Positive Action Group - Possan Jantys Jarrooagh

Open, accountable government, rigorous control of public finances, and a fairer society for all.

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Pink Book reveals IOM Government living beyond its means - PART 2

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Our first article (11/09) created quite a stir and so here are some further thoughts…...

A. Public Sector Pensions - Future Funding

It may be that the the mounting Public Sector Pension crisis is worse than thought.

In a detailed document published by the *Public Sector Pensions Authority, "IOM Government Unified Scheme 2011, Annual Report and Accounts 2012-2013" there is a gloomy set of notes at page 30 about the PSP funding gap. It is expected to "increase as a larger proportion of the Scheme's membership reaches retirement and that additional funding will be required from the Treasury".

It's worth reading this page in the Report, if nothing else.

Last Updated on Monday, 20 October 2014 17:55
 

PAG submission on Beneficial Ownership proposals

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The Government recently held a consultation to gather views on the Island’s current regime for identifying the beneficial ownership of companies, and whether a centralised registry of such information would improve transparency. This is in line with the governments G8 commitments.

Attached is both the initial consultation document and the PAG response.

Attachments:
FileFile sizeDownloads
Download this file (beneficialownershipconsultationju.pdf)Beneficial Ownership consultation181 Kb54
Download this file (PAGsubBenOwnsCosFIN280914.pdf)PAG Beneficial Ownership submission33 Kb55
Last Updated on Saturday, 25 October 2014 11:15
 

Judicial Inconsistency - or what?

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eq justIn October 2013 this website published an article "Justice - truth in action"

It made the point that the public needs to have absolute confidence in our system of justice and referred to an inconsistency of approach in the Isle of Man.

Generally our police respond to drug offending with some vehemence as we are reminded this week via a report from EnergyFM:

"A 60-year-old man from Douglas has pleaded guilty to possessing and cultivating cannabis. Joseph Crook appeared at Douglas Courthouse yesterday charged with two offences.  He was stopped on Victoria Road by police on August 23rd who found he had a small amount of cannabis bush in his possession. In court Mr Crook also entered a guilty plea for cultivating four plants at a property in Douglas which were found on the same day. The case has now been adjourned for two weeks to allow the prosecutor to compile more evidence - Mr Crook will next appear in court on October 21st."

Last Updated on Wednesday, 15 October 2014 10:39
 

Bed Thirteen

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(The cardiac recovery ward was short-staffed, struggling along with half its normal staffing , so Sister said. Contemplating the ceiling and infinity. I wasn’t inclined to poetry at the time but the good old subconscious filed away an idea…)

Hello, you Bed Thirteen?
Sister said I should come and
talk to you as I’ve nothing
better to do. I’m on work
experience. you know.Maybe
I might be a nurse one day.
Excuse me. You’re rather faint?
You’re ‘not feeling very well?’
I see, of course, wouldn’t
be, would you? That’s why you’re here.
If you don’t mind me saying
so, you look a little queer.
And Bed Thirteen, well, I mean –
Twelve A would sound lots better,
don’t you think? If I was
In Bed Thirteen, heaven know,
I’d be turning up my toes.
But don’t let me worry you.
You’re ‘going to die?’ Not now,
wait till a real nurse is here.
‘Where are they?’ At lunch, I guess,
left this place a right old mess.
‘Who’s in charge?’ Me, I suppose.
You do look funny! Gobsmacked.
With your jaw dropped open, and
your eyes rolled right up like that.
Anyway, if you haven’t died,
you haven’t lived, they say: the
best night’s sleep you’ve had in years…
(that’s a joke…) Well, please yourself.
I must go. All the best. If
I were you, I’d get some rest.

Jeff Garland

Last Updated on Tuesday, 30 September 2014 22:22
 

Disability and Equality - presentations

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Please find documents used and referred to during our meeting on Disablement and Equality last Monday 22nd September 2014.

Thanks to our speakers, Gareth Foulkes and Paul Becket and everyone else who attended, especially those that contributed so richly to the later debate.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 23 September 2014 13:12
 

Pink Book reveals IOM Government living beyond its means - PART 1

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The annual IOM budget document is commonly referred to as the Pink Book.
 
Politicians see it about a week before it is presented to Tynwald for debate and ultimately approval. The public has access to it after the Treasury Minister's speech and then read or hear comment in the local media.

One PAG supporter decided to take a detailed look at the figures in the 2014-15 Pink Book and using prudent accounting drew some interesting conclusions:

Last Updated on Friday, 12 September 2014 11:09
 

Land Banking - Planning Committee at last wises up to Developers?

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moneyinground
It appears that the Planning Committee has at last rumbled one way property developers play the planning system.

At the August P C Meeting Dandara and Heritage Homes submitted a total of three Douglas planning applications requesting a variation to earlier successful approvals. They wanted to extend the duration of each one by a further 4 years.
 
It's usual for the Committee, in granting approval,  to impose a condition that work must be started within 4 years of the date
of the decision. 
Last Updated on Thursday, 04 September 2014 22:57
 

ONLY LITTLE PEOPLE PAY TAX….

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littlepeoplepaytaxLetter to Isle of Man Newspaper by PAG committee member Chris Blythe (in personal capacity):

I refer to the letter from Alan Croll last week (We’re no secrecy jurisdiction) and the faint aroma of self-interest in his assertion that tax avoidance is common sense as well as perfectly legal, his criticism of Tax Justice Network, and his statement that the Isle of Man is not a secret jurisdiction.

He is quite correct in stating that an economist’s attitude (and clearly his) is that tax avoidance is legal whilst tax evasion is illegal.  However, to the ordinary man in the street, the words avoidance and evasion are remarkably similar – to the point that it is very hard sometimes to distinguish the two, as Gary Barlow and other wealthy” tax avoiders” in the UK have found to their cost. And when HMRC tests (allegedly legal) tax avoidance schemes in court, it is often found that the borderline has been crossed and the intent of the relevant tax laws breached. In those circumstances, avoidance and evasion may be considered two sides of the same coin - “weasel words” designed to cloak the sometimes legal / sometimes slippery practices / sometimes illegal practices of well-paid tax accountants and lawyers looking for opportunities and loopholes in the wording of tax laws.

Last Updated on Thursday, 17 July 2014 22:49
 
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