Friday, 20 January 2012

Funny Old World 9

Health Warning: what follows is not news, any more than the middle section of Private Eye is news, or The Impressionist is news, or Spitting Image was news. It is a light hearted spin on the real news, which can be found on genuine news sites, such as BBC Jersey. Other news sites are available. This is not one of them. None of the individuals mentioned have ever said anything quite like the words attributed to them. Which is perhaps a pity.

The States of Jersey police are changing the way it deals with people who have been arrested. At the moment the custody unit is run by the response department. A new dedicated department will decide whether they should be detained overnight, remanded in custody, or shot on the spot, which will free up the response officers for their main duties.

And crime in 2011 was at its lowest level for 10 years, according to a report from the States of Jersey Police. The police said high-profile policing, targeting prolific offenders and shooting them on the spot had all played a crucial part in bringing down crime.

Allowing States Members to sit on the new Electoral Commission would be a "disgraceful betrayal". Former Deputy Daniel Wimberley has asked the States to stick with an independent commission and urged them not to appoint Senator Philip Bailhache as chairman.

Last year it was agreed to take the matter out of the hands of States Members, and put it in independent hands. But Privileges and Procedures Committee changed the original plans to allow politicians to sit on the commission.

The Committee President explained "The States has a long tradition of failing to reform itself, and we had to ensure that we didn't avoid all the wrangling and bickering that has scuppered previous reform efforts. Sir Philip Bailhache is the right man for the job. If it was in independent hands, something might actually get done."

And the States of Jersey has decided to delay a debate on government reform as the group responsible needs more time. The Privileges and Procedures Committee said it was looking at a wider review. It said it would be setting up a sub-committee to look at all the issues over the next few months.

A press release explained: "We recommend setting up a committee with broad terms of reference, so we're in a position to think through the various implications and decide based on long-term considerations rather than rush prematurely into precipitate and ill-conceived actions. As far as one can see, in the fullness of time, we will bring propositions to the States, but Rome wasn't built in a day, you know."

Reports came in that the Chief Officer was cancelled at Jersey Airport because of fog. Thick fog on Wednesday meant the figure for the payoff on the resignation of the Chief Officer could not be seen in the States sitting. The poor weather conditions meant that at one point on Wednesday all Ministers were ensuring the question was either delayed or on hold. Other Chief Officer retirement bonuses were also lost in the fog. Meanwhile, on Radio Jersey, Roger Bara put on the song "Pay Misty for Me".

Married women in Jersey to have access to tax affairs. Changes to the tax return form mean married women can get access to their tax affairs. For years, married women have suspected liaisons between their husbands and female clerks at the Income Tax Department at Cyril Le Marquand House, but now those affairs can be made known to them.

The tax return form includes a new box which a woman's husband can sign to give her permission to access their tax husband's tax affairs. There was also a new measure to allow spouses to have separate tax affairs, presumably with male clerks at Cyril le Marquand House. The tax department said it would allow "autonomy and privacy" in conducting their tax affairs.

Jersey Tourism is looking for German-speaking islanders to become tour guides this summer. Jersey Tourism said the island had seen a 23% increase in the number of German visitors in 2011.

A local tour operator has offered to pay for guides to do a tourist guide course at Highlands College. Albert Speer, director of tourism, said: "We had 13,000 German visitors last year and... we are expecting that number to rise." And Charles de Gaulle, the General Manager of tour operator Bonjour, said: "Most German visitors come as part of an organised tour and already we have had more requests for German-speaking guides."We are looking for people who speak German, are confident with people, have good customer service skills and are able to take charge of a group.

Customs Officials have already been trained with a repertoire of questions translated into German, which can be fielded at suspicious looking Germans. They will stop anyone with the name "Adolf" and ask "Halt! lassen Sie mich die Unterlagen für Ihren Schnurrbart sehen", which in English translates to "Halt! let me see the documentation for your moustache."

Other German words for tourist guides include:

Abfahrt - departure

Autofahrt - car ride

Bootsfahrt - boat ride

Butterfahrt - trip to buy duty-free merchandise

Busfahrt - bus ride

Extrafahrt - additional ride

Fahrtenmesser - travelling knife

Fahrtroute - travel route

Fahrtwind - airstream, air turbulence

Familienfahrt - family trip

Gratisfahrt - free trip

Kaffeefahrt - cheap bus trip combined with a sales pitch

Kamerafahrt - tracking shot

Klassenfahrt - field trip

Lustfahrt - pleasure cruise

Radfahrt - bike trip

Seefahrt - navigation

Sternfahrt - car rally

Tagfahrt - day trip

Taxifahrt - taxi ride

Testfahrt - test drive

Trampfahrt - sea cargo hauling to multiple ports

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