Responding to the publication today of the Welsh Government’s Programme for Government, Councillor Andrew Morgan, WLGA Leader said:
“The Welsh Government has set out its ambitions and priorities in its new Programme for Government. Local government shares and welcomes many of these priorities, including the proposal to pay care workers the real living wage; the proposals to reduce the administrative burdens and strengthen the autonomy of local government; and the focus on tackling climate change.
There are several proposals that will require further clarification, detail and discussion, and an understanding of what they mean for local government. We look forward to exploring these with Welsh Ministers in the coming weeks.
As one of the core public service deliverers in Wales alongside the NHS, local councils will be central to delivering many of the Welsh Government’s national ambitions. It is important therefore that local government is involved as early as possible in designing and shaping the emerging policy and legislative priorities.
Council leaders will need time to analyse the details, but I welcome the ambition contained in this Programme for Government. That ambition will be important if we are to rebuild and recover following the extraordinary experiences and trauma of the pandemic.
Local government will be pleased that the new Welsh Government has listened to its key asks as outlined in the WLGA’s bold Manifesto for Localism. Councils have long made the case for a focus on preventative services, and it is really encouraging to see that emphasis on these important functions.
Over the course of the pandemic, we have seen more than ever that councils are ideally placed at the heart of their communities to find local solutions to service delivery. The close relationship between Welsh Government and local authorities, which has been such a cornerstone of the Covid response in Wales over the last 18 months, will be even more critical if we are to unlock the potential of the Welsh Government’s Programme and ensure that our communities and economy recover over the next Senedd term.
With sustainable, fair and flexible funding, councils can work in partnership with Welsh Government to deliver even more for our communities across Wales.”
NOTES TO EDITORS
The WLGA’s Manifesto for Localism is available here.