Saturday, 17 December 2011



Whilst conducting my research I came across this latest article by Lucy (meddling) Mason. Now, I don't know if this is written as some tongue 'n' cheek piece, or meant to be serious, but I haven't laughed as much since her last article. 

There are some cracking lines in this piece and i'm not talking about the 100% columbian type either. I just had to share it with readers.

Team Voice 

LAST week, in the final official piece of business for the States Assembly in 2011, Members exchanged Christmas messages. In a long-standing tradition, one Senator, one Constable and one Deputy each gave a speech on behalf of their colleagues reminiscing about the past year, looking to the future and sending their best wishes to, well, pretty much everyone, including the ever-important tea ladies and even us, the media.

It was an inspiring moment, a happy occasion that gave you a warm, fuzzy feeling inside – and not just because it meant no more States sittings until 17 January.

So I thought it was only fair that I return the favour and come up with my own Christmas message for States Members and you, their voting public – even if it is only to show that I can be optimistic at times. So here goes …

Christmas is traditionally a time when we look back on the year that has passed, take stock of everything that has come and gone, and are thankful.

It has been a difficult year in many ways as Jersey, like the rest of the world, has struggled to weather the economic storms that have been thrust upon us. We have faced cutbacks, rising taxes, job losses and the highest unemployment figures ever recorded for this Island.

But these are all challenges that we have begun to tackle, in the most part, head-on, and this can only be a good thing.

And I have no doubt that with ever more challenges lurking on the horizon – the most timely being the threat to our fulfilment industry – we will continue in this manner. The new multi-million-pound drive to get people back to work is just one example of this.

I know we may not always believe it when our politicians tell us, but we are in many ways extremely lucky and in a very good position to ride out the many problems facing us. We also live in a beautiful, vibrant and interesting Island of which we should all be very proud.

As Senator Philip Ozouf keeps telling us, we have no debt, we have strong public finances and, as much as people (myself included) may complain about them, we have a group of pretty OK politicians to lead us.

Yes, they, like us all, make mistakes, but perhaps just this once we should put ourselves in their position. They work damn hard on our behalf and I doubt that many of us who openly criticise them the first chance we get could do their job.
OK, so maybe I’m being a bit harsh on myself and my colleagues there – we don’t set out to criticise.

And this is something that I don’t think many States Members get. We are taught as journalists that we are the eyes and ears of the public to whom we report, and it is a duty that I certainly take very seriously.
We want the public to know what is going on at the meetings which they can’t always attend, in the States Chamber when they are at work, and in countless other forums where decisions are taken, explained and reported.

But we also only have limited space in which to present this information.
So forgive us occasionally when, for example, we don’t report every speech that is given by every candidate for every position, or we don’t report a proposition word for word, for we also have a duty to keep our readers interested enough to keep themselves informed.

AND please do remember the good bits we write about as well as the bad. There is no malice in what we report, and no pre-planned agenda. And there is certainly no higher force controlling what I write within these pages.

Which brings me very nicely to the hope I have that next year, in keeping with the sentiment to have a reformed, more collaborative States Assembly, that the media and politicians can be a bit more understanding of one another.

Let’s work together; let’s keep people informed; and let’s all concentrate on doing our jobs to the best of our abilities like the professionals that we are.
Because, looking to the future as we also do at this time of year, there are exciting times ahead. We have a new Chief Minister, many new Members and ministers, and new and changing challenges to face.

We all should be optimistic, because with optimism comes a renewed sense of striving for the best, to be the best, to make the best decisions, and do the best for the wonderful place that we are lucky enough to call home. We are all in it together – let’s remember that.

All there is left to say are the thank-yous that traditionally accompany messages of this kind. In keeping with that tradition, I would like to thank the politicians who keep me in a job. Sure, you don’t get it right all the time and you may infuriate the hell out of a lot of people a lot of the time, but where would we be without you?

If we didn’t have you lot to complain about, be outraged about or, very occasionally, be quite impressed with, life would be so much more boring. We’d have nothing to tweet about, nothing to gossip about and the world would be a far poorer place.

So thank you, dear States Members, for keeping life interesting. Oh, and keeping our lovely little Island ticking because yes, sometimes you are rather good at it.
Thank you to the families of our esteemed politicians – how do you cope?
Thank you to the hundreds (and hundreds and hundreds and hundreds) of civil servants who do all the work behind the scenes, often without much public recognition.

Thank you to the States ushers, staff at the States Greffe, the Bailiff and Deputy Bailiff, the Attorney General and the Dean, all of whom keep us informed with what is going on and advise us and our politicians) for it isn’t just us who have to sit through hours of debate that sometimes goes on much longer than anyone would like).

Thank you to our readers for taking an interest, for commenting, emailing, calling and tweeting – everything we do, we do it for you.

And, finally, thank you to Manny, who makes me my tea. I couldn’t do it without you.

Happy Christmas to you all and my best wishes for the new and exciting year ahead.

Saturday, 10 December 2011

Paul Le Claire Responds to the Census Findings


Former Deputy Paul Le Claire responds to the Census Findings. During his time in the States he has  challenged the findings of the States Statistic Unit in many a debate.

 Has Paul le Claire got his figures right?

Is the real figure at 100,000 plus?

This is a very serious situation for the Island. 

Team Voice 

Dear States Member , 

The total resident population of Jersey revealed in our latest Census, shows that on the 27 March 2011, Jersey had a resident 

population of 97,857

The previous estimate produced and published in June of 2010, by the States Statistics Unit for the end of 2009, was 92,500.

The new figures demonstrate that in just 15 short months we have seen an increase of 5357 more people in Jersey. 

The average number of births over deaths for the 5 year period 2005 to 2009 was +250.  The figure for 2010 was  + 270.

If births have continued at this higher number of 270 per year, we can say that the numbers of locally originating people

increase the estimated total resident population up from 92500 from Dec 2009 by a figure of 337 to a total of 92837

The number of new migrants in Jersey in those 15 months therefore is 5020. 

The annual average over the 5 year period 2005-2009 was 640 people into the island per year.

These much higher numbers have occurred in a period when the global recession was well underway. 

The alarming rate of increase in this short period of 15 months of 5020 new migrants is a cause for serious concern and action. 

If we have continued to increase our population at the same pace in these last 8 months, as we have since 2010, then we now 

have another 2677 more people living in Jersey today, that have migrated here.

With a further 8 months of births over deaths at that higher average, this adds a further 180.

This makes our current population at or around 100714.

My Information is derived from the States Statistics Department, who in the words of our last Chief MInister are

"independent, impartial and  professional."

It is my estimate therefore using their Statistics, that our current resident population is 100714. 

If we add a further 2052 people,  which were the numbers of short term visitors here in the end of March 

in this latest Census, then that gives us a total human being count, in Jersey today of, 102766. 



Paul Le Claire