20 March 2018
Executive Council met today with four items on the Open Agenda.
Council approved the Employment Rights (Minimum Wage) Amendment Regulations 2018 and agreed to prescribe an increase in the Minimum Wage to £3.05 per hour for those aged 18 and over, and £2.10 per hour for those aged 16 and 17. It was agreed that there will be a further review in six months’ time, and that there would be a consistent approach when considering the Minimum Income Standard.
Council then considered and approved the Pension (Amendment) Regulations 2018. The Financial Secretary advised Council that this was a tidying exercise following a recent case involving an individual whose maternity leave did not count for pension purposes. This amendment deals with the anomaly and also provides for similar treatment for those on paternity and adoption leave.
Council approved the establishment of the Airport Trading Account Special Fund to manage the activities of St Helena Airport which became necessary following the start of commercial air services. The funding has previously been managed under the Special Fund – DFID Projects.
Sitting as the Planning Authority, Council was addressed on three applications for outline planning permission as submitted by Connect Saint Helena Ltd to develop sewage treatment facilities for Half Tree Hollow and Jamestown. These were for:
- A standalone plant in Half Tree Hollow
- A standalone plant in Jamestown
- A combination of the two which would see a pipeline installed alongside Jacob’s Ladder, and diverting through the culvert near the bottom and along to an area near the Sand Yard
It was noted that this is a longstanding issue and it has been through many discussion and consultation phases.
Council today, following further extensive discussion, granted outline planning permission as recommended by the Land Planning & Development Control Authority but with enhanced conditions, for the third application i.e. a combined sewage system for both Half Tree Hollow and Jamestown.
Council recognised that this is a very sensitive issue and therefore the enhanced conditions will better inform the detailed designs that will be needed when submitting the application for full planning permission.
In the Closed Session, Council discussed some recent concern about the arrangements for medical referrals, particularly a specific case where it appeared that accommodation was not initially available in South Africa. Council appreciated the need for support and this has recently been put in place. It was reported that in the specific case mentioned, the accommodation provider had made an error rather than SHG.
The meeting closed at 2pm.
20 March 2018