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craggy_steve

Steam Packet to be sold

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@John Wright excellent summaries of situation, and why buying two new boats and waiting for the current UA to expire was not a viable option.

Unfortunately fares will not significantly come down in the short term.

It would be very good if profits from the operation that are recieved by government (after financing obligations) could be ringfenced to be used for upgrading of marine infrastructure (throughout the island) and harbour operations and definitely NOT go into general government coffers...

 

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prices to go up 3.1% a year for the next 8.5 years of the UA just to stand still......

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1 hour ago, woody2 said:

prices to go up 3.1% a year for the next 8.5 years of the UA just to stand still......

so around a 30% increase on current fares then,  i'm glad i fly.

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2 hours ago, woody2 said:

the fare increases are to pay the debt off not to fund new boats......

The current fares do that already. What fare increases are being introduced, other than RPI under UA?

Once the loan s paid off the ship building loan they are going to have to get from someone is going to have to be repaid, presumably over the lifetime of the vessel(s)

Edited by John Wright

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1 hour ago, b4mbi said:

@John Wright excellent summaries of situation, and why buying two new boats and waiting for the current UA to expire was not a viable option.

Unfortunately fares will not significantly come down in the short term.

It would be very good if profits from the operation that are recieved by government (after financing obligations) could be ringfenced to be used for upgrading of marine infrastructure (throughout the island) and harbour operations and definitely NOT go into general government coffers...

As a regular non-business user I would be very pissed off if any profits went into the CS/PS pension pot general government coffers as that would mean I'm being taxed twice.

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1 hour ago, P.K. said:

As a regular non-business user I would be very pissed off if any profits went into the CS/PS pension pot general government coffers as that would mean I'm being taxed twice.

With all due respect they don’t give a toss what you, me or the next person thinks. It’s a revenue stream that will be used in the same way as every other revenue stream. To think otherwise is just folly. 

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13 hours ago, John Wright said:

No, it was agreed after an extended period of uncertainty, when the introduction of competition had bankrupted the Steam Packet, seen the competitor, encouraged by the Harbour Board who built new facilities for it, which ran at loss, change hands several times, but its owners had deep pockets, a series of disastrous second hand boats, an aging fleet and the need for new investment. The Steam Packet, sensibly, wanted a guarantee that if it invested it would not face unfair competition in future.

It was a deal that guaranteed a consistent level of service, fast craft, which the politicians thought we needed.

Although I compare it to a franchise, it isn’t, it’s an agreement that the goverrnment give exclusive link span usage in return for for fleet investment and guaranteed service levels.

There wasn’t a tender exercise, the jurisprudence and rules and regulations have changed since the UA was first introduced to now in terms of what would have to happen. There would have to be one at the end of the UA.

However I suspect IoMG was manipulated to granting it by the then owners. It was a good way to secure the Island life line, but had unintended consequences for the Island and Steam Packet, that were fortuitous, to say the least, if not intended, to its then owners

Jurisprudence or any procurement rules wouldn't stop IOMG from building two vessels providing there was a tender to build them. IOMG could then tender the operational & management part of the required ferry/transport service. IOMSPCo could then bid along with others.

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43 minutes ago, Andy Onchan said:

Jurisprudence or any procurement rules wouldn't stop IOMG from building two vessels providing there was a tender to build them. IOMG could then tender the operational & management part of the required ferry/transport service. IOMSPCo could then bid along with others.

Yes, and No.

They could do all that you say, but awarding the tender to yourself would clearly be open to judicial review on Wednesbury unreasonableness grounds.

And if their decision is overturned, or they unexpectedly awarded the tender to SPCo, they are stuck with two ships for which they have no use. Its a big gamble...

Edited by John Wright

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7 minutes ago, John Wright said:

Yes, and No.

They could do all that you say, but awarding the tender to yourself would clearly be open to judicial review on Wednesbury unreasonableness grounds.

And if their decision is overturned, or they unexpectedly awarded the tender to SPCo, they are stuck with two ships for which they have no use. Its a big gamble...

Calmac recently had a contract awarded to themselves. Granted it was after an official procurement exercise and it was a decision made by Transport Scotland but the end result was the same. 

Edited by Lxxx

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7 minutes ago, John Wright said:

Yes, and No.

They could do all that you say, but awarding the tender to yourself would clearly be open to judicial review on Wednesbury unreasonableness grounds.

And if their decision is overturned, or they unexpectedly awarded the tender to SPCo, they are stuck with two ships for which they have no use. Its a big gamble...

What is unreasonable about protecting a lifeline?

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1 hour ago, Lxxx said:

With all due respect they don’t give a toss what you, me or the next person thinks. It’s a revenue stream that will be used in the same way as every other revenue stream. To think otherwise is just folly. 

Which is why it would piss me off.....

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2 hours ago, WTF said:

so around a 30% increase on current fares then,  i'm glad i fly.

They'll be captive fair game in the same vein as toilet tax, MUA standing charges, vehicle road tax and everything else that gets hiked at will.

The financial well-being of the Island's economy, its residents and anybody interested in coming here on a tourism basis will come a distant second to the potential and thought of all that luvverly wonga for the pension pot. I predict yet another grab.

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Do you think the government will sort the shitty wifi out on the boat?

Do you think they'll be wearing the bus drivers uniforms and also have the same shitty attitude, "sorry can't serve you food you don't have the correct change".

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49 minutes ago, Andy Onchan said:

What is unreasonable about protecting a lifeline?

That would be for the Court to decide, but there’s a basic rule preventing some one being a judge in their own cause.

Calmac is interesting, but a very different structure. So the comparison is not direct.

The way Calmac and the Scottish Government work it is that the government owns the boats, the harbours, and the Calmac operating set up, but separately.

Basically the tender is to operate the services at and agreed Service level using the ports and boats provided at the lowest subsidy.

The last time Calmac didn’t win, on the North Link services to Orkney and Shetland, where someone thought they could do it more efficiently, and for less subsidy, the new comer got into trouble and the franchise was ended and the route went back to being operated by Calmac. 2011 tender saw it going to Serco, who just took over the ships, timetables, and it ends this year. There’s talk of Calmac taking back public.

Of course, it’s a possibility, the IoM could examine, state ownership of the routes, vessels, and other infrastructure, and let out management or operation for 5 or 10 years at a time.

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8 minutes ago, John Wright said:

That would be for the Court to decide, but there’s a basic rule preventing some one being a judge in their own cause.

Calmac is interesting, but a very different structure. So the comparison is not direct.

The way Calmac and the Scottish Government work it is that the government owns the boats, the harbours, and the Calmac operating set up, but separately.

Basically the tender is to operate the services at and agreed Service level using the ports and boats provided at the lowest subsidy.

The last time Calmac didn’t win, on the North Link services to Orkney and Shetland, where someone thought they could do it more efficiently, and for less subsidy, the new comer got into trouble and the franchise was ended and the route went back to being operated by Calmac. 2011 tender saw it going to Serco, who just took over the ships, timetables, and it ends this year. There’s talk of Calmac taking back public.

Of course, it’s a possibility, the IoM could examine, state ownership of the routes, vessels, and other infrastructure, and let out management or operation for 5 or 10 years at a time.

I think that would be the best possible scenario for the island. In my opinion.

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