Guernsey States deputies' numbers cut in new government

Guernsey States Chamber
Image caption Seven fewer deputies will be elected when Guernsey goes to the polls in April 2016

Changes to the States of Guernsey, including cutting the number of deputies, will take effect next year.

The move to cut the number of deputies from 45 to 38 was proposed alongside changes to the political structure.

The proposals were accepted alongside changes to ensure recognised accounting standards would be brought in and the electoral process would be reviewed.

The drop in the number of deputies will be in place ahead of the next election, being held on 20 April.

The new political structure, including a senior committee, will be put in place following the election.

Deputy Matt Fallaize, chairman of States Assembly and Constitution Committee, said these changes would introduce leadership.

"We need more leadership in the States, but it has to be leadership by influence because it can't be leadership through the exercise of raw power unless we have a ministerial system of government," he said.

"If you create the conditions for leadership and coordination and more proportionate checks and balances, the chances are over time you will get policy that will serve the island better."

States outline structure

  • One senior committee: Policy and Resources
  • Six principal committees: Economic Development, Education, Sport & Culture, Employment, Housing & Social Security, Environment & Infrastructure, Health & Social Care and Home Affairs
  • Five board or authorities: Development & Planning Authority, Civil Contingencies Authority, Passenger Transport Licensing Authority, Overseas Aid & Development Commission and States' Trading Supervisory Board.
  • Scrutiny Management Committee
  • States Assembly and Constitution Committee

The States Assembly and Constitution Committee has been tasked with investigating a range of election methods, including island-wide elections, reducing the number of electoral districts and bringing in a single transferable vote system.

Currently the States is made up of 45 deputies elected from seven electoral districts and two States of Alderney representatives - who will be unaffected by the changes.

A move to increase the size and oversight of the States' Trading Supervisory Board was among those defeated.

The final details of the government, including the mandates of the committees, are due to be agreed later this year.

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