Civil service £13,000 flights: I apologise, says Mike King

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Economic Development chief executive Mike King

A SENIOR civil servant embroiled in the flight costs scandal has apologised to the public for what he has called ‘an error of judgment’.

Economic Development chief executive Mike King’s apology to Islanders comes a week after this newspaper exclusively revealed that he and Locate Jersey’s director of inward migration, Wayne Gallichan, had spent almost £13,000 of taxpayers’ money flying on fully flexible return business-class tickets to South Africa.

And on Friday it emerged that the two men had been booked to play golf on their arrival at Cape Town, despite saying that they went business-class so that they were fresh to start work immediately.

States chief executive John Richardson has now launched an investigation into the case, while Economic Development Minister Lyndon Farnham said that the matter was now out of his hands but that he hoped that the outcome of that investigation would be made public.

Read a full Saturday Interview with Wayne Gallichan in this weekend's JEP.

 

 

 

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Comments for: "Civil service £13,000 flights: I apologise, says Mike King"

Finding Me:Mo

This is a far greater problem than a couple of high priced tickets and some golf 'jollies'. In a commercial world this is something the Chairman would ask ,'what exactly did you get out of this ' and expect some positive and immediate outcomes.

The MAJOR pachyderm infront of the telly is that these are CIVIL SERVANTS not real commercial employees. So the problem is the deeply confused state that the disaster that the States of Jersey has recently become . They are being told 'act commercially','save every penny you can' , or 'make a profit' ,' generate income' or even worse being converted into true commercial bodies but run by 'half way house' civil servants.

This is a fundamental leadership problem at the highest level ...political!

Tony B

So when are you sending in the refund cheque?

The Moaning Old Bugger

Not accepted by me. It would of been accepted if he had done it first time he got found out. The only option now is for him to resign, as for the other one sack him now

Oldwoman

Glad their sorry,now pay back the money you robbed from the people of Jersey, then do the right thing, and resign. If it is felt the police should look into the theft, I for one will not complain

Scrutineer

This looks very strange "And on Friday it emerged that the two men had been booked to play golf on their arrival at Cape Town, despite saying that they went business-class so that they were fresh to start work immediately." To whom did they say this?

Realist

Why just concentrate on these two unfortunates, held in the glare of media headlights? Though it's a juicy story for our local media, golf to settle the mind before the task at hand and business class tickets, there are far more pressing matters, involving States expenditure of tens or hundreds of millions on various projects, from cycle paths, village improvement schemes, a £45 million new school and the hospital at around £500 million,that deserve more attention.

No Axe to Grind

The JEP has done some investigative journalism. Great. About time.

This case, bad as it is, is the tip of a very large iceberg. It has been going on for the last 20 years, getting worse. We need a Cyril Le Marquand in the States to sort out this cultural problem. What chance of that? I don't see anyone coming close.

Ramlow

Just check on BBC Radio Jersey morning programme of 26 Feb at 1.20.00 in. Deputy Norton is convinced that within two hours of arrival this pair of civil servants are to deal with business at the "very TOP TABLE". The only top table in view so far is the view of Table Mountain from the infamous golf course which magnetised our two civil servants more or less upon immediate arrival in Cape Town.

If our politicians have indeed been deceived, they should man up and take action.

jerseythepartiesover

Look let us get to the important things, who won? They went to South Africa and back on our money, we should at least get to know the outcome!!!!

constables out

"Brown nose" Norton speaks again!! Wonder what his list of achiements will be listed when looking to be re elected?

Oldwoman

I must have missed it, I never heard him on the media or in the square, who did he say sorry to. We want at the very least a public apology from both these men, and then sack them.

N. Pearce

A resignation (without compensation) would be the minimum requirement.

Jean P

This is the tip of the iceberg. King and Gallichan spend a lot of time on the golf course. Its why they like to sponsor the Jersey Golf Open - so they can play in it with some professional players. £100k I heard is spent on that!!

JEP should ask Gallichan to justify his playing in over the last few years. If he played with clients then so be it. If he played at all on SoJ taxpayer time with people who were not his clients then he should be sacked.

C Le Verdic

Nice work if you can get it!

Is all this golfing taking place in their leisure time?

This really makes the constant assertion by the ruling classes that the workers in Jersey have to tighten their belts and share the hardships of the current economic situation an absolute joke. Where's Corbel when we need him, or is he playing golf somewhere else?

peppermint

I feel they should be sacked. Our tax money should not be used for these guys to go on jollies. This is very annoying and they should be ashamed of themselves.

peppermint

£13,000 on flights alone.. It would be interesting to see how much was spent on everything else, posh hotel bills, posh resultant bills, all that lovely South African wine, all on us tax payers. Where I work (corporate world) you have a £25 budget for dinner when you travel for work. It doesn't matter if you are a trainee or a director. You have a budget for flights and hotels etc etc.. This should be the same for these guys.

