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Home | August 2013 Please tell us what you think of this article. Tell a friend Print Friendly

Falklands : MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT SPEECH BY THE HON MR GAVIN SHORT
Submitted by Falkland Islands News Network (Juanita Brock) 27.08.2013 (Article Archived on 24.09.2013)

MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT SPEECH BY THE HON MR GAVIN SHORT

Madam Speaker, Honourable Members, Ladies and Gentlemen, I guess we have reached our last Legislative Assembly. As I sat down last night to dash out a few quick words I found it hard to do because I normally twitter on about my departments, what we are going to be doing etc and suddenly realise that there is almost no tomorrow.

Before I sort of launch, I would like to fully associate myself with the comments made by the Honourable Mike Summers regarding Gibraltar. I do wish them well and I for one stand firmly with them.

I have one thing to have a moan about before I disappear and that’s the remuneration package that is being offered for FIG employees. While there is a lot of good stuff in that package, I think it is probably fair to say that we have accidently, inadvertently introduced something that is quite negative and certainly is having quite an effect on Staff morale at this very moment. That was, of course, having a bonus for those who have served 10, 20 or 30 years of service. There seems to be quite a number who have reached these milestones already who thought that this would apply to them. Of course they found now that they have done 11 years or 21 years, they have got to wait another 9. And, of course, I believe those who have hit 30 – tough - that’s it.

I was also told that there was a generous pension contributions made for the longest serving people. Now in some of the paperwork I have seen over these last 24 hours. That to me seems to indicate that was righting a wrong that came under the Hay Management Scheme, so I don’t really see us being overly generous. If you are righting a wrong - that is something you should do and not out of the kindness of your heart. So I would basically ask my Honourable Colleagues around this table – we have a month before we all go up in smoke and I think this is one wrong we could right while we’ve still got time because it really is effecting the morale of our civil service and our government workers at a time when we really shouldn’t be doing this stuff.

The last four years have sort of passed in a blur, really. And I hope that just as others who have gone before us we leave our little country in a better state than when we found it. There are also a great many challenges ahead such as (exploration and exploitation of) hydrocarbons, immigration, infrastructure, fisheries and education just to name a few. But I think the next four to eight years are probably going to be the ones that really shape what the future of the Falklands will really look like.

As the future of the hydrocarbons regime starts to take shape and of course it is still nowhere near certain that everything is cut and dried, we will probably have two things, really, to manage. One is going to be the expectations and the pressures to start spending beyond our means without a guarantee that we are going to hit the big time and the other is control. If hydrocarbons happens while we are probably going to come under great pressure from those who would wish to part us from our cash and diminish the control that we have with spending and investment decisions and in how and what we do with the hydrocarbons revenues.

Whilst we must put money away, invest for the future, sort out the crumbling infrastructure, we must never lose sight that this oil and, indeed the monies that will come from it, should it happen, belong to the people of the Falkland Islands and it isn’t going to be enough to use some of it to give a proper living wage to all. (That’s not electioneering by the way but something I believe before and after.) But we are going to have to find a way of returning some part of that cash directly to the people but there would be re-introducing the old Pound a Day scheme or subsidising things but just make life here that little bit more enjoyable. Making sure it covers both Camp and Stanley is going to be fun as is working out what type of things we want to do and how we return a bit of the cash to the people.

I do hope that those who follow us will carry on striving to make these Islands a better place for all of us. I also hope that the next MLAs will continue to fight the lies and pressures that still emanate from Argentina with as much vigour as we have. I rather suspect that the more combative Falklands claims have a bit of a nasty surprise for those across the way who would rob us of our peace of mind just as they have robbed other countries over the years. I thoroughly enjoy standing up to them. To quote a great hero of mine, we will never surrender.”

There have been lows and highs as you would expect. Maybe one of the lows for me was having to increase the tax burdens in our first budget and the joy of being able to reverse this in the last budget.

There have been many highs such as the first positive well that was drilled and the Minimum wage that was passed through this House but I guess the real big one for me was the Referendum. And it wasn’t just the Referendum. For me it was the moment when the Falklands took another step along the road to greater self-confidence and we must build on this going forward so that we have an even greater control over our affairs and our destiny.

Looking over these past four years I say there has been a few ups and downs but to quote a rather fine pop lyric which sums it up rather nicely for me, “even the bad times were good.” And once again I thank you all for giving me an opportunity to serve you.

Although things aren’t perfect here – and it could be better – we really do have a great little country – an economy that many look on with envy and a community of people who are not afraid to do a bit of hard graft. And I hope we never lose this.

As I say, I would like to thank the people of the Falkland islands for their help and guidance over these last years, for keeping my feet firmly on the ground and for giving me the occasional broadside when required.

To those in the departments with whom I have had the honour to be portfolio holder – you have all worked extremely hard at all times and sometimes in quite horrendous circumstances and continue to do so in your fields to make sure that the services of the Government are delivered in a fair, straight manner and that our Islands remain economically secure, safe and well defended.

To my Colleagues I would like to say thank-you for putting up with me. To the ladies in Gibbering House, you have my eternal respect and I now know that it is possible to herd cats.

And finally, of course, to my long suffering family, I would like to thank them for their endless patience and understanding.

I guess to end this address, as you would expect of me, I would just like to say this: As far as I am concerned, I am living in the best little country in the world. This is a groovy happening place – in fact the Falklands rock.

I thank you all for the final time and support the Motion for Adjournment.





MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT SPEECH BY THE HON MR
GAVIN SHORT



 



Madam Speaker, Honourable Members,
Ladies and Gentlemen, I guess we have reached our last Legislative
Assembly.  As I sat down last night to
dash out a few quick words I found it hard to do because I normally twitter on
about my departments, what we are going to be doing etc and suddenly realise
that there is almost no tomorrow.



 



Before I sort of launch, I would
like to fully associate myself with the comments made by the Honourable Mike
Summers regarding Gibraltar.  I do wish
them well and I for one stand firmly with them.



 



I have one thing to have a moan
about before I disappear and that’s the remuneration package that is being
offered for FIG employees.  While there
is a lot of good stuff in that package, I think it is probably fair to say that
we have accidently, inadvertently introduced something that is quite negative
and certainly is having quite an effect on Staff morale at this very
moment.  That was, of course, having a
bonus for those who have served 10, 20 or 30 years of service.  There seems to be quite a number who have
reached these milestones already who thought that this would apply to
them.  Of course they found now that they
have done 11 years or 21 years, they have got to wait another 9.  And, of course, I believe those who have hit
30 – tough - that’s it. 



 



I was also told that there was a
generous pension contributions made for the longest serving people.   Now in some of the paperwork I have seen
over these last 24 hours.  That to me
seems to indicate that was righting a wrong that came under the Hay Management
Scheme, so I don’t really see us being overly generous.  If you are righting a wrong - that is
something you should do and not out of the kindness of your heart.  So I would basically ask my Honourable
Colleagues around this table – we have a month before we all go up in smoke and
I think this is one wrong we could right while we’ve still got time because it really
is effecting the morale of our civil service and our government workers at a
time when we really shouldn’t be doing this stuff.



 



The last four years have sort of
passed in a blur, really.  And I hope
that just as others who have gone before us we leave our little country in a
better state than when we found it. 
There are also a great many challenges ahead such as (exploration and
exploitation of) hydrocarbons, immigration, infrastructure, fisheries and
education just to name a few.  But I
think the next four to eight years are probably going to be the ones that
really shape what the future of the Falklands will really look like.



 



As the future of the hydrocarbons
regime starts to take shape and of course it is still nowhere near certain that
everything is cut and dried, we will probably have two things, really, to
manage.  One is going to be the
expectations and the pressures to start spending beyond our means without a
guarantee that we are going to hit the big time and the other is control.  If hydrocarbons happens while we are probably
going to come under great pressure from those who would wish to part us from
our cash and diminish the control that we have with spending and investment
decisions and in how and what we do with the hydrocarbons revenues.



 



Whilst we must put money away,
invest for the future, sort out the crumbling infrastructure, we must never
lose sight that this oil and, indeed the monies that will come from it, should
it happen, belong to the people of the Falkland Islands and it isn’t going to
be enough to use some of it to give a proper living wage to all.  (That’s not electioneering by the way but
something I believe before and after.)  But
we are going to have to find a way of returning some part of that cash directly
to the people but there would be re-introducing the old Pound a Day scheme or
subsidising things but just make life here that little bit more enjoyable.  Making sure it covers both Camp and Stanley
is going to be fun as is working out what type of things we want to do and how
we return a bit of the cash to the people.



 



I do hope that those who follow us
will carry on striving to make these Islands a better place for all of us.  I also hope that the next MLAs will continue
to fight the lies and pressures that still emanate from Argentina with as much
vigour as we have.  I rather suspect that
the more combative Falklands claims have a bit of a nasty surprise for those
across the way who would rob us of our peace of mind just as they have robbed
other countries over the years.  I
thoroughly enjoy standing up to them.  To
quote a great hero of mine, we will never surrender.”



 



There have been lows and highs as
you would expect.  Maybe one of the lows
for me was having to increase the tax burdens in our first budget and the joy
of being able to reverse this in the last budget.



 



There have been many highs such as
the first positive well that was drilled and the Minimum wage that was passed
through this House but I guess the real big one for me was the Referendum.  And it wasn’t just the Referendum.  For me it was the moment when the Falklands
took another step along the road to greater self-confidence and we must build
on this going forward so that we have an even greater control over our affairs
and our destiny.



 



Looking over these past four years
I say there has been a few ups and downs but to quote a rather fine pop lyric
which sums it up rather nicely for me, “even the bad times were good.”  And once again I thank you all for giving me
an opportunity to serve you.



 



Although things aren’t perfect
here – and it could be better – we really do have a great little country – an
economy that many look on with envy and a community of people who are not
afraid to do a bit of hard graft.  And I
hope we never lose this.



 



As I say, I would like to thank
the people of the Falkland islands for their help and guidance over these last
years, for keeping my feet firmly on the ground and for giving me the
occasional broadside when required.



 



To those in the departments with
whom I have had the honour to be portfolio holder – you have all worked
extremely hard at all times and sometimes in quite horrendous circumstances and
continue to do so in your fields to make sure that the services of the
Government are delivered in a fair, straight manner and that our Islands remain
economically secure, safe and well defended.



 



To my Colleagues I would like to
say thank-you for putting up with me.  To
the ladies in Gibbering House, you have my eternal respect and I now know that
it is possible to herd cats.



 



And finally, of course, to my long
suffering family, I would like to thank them for their endless patience and
understanding.



 



I guess to end this address, as
you would expect of me, I would just like to say this: As far as I am
concerned, I am living in the best little country in the world.  This is a groovy happening place – in fact
the Falklands rock.



 



I thank you all for the final time
and support the Motion for Adjournment.



 



 

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