A weekly look at the Manx political scene in which Ewan Gawne talk to the politicians who are raising the issues and asking the questions in Tynwald, the House of Keys and also looking at local political issues around the island.
Posted by EwanG at Monday, March 30th, 2020 1:00pm
As Manx life continues to change day-by day, we reflect on a week of decisions designed to keep people safe and the economy afloat during the pandemic.
An economic intervention of more than £100 million is approved by Tynwald, the food retail industry pleads for calm and respect for its workers, and despite what you may think, one of the Island's broadband providers insists its network hasn't reached capacity.
Posted by EwanG at Monday, March 23rd, 2020 2:45pm
The Island’s chief medical director explains why ‘flattening the curve’ is a must – we speak to a young person here with a mild case of COVID-19 who’s pleading with the fit and healthy to take the virus seriously. Graih outlines the challenges faced in helping the homeless self-isolate. And a Port Erin commissioner explains more about plans for the Cosy Nook.
Posted by EwanG at Monday, March 16th, 2020 4:14pm
Should Arbory, Rushen, Port Erin, Port St Mary, Malew and Castletown all join forces to create a new local authority? The idea’s been floated by a commissioner ahead of the local elections in April. On this episode of Agenda we speak to representatives of all five authorities to see what they think about the proposal.
Posted by EwanG at Monday, March 9th, 2020 12:14pm
Villagers in Laxey hear the pros and cons of plans to put a sewage treatment works in the heart of the community. The future of Port St Mary’s bowling green is up in the air. And, a cross-local authority forum is under threat.
Posted by EwanG at Monday, March 2nd, 2020 12:48pm
The leader of the Manx Labour Party, who helped rebuild lower Pulrose in the mid 1990’s, is calling on government and local authorities to invest in creating more public homes. We speak to recently-retired politician David Cretney.
And changes to the bus timetable, which upset some in Jurby, will 'lead to more efficient use of resources' say infrastructure bosse
Posted by EwanG at Wednesday, February 19th, 2020 5:46pm
'It’s not the right site' - that’s what some in Laxey have said about the proposed location of a new sewage plant for village, designed to end the discharge of raw waste. Progress of the draft Eastern Area Plan has reached a new juncture, we find out what comes next.
Posted by EwanG at Monday, February 17th, 2020 1:20pm
Homeless charity Graih has warned the quality of cheap private accommodation can be very poor, and landlords often seek to exploit vulnerable tenants.
Policy and Reform Minister Chris Thomas says work is ongoing to improve the quality of accommodation in the private sector, including a landlord registration bill.
Posted by EwanG at Monday, February 10th, 2020 12:38pm
Local authorities are getting worried about the closure of village post offices, with fears the situation in Ballasalla could soon spread to other areas. We hear from Malew Commissioners, the Isle of Man Municipal Association, and from post office chair Julie Edge.
A delayed social housing project in Braddan costing more than £4.5 million is set to provide tenants with homes that exceed the standard for energy efficiency – we speak to commissioners on site.
Posted by EwanG at Monday, February 3rd, 2020 12:39pm
Douglas residents will pay out around £12 million in rates across the next financial year, but where does that money go? We speak to councillors about the budget for 2020/21, and find out how the local authority intends to use public finances.
Posted by EwanG at Friday, January 24th, 2020 4:38pm
The owners of Caley’s Stores have decided to call it a day, causing an outpouring of sadness in the Sulby community. We hear why the old adage use it or lose it rings true. The Arbory/Rushen merger prompts talk over the future for local authorities, and whilst rates are being set, we hear what's going with attempts to change the way the property tax is assessed.
Posted by EwanG at Monday, January 20th, 2020 12:27pm
Should MHKs be paid more, and the financial boost for being a departmental member dropped? It’s one of the ideas put forward in a report into the pay of Tynwald members. Some say this could re-balance executive and scrutiny roles by removing the ‘sweetener’ that comes with joining government. Others feel the report missed an opportunity to cut politicians' salaries and save public money.
Posted by EwanG at Monday, January 13th, 2020 12:43pm
The Post Office says nothing is decided on the future of the Ballasalla counter, but residents have serious concerns about the prospect of losing a 'vital service'. We hear from some of the more than 100 people who turned up to a coffee morning last week to discuss the issue. Public sector rents are to go up 1.9% in April. Infrastructure Minister Ray Harmer explains how the increase is calculated, whilst MHK Rob Callister challenges the DoI's figures.
Posted by EwanG at Monday, January 6th, 2020 11:39am
The man who's served as clerk to three authorities in the north of the Island for almost half a century will step down next year. John Quayle, who's 80, has managed the books at Jurby Commissioners since 1973, and says at his age, it was time to 'pack it up' and will step down in February. We speak to him about his time in local politics.
Posted by EwanG at Monday, November 18th, 2019 2:13pm
Manx Utilities is aiming to build a new sewage treatment plant in Laxey next year, at the cairns site by the village harbour. But a residents group is opposed to the plans, and wants the ‘Best For Laxey’ – we’ll look at both sides of the debate, and hear the position of Garff Commissioners
And commissioners in Ramsey welcome news there’ll be flood defences built in the town, but want to make sure any scheme is attractive, and 'done to the right standard'. We hear from local authority members and a constituency MHK.
Posted by EwanG at Monday, November 11th, 2019 1:24pm
An investigation is called by Malew Commissioners over fears decisions were made without approval. Slow down say Ballabeg residents to speeding motorists. And Douglas Council plans for a Bee Gees statue on the promenade.
