Reform Jersey Secures Key Victories in Government Budget Debate
Several amendments brought by Reform Jersey’s members have been adopted by the States Assembly in the annual debate on the government’s tax and spend plans.
Four Reform Jersey amendments were accepted by the government at the start of the debate, whilst one was secured by defeating the government with the support of a majority of backbenchers.
Deputy Raluca Kovacs secured additional funding of up to £1m per year to expand the medical hosiery and wound dressings scheme for those with a clinical need, including a commitment from Ministers to set up a scheme providing them for free. This will build on the excellent work already done by Family Nursing Home Care to support Islanders to recover more quickly and avoid further complications arising.
Deputy Carina Alves led a stunning defeat of the government to secure an extension of the free GPs for children programme to include all full-time students, including those above 18 years of age. This will now have to be implemented next year with the agreement of GPs. This is the second time Deputy Alves has defeated the government to expand access to GPs for young people.
Deputy Lyndsay Feltham also managed to get agreement to introduce a new scheme to provide financial support for the carers of children with complex health needs. This will begin as a pilot next year, with legislation to make it permanent to come later.
The first of Deputy Tom Coles’ victories was to secure agreement from the government that a new scheme will be devised to incentivise ‘right-sizing’ for those who live in large family homes but who would like to move to a smaller home.
Lastly, Deputy Tom Coles managed to convince the government to delay the implementation of their plans to limit people of working age’s access to their pension funds. This had been proposed at too short notice by the government and would have disrupted the plans made by young Islanders to invest in their own futures or plan their career development.
Party Leader, Deputy Sam Mézec, said – “Over the last few months, Reform Jersey’s parliamentary members have worked hard to bring meaningful amendments to the Government Plan to implement our manifesto commitments and make life better for Islanders. We are extremely proud to have secured several key victories against the backdrop of a government budget which contained very little to tackle Jersey’s cost of living crisis and prepare the Island for the challenges we are facing.”
“Our members will continue to lead the way, acting a positive force in Jersey politics, as we move our party and movement forward to be ready to stand as an alternative government-in-waiting.”
Other Reform Jersey amendments were opposed by a majority of States Members, including; funding to end the teachers pay dispute, tax reform, more affordable public transport and action to relieve the housing crisis.
Separate to this, Reform Jersey members also contributed to several successful amendments brought by their Scrutiny Panels, including; prioritising the delivery of sports facilities at Le Rocquier, developing plans to expand free nursery care, and providing greater transparency on the government’s efficiency savings programme.
For further interviews or comments, please contact each Reform Jersey States Member directly for the amendment they are responsible for.