Each of the 15 Senatorial Candidates took time out of their campaign to speak to BBC Radio Jersey's Home Affairs Producer Hamish Marett-Crosby about their election platform and what they would do if they were elected.
Name: Freddie Cohen
Read a transcript of the interview with Freddie Cohen below or listen to it using Real Player.
Why are you looking for an island mandate?
Because I feel that I have something to offer. I've worked in the community, delivering community products now for more than 25 years, and during that time I’ve learnt how to deliver things on time and within budget, and I hope that the electorate will feel that I have something to offer them.
So what are the main planks of your manifesto? Why should the people vote for Freddie Cohen?
Well I have a very wide ranging manifesto; I’m covering all sorts of issues from shared equity ownership, Jersey audit office, providing residential care for people, supporting agriculture, bringing new industries to the island, lowering consumer prices, stopping inappropriate development on the Waterfront, helping young people and supporting the honoury system – it’s a very broadly based manifesto, and it’s designed to support the finance industry but to use the benefits devised from that to help every section of the community.
What do you feel, were you to be in the States in a few weeks time, will be the main problems that you and your colleagues will be facing?
Well the first thing is clearly the implementation of ministerial government. There’s been a great deal of work done recently to produce the framework, but now the really hard stuff begins, and there are all sorts of areas that have to be covered immediately.
It’s also very clear that there will be problems in terms of anomalies that will rise out of the new policies that have been proposed, and for example there are various anomalies in the zero ten that will need consideration and will need careful implementation and thinking about.
What sort of anomalies?
There is a current position in zero ten that will lead to, for example, two identical businesses side by side, one would be Jersey owned and that would be paying Jersey tax, and the other non-Jersey owned would pay no Jersey tax, and that clearly is unfair, it’s not intentional but it does have to be smoothed out.
You mentioned your manifesto being very wide ranged, but what would be your priorities were you to be in the States, what would be the first thing from your manifesto that you would tackle?
There are a lot of things that I would like to achieve, but my first priority would be delivering shared equity ownership.
I believe that shared equity ownership provides an enormous opportunity to provide young Jersey families with homes in an affordable way. I believe that we have the resources to deliver this, and I believe we can deliver this very quickly and very efficiently and it will make a very real difference to people.
There are many other issues I would like to cover, I would specifically like to cover the position of consumer prices; which are presently far too high, and if we are unable to lower those using the existing mechanisms we really have to look at increasing competition.
Would you have some States mechanism to control prices?
No, I wouldn’t propose controlling prices, but I certainly would propose engaging with retailers to determine the cause of prices, and consideration being given to open up the markets to allow other supermarkets particularly to come into the island.
One of the first things you are going to be asked to do, were you a States member, would be to vote for a new Chief Minister, assuming life continues more or less as normal and we expect certain people to be there, who would be your preferred choice and why?
Firstly I think it would be wrong for me to decide now. I have as I have told you a broadly based manifesto and I want to hear what the candidates have to say about the proposals that I am concerned about.
I want to hear which candidates care about the people that I am concerned to help. And furthermore, at the moment we only know of possibly two candidates and I sincerely hope that there will be many more candidates, but it would be wrong for me to make a choice now.
And as I say, the election is coming up soon and you hope people will vote for you, your first action will be shared equity and the second on your agenda will be?
Lowering consumer prices. There are many other issues that I am concerned about, I would particularly like to see improvements made to provide residential care for the elderly, there’s a very difficult position at the moment where elderly people often end up falling on the perceived charity of the parishes and I believe that that’s wrong; I believe that every civilised society should provide proper residential care for the elderly, that means nursing home care and ordinary residential care so I would be working very hard to try and achieve that as quickly as possible.