With the election due to take place on Wednesday 16 May, yesterday marked the start of a month of hustings meetings, posters being placed all over the Island and the start of the campaign trail.
There was standing room only at the Town Hall on Tuesday night as the candidates were formally nominated to stand for election. Following the day’s States sitting – the last of the current Assembly – several retiring Members rushed to the Town Hall to see who might be replacing them in the Chamber.
And Islanders hoping to see change in the Assembly will get their wish as around a third of Jersey’s serving politicians are retiring from politics, including five Senators.
Chief Minister Ian Gorst, Economic Development Minister Lyndon Farnham – who have confirmed they will seek the position of Chief Minister if they are returned to office – and Senator Sarah Ferguson are the only Senators seeking re-election.
The three Senators are joined in the race for the eight available seats by six current States Members seeking Islandwide mandates for the first time – Deputies Kristina Moore, Tracey Vallois, Sam Mézec, Simon Brée and John Le Fondré and St Brelade Constable Steve Pallett.
There were just two surprises on the night from candidates who had not previously stated their intention to stand – former St Clement Deputy Gerard Baudains and Gordon Troy.
Disability campaigner Anthony Lewis, entertainer Stevie Ocean, estate agent Frank Luce, St Brelade’s Bay Association chairwoman Moz Scott, businessman Gino Risoli and Philip Maguire were also nominated as Senatorial candidates.
For just the second time in Jersey’s history, all 49 States seats will be up for grabs on one election day.
St Clement Constable Len Norman presided over the Senatorial nominations meeting. Nomination meetings for Deputies and Constables are due to take place at each of the Island’s parish or public halls on Wednesday night.