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Treasury Minister speaks out on £800m hospital plan

Treasury Minister speaks out on £800m hospital plan

Friday 22 April 2022

Treasury Minister speaks out on £800m hospital plan

Friday 22 April 2022

The Treasury Minister has revealed she does not support the idea of building a new single-site hospital at Overdale – but thinks that the £800m plan is too far down the line not to see it through.

Speaking on the Politics Disassembled Podcast, Deputy Susie Pinel said that she had “put forward time and time again” to her Ministerial colleagues that her preference would be to have an acute hospital on People’s Park, with a “longer-term unit” at Overdale.

“You’ve then got a quarry behind you, a quarryface which would negate the height of building there. The access is fantastic and then to build an access cable car lift up to Overdale... That’s the way I felt it would have worked better," she explained.

However, she added that she felt the Government had “got to the point now where we really have to see this through”, even though “I totally understand that it’s not ideal.”

Deputy Pinel explained that her main reason for supporting the current project was because, as Treasury Minister, she was acutely aware of how much it’s costing to keep the current General Hospital going.

“It’s just ridiculous trying to maintain a building that's completely not sufficient for action and we’re also not getting the staff over because of that,” she said.

Following a planning inquiry, the Overdale proposals are currently before independent planning inspector Philip Staddon, who will make a recommendation to the Environment Minister, who has the final say.

If approved, the new hospital, which will be Jersey’s largest ever capital project, is due to be financed by two bonds to be paid off over 30 to 40 years. 

Asked if she was concerned about leaving a significant legacy of borrowing, the Treasury Minister responded that she “wouldn’t be doing it if I was.” 

Her comments came days after she revealed that she would be leaving politics after more than 10 years. 

The Minister explained that she felt party politics was the way forward, having become a member of the Jersey Alliance. 

Deputy Pinel told the podcast that she had previously sought to start a party with a group of six politicians elected at the same time in 2011, and then again in 2014, but that the plans didn’t end up coming to fruition.  

Leaving politics, she said, was mostly due to “persuasion from family and friends”.

Deputy Pinel said she would be leaving following “quite a large contribution to Jersey”, adding: “I’m a Jersey girl, I love Jersey and been very happy to do it all, but the time it takes plus the criticism does get a little hard to take sometimes.”

Elsewhere in the Politics Disassembled Podcast, she discussed the levers available – and not available – to Government for dealing with the rising cost of living, and why she is uncomfortable talking about the island’s housing situation as a “crisis”.


Show me the money


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Posted by Guy de Faye on
In today's money the ocean liner Titanic would cost £400 Million. Not far off the early estimates for the "New All-in-One Hospital".

The Titanic was completed, launched and filled with people. It was still a disaster.

Maybe it is better to get the concept and design right, at extra cost, instead of courting catastrophic failure.
Posted by Martin on
SAYING that the EIGHT HUNDRED MILLION ( AND we KNOW it will be MORE ) IS TOO FAR DOWN THE LINE NOT TO SEE IT THROUGH - is like Putin saying - I have invaded the UKraine best carry on - RATHER than realising S O M E plans are NO good and best to pull out & make best reparations RATHER than causing more mayhem & suffering!
Posted by Jon Jon on
Pinel won’t be missed that’s for sure,saying it’s to late now with this hospital site at Overdale is wrong,it’s never to late,maybe she should of had the bottle to stand up to Farnham on the council of ministers and said sorry no support from me therefore no cash from the treasury!
Posted by Scott Mills on
Guy de Faye, I agree....I've seen the ending of this "hospital" film already. Good job I'll be out of here before they even put a spade on the groud, let alone in it. Good luck Millenials, Gen Z's and Alpha's, with the latter you've got no chance. But by that time, can't see many graduates flocking back to Jersey, and/or highly skilled workers. The rats have already left the ship!
Posted by Scott Mills on
ps. It'll be Billion by time it's built.
Posted by Private Individual on
It's amazing how they all have something to say when they are not standing again!

She has supported the hospital debacle right from the beginning and never spoke out against it until now. She consistently voted with the council of ministers even though she knew it was the wrong decision.
Posted by Private Individual on
I agree with Scott Mills, time to leave SS Titanic Jersey as the cost of living crisis is upon us with a vengeance. Why is this not being addressed by any of the candidates that have announced they are standing for election?
Posted by Alexander Burnett on
These comments are Scandalous when given the gravity of the decisions made by these so called Politicians. This is not a personal attack i get what the lady says about personal and unfair criticism, the facts are she is in charge of Treasury and to say it is to far down the line not to spend £800m and probably more is totally unacceptable ? When is that these people stand up and accept the responsibility of the job ? at what stage do they accept their responsibility for squandering our money ? As Treasury Minister you either subscribe to it wholeheartedly or NOT if in your opinion £800m of our money would be better spent elsewhere you either back the scheme because it is in the interest of the people of Jersey or you Resign what you don’t do is say “oh I don’t support it but it’s to far down the line to object ? I may as well endorse £800m plus of the public purse than do what I have been voted in to do ? You are voted in by the people for the people you have a duty of care woman ?

This talk of Peoples Park is whimsical and not becoming of a politician, by decree the park does not belong to the States it is the Peoples park, why even mention something that is unattainable ?

Then we have the final decision going to quite possibly the biggest underachiever that has ever haunted the halls and chambers of our parliament, Let’s look at his record, he is in charge of a department that after an extensive Police investigation was found to be “ Unfit for Purpose” let’s look at his most recent record involving the Bridging Island Plan he promised to Secure 1500 sites he has barely attained 500 ? At a time when everyone acknowledges we have a housing shortage crisis on our hands what does his department do, halves the amount of public meetings to assist with getting new schemes through ? He has effectively created a bottle neck where far less applications will be processed than the previous years ? Again politics is about taking responsibility as well as Plaudits, if John Young had any decency he should have resigned on the back of the Norwich Police findings instead of spreading himself over a double page expose of the JEP as though he was akin to the second coming of the Messiah. The man who has sorted the housing crisis, whereas as a result of his ineptitude he has to take his share of responsibility for creating the problems He is an abject failure as a planning minister and to Allow him to make the final decision on the Hospital is simply asking for further controversy all I can say is Brace yourself people of Jersey we do not have politics here what we have is a gang of well to do underachievers that never get tired of back slapping. Wake up Jersey!
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