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Government Work Plan 2021-2025 

Introduction

In 2021 the States decided the Island’s priorities for the subsequent four years. 

The first outline stage of the process was in March 2021. Stage 2 was published in June 2021 and was debated at the States meeting that started on Wednesday 21 July. 

Prioritisation exercises are common in the States – in the past you may have heard of the P&R Plan or the States Strategic Plan. But this version, called the Government Work Plan, is particularly significant and worthy of everyone’s attention because it comes directly after the upheaval and financial impact of both Covid-19 and Brexit.

What’s included in the Government Work Plan (and what’s left out) has a material impact on all of our lives. Compromises and difficult decisions have to be made to agree a Plan that is achievable and affordable, yet ambitious enough to kickstart Guernsey’s recovery.

We created this resource page to help you follow the Government Work Plan as it develops, and we update it regularly with links to relevant documents, videos and media articles. Because we’re Women in Public Life, we pay particular attention to the involvement of female Deputies to give you an idea of what you could expect if you were elected to serve your Island.

The sections below start with the most recent news about the Plan and then work backwards to lay out its history.

Deputy Heidi Soulsby, Vice-President of the Policy and Resources Committee, leads the Government Work Plan project.

Hear her views on the latest version of the Plan in this Bailiwick Express podcast.

June 22 debate

The Government Work Plan is intended to be a fluid document that is reviewed and updated as the States term progresses. In May 2022, P&R published a GWP policy paper including a report on progress to date and a revised version of the Plan for debate at either the States meeting that start on 14 June or 28 June 2022.

To understand the Plan, we recommend starting by reading the latest Monitoring Report and listening to Deputy Heidi Soulsby’s interview with Bailiwick Express.

If you want to go further, read Appendix 5 and 6 of the policy paper. These describe the areas that States committees want to prioritise (Appendix 5) and P&R’s response to those priorities (Appendix 6).  If you are interested in the States’ finances, check out the numbers in Appendix 8.

The main area of contention relates to whether work should begin on a review of the potential change to the legal status of cannabis – Health and Social Care are in favour, Home Affairs are not. If you read the propositions in the policy paper, you’ll see cannabis has its own proposition (13B) so that the States can make a specific decision on that point.

To understand the Plan in detail, read the policy paper in full and the remaining appendices.

Amendments

To date, five amendments to the plan have been lodged:

Amendment 1 Roffey/Ferbrache – formalises intention to scope out replacing the States Dairy.

Amendment 2 Roffey/De Sausmarez – proposal to sell some GHA houses for 75% of market value. Bailiwick Express report.

Amendment 3 Roffey/De Sausmarez – seeks to retain States commitment to addressing in-work poverty. Bailiwick Express report.

Amendment 4 Inder/Ferbrache – proposes creation of a Housing Action Plan.

Amendment 5 Oliver/Helyar – proposes that developers have the option to pay cash in lieu of affordable housing obligations.

 

Scrutiny hearing May 2022

The Scrutiny Management Committee held a public hearing with P&R to discuss the Government Work Plan on 30 May. Watch the recording.

 

Links to each section of the policy paper

Propositions

Policy paper

Appendix 1 – monitoring report July 2021 – May 2022

Appendix 2 – legislation prioritised for drafting

Appendix 3 – actions relating to each of the four GWP priorities

Appendix 4 – actions by category

Appendix 5 – key actions raised by committees

Appendix 6 – P&R observations on committees key actions

Appendix 7 – 2022 recovery actions

Appendix 8 – funding and investment plan update

Appendix 9 – extant States resolutions recommended for recission

Appendix 10 – legislation approved and/or commenced since June 2021

 

Media analysis:

Government Work Plan is published as Policy and Resources grapples with limited resources (Guernsey Press, 13 May)

P&R says States ‘must tackle’ housing needs and cost of living (Bailiwick Express, 13 May)

Cannabis law moves closer – and States to debate GP costs (Bailiwick Express, 13 May)

Housing will be first item on the agenda at next States debate (Guernsey Press, 14 May)

Capital projects can now be funded without borrowing (Bailiwick Express, 14 May)

Comment: Priorities are looking expensive (Guernsey Press, 16 May)

Focus: The States’ agenda this year (Bailiwick Express, 16 May)

Comment: Not all good news on finances (Guernsey Press, 17 May)

Comment: A juggle of individuals’ priorities (Guernsey Press, 18 May)

Podcast: P&R VP backs HSC on cannabis review (Bailiwick Express, 19 May)

States on verge of new reciprocal heath agreement with UK (Bailiwick Express, 31 May)

Previous States accused of doing ‘almost nothing’ (Guernsey Press, 31 May)

Staff shortages will make it impossible to do everything’ (Guernsey Press 31 May)

Comment: Work Plan shows signs of struggle (Guernsey Press, 31 May)

Jan 22 update

A user-friendly summary of the Government Work Plan and a report on progress were published on 20 January 2022.

