EXECUTIVE Council met on March 28 attended by Members of Legislative Assembly Jan Cheek, Sharon Halford and Dick Sawle (left).
MLA Sawle gave the following report:
As is customary, we began by going through the task status report – a report which lists progress on action points carried forward from previous meetings of Executive Council.
The first paper on the agenda was a lengthy review of KEMH clinical care following a tragic neonatal death in March 2011 presented by the Director of Health and Education. As this paper had been received at a late stage, Members felt that – given the importance of the subject and the time required to digest and discuss its contents, it should be referred to the next meeting which is due to be held on the 2nd April.
We then approved a design for a commemorative coin to celebrate the diamond jubilee of Her Majesty the Queen. This coin has a face value of £5.00, is minted in sterling silver and should be an attractive collector's item.
We then approved the recommendations in a paper relating to IT security on the FIG network.
We approved a guarantee of an overdraft facility for FIMCO which was required simply due to cash-flow restraints on the business caused by timing issues. The company itself is in very good shape.
A proposal submitted by the Environmental Planning Officer to list the stone corral near Sapper Hill as a building of special architectural or historic interest was approved. This, for those that may have missed recent events, is the corral which was within the land now cleared as safe by BACTEC last week.
The Canache Management Plan was approved. This is the plan which, following very extensive public consultation, has now been finalised. The intention is to treat equally all users of the Canache area and deals with issues such as land tenure and rents. This paper is a public paper and I would urge all those who are interested to obtain a copy of it for full details.
We then moved on to consider the report of the PAC on the dairy. This report will be submitted for approval to the next Legislative Assembly and will be published in due course once approved.
The next item on the agenda was a paper from the Attorney General giving details of legislative drafting priorities for the year 2012/13. The recommendations of the paper were agreed with the addition of legislation for a minimum wage. It was noted that delays in producing legislation were often caused by lack of instructions from departments. The need to produce a full revised set of Falkland Islands law is one of the immediate priorities. This paper is available as a public paper, and I would urge all those who have an interest to obtain a copy of it for full details.
A scheme for legal aid was then approved. The author of the legal aid document is the current Senior Magistrate, and I would like to personally thank him for the work that he has put into this document which makes clear to people what the criteria are for obtaining legal aid – something which had been sadly lacking in the past. The paper is, of course, public and anyone who wishes to obtain a copy can do so.
We approved for submission to the Assembly legislation relating to Fisheries products. The aim of the legislation is simply to update the current legislation and ensure that it remains in line with EU regulations for the catching, storing and transport etc of fishery products. The paper will be circulated to all fishing companies via their association and will also be gazetted.
The Census Order 2012 was approved. The Census will take place on the 15th April. Whilst the Census will remain as planned, we also agreed a suggestion that an additional question be added to the census papers. This will ask people for their views on time change, following recent questions raised by some members of the public as to whether the public consultation process accurately reflected all views. Answering the short question on time change is, of course, open to all residents over 16 and is entirely voluntary. The expectation is that the time change question will finally be resolved!
We noted a paper on the performance of FIG for the period October to December 2011 which notes progress on various aspects of the Islands Plan. We also noted the establishment of a task group which will look at various aspects of decision making within FIG. For example, what items need to be decided upon by Exco and what authority Exco might wish to delegate to, for example, a committee.
Finally, we approved a number of appointments to the Pension Board and also to the Historic Buildings committee.