Covid-19 Coronavirus

Chief Minister appoints new Policy and Reform Minister and Infrastructure Minister

Wednesday, 3 June 2020

Chief Minister Howard Quayle MHK has today announced that Tim Baker MHK will become the new Minister for Infrastructure and Ray Harmer MHK will become the new Minister for Policy and Reform.

The changes to the Council of Ministers follow last week’s dismissal of Chris Thomas MHK, who had held the position of Minister for Policy and Reform.

Minister Harmer has been Minister for Infrastructure since 2016. Minister Baker has previously held positions as Chair of the Planning Committee and was a member of the Department of Infrastructure and Department of Environment, Food and Agriculture. His most recent position was as chair of Manx Utilities.

A new chair of Manx Utilities, as well as replacements into the departmental positions, will be announced over the next week.

The Chief Minister said:

'I am delighted to welcome Tim to the Council of Ministers. He takes on some challenging schemes, including our flagship regeneration of Douglas Promenade, delivery of the new ferry terminal in Liverpool and the removal of the silt from Peel Marina.

'I know that from his position as a department member he will have detailed knowledge of their progress and will be able to hit the ground running.

'Minister Harmer is warmly welcomed to the Cabinet Office, where again there are significant challenges, particularly in kick-starting our legislation programme which had been temporarily halted by the outbreak of COVID-19.

'We have great ambitions to deliver for our residents and while the pandemic knocked us off course, we are now determined to finish the delivery of our Programme for Government.'

Minister Harmer said:

'The Policy and Reform portfolio is broad and varied. This administration has a great deal it still wishes to deliver, and for me this will include work on gas regulation, helping people out of poverty and negotiations with the BBC. We also need to move forward to deliver our challenging legislation programme.

'I wish Minister Baker every success in completing the projects that have substantially progressed at the Department of Infrastructure and I look forward to regular updates at Council.'

Minister Baker added:

'I am delighted to be asked to take on this exciting and challenging Ministerial role, which will build on the experience I have gained in working closely with Minister Harmer over almost four years as DoI member with responsibility for Ports, and also latterly for Highways.

'The Department of Infrastructure is integral to delivering essential services to the public of the Isle of Man through each of its divisions. Indeed its response to COVID-19 has shown the ability of its people to provide critical infrastructure solutions in a flexible and innovative manner to sustain and protect our community.

'Solid foundations for the future have been laid by the work that has been done since 2016 but we still have a great deal to deliver over the remaining time of this administration, including several major ongoing projects. I am very much looking forward to working with the whole DoI team to drive the department forward and to completing the delivery of our ambitious programme.'

The ministers take up their positions with immediate effect.

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