C Le Verdic

'Where I work (corporate world) you have a £25 budget for dinner when you travel for work'

Unfortunately, the golfing pair probably got their inspiration from the corporate world of not so very long ago (and indeed persisting even now in many quarters).

peppermint

I agree, things are changing now in the private sector. The public sector needs to as well

RaVen

Its a complete P**s take and as a working class person here in Jersey on minimum wage, I actually found this to be very insulting.

At the very least, they should be made to face a disciplinary with a severe grilling and made to pay some of this money back

N. Pearce

It is now time to take a good look at what our government actually does. There must be many unnecessary things that shouldn't be undertaken by government. Let us cut government back to the bone with minimal interference from them into our private lives. It is not the duty of government to tell us how to live, for instance, which they seem very keen to do.

cancer

A very fair point. Sadly, we are now infested with "Agenda People" who will, eventually , determine what sort of chairs we should it on and what we MUST eat for dinner.

Sadly, the SoJ has chosen to employ these fanatics. We should therefore dig our own bunkers and hope that, eventually, common sense will prevail. I'm not optimistic, though.

Jean P

It's quite good fun looking at the twitter accounts of these people. You can learn so much from their ego puffing. And so little. But at leasts Wayne's 568 followers know what he likes. But a question....

Why on the 13th February did Wayne Gallichan retweet Alan Wood's message stating "I’m looking forward to representing Jersey at the SAVCA conference in CT. Jersey has a compelling message to share. " But a few weeks later Wayne had to go out to South Africa at vast vast expense with his boss to play golf. If there is somebody (Alan Wood) already one presumes in situ in CT and already capable why didn't he attend the Wayne-King Cape Town jolly instead. No golf probably at the SAVCA event!!

C Le Verdic

I see that Wayne tweeted 'See you at #PDAC2016 :)' which appears to be taking place right now.

However, it doesn't look like their golf is until June (maybe a bit cold in Toronto at this time of year) 'Mining Matters is excited to announce a new venue to celebrate our 10th annual Diamond in the Rough Golf Classic! Join us on June 16, 2016 at Cedar Brae Golf Club'

Any redactions now in anyone's diary, I wonder?

It doesn't conflict with The #AcornJerseyOpen 2016 (which) takes place at La Moye Golf Club 8-10 June!

Abaddon

Sadly it is a States culture thing, going on for decades, the islanders make it, we spend it on jollies.

If the JEP really want to get to the JOLLY root of the problem, can I suggest putting in freedom of information requests for three easy to find pieces of information?

1) How much the States preferred travel agency spent on behalf of travel from August 2014 to August 2015 and from August 2015 to end of February 2016 we know how many millions departments spent as published by the Jersey Evening Post previously, see below.

2) The travel agency can also supply a breakdown of department executives and other staff, including quangos, and individual politicians of cost of travel, accommodation incurred, not forgetting of course and including credit cards ( held by states employees and states members ) expenditure paid for independently of air flights and advanced hotel costs.

3) An explanation regarding the policy on travel expenses by the public sector and politicians and who actually organises and gives permission for trips to take place in the public interest and who has responsible to check that the benefits are worth the expense as in a private company ?

JEP Story: Travel and trips cost taxpayers millions and the cost increasing as the figures prove.

Total departmental expenditure on travel and accommodation expenses, which in 2012 amounted to £2.6m, in 2013 £2.8m, and from 1 September 2013 to 31 August 2014 came to £2.2m – upwards of £7 million over the three-year period following the November 2011 elections.

http://jerseyeveningpost.com/news/2015/10/01/ministers-spend-almost-80000-in-2014-on-travel-accommodation-and-expenses/

Tickle

If this is in anyway true I must admit we face a crisis in the house, or the house is rotten to the core.

Sugar tax I think we need a tax on politicians and there expenses.

Every pound they spend 30p has to be put back in the public purse.

why are they allowed to run free with our money.

Break the cycle of these free loaders and make them account for themselves.

Dont you have to give 1000 detials to claim a crappy 130 pound a week income support.

Make them fill out a 30 page expenses form everytime they sneeze.

Our government stinks bout time someone fumigated the states chamber.

Oldwoman

Why have they still not been sacked, get rid!,and make checks on the rest of them,you can bet their all at it.

cancer

So many good comments, sorry I can't highlight them all.

The bottom line is surely that these 2 took the maximum advantage of their employment rules [air fares, etc.] and then started dissembling about the details. The Golf Day is the killer ... they wanted to be there [to bull***t] and weren't even competent enough to get there to do it. What does that say for a £100K+ 'Executive'?

The costs are a different subject, I'm just talking about competence.