Friday, 15 February 2013

Funny Old World

Jersey's first public electric charging bay has gone live in a St Helier's car park. The two charging points at Sand Street car park allow motorists to electrocute themselves when they come to go shopping. It is part of a pledge by Jersey's government to "significantly" reduce carbon emissions, and cut down on the traffic congestion in St Helier.

Deputy Lewis said this would be the first of a network of electrocution charging points in the island. He said there would be two bays in each of five St Helier multi-storey car parks. Parking in the electric bay is half the cost of parking in a normal bay, but the funeral costs have to be born by the estate of the deceased motorists themselves.

Jersey police have increased patrols in a town shopping area in response to concerns about anti-social behaviour. The increased presence in St Helier's Wests Centre came about after shopkeepers voiced their concerns. Businesses owners said teenagers were gathering in alleyways and doorways, putting people off shopping, although they weren't actually doing anything illegal. "There's nothing worse than a hoodie standing in a doorway out of the rain to keep dry," said 90 year old local retailer Irma Fessputt, "and it should be stopped. Bring back National Service, that's what I say. And flog them."

A Jersey caterer said there was no horsemeat in its school meals after checking its supplies. He did not believe the meals had been affected by the scandal that has seen horsemeat passed as beef. "This is a story that's just galloping away", he said, "but rest assured, for us, it is definitely not horses for courses."

The government minister in charge of Jersey's bus service is due for a good grilling next week. The Transport and Technical Services minister is facing a panel of politicians who want to know the latest on how new bus operator LibertyBus is getting on. After his grilling, he may turn up as part of the Grouville Grilled Gourmet range of local foods in a supermarket near you.

A planned referendum on electoral reform in Jersey is attracting criticism from backbench politicians. There are calls to simplify the question that will be put to the public. Deputy Geoff Southern wants a simple yes or no question, rather like "Should I keep my pay rise?". It is widely rumoured that the Deputy wants to be the new "Face of L'Oréal" in Jersey, as his reply to that question was "Yes. Because I'm worth it."

The new bus operator LibertyBus is putting forward alterations to bus timetables from March. It is the second stage in a series of proposed changes towards a vision of a better bus service that meets the needs of Jersey. The first stage was bus delays, buses travelling off on quite different routes, buses failing to pick up people, and electronic notice boards at Liberation Station showing no times or the wrong times.

Changes include - Services 1 and 9: Revised timetables incorporating additional journeys and hourly Sunday services. Anglican Sunday services will be taken by the Reverend Adam Smallbone, who will be seconded to Jersey from St Saviour in the Marshes in East London. Catholic services will be taken by Father Ted Crilly.

Restrictions on how much Channel Island postal companies can charge for stamps and other services will be removed under plans by the regulator. "They can charge more," said the regulator, "and it will be my job to just instead focus on 'quality of service through measuring performance'. And I have as much idea what that phrase means as you do."

And finally, journalist Leah Mcgraph Goodman will be returning to Jersey. She had been refused entry to the Island after her exposé that some books in the Island had banned from sale after it was found they contained up to 60% horsemeat.

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