FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 2: If you’re a homeowner, a senior, or gay — or even all three — chances are you’ll like today’s Throne Speech.

But if you enjoy your potato chips and Twinkies, like to smoke or were hoping for a return of cruise ships to Hamilton and St George, you probably aren’t too thrilled.

Governor George Fergusson delivered his first Speech from the Throne under overcast skies and gusty conditions.

Believing that better times are just around the corner, the Governor declared: “Bermuda is poised in the coming year to finally break the grip of this seemingly unending recession.”

Right off the bat, the Governor noted that “for most Bermudians, the only issue that matters in today’s economy is having a decent job”.

Some islanders who have been made redundant, he said, have set their own course by starting their own businesses and Government aims to help by expanding the Economic Empowerment Zones.

For those still mired in the slump and about to lose their home, Government is looking to decrease the seven per cent interest rate on post-judgment debt.

Homeowners could also see benefits from a revitalized real estate market.

Governor Fergusson gave a nod to helping both the tourism and real estate industries by providing “a form of residency” for tourists who invest in Bermuda with the purchase of tourism-zoned units.

And seniors who are also homeowners also look set to benefit from an amendment to the Financial Assistance Regulations, which will allow some to receive financial aid.

There is lot for seniors to like besides being eligible for financial help; having HIP and FutureCare policyholders get their generic drugs free is a huge deal.

Government will also provide free sightseeing tours for seniors stuck in elder care, so they can get out and enjoy some fresh air.

Seniors — along with gays — will benefit from a long talked about revision to the Human Rights Act, which will finally provide protection against discrimination based on sexual orientation or age.

Having once been killed by the PLP’s Central Committee in 2006 and then suffering a defeat in Parliament, Governor Fergusson said “Bermuda’s Human Rights Act 1981 no longer meets the standard for human rights in a 21st century democracy”.

In other words, perhaps — those MPs who have consistently opposed this in the past will be dragged into the 21st century.

It appears Government is moving away from the idea of a central Sports Hall of Fame, and instead allowing each parish to create its own. But all Olympians and Paralympians will be honoured with a brick bearing their name at the National Sports Centre.

Clarence Hill, who won bronze at the 1976 Olympics in boxing, will be honoured with a bronze statute at a location yet to be announced.

If sports is not your thing and you’re a couch potato, munching away on your potato chips, you probably won’t enjoy the prospect of a heavy tax on junk or unhealthy foods. Government might also move towards making fast food restaurants post calories counts on their menus as it declares war on obesity in an effort to trim health care costs. Smokers could also be faced with ‘punitive measures’ — that is, higher taxes — as another way to offset health care costs. *

In a pre-Throne Speech statement, the Bermuda Employers Council had stated its desire to see new cruise ship ports in Hamilton and St George’s, especially after a slew of shop closures, but there was no mention today of any movement in this area.

* Statement from DCI, following the Throne Speech: Following His Excellency the Governor’s reading of the 2012 Speech From The Throne, the Cabinet Office has stated that an edit was missed in the larger print (reading) version produced for His Excellency. The noted paragraph spoke of higher import duties on ‘junk food’ and how tobacco products could be displayed in retail establishments. For the avoidance of doubt, the policy review of these matters is incomplete and do not constitute official government policy.