Connect with us
Advertisement
Advertisement

News

County council budget row intensifies

Published

on

Plaid Councillor

Key role in debate: Mark James

AS PLAID CYMRU councillors stepped up their criticism on the conduct of the County Council’s budget debate, the ruling Labour and Independent has responded by attacking the Plaid proposals. Last week, Plaid released a press statement following the budget which, amongst other things, slated the Labour/Independent administration and pointed out: “All the cuts and charges could have been avoided this year had they accepted a Plaid Cymru opposition group proposal to take £6.2m (under 10%) from the Earmarked Reserves of £73.5m.”

The statement went on to claim: “Our people have suffered cuts and extra charges to no avail. What was truly depressing was seeing the council’s Chief Executive and Head of Resources intervening in the debate. This council is obviously officer-led, as the Executive Board is too weak to run the council.” Watching the meeting on playback, a key role in the budget debate was played by controversial Chief Executive, Mark James. Intervening in the political repartee, and siding with the administration after stating that the Council’s Head of Finance could not comment on the opposition’s proposals, Mr James proceeded to comment on them and roundly reject them.

Mr James, whose ‘peculiar’ pension arrangements were the subject of a humiliating climb down by the Council last year and who lately had his request for a £400k plus severance package booted into the long grass, appeared intent on ensuring that the budget proposals before the Council were accepted as written with neither amendment nor redaction. The Labour/Independent grouping made sure that Mr James’ bidding was followed. In their joint statement, both Cllr Kevin Madge and deputy leader Cllr Pam Palmer heavily criticised Plaid’s approach. Leader Cllr Kevin Madge said: “All in all, whilst we welcome sensible debate, and would certainly have welcomed Plaid Cymru’s input during the extensive consultation process, what they finally came up was not only too little, too late, it was not workable, not plausible and certainly not in the best interests of Carmarthenshire.”

Cllr Palmer added: “I repeatedly asked for input from the opposition group for the budget and would happily have given them credit for any workable suggestions, since these are challenging times and we need to work together. Despite this, and lengthy consultation, no proposals were put forward until [shortly before the budget debate], which left no time for consideration.” In the course of the debate, Cllr Dai Jenkins, of Plaid Cymru, pointed out that while frontline departments had suffered cuts to their wage budgets, the Council’s press office had received almost a 13% increase in its own. Councillor Madge concluded his observations on the tough choices made by the Council by saying: “We believe we have done the best we can with what has been the most difficult budget settlement in the history of this council.”

Continue Reading
Advertisement
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

crime

Police launch public appeal following Carmarthenshire burglary

Published

on

DYFED-POWYS POLICE is investigating a burglary at a property in Ponthenry.

People broke into a shed at a home in Victoria Road at around 8.30pm on Monday, 31 October, before leaving after spotting a CCTV camera.

They returned at around 10.15pm and again at around 10.55pm.

During their raids they tooka green Wolf motocross helmet with a full face with a peak and line green motocross goggles.

Officers are appealing for help to identify two people they would like to speak to over the incident.

Anyone with information that could help officers with their investigation is asked to report it to Dyfed-Powys Police, either online at: https://bit.ly/DPPContactOnline, by emailing 101@dyfed-powys.police.uk, or by calling 101. If you are deaf, hard of hearing, or speech impaired text the non-emergency number on 07811 311 908. Quote reference: DPP/0756/01/11/2022/02/C. Alternatively, contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously by calling 0800 555111, or visiting crimestoppers-uk.org.

Continue Reading

News

Morrisons Foundation supports children’s charity with grant for vital equipment

Published

on

The Morrisons Foundation supports registered charities that make a positive difference. They recently awarded national children’s disability charity, Cerebra, based in Carmarthen, a grant of £11,109.

This will fund the creation of writing slopes through the Cerebra Innovation Centre, which is partnered with the University of Wales Trinity Saint David and designs wonderful toys and equipment to help children living with a brain condition to learn and play.

