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Innovation Fund proceedings: No disclosure

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IT would be inappropriate to disclose the outcome of proceedings against civil servants involved in the running of the now frozen Jersey Innovation Fund, the chairman of the States Employment Board has said.

Senator Andrew Green

Senator Andrew Green said that procedures had been changed after concerns were raised about the fund, which provided grants to start-up businesses.

And he added that the loss from the fund would be ‘substantially lower’ than first feared, as some loans had been repaid and there had been a £1.6 million ‘write-back’ to the fund.

Responding to a question from Deputy Jeremy Maçon on Monday, Senator Green said: ‘The investigation was concluded and as a result of its findings appropriate action was taken in line with the States of Jersey disciplinary procedures and policies, including the code of conduct.

‘It would obviously not be appropriate for me to publish the report or disclose the outcome of proceedings concerning any officers, as this would constitute a breach of personal data.’

In 2017 the Comptroller and Auditor General released a report criticising the operation of the fund and stated that about £1.4 million given out to start-up companies might never be recovered.

Following the CAG’s report three reviews relating to the fund were carried out – one of officer responsibility, one of political responsibility and one of other similar funds which issue taxpayers’ money.

Deputy Maçon said the public and Members had the right to know the key findings of the report.

Senator Green replied that there was a ‘very clear report from the CAG which is in the public domain’ which changed how the Innovation Fund was run.

Krysta Eaves

By Krysta Eaves
author

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