Council of Ministers of Jersey

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The Council of Ministers is the collective institution of executive government in Jersey. The council co-ordinates policies and administration, especially policy affecting two or more ministers, prioritises executive and legislative proposals, and presents a "Strategic Plan for Jersey" for approval by the States of Jersey.

The council does not represent a parliamentary majority as ministers may be elected on a variety of manifestos. The executive is prevented from constituting a majority of the 51 elected members by the States of Jersey Law 2005, which places a legal cap of 22 on the number of states' members who may hold office as chief minister, minister and assistant ministers.[1]

The first Council of Ministers was established in December 2005.

Constitution[edit]

The election for chief minister takes place as a majority vote in the States Assembly. The chief minister-elect then nominates nine people for the position of minister. Other candidates may be nominated from among the states members and a vote is taken for each ministerial post on a majority basis by the full membership of the States of Jersey.

Operation[edit]

The chief minister acts as president of the council and matters may be brought for discussion by any minister.

Legally ultimate responsibility for the policy decisions of a department rest solely with the minister, however in practice matters are decided by a unanimous or majority vote of the ten ministers.[2]

Membership 2011-2014[edit]

Senator Ian Gorst the Chief Minister of Jersey

Elections for ministerial posts were held on 17 and 18 November 2011. The chief minister's nominations were all contested; two of his nominations were defeated, and five ministerial posts were decided by margins of between 1 and 3 votes. The chief minister's nomination of Senator Ian Le Marquand to the Treasury was defeated, and so the chief minister amended his nomination for Home Affairs to retain Senator Le Marquand on the council, by withdrawing his nomination of Senator Lyndon Farnham. The chief minister's nomination of Connétable John Refault to Transport and Technical Services was defeated, with Deputy Kevin Lewis, a former Assistant Minister for Transport and Technical Services, being elected.[3]

Membership 2008-2011[edit]

Former Senator Terry Le Sueur was Chief Minister of Jersey

Elections for ministerial posts were held on 11 and 12 December 2008.[4] The nominees of the Chief Minister were successful with the exception of Senator Routier, proposed successively for Health and Social Services and Education, Sport and Culture. Three ministers subsequently resigned as ministers (but remained as States members) in the face of criticisms of their personal conduct: Senator Jim Perchard (2009), Deputy Terry Le Main (2010) and Deputy Sean Power (2011), triggering further elections. One minister, Senator Freddie Cohen, exchanged the role of Planning and Environment Minister for that of "foreign minister" in 2011.

  • Economic Development Minister: Senator Alan Maclean (elected with 32 votes; Deputy Mike Higgins received 20 votes)
  • Home Affairs Minister: Senator Ian Le Marquand (elected with 34 votes; Senator Stuart Syvret received 18 votes)
  • Health and Social Services Minister: Deputy Anne Pryke (from April 2009). Her predecessor, Senator Jim Perchard (elected in 2008 with 31 votes; Senator Paul Routier receiving 21 votes) resigned in April 2009 after controversy surrounding remarks he made in the chamber urging Senator Stuart Syvret to commit suicide.[5]
  • Education, Sport and Culture Minister: Deputy James Reed (elected on the fourth round with 31 votes). Deputy Reed was the Chief Minister's initial candidate for the post. However, when his nomination of Senator Routier for Health and Social Services was defeated, he withdrew Deputy Reed's name and nominated Senator Routier in his place. Deputies Reed, Judy Martin and Roy Le Hérissier were also nominated. In the first round of voting Senator Routier received 16 votes, Deputy Reed 13 votes, Deputy Le Hérissier 12 votes and Deputy Martin 11 votes. With Deputy Martin eliminated, in the second round Deputy Le Hérissier received 20 votes while Senator Routier and Deputy Reed both received 16 votes. In the tie-breaking third round Deputy Reed received 29 votes and Senator Routier was eliminated with 23 votes. In the final round Deputy Reed was elected with 31 votes and Deputy Le Hérissier received 22 votes.
  • Planning and Environment Minister: Deputy Rob Duhamel (from July 2011).[6] Senator Freddie Cohen, who was elected to the ministerial post unopposed in 2008, resigned in order to focus on his role as "foreign minister" (formally, as an assistant minister to the Chief Minister).
  • Housing Minister: Deputy Andrew Green (from February 2011).[7] He replaced Deputy Sean Power, in post since June 2010, was resigned after he was "found to have broken the Data Protection Law by sending a confidential and personal email to a States colleague on to a third party".[8] Power's predecessor had also resigned: Senator Terry Le Main, elected in 2008 with 27 votes (Senator Alan Breckon receiving 25 votes), stood down as minister in June 2010, following unproven allegations, which he vigorously denied, about his relationship with a property developer.[9]
  • Social Security Minister: Deputy Ian Gorst (elected with 36 votes; Deputy Geoff Southern received 16 votes)
  • Transport and Technical Services Minister: Constable Mike Jackson (elected with 33 votes; Deputy Rob Duhamel received 19 votes)

Membership 2005-2008[edit]

In 2005, only one of the ten ministers nominated by the Chief Minister failed to achieve election: Senator Len Norman, whose position was filled by Deputy Guy de Faye.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "States of Jersey Law 2005, Article 25". Retrieved 2011-12-23. 
  2. ^ Senator Philip Ozouf, BBC Radio Jersey Talkback June 24th 2007
  3. ^ "Deputy Anne Pryke wins a four-way battle for Health". Jersey Evening Post. 19 November 2011. 
  4. ^ Anon (2011). "Inside the States - Council of Ministers election". bbc.co.uk. Retrieved 5 September 2011. 
  5. ^ Editorial (2011). "A minister falls on his sword". thisisjersey.com. Retrieved 5 September 2011. 
  6. ^ Anon (2011). "New Environment Minister elected". thisisjersey.com. Retrieved 5 September 2011. 
  7. ^ Anon (2011). "New Housing Minister elected". thisisjersey.com. Retrieved 5 September 2011. 
  8. ^ Anon (2011). "Minister resigns over email data breach". thisisjersey.com. Retrieved 5 September 2011. 
  9. ^ Quérée, Ben (2011). "Minister resigns". thisisjersey.com. Retrieved 5 September 2011. 
  • States of Jersey
  • Senator Philip Ozouf, BBC Radio Jersey Talkback June 24, 2007