Saturday, 10 October 2009

Amos Group - Minutes for October

Here are the Minutes of the Amos Group. My own comments on the Transport Policy were submitted to Amos and have been posted on this blog at

They were mostly in agreement with my suggestions, except for the priority bus lanes, which may be impossible to engineer in the small space, but I still think could help (having seen them in Exeter), and an MOT, which they propose as long as it is relatively simple (and every two years), which is a good suggestion.

Amos is an ecumenical group, "the Social Responsibility Group of Christians Together in Jersey", and details of the group's activities can be found at

Minutes for AMOS GROUP of CHRISTIANS TOGETHER IN JERSEY on Wed. Oct. 7th at 5.15 at Pastoral Centre

1. The opening prayer was led by Adrian Pearce 2. We went through the response that Tony had circulated about transport policy. We made these comments:

We agree with a more "graded target", such as cut traffic by 3% each year over 5 years, so that each year the target could be measured.

Surveying mixed forms of transport:

We think there is need for a range of vehicle sizes, including double-deckers for busy routes (provided there are very few 'no go' parts of the Island) and some smaller vehicles for less busy routes. We regret the loss of the Hoppabus service in town, linking estates on the outskirts of town with the centre with easy access to town centre shops

Smart Card System for Buses:
This is a good idea to speed up access, and to encourage more use by offering discounts for multiple journeys. Use of buses would be encouraged if bus shelters were provided at more places.

Incentives for Park and Ride
This is a good idea. A cheaper season ticket for a more remote parking locations combined with an economic shuttle service in an out of town park and ride scheme would be useful in keeping commuter traffic out of St Helier. The shuttle service only needs to run at the start and end of working day.

Short term Shopping.
We do not agree with the demolition of Minden Place car park. It provides more central parking for shoppers in the markets. A car park at Ann Court is too far from the shopping areas. .

Incentives for School Bus Use
The main incentive for school bus use by children is a convenient timetable. No need for the promotions - books for schools, sport equipment for schools -by commercial companies. There are always going to be less on the buses going home as schools have a range of after-school activities.

Congestion Charge
We do not agree with the introduction of a congestion charge. The cost of a day's parking in St. Helier is a type of congestion charge. Off peak (9.00-5.00) for Jersey there is no need for short term shoppers, or people needing to visit the hospital etc. to pay anything other than their scratchcard fee.

States Members Parking
We agree that States members should not have free parking. However they should keep their pre-allocated parking and pay a parking fee. . Priority Bus Routes
Bus priority lanes are not practical in Jersey Better Engineering of Traffic Flow

Congestion has been improved by better traffic flow with gyratory systems (the one by Wellington road works well for example).

No need for formal MOTs?
We do feel there should be some regular check made on older motor vehicles to ensure they are safe. The honorary police road checks are not all-embracing to do a really effective job of getting unsafe cars off the road.. A formal check can be included as part of the annual service that cars have. It should be done once the car is 5 years old and every 2 years after, recognising Jersey's relatively low mileage. The point of sale could also act as a simple trigger for this, and any car to be sold would need a certificate of road worthiness, as long as it was relatively simple. This would also benefit the buyer.

Cost of Road Maintenance
Large commercial vehicles should stick to limited routes. The location of potato packing stations in the countryside does encourage the heavy vehicles into country roads. There should be suitable routes for HGVs in Jersey.

There is an online consultation on Transport at:

3. The Social Security Dept have given a clear response to the Income support scrutiny panel a .pdf of their response if available from ELeQ. There are some further issues to follow up. ELeQ to continue on the panel. 4. We welcome the decision to set up an Ombudsman for financial matters, long-awaited.

We hope there will soon be a depositor protection law in place for accounts in Jersey bank accounts up to £50k.

We welcome the Home Affairs Minister's commitment to a review of the licensing law with the aim of reducing harmful levels of alcohol consumption.

5 The J.O.W.G. have appointed Lucy Layton as Centre Manager for 3 hours per week, to help Primary teachers. The New Internationalist catalogue offers a number of books, Amnesty cards etc on international issues at a big discount on RRP. Catalogues will be circulated soon.

6.. ELeQ had written to Guy Brandon from the Jubilee Centre, author of a book called 'Just sex? Is it ever just sex', which tries to set sex in the context of relationships in general. It led to a general discussion on the balance between rights and responsibilities . There is perhaps an increasing swing back to stressing responsibilities rather more than rights, which is welcome

7. The meeting closed with the Grace at 6.40

Dates of next Amos meetings Wed. Nov. 4th, Dec. 2nd at 5.15 at Pastoral Centre

Ed Le Quesne 7 / 10 / 09

Note: With regard to Data Protection, this posting of mine is to give the Amos Group a wider circulation. However, the Amos Group minutes are public domain, and can be found at

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I agree with some of the views, apart from the lack of cycling needs, and I responded to the consultation also. I mentioned the increasing amount of P30's that are now on the roads, which is done for economic reasons more than anything else as the cost of specialised smaller vehicles is more to the company or individual concerned. I question why these vehicles are allowed when you see them carrying loads that could have been carried by a small pick up!
Captain Fantastic