Nick Mann - page 2

Population demographics must accommodate youth


In light of recent debate on population targets and what shape the island should take demographically, Nick Mann writes that although the States has signalled the need for a vital and productive working population, it may be striking the wrong balance when it comes to policy consideration and not focusing on the aspirations of younger generations

A time of contradictions as spin cycle kicks in

Everyone gets along and looks for new friends and allies at the start of a States term, but after a couple of years these alliances may end up broken – and there may even be calls for resignations from boards at the heart of controversial policies.

With the next general election a mere six months away, Nick Mann takes a look at the life cycle of the Guernsey States, starting with the honeymoon period where everyone is getting along but not much happens, through to the time after the first big embarrassment and people have declared it the ‘worst States ever’ – and then the Assembly enters maximum spin cycle...

States’ sweeping statements are too often set on sand


A quick glance at the annual business trends survey released in the summer reveals a drop in confidence in the economy, one that is at odds with Treasury minister Gavin St Pier’s view that general business optimism has become increasingly positive

No magic bullet for the demographic time bomb

Alderney is the subject of a specific policy in this year’s Budget, in an effort to help it during a time of economic decline.

The Annual Fiscal Policy Review is out today, and while these things are not known for making gripping reading, there are some sobering comments between its pages, warning of the economic impacts of an ageing population. This, writes Nick Mann, will not be offset by simply increasing the pension age and is likely to involve cuts to services

Budget failures show a legacy of broken promises

Politics money shot

A detailed look at the latest Budget makes for grim reading – and the string of failures and Treasury’s intention to stall voting on £120m. of projects until next term is a big blow to public confidence. People who had hoped that this would be a ‘States of Change’ probably didn’t expect those changes to be for the worse...

Budget’s sting will need good arguments behind it


With the release of the 2016 budget today, the island will begin to get an inkling of whether or not the States has made all the savings it promised during the last year. Nick Mann predicts that the minister is going to face a lot of questions over plans to raise extra funds through new taxes, even if the controversial GST is off the table...

C&E not convincing over need for shiny new toy


The jokers liken sea fisheries protection vessel the Leopardess to the Olympic flame – it never goes out. That’s a bit harsh, but, says Nick Mann, Commerce and Employment has a job on its hands to convince States members that the island should spend nearly £3m. to replace a boat which was given another 10 years’ service just three years ago

Candidates could learn from Labour leadership challenge

Labour leadership contest

In the run-up to Guernsey’s general election in April, Nick Mann looks forward to a period of electioneering and heightened pressure on our current politicians – and points to the recent Labour leadership challenge as a way for candidates to be more electable

Roll up for election time


The opening today of the electoral roll is the first step in the process that will culminate in the general election next April. But before that is a by-election for St Peter Port North, and anyone who wants to vote in that will have to make sure they get their name on the roll soon. Nick Mann wonders how many will do so, given the district’s poor turnout in the past

There is one answer to Sunday trading question


The thorny subject of Sunday trading returns to the States next month, but the discussion will not be helped by the C&E minister having to represent a board divided over which path to take. Nick Mann believes that there is only one answer to the question of whether shops should open – and a unified approach from the department supporting that would lead to a cleaner debate

A lack of trust is no laughing matter


The Environment Department’s refusal to go public over the expert advice given on the Town Quay road layout and courtesy crossing has given islanders even less reason to trust their elected representatives. And, says Nick Mann, it makes people wonder what else may be hidden

Time for the States to get to grips with housing


When it comes to the housing issue it seems as if the government hasn’t yet figured out its approach – but it’s time that it did, writes Nick Mann. If the States really wants to ensure that young people remain in the island it needs to make sure that they can afford somewhere to live and put down roots

Deputies will have to keep eyes on the big picture


The days when a politician got involved in minor parochial matters are about to end, with the impending slimming down of the States likely to mean that all members will have work of a far more important nature. But, writes Nick Mann, while the new breed of deputies will need to discipline themselves to stay out of such things, it could be an opportunity for the douzaines...

Traffic strategy stalled in last-chance saloon


The States will debate how to fund the traffic strategy – and if it even wants one at all – at the end of this month. But as Environment places a desperate selection of resolutions before the Assembly, a lack of leadership might spell the end for the strategy