Tuesday’s Tynwald session includes some interesting questions. Mrs Beecroft would like to know the costs of running the Brussels office and what this investment has brought the island in return. She asks similar questions with regard to the London office. (My paraphrasing in both cases. The actual questions are here: http://tynwald.org.im/papers/orders/2011-2012/ko29112011.pdf ) Wouldn’t we all like to know the cost of running these prestigious premises? Yes, now that cost-cutting is back in vogue we need to gain a better insight into how money is spent – or possibly wasted.
Mr Cannan asks further questions about the land swap deal in Kirk Michael. What will the answers reveal – if anything? To the layperson it does seem extremely odd that this deal was pursued during the summer recess, if I recall correctly, and with seemingly improper haste. Can we get to the bottom of things? If Mr Cannan is as tenacious as his father, perhaps we will.
There are also some intriguing questions from Zak Hall with regard to how many complaints have been made against doctors and nurses in the past five years and the number of cases where it was recommended doctors or nurses be struck off or incurred a suspension. (My paraphrasing in all the above).
All good questions but the ones that particulary interest me are:
The Hon. Member for Middle (Mr Quayle) to ask the Minister for Community, Culture and Leisure –
(a) Whether the low cost activity hall approved for Marown and Rushen has been removed from his Department’s five-year capital programme proposals; and
(b) if he will reinstate the hall in his Department’s capital programme in the interests of improving the participation of young people in healthy, sporting activities and improving access to sports facilities in Marown and Rushen?
The background behind this question is unknown to me but it seems odd that there is rarely money to fund youth activities or facilities – the newest facility for youngsters in Ramsey, The Northern Lights Community Centre, has been brought to life by hard hands-on work and time and material donations without cash injections from government. Well done to those involved. But isn’t there something strange here? Activity halls etc seem to be axed in sweeping budget cuts yet CCTV, involving significant costs, never appears to be rejected.
Shouldn’t we be helping our youngsters to gain an interest in sports, music, drama etc. rather than leaving them to hang around street corners and then record misdemeanours via lurking CCTVcameras when these young people step out of line? Some may say that there was no entertainment in their youth either. However, in times gone by there were several cinemas around the island. Coffee bars were trendy and also plentiful. No need for kids to hang around the streets. These things are generally no longer available.
Have all forms of entertainment, apart from licensed premises, beeen removed? Hardly surprising then that we have a culture based on alcohol consumption. It seems to me that the powers-that-be prefer to provide control and snooping in preference to providing entertainment and encouragement for youngsters who wish to pursue ambitions in music, drama, art, sport etc. Do you think this is an accurate assessment?