Posted by EwanG at Monday, November 4th, 2019 12:43pm
An Onchan commissioner resigns, accusing board members of trying to undermine him and creating a bad atmosphere at meetings. But the local authority's chairman insists members are told to treat each other with respect, and heated discussion is part of the job. Two politicians/businessmen unveil plans for a £6 million commercial sports centre at King Williams College, insisting the facility will be available to all on an equal basis. We speak to commissioner David Parnell, and MHK Ralph Peake.
Posted by EwanG at Monday, October 28th, 2019 1:57pm
'It was like a courtroom' say some who took part in the Eastern area Plan inquiry, we hear from those who felt they were up against it. A housing development in Marown has left residents feeling sorely disappointed. Is the fracking debate a distraction? And all change at Malew Commissioners, but the new chairman insists there’s no lack of experience.
Posted by EwanG at Monday, October 21st, 2019 2:26pm
A new skate park in Castletown is just weeks away from completion. We speak to the commissioner behind the project, and those building the 'world class facility' at Poulsom Park.
Resident in Port St Mary fear a main road could collapse if development on the Underway continues – and Douglas Council wants to see changes to the way social housing is funded.
Posted by EwanG at Monday, October 14th, 2019 2:20pm
Villagers in Laxey demand answers from Manx Utilities and government ministers over flooding which devastated homes along Glen Road. We get the reaction of residents, commissioners and MHKs from last week's public meeting.
And what impact will the 'climate emergency' have on plans to zone swathes of greenfield sites under the Eastern Area Plan?
Posted by EwanG at Monday, October 7th, 2019 1:19pm
Garff Commissioners say the devastating floods in Laxey could’ve been avoided, and want government to take action, we hear from chairman Jamie Smith, and local authority member Nigel Dobson.
Policy and Reform Minister Chris Thomas puts forward a plan to modernise rates, but critics aren’t sure it’s any better than the current system. We speak to Mr Thomas and Ramsey MHK Lawrie Hooper.
Posted by EwanG at Monday, September 30th, 2019 1:24pm
How does looking for gas in the Manx seabed fit into the government’s commitment to make the Island carbon neutral? MHK Ralph Peake and MLC Jane Poole-Wilson, members of the climate change transformation team, attempt to answer that question.
And they could call men to arms, quell riots and light the beacons to warn of invasion – we speak to a new Captain of the Parish for Lonan, Stephen Carter.
Posted by EwanG at Monday, September 23rd, 2019 2:00pm
Is the Island’s population really going to grow enough to need the more than 2,000 new homes earmarked in the draft Eastern Area Plan? Or are government hopes a distant reality?
Our guest, author of the 2016 Isle of Man Population Atlas, statistician Paul Craine seeks to answer those questions.
Posted by EwanG at Monday, September 16th, 2019 1:46pm
The Isle of Man Green Party is gearing up for its first conference this weekend, with community, clean energy and climate change all on the bill. We hear from party leader Andrew Newtown, and deputy leader Lamara Craine. Plans to turn Ramsey Courthouse into a community hub get the green light from planners. And there’s now a full set of Malew Commissioners after a by-election last week, we speak to the winners.
Posted by EwanG at Monday, September 9th, 2019 1:01pm
We hear from the five candidates vying for the three vacant seats on the board of Malew Commissioners. With a by-election taking place on Thursday, the five hopefuls explain why they're standing. And in the second half of Agenda, foodbank users speak out about poverty on the Isle of Man, whilst the government insists steps are being taken to address the issue.
Posted by EwanG at Monday, September 2nd, 2019 12:42pm
Do you know how much local authority members claim? Should they take allowances for attending meetings? Some do, and some don’t, we hear why. Commuters are fed up with the TT access road, but changes aren't likely to be made until 2022. Finally, residents by Ballakermeen High School fear traffic calming measures could lead to further congestion despite claims to the contrary.
Posted by EwanG at Monday, August 19th, 2019 12:19pm
Commissioners in Castletown feel planners are frustrating efforts by developers to build new homes in the ancient capital. Those behind plans for glamping in Groudle explain more about the project, and we speak to the MHK, turned Health Minister, who promised to bring the issue of local authority reform to Tynwald every year unless 'sufficient progress is made'.
Posted by EwanG at Monday, August 12th, 2019 12:15pm
The roll out of Bus Vannin’s 'dial-a-ride' minibus service has caused a stir in the north, where Jurby residents are unhappy with the loss of regular timetabled service, and a taxi driver leaves Kirk Michael due to ‘unfair competition’.
And should the Tynwald ombudsman be able to investigate complaints against local authorities and statutory boards?
Posted by EwanG at Monday, August 5th, 2019 12:45pm
A local authority merger special, as Arbory and Rushen Parish Commissioners investigate a possible union.
Posted by EwanG at Friday, July 26th, 2019 10:50am
Businesses are suffering from the works along Douglas promenade, but who should be offering them compensation? Douglas Council says it shouldn't have to, but government should. Onchan Commissioners are wary of major development in their district under the Eastern Area Plan, and a play park revamp in Port Erin has come at an unfortunate time.
Posted by Sarah Hendy at Monday, July 22nd, 2019 5:00pm
‘Unparliamentary language’, allegations of institutional bullying and increasing Douglas Promenade refurbishment costs are the topics of this week Agenda, with Alex Wotton.