Click on the front pages below to read them.

SUMMARY
MONITORING REPORT

The Billet containing the original Government Work Plan, as at July 21,  is HERE.

Jan 22 hearing

The Scrutiny Management Committee of the States regularly organises public hearings to hold States committees to account.

On 12 January 2022, Deputies Burford (chair), Fairclough, St Pier and Gabriel questioned Deputies Soulsby, Helyar, Ferbrache and Mahoney about the progress of the Government Work Plan.

It was a wide-ranging and interesting session, covering development plans for States property assets, broadband rollout, air and sea links, and the tax review.

Here are some of the media stories the hearing generated:

Jersey blindsided by Guernsey’s Condor ferry purchase (Bailiwick Express 13 Jan 2022)

Confusion over the schedule for fibre rollout (Guernsey Press 14 Jan 2022)

Island faces a stark and binary tax choice – Helyar (Guernsey Press 14 Jan 2022)

 

Watch the Scrutiny Management Committee put questions to the Policy and Resources Committee about progress on the Government Work Plan.

July 21 debate

Policy and Resources led the original development of the Plan, with the input of all of the committees of the States. But no matter how collaborative the process, when the Plan was debated in July 2021 there were still aspects that Deputies wanted to change or add to. They did this by lodging amendments – these were debated first.

If you want to study the detail of the debate, you can read the original proposals and amendments, watch the debate, analyse the voting records and download the Hansard report HERE.

Twelve amendments to the Plan were submitted altogether but Amendment 10 (WON) and Amendment 11 (WON) were on technicalities so there were ten significant ones. 

Two of the ten amendments were led by Deputy Sasha Kazantseva-Miller. Amendment 3, seconded by Deputy Yvonne Burford, related to the way in which the GWP workstreams will be managed. P&R wants to create a standardised governance structure for each workstream. Sasha and Yvonne believe that committees already have well-established ways of managing significant workstreams so P&R’s new structure isn’t necessary. LOST 13-23.

In Amendment 7, Sasha and her seconder, Deputy Gavin St Pier, proposed that the States should not agree to borrow a further £200m until it is clearer what direction the Assembly wants to take on taxation in the future. A review of Guernsey’s taxation system is due for debate in September 2021. LOST 9-27.

In Amendment 8, Deputy Lindsay De Sausmarez wanted to reinstate the review of the delivery of Primary Education as a priority during the life of the Plan. Her amendment was seconded by Deputy Steve Falla. LOST 10-27.

Lindsay also seconded an important amendment in relation to closing Guernsey’s Gender Pay Gap. The Plan puts legislation for Equal Pay for Work of Equal Value on the back burner, not to be worked on until 2026. Amendment 2, led by Deputy Peter Roffey, sought to bring that start point forward to 2022/23, arguing that it make sense to do the policy work at the same time as replacing Guernsey’s Sex Discrimination in Employment Ordinance. LOST 18-19.

In total, Deputy Yvonne Burford seconded three amendments. As well as Sasha’s governance amendment (3, see above), she also backed Deputy Gavin St Pier’s proposals that (a) initiatives such as public private partnerships should come back to the States for approval (Amendment 5) LOST 15-23 and (b) P&R should be able to approve capital projects up to £10m, rather than the unlimited sum proposed (Amendment 6). LOST 18-20.

LATE AMENDMENT

As the proposing committee, P&R are allowed to lodge amendments at any time. One such late amendment, seconded by Deputy Heidi Soulsby, was a compromise proposal in relation to funding for drugs for cancer and other serious conditions, referred to as ‘NICE TAs’. In January 2020 the States agreed to fund drugs with an ICER of £30,000, going up to £40,000 after a review. Guernsey’s financial circumstances have changed since then so the GWP delays that review until 2026. Amendment 12 was in response to Amendment 1 (see below) and would have brought that review forward to 12 months after the roll-out of NICE TAs with an ICER of £30,000. LOST 17-20.

In addition to the seven amendments proposed or seconded by female Deputies, there were three further amendments:
 
Amendment 1 – to fund drugs with an ICER of £40,000 in this States term (Roffey/Queripel). LOST 21-17
Amendment 4 – to reinstate the review of palliative and end of life care as a priority for this States term (St Pier/Roberts). WON 23-13.
Amendment 9 – to make ‘replacing CCTV systems’ a pipeline project to be scoped in this States term (Prow/Vermeulen). WON, no recorded vote.
 
PROPOSITIONS
 
The Government Work Plan passed the States on the afternoon of Friday 23 July 2021. All of the propositions (as amended) were agreed, mostly by large majorities. The largest resistance was to Proposition 14, with 17 Deputies voting ‘contre’. List of amended propositions.
 
