GP Opinion - page 2

Managing conflicts is not new

IN ITS second piece on the CISX affair, satirical magazine Private Eye speculates that the reason for the resignation of the chief minister is because there is more and worse to come from the investigation into the matter by the Guernsey Financial Services Commission.

Addiction to secrecy is widespread

NOW that the unredacted version of the Lightfoot review into the operation of the Ambulance and Rescue Service has finally been released, it is possible to see that withholding the information was secrecy for the sake of secrecy.

What was rejected to get GST?

WHEN the Assembly does finally debate the introduction of a general sales tax, slated for implementation in 2019, States members of the day need to look for something specific.

Sales tax is taking the easy way out

THE dismay that has been expressed by small- and medium-sized businesses locally about the possible introduction of a general sales tax is understandable and entirely predictable. Those at the sharp end of commerce know only too well what the imposition of a new tax means to them in terms of administration, to help government collect the new source of revenue, and sales as a 5% hike in prices would damage competitiveness.

Why this is about more than GST

FOLLOWING our page one story yesterday, the Policy Council has now confirmed that introducing a goods and services tax is actively under consideration, that 5% is what its review team has been modelling and that tax breaks would be needed to protect the vulnerable. In other words, our exclusive was on the money and thanks to that islanders now have a much better appreciation of official thinking on the future direction of personal tax, pensions and benefits.

Unfair tax to overshadow election race

DEVELOPMENTS over the weekend indicate that this election for a new chief minister will be like no other before it. For the first time, a single issue is likely to dominate the process and it is clear that a degree of personality politics has also entered the contest. News that the tax, pensions and benefits review is expected to recommend the introduction of GST at 5% with the pretence of capping it for all time is one thing. That the island may have chief minister candidates who are diametrically opposed on that is quite another.

Commons council risks too much

AS THE dispute between the clubs and the Vale Commons Council wears on over what is a reasonable annual rent to be able to maintain a golf course on 50% of the area there, it is clear the council is playing a dangerous game.

Commons council risks much

AS THE dispute between the clubs and the Vale Commons Council wears on over what is a reasonable annual rent to be able to maintain a golf course on 50% of the area there, it is clear the council is playing a dangerous game. It has no clear title to the land under discussion, has produced no justification for the sums it seeks to raise and has, probably foolishly, declared its intention to introduce paid parking in unspecified areas for unspecified users.

One way to prove a shift of culture...

WHEN the Assembly was talking about FTP savings on Wednesday, the Social Security minister said despite the gains demonstrated, he had real concerns about whether the cultural change that was part of the original report had really occurred. Unless or until the public sector pension scheme is reformed, it is clear that no culture change has taken place at all.

Interests need to be managed

HIS resignation yesterday as chief minister means that Guernsey has lost a man of integrity and ability for doing nothing wrong and government now has to elect what amounts to a caretaker head of the Policy Council for the remaining two years of this political term.

What makes CISX affair so difficult

BEFORE he was elected deputy in 2012, the man who went on to become chief minister was a director of around 50 companies. On the basis that they met quarterly, he would have had, on average, 16 board meetings a month. At even a modest £8,000 a year per directorship, that would have netted an enviable £400,000 per annum, although it is doubtful that someone of his legal expertise and background would concentrate on the small fry.

Condor’s settlement leaves risks

NOW that the dust is beginning to settle on the strike action taken by Condor staff in St Malo, the fallout raises some questions about the future of the ferry service. What, if anything, can the operator do to limit the potential for a repeat performance?

Personal criticism is justified

A FRAUD case in which a care home worker in a trusted position systematically pilfered the public purse took an unexpected twist when her lawyer, in effect, said that his client was a bit taken aback by the public reaction to her crime and that had left her, well, upset.

Answer this in the next 25 years...

READ carefully the letter from the chairman of the Vale Commons Working Party on the page opposite and it is clear that what this column suggested as a theoretical position – what do islanders want from their common? – is actually being actively pursued.

Common is about more than rents

UNDER legislation approved by the States in 1932, the Vale Commons Council is responsible for managing L’Ancresse for the benefit of all islanders, not just those living within the Clos du Valle.