Click the image above to download a full transcript of this year's throne speech.
“The challenge of our time is the opportunity of our time.”
Throne Speech Highlights, November 7, 2014
“The Government’s programme for the year ahead will continue to focus on the need to grow the economy and stabilise government finances while implementing a broad range of common sense, progressive measures to improve the quality of life for all Bermudians.
“Bermudians can expect social support programmes to continue, new protections for the vulnerable, reforms to strengthen government accountability, worker retraining initiatives, the end of conscription and reform of marijuana laws.”
- Development of continuous community-youth communications and supportto counter the influence of gang culture
- Activation of Part 2 of National Training Plan to support the training and entry of workers into the workforce
- Expansion of Career Pathways programme to introduce M3 students to career employment experiences, helping them to focus on post-secondary education and career opportunities
- Development of a National Youth policy to give young Bermudians greater voice in decisions affecting their lives and the life of the country
- A new Energy Act to increase competition between power producers, in keeping with Government strategy to reduce energy costs
- Amendments to the Defence Act to eliminate conscription and provide for an all-volunteer regiment
- Bermuda Regiment to assume responsibility for inshore maritime patrols
- Amendments to Pharmacy and Poison Act to allow medical use of specific forms of cannabis-containing products
- New Police caution policy granting officers greater discretion in dealing with first-time offenders who might otherwise have been charged with cannabis possession
- Expansion of ambulance service to improve emergency response in the Easter and Western ends of the Island
- PATI to be operational on April 1st, 2015
- Grocers to extend 10% discount Wednesday through the holiday season, to February 15, 2015
- Amendments to Motor Car Act to allow roadside breath testing for safer roads
- A Children Amendment Act requiring courts to offer separating parents mediation for agreement on child custody and access matters prior to the issuance of co-parenting orders.
- Merging of the Orange Valley Centre and the Opportunity Workshop to provide full range of programmes to its cognitively and physically disabled clients
- New Bermuda Health Plan to guide its mission for “Healthy People in Healthy Communities”
- Legislative amendments to give the Bermuda Health Council authority to name and shame employers who don’t provide health insurance for employees
- Request for Proposals to use the ‘finger’ peninsula at the airport for a large-scale solar photovoltaic facility
- Examination of Fixed Penalties Notices allowing Police to issue on-the-spot fines to persons committing minor offences, giving them the opportunity to pay a fine out of court and easing pressure on the court system
- Devolve responsibility of police to attend and investigate minor road traffic accidents to qualified individuals, supporting Bermuda Police Service strategic focus on combating guns, gangs, drugs and violence
- Opening Government Boards to broader public participation
- Amend Criminal Code to outlaw possession of child pornography
- Consultations underway to ease pressures on seniors through a reverse mortgage programme
- Formation of committee to examine domestic violence with a view to strengthening education, protections, support and powers of intervention for victims and perpetrators
- Commitment for a permanent location for Sports Hall of Fame.
“Economic recovery will continue to be the national priority. Without recovery, there can be no broad-based human recovery from the setbacks of recent years.
“Progress in the form of jobs and rising incomes will come as economic activity picks up; building on the strong body of evidence that shows the Island is moving in the right direction.”
- Groundbreaking at Ariel Sands for the start of an $85 million cottage colony development that will create between 50 and 70 jobs during construction.
- Phase 2 Hamilton Princess development creating 250 construction jobs, with the hotel looking to hire 115 staff positions upon project completion scheduled for summer 2015.
- Legislation to host the America’s Cup Finals in 2017 and the America’s Cup World Series Event in 2015
- Legislation to establish a domestic gaming industry.