Details of the voting are currently laid out on the govgg Twitter feed and the States meeting page will be updated with the recorded votes shortly.

 

Media around 2021 debate

Guernsey Press 17 June 2021:

‘Recovery actions run through every thread’.

‘States needs to borrow £200m for Work Plan’.

‘It’s for all States members to own the plan’.

‘Work Plan could make life tough for deputies’.

Guernsey Press 21 June 2021:

‘Life-saving drug campaigners unhappy P&R wants to stall’.

‘States exposed by unfunded health promises’.

Guernsey Press 22 June 2021

‘Better access to drugs ‘will help thousands of islanders”

Bailiwick Express 25 June 2021

‘Government u-turn puts Guernsey Dairy on shaky ground’.

ITV Channel TV 16 July 2021

Now is the time’ for a Sexual Assault Referral Centre

Guernsey Press 18 July 2021

ESS president hits back at think tank’s criticism‘.

Guernsey Press 19 July 2021

Government’s failure to plan puts North at risk‘.

Bailiwick Express 20 July 2021

Deputy wants review of end of life care prioritised‘.

Island’s CCTV systems “at risk if failure”‘.

Guernsey Press 20 July 2021

What’s in the Plan?‘ (opinion piece by Deputy Gavin St Pier)

Government Work Plan should lead to tangible action, says Soulsby‘.

Six-minute States‘ podcast – preview of the GWP debate.

Guernsey Press 21 July 2021

Our safety trumps any work plan‘.

Six-minute States‘ podcast – first day of the GWP debate.

Bailiwick Express 21 July 2021

10 years or more for Equal Pay for work of Equal Value‘.

P&R ready to “roll up sleeves” following Douzaine’s condemnation‘.

Guernsey Press 22 July 2021

Tackling housing top of Work Plan’s priorities‘.

660 spare places in our primary schools‘.

Six-minute States‘ podcast – day two of the GWP debate.

Bailiwick Express 22 July 2021

Attempt to prioritise primary review “wins the argument but loses the vote”‘.

End-of-life-care set to be re-prioritised‘.

Guernsey Press 23 July 2021

Nice drugs roll-out set to continue as planned‘.

‘Higher taxes warning – ‘we have no choice”.

Bailiwick Express 23 July 2021

States agree to continue with NICE drugs funding‘.

Six-minute States‘ podcast – final day of the GWP debate.

Guernsey Press 25 July 2021

“This is no power grab” – P&R defends plans to borrow £200m‘.

Bailiwick Express 26 July 2021

200m government loan approved to fund £568m States plan‘.

Guernsey Press 27 July 2021

“Health will be at the centre of our economic growth”‘.

Guernsey Press 31 July 2021

The motherhood penalty‘ and ‘I felt betrayed by the law for not protecting us‘. (Original 4-page supplement refers to the omission of plans to update maternity and adoption leave from the Government Work Plan).

 

Photos courtesy of the Guernsey Press
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Guernsey’s iconic women of the future?

Thank you for nominating a young woman or girl for our future iconic Guernsey women campaign to celebrate International Women’s Day!

Nominations close on Sunday 6 March at 17.00.

Please fill in the details below.

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Miriam Makeba - South Africa

Nominated by: Christine James

Zenzile Miriam Makeba (1932 to 2008), nicknamed Mama Africa, was a South African singer, songwriter, actress, United Nations goodwill ambassador, and civil rights activist. Associated with musical genres including Afropop, jazz, and world music, she was an advocate against apartheid and white-minority government in South Africa. In 2020 she was named one of Time magazine’s 100 women of the century. 

South Africa is ranked 12th in the world for percentage of women in national parliament: 45.8% (source: data.ipu.org) 

Are you from South Africa? Please email hello@womeninpubliclife.gg if there is a social or cultural group for people from South Africa in Guernsey.

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The original image “The Hague Jazz 2008 – Miriam Makeba” by Haags Uitburo is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0. 

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Jacinda Ardern - New Zealand

Nominated by: Martin Lock

Jacinda Ardern (born 1980) has served as prime minister of New Zealand and leader of the Labour Party since 2017. In 2019, she led the country through the aftermath of the Christchurch mosque shootings, rapidly introducing strict gun laws in response, and throughout 2020 she directed the country’s widely praised response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Ardern was the world’s second elected head of government to give birth in office when her daughter was born in 2018. ‘An inspiring Prime Minister who brought a nation together with true leadership, empathy and compassion.’

New Zealand is ranked 4th in the world for percentage of women in national parliament: 48.3% (source: data.ipu.org) 

Other iconic women: Dame Whina Cooper, nominated by Claire Fisher, and Kate Sheppard, nominated by Anna Cooper.

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