic job working on more parochial matters.

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

No, they are remaining green unbuilt areas and I would rather they be enjoyed as long as there wasn't a threat to our agricultural sector through lack of land which as far as I know there isn't.

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?

Teamwork and collaboration with a determination to drive forward the key issues in my manifesto. I am working with The Guernsey Party who have common goals with myself and should we all be elected this will be a starting point.

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

Everyone in Guernsey has a role in tackling climate change and this is a key issue for the next States.

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

I would like to see a Guernseyman take up the helm and have the skills and ambition to lead on implementing sustainable economic growth to enable everyone to thrive.

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?

I absolutely would. The report even in a post Covid world speaks for itself and provides the economic data to support the investment. The cost of the infrastructure far outweighs the benefits. If we are to be a global player we need the infrastructure to do this and be open for business. A longer runway would mean we would be more attractive to other airlines and as well as the benefit of people coming into the island provide more cost effective sustainable travel solutions for islanders.

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?

I do, one of the opportunities we need to support is in the blue economy and investing in our harbour infrastructure.

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

I believe we need to review our current policy to make it equal for all and competitive with other jurisdictions whilst understand the impact any changes will have particularly on small businesses.

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?

Island-wide fibre broadband, better air and sea links and the support for investing in our tourism offering - sports tourism, world class attractions and the blue economy.

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?

There is a need for the car and some people really enjoy their cars and driving. It can provide a mean of independence for those who most need it. However I fully support electric vehicles and electric bike schemes. We need to have a balance.

Do you support outsourcing of States services?

I do when it is more cost effective and requires the skills and experience that the States don't currently have. I would like more skills sharing though between departments so outsourcing can be minimised.

What will you do to educate the islanders about the reality of the climate crisis which is the biggest threat currently facing the world?

We all have a part to play and we need to target education to the relevant audience. Guernsey needs to walk the walk as well as talk the talk.

Most environmental problems are caused by the love of growth. Would you consider de-growth?

Growth doesn't have to growth at the cost of all. Growth needs to be sustainable and support the environment and other areas of social important. Unfortunately without growth our economy wouldn't be able to sustain or implement environmental policy.

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?

A partnership approach with the Guernsey Bicycle Club or similar to develop safe cycle routes.

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

I would support a policy around electricity transition supported by grants or tax breaks, cheaper electricity and a solar fund for all households to receive solar panels

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

We would like to see glass cleared and for the dairy industry or part of it to consider ceasing to use cake to feed and glyphosate and use organic methods - potentially this can be achieved by having micro-dairies rather than a large new development. Organic methods may help restore lost diversity.

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?

Because the current States can't reach a consensus decision and doesn't have the apetite for ambitious projects. For the detail the current States would know more.

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'm not sure anywhere would be perfect but an environmental analysis would be beneficial of the area and other shortlisted sites.

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?

Yes, No, Yes. Aurigny is a vital lifeline for the island but needs to be managed better and review its current fleet to make it a more cost effective proposition. We need to look more at leasing aircraft instead of buying them as they devalue so quickly.

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?

Absolutely we need to protect our existing infrastructure and fix things and fix them quick.

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?

Education is so much more than money. I don't want us to choose an education strategy based purely on financials but equally this is not an open cheque book. In my opinion the system wasn't broken before but we are where we are. We need to look at a three school model and budget accordingly based on evidence based research on what's best for our children and grandchildren.

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?

I think we need to get a very clear picture on what our finances actually look like and an accurate balance sheet including complying with international standards when it comes to accounting. This is before we revisit or introduce any tax schemes.

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

I believe consumer rights is extremely important and should be introduced as a priority.

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 didn't, I believe everyone has the opportunity to thrive and I would like to know more about this.

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?

No I think we need to at this time. We do not lack cash, we lack ambition.

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?

No, we need to let Covid pass and the new trends work themselves out before making any such decisions. I imagine a number of people will continue working from home but others may return. Time will tell.

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

I think this sounds like more regulation, administration and time which is what we are trying to move away from. I'm not a fan of dog mess though either.

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?

My goal is to give everyone the opportunity to thrive, generate growth in the economy to avoid tax increases and improve air and sea links to encourage people here but to enable cost effective and sustainable connectivity for islanders plus that fibre broadband!

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 believe I am a good listener and in my time have mediated many disagreements and negotiations. I am firm believer in moving forward not backwards.

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

No but I don't think the Population Management Law is fit for purpose in any case.

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 think the planning laws need to be keeping with our economic strategy and be flexible to benefit the island for all.

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

I don't feel strongly either way but I would like to understand how doing so would make a difference locally and the economic benefits it could bring.

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 have in previous States but not the last assembly. It is fascinating the watch a debate in the historic part of the building.

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?

We will only be able to support others in the world if we have a strong economy. This underpins everything we do and if we are in a position where we have a strong economy we will then be able to help others.

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 and in a way every Deputy is a scrutineer and should take this approach in their work. It is fairly carried out using the due process and procedure.

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 think it would depend on the issue, the delay and reasons and the impact on others.

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?

Introduce new schemes to help first time buyers and increase the affordability of property ownership including a review into re- introducing a “help to buy” deposit loan scheme and I would support developing a freehold land bank system with homeowners having the right to buy the freehold.

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 would like to understand the reason for the delay and therefore look for a solution however it does also come back to our economy and a thriving economy will provide better front line services.

