Election Manifesto of Gary Webb
My name is Gary Webb but most of you know me as Guido and I would like to put my name forward for nomination as an MLA in the forthcoming elections.
I left school with good CSE Grades, I didn’t go to College or University – instead the University of Life as a 16yr old Solider. I first came to the Islands in 1987, as a young 18yr old Royal Engineer, before completing a further 5 voluntary tours based in Stanley with EOD. Not only did I love the Islands, but I found the love of my life. On completion of 11yrs service, completing my childhood ambition, I moved to the Islands. After a brief spell working on the North Camp road, what followed was 22yrs serving the Community to the best of my ability as a Police Officer. Now working for FIMCo I have tried to carry on that mindset.
I am a man of my own mind, I will stand up for what I believe in, I have no qualms in putting my head above the parapet to be heard, at times when difficult decisions need to be made. I try to see and say things as they are and not “gloss” thing’s over or brush under the carpet. If a job needs to get done, it will get done right the first-time round.
I didn’t attend the briefings and lectures laid on for possible candidates, whether right or wrong I felt that potential candidates would be indoctrinated on “this is how things work so don’t try and change anything.” That’s not me.
My points for standing are such –
I continue to be frustrated seeing issues that matter to the electorate pushed aside because 8 people think they know better
It is time for locals to stop being pushed aside for jobs in favour of oversea experts. Directorships should be locals, Line Mangers should be locals, to ensure career succession to be planned. Over exuberant qualifications and 5-10year job experience that some posts are being advertised at which clearly isn’t being aimed at filling a position locally needs to end. Our Children that go away to college or Uni need to know that as soon as they have finished their education there is a job for them to come back to (if they wish) not in 5 years’ time. There was a time where experience was learned on the job, local knowledge far and away outshines the Expert, and has been proved time and again.
This is an important part of Falkland life and with planning and mentoring of our younger generation we have a future for them that they can be a major part of.
I have real concerns with the influx of workers coming in, it won’t be long before there is no job for our Children leaving School to go into. Moderation is key.
Road Traffic Ordinance is not fit for purpose. This is dated at 1948, wow!! In those days there would have been a handful of vehicles within the Islands, now there are Hundreds, with many families having two or three parked outside their front gate. When a piece of the Ordinance for front tyres states – it must be pneumatically filled (filled with air), and nothing else then we have an issue. Many other Ordinances have been changed so why not something that could play a significant role in people’s safety.
Telecoms – Competition should not be discouraged but encouraged, that’s how prices reduce. We should not be scared of Starlink but embrace it and see where it can take us, maybe in unison with SURE. I will be pushing for a test to be undertaken to ascertain the viability of this additional service. An amendment to the Telecoms Ordinance can easily be achieved.
Housing – the concept of bidding for plots of land makes no sense. Land size of Small, Medium or Large with fixed prices is fair and simple. First time buyers being outbid for land by those who already have land or have sold their land to move to another location is wrong in every aspect. Long term tenants in FIG houses will be given the option to buy, and those FIG Houses that are uninhabited due to requiring works will be brought back online within this term.
Flights – the Airbridge needs to be addressed, for what we pay it is a poor service and getting worse. I would like to see a Local Flight Rep based in Brize Norton, so a point of contact is present for all incoming and outgoing flights, to deal with any issues that may occur. With Covid PCR tests now a requirement to return to the Islands, as has been witnessed so very recently with delays these can become expensive especially for a family of four. I will propose that should you be delayed through no fault of your own, Government will reimburse you for your Covid Tests.
Latam Flight – Covid is here for the long term, and it is something we need to live with and learn to adapt too, for that reason we strongly need to look at reopening of this service. However, although easy to say, we must be mindful that as an Island we have been relatively successful in coping with the disease and should not look to jeopardise ourselves. Loosing income is hard, for anybody or any business but loosing life is harder!
Projects – Major projects have been set – I support the Building of the new port, but like everybody else is becoming exasperated with the length of time it has taken to get where we are. This now needs an injection of speed and importance to get things moving. A figure needs to be set and agreed which will not see an increase due to any delays. A sports arena will be a greatly valued asset to the Islands and I fully support this initiative as I do the New residential care building for our older generation and those in need of assistance, something many of you may need later in life.
I do have great concerns of the £11-16m Budget that this set at, it is far way and above over budget already and needs to be reined into a single digit, and if this means looking for a new builder then so be it. We do not have an open cheque book and fiscal prudence is required to protect all our futures.
Pensions – an embarrassment, left and deflected for so long. Pensions are in the interest of everyone, whether you are 18 or 64. To of given your whole life to live and work within this community for the better of your compatriots, don’t we deserve to be able to live our remaining years at a level of dignity that we can afford. Surely somewhere within our Budget we can find money to address this.
Our Export Market – Fishing, continuing to see quality product going North, but mindful of keeping stocks under control. Supporting the Farmers, with their wool, FIMCo with the Meat, all 3 of which brings money back into the Islands, gives employment and career opportunities to many.
WBS – a second boat, if this is not needed now then I don’t know when.
We have to protect the environment with support through grants to enhance our recycling.
There are many other issues to cover, improvement to Banking, working with the Chamber of Commerce to support our local businesses and assessing how as a Government we can help, looking at the vast size of Government, and just as important being open and talking to all sectors.
In my 26yrs living here, I have seen many elections, all promising the Earth, some delivering but with many falling flat, I don’t intend to be part of the latter.
I know I would be only 1 man in a field of 7 other MLA’s, I’m not one to promise the world and fail to deliver, I will fight my corner for what I believe in not what I am told too believe in. I love my current job and would miss it immensely if elected, but now maybe is a time to take a leap where a straight-talking lad didn’t think he could go. I may not get any votes, I may get 1 or I may get enough, either way I will give whatever comes my way my full attention and service to duty.