Ministers have broken a deal to pay compensation for a new electricity substation and are refusing to hand over the cash now that work has started, according to Town Constable Simon Crowcroft.
The deal to build the substation on Westmount Gardens was based on the JEC putting up £250,000, and the States providing £83,000 to compensate the parish for the loss of the land. Although the JEC paid up straight away, Mr Crowcroft says that politicians are refusing to keep their side of the bargain.
He says the original deal with former Treasury Minister Philip Ozouf was for the £83,000 to be spent on urban renewal projects in consultation with TTS. But when he asked what was going on, he was told the cash had been removed from their budget – and then that it was coming out of money that the States had already agreed to put towards urban renewal work.
“I think that they have reneged on the deal,” he said.
“I know that with a £130 million deficit that it’s not a huge amount of money, but it’s not good enough.
“It was very clear that we were talking about a third of a million pounds for St Helier in total, not £250,000 and just deducting existing money from the department. That does not work.”
Mr Crowcroft raised the matter in the States a fortnight ago, and Chief Minister Ian Gorst promised to look into it.
When asked whether he felt it was acceptable to strike a deal, only to be told the payment was coming out of a fund already due to be given to the parish, Senator Gorst said it seemed “odd”.
He told the States at the time: “Of course I would not agree with that. I think the question is - and this is the question I do not have the answer to - whether the money, if it were allocated to TTS. and has been taken from TTS, was due to be allocated to St. Helier originally, and if it was then that would seem slightly odd, to say the least.”
Comments on this story express the views of the commentator only, not Bailiwick Publishing. We are unable to guarantee the accuracy of any of those comments.
Once your comment has been submitted, it won’t appear immediately. There is no need to submit it more than once. Comments are published at the discretion of Bailiwick Publishing, and will include your username.