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

I would like to advance the timing of the motor two degrees before top dead centre.

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?

I would like to see it implemented but we also need to anaylse the costs and focus on growing the economy.

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?

Yes I do, we need to now determine in a post Covid world how best to proceed. But it absolutely needs to be a priority.

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 am, and I am an advocate for extending our runway.

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 absolutely would. Any opportunity to develop our ties and be part of wider negotiations can only be a good thing.

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?

Everyone deserves the opportunity to thrive and I am committed to implementing the legislation for the benefit of all.

What criteria do you use for decision making?

I would hear all the evidence and arguments and weigh them up against my own principles and the evidence provided taking into account the consequences of such a decision.

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?

Everyone's circumstances are different and I believe everyone has the right to make the choice that is right for them.

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?

Guernsey needs to remain competitive and I think our tax system is fair.

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 believe Guernsey has a unique opportunity to become a destination of choice. I believe people will be less keen to travel long haul and Guernsey can provide the perfect alterative. Tourism should be at the heart of Government and we should be doing more to support our sector which provides wellbeing and opportunities locally as well as economic growth.

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

I would put driving Guernsey's economy first with all of the below second. This is not a case of and/or it is a case of ALL, we need the economy to be an enabler to enable us to do ALL of these things which are of vital importance.

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

I built, run and developed one of Guernsey's largest hotels on the island's west coast. This was an important part of Guernsey's tourism sector and enjoyed by many. I lobbied and was successful in building Guernsey's second 18 hole golf course and developing the game. Provided a great facility for local sport. Most recently I was successful in lobbied to amendments to Guernsey's Population Management Law and successfully challenging a decision to delay Guernsey's Election by 12 months.

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

Yes straight away, I believe there was a plan put in place that hasn't been implemented. I would like to see this sped up from a ten year plan to a five year plan.

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?

No, I don't think it should. I think it needs to he run better, review its fleet and operating model and consider more innovative ways to operate and generate income. I would be in favour of reducing the fleet and perhaps entering into a co-share with another airline for certain routes.

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

We need to do what is right for the business for it to fulfill its potential and provide the best return.

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

They absolutely should in the RIGHT way. The current situation with Aurigny is unsustainable however we have recognise that good air and sea links are our lifeline but they need to be affordable, sustainable and reliable for all parties. Tax payers support should not be viewed as an open cheque book.

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

I don't believe it should be funded through people giving up their our own homes. We need to increase our tax take.

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

Absolutely no GST. It is tough enough already. We need to grow our economy and protect our unique position of not having a salestax.

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

I would, they are an important part of our heritage.

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

I would roll out high speed broadband, lengthen the runway and progress the Eastern Seaboard programme.

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.

I think they are about right but I would like to see less cash based support and more of a focus on support through a voucher system.

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?

The key to this is looking to implement an attractive/flexible population management law which makes the island an attractive place to develop a career so we are attracting the best talent particularly in the areas of education and health.

How will your religious faith influence your voting decisions?

I consider myself a non practicing Christian however as in business religion didn't influence my decision making and it certainly won't in the States.

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?

I absolutely would. The report even in a post Covid world speaks for itself and provides the economic data to support the investment. The benefits of the runway far outweigh the cost. If we are to be a global player we need the infrastructure to do this and be open for business. A longer runway would mean we would be more attractive to other airlines and as well as the benefit of people coming into the island provide more cost effective sustainable travel solutions for islanders.

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?

I think the cost of primary health care is high but the cost of reducing it shouldn't fall back onto the taxpayer. I think we need to look at what insurance policies are available and perhaps concessions for the most vulnerable in our community. I welcomed the States decision to reduce healthcare costs on a means tested basis for children.

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 don't believe euthanasia is possible with out clinical support which Is currently not a possibility locally. I think we should be able to provide the best palliative care possible.

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

I would like to the newly formed Guernsey Institute plans progressed and the introduction of T level considered. A number of the subject areas introducing in this form in the UK are currently covered by the C of FE.

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?

We need to introduce island wide fibre broadband as soon as possible this is the key to unlocking a massive opportunity for Guernsey. We need to remove the red tape and make It easier to do business and provide incentives for businesses looking to set up locally.

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?

I believe our mental health offering needs a fundamental review and if it is found to be lacking resources we need to invest in this area of health. Since lockdown mental health support has seen a surge in demand and we need to ensure everyone has access to the right support. Our third sector is extremely active in this area but that should not replace the medical help available.

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.

I think the Island-wide voting referendum was a great example of public engagement. I would like to see as part of the consultation organised public debates moderated respectfully included all stakeholders. I hope the public engagement during this election will continue into the next States.

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

A learning we need to take away from the last States is being indecisive gets us nowhere. Once a decision is made after considered debate we need to respect that decision unless the environment or evidence for that decision changes.

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

I favour the three school model, with a separate sixth form centre and the reintroduction of States funded college bursaries on a means tested basis.

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?

I don’t believe this should be an/or decision. I think we take far too long to fix current essential repairs that are at the core of our island and its heritage. But waiting so long things cost so much more. If it's broken fix it and fix it fast. It's the little things that matter. Project such as the East Coast development are capital spends, maintenance needs to be considered differently.

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"?

In my opinion the original process worked perfectly well and in my opinion if ain't broke don't fix it would be my mentality.

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