P&R must bring States together

POLICY & RESOURCES president Peter Ferbrache strikes an unusual tone in today’s last-ditch appeal on behalf of the Tax Review proposals, which seem to be set for a bonfire by the end of the week.

It’s not the first time he has come over a bit ‘bleeding heart’ – remember the unprompted ‘We’ve failed you’ message to islanders in a States debate last year? Though, of course, that was tarnished somewhat by a back-handed slap for previous States Assemblies who also failed to take action on the island’s imminent housing shortage.

P&R has had some little successes along the way of the Tax Review. It has convinced most, but crucially not all, that there is financial trouble ahead. It seems to have also stopped threatening to close schools or hospital wards if the public didn’t swallow GST.

So is Deputy Ferbrache all-but prepared to give up the ghost of GST? Or are his comments setting the scene for a last-minute compromise?

The tone also appears conciliatory, not a tone we’ve been used to hearing across the two-and-a-half years of this States. And that’s going to become increasingly important, because unless the States agrees to scrap all thoughts of extra tax for the next two years, or indeed if it agrees a compromise this week, it’s going to be more important than ever for members to work together on a solution, rather than prolonging a ‘Two Tribes’ narrative.

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