The writing slopes are designed to help children who struggle with posture and fine motor skills. They also aid children with writing, drawing and hand control. Ross Head, Product Design Manager at the Cerebra Innovation Centre explains;

‘The slopes include a lovely wipe-clean surface for children to experiment with mark making, their own set of pens and a clever lid-free pen store to remove the challenge of removing lids for some children. We are so lucky to be able to do what we do and funding like this is so important to allow us to push boundaries and provide vital equipment that looks beautiful.’

At the start of 2022, the Cerebra Innovation Centre highlighted that they anticipated the need for an additional 20 writing slopes for children. Cerebra Fundraising Manager, James Hay then worked with the grants team at the Morrisons Foundation, who were delighted to support this project. David Scott, Morrisons Foundation Trustee said:

‘Cerebra is dedicated to helping families who have a child with a brain condition to discover a better life together, that’s why I’m delighted that we’ve been able to provide this support. The specialised writing slopes will make a huge positive impact on children with sensory and mobility issues, providing a great opportunity to develop their skills, which will last a lifetime.’

Grants like this are a vital source of funding for Cerebra so that they are able to continue to support children living with a brain condition and their families who face challenges every day. The Cerebra Innovation Centre is one of the many support services provided by the charity that so many families have come to rely on. James Hay adds;

‘Thank you so much to the Morrisons Foundation for this generous grant! We are over the moon as we know how much this project will change young lives. These are particularly challenging times for charities and so this funding from Morrisons for the creation of 20 writing slopes is warmly welcomed.’

You can find out more about Cerebra and how they help children and families by visiting www.cerebra.org.uk 

Writing Slope
Continue Reading

News

White Ribbon campaign supported by Carmarthenshire County Council

Published

on

CARMARTHENSHIRE COUNTY COUNCIL says it is again showing its support for the White Ribbon campaign, which takes place on Friday, November 25 and is followed by 16 Days of Action.

White Ribbon is the UK’s leading charity engaging men and boys to end violence against women and girls.

While domestic abuse affects both sexes, the largest number of violent incidents involve men against women. But ultimately male violence against women is everyone’s issue, not just women’s.

The council was awarded White Ribbon UK accredited status for the first time in 2018 and is continuing to work to tackle such violence.

White Ribbon flags will be flying at County Hall in Carmarthen and town halls in Llanelli and Ammanford on White Ribbon Day (Friday, November 25). County Hall will also be lit up on the evening to show support.

The council is working alongside partners to raise awareness of the campaign across the county – from sports clubs, joint visits with the Police to licensed premises, our leisure centres and libraries to bus stations.

With this year’s White Ribbon Day falling on the same week as the start of the FIFA men’s World Cup, there has never been a better time to come together and start playing as a team to end violence against women and girls.

The council will be raising awareness of the campaign at special events including a Walking Football session at Amman Valley Leisure Centre on November 30 and at “An Evening with Sam Warburton” at the Lyric Theatre in Carmarthen on White Ribbon Day (November 25).

Cabinet Member responsible for Community Safety, Cllr Philip Hughes, said: “It’s vital that we raise more awareness about domestic abuse so that anyone affected can get help and support from one of our local services.”

Support locally can be found at: Threshold (Llanelli) on 01554 752 422 or www.threshold-das.org.uk; Calan DVS (Ammanford) on 01269 597 474 or www.calandvs.org.uk; Carmarthen Domestic Abuse Service on 01267 238 410 or www.carmdas.org and Goleudy on 0300 123 2996 or www.goleudyvictimandwitnessservice.org.uk or call the Live Fear Free Helpline on 0808 80 10 800 or visit https://gov.wales/live-fear-free for free advice and support 24/7

For more information on the White Ribbon campaign visit www.whiteribbon.org.uk

Continue Reading

Trending

FOLLOW US ON FACEBOOK