Falklands : Falklands - General Purposes Committee Report (27/05/09)
Submitted by Falkland Islands News Network (Juanita Brock) 07.06.2009 (Article Archived on 21.06.2009)
A meeting of the General Purposes Committee took place on Wednesday, 27 May 2009.
GENERAL PURPOSES COMMITTEE REPORT (27/05/09)
By J. Brock (FINN)
A meeting of the General Purposes Committee took place on Wednesday, 27 May 2007 at Gilbert House. On Friday, 29 May 2009 The Hon Mr Mike Summers updated the media on what happened during this important committee meeting.
1. Attendance at Party Conferences
2. Possible Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) Post Election Seminar
3. CPA observance of the November 2009 Election
4. A Discussion of the Fire Arms Policy
5. Discussion about Infrastructure at the Mink Park
6. A discussion on the requirements for the new Governor
7. A Meeting with Dr Chris Doyle
8. A Meeting with Oil Operators
9. A Meeting with the Chief of Joint Operations Sir Stuart Peach
10. Brief Senior Staff group at Mount Pleasant
Party conferences should be interesting this year with a large number of MPs across the board standing down due to the expenses disclosures. Nicholas Winterton and his wife as well as Ben Chapman, who are staunch Falklands supporters have been affected by the disclosures. The Honourable Mike and Mrs Phyl Rendell will be going to the party conferences this year. It is possible that another Elected Member would be present but advice from FIGO needs to be sought before a final decision is taken.
A paper raising issues that need to be dealt with will be raised for EXCO. The paper will be submitted due to a need for clarity on firearms policies dealing with pistols used to drive sheep from hills and other difficult areas and notification to neighbours when firearms are being used. Itís a practical paper that will go through the working group and then to the Police Committee before going to EXCO. At the moment it isnít clear which group holds which view.
As there will be new people in Assembly after November and the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) as well as Elected Members want to hold a post election seminar to give insight to new Assembly Members on how Parliaments work, procedures and what the norms and expectations are. It is not known yet what the cost will be or who will pay, though it is thought that the CPA will pay for airfares. One member of the CPA is expected to come early to observe the elections.
Requirements for New Governor:
There will be a new Governor in August 2010and Members discussed the requirements and qualities they want in a new Governor. In other Overseas Territories there is no feedback from elected members but here in the Falklands feedback is taken into consideration due to the high profile the post has. They want an older, mature person with qualifications in internal self government and a lot of Foreign Office experience.
The Doyle Report:
The report including proposed draft legislation should be received in due course. New legislation is key to the whole project.
There has been provision for the road and DPW has been asked to complete his plans for housing development on site for up to 19 plots. These plots would be available on a low cost basis. Power and water already present but sewerage needs to be dealt with. Money for investment to repair the road needs to be raised. It is possible that the privately owned site next to the Mink Park could be part of that project provided the owner agrees and wants to develop his area.
Chief of Joint Operations:
Honourable Members discussed repairs to the runway and the air-bridge with Sir Stuart Peach. The Runway will be open for 36 hours each week to accommodate scheduled flights. It is thought Sir Stuart left the Falklands with a good positive attitude about Defence in the Falklands.