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‘Scandalous’ and ‘appalling’: Leighton Andrews



Bryn's Porsche targeted again: Leighton Andrews.

Bryn’s Porsche targeted again: Leighton Andrews.

WELSH Public Services Minister has announced his intention to crackdown on Chief Officer pay in local government.

Citing the provision to Mr Parry-Jones of a Porsche Panamera, reported in The Herald last May, as ‘appalling’, Mr Andrews went on to state that stories about the pay and pay-offs offered to council chief executives were ‘scandalous’.

The comments formed part of a biting critique of the quality of local government leadership across Wales, which Mr Andrews condemned as reactionary and not doing enough to head off crises in key services councils deliver.

Asking why councils seemed satisfied to wait for inspectors to point out ‘major failings’