Senators to go after States reforms gain approval

- Advertisement -

The move means that the position of Senator, which has an Islandwide mandate, will be scrapped at the next election.

The Assembly will instead be comprised of 37 Deputies across nine newly formed districts and the 12 parish Constables from 2022 onwards.

States Members voted overwhelmingly to support the proposition from the Privileges and Procedures Committee in its third reading, by 31 votes to 12, with no abstentions.

This ratified an in-principle decision made in December.

PPC chairperson Deputy Carina Alves said: ‘I do believe we are making positive changes for our island and the people we represent.’

Deputy John Young said Deputy Alves had piloted through the ‘most progressive and major reform that has happened for decades’ while Deputy Geoff Southern added: ‘I think it will be a vital, healthy democracy.’

Meanwhile, Deputy Louise Doublet it would be ‘one of the most important things this Assembly has done to encourage diverse candidates to come forward’. She encouraged women and other under-represented groups to stand in next year’s election.

Senator Lyndon Farnham said the Assembly had ‘made a mistake’ in scrapping Senators.

Members also voted yesterday for PPC proposals to move the date of next year’s election back by a month to 22 June, rejecting an amendment from Senator Ian Gorst to maintain the May status quo by 26 votes to 17, with two abstentions.

The change of date proved contentious in the Chamber. Senator Gorst said: ‘It is undemocratic for a parliament to extend its own life a year before it’s due to end for simple administrative reasons.’

He argued that the change risked turning Liberation Day into a ‘campaign launch day’. However, Deputy Alves said: ‘PPC sees this as quite the reverse. Liberation would signal the end of the tenure of Members.’

However, Members did vote for an amendment from Senator Gorst which kept the current Members in post until such time as their replacements were sworn in. Senator Gorst said under the original proposals there would be a gap of around two weeks where Jersey would not have a parliament, which would cause a problem in emergency situations and mean all executive power was invested in the Chief Minister for around three weeks. Addressing Members following the historic vote yesterday, Deputy Alves said Islanders had ‘known for a long time the system was flawed’, which manifested itself in poor voter turnout.

She said: ‘While we have been critical of some of the false starts there have been over the years, I think it has been important that we have dedicated time to this issue because it has been so vital to address what is wrong with this system.’


Senators Vallois, Moore, Pallett and Mézec; Constables Crowcroft, Norman, Vibert, Buchanan, Shenton-Stone and Jehan; Deputies Martin, Southern, K Lewis, Higgins, Pinel, Luce, Renouf, Doublet, R Labey, Johnson, Truscott, Young, Ash, Morel, Pointon, Le Hegarat, Ahier, Ward, Alves, Pamplin and Gardiner. (31)


Senators Gorst, Farnham, Ferguson and Le Fondré; Constables Mezbourian, Jackson, Le Maistre and Le Sueur; Deputies C Labey, Guida, Huelin and Raymond. (12)

- Advertisement -
- Advertisement -
- Advertisement -

Latest Stories

- Advertisement -

UK News

- Advertisement -
- Advertisement -

Read the latest free supplements

Read the Town Crier, Le Rocher and a whole host of other subjects like mortgage advice, business, cycling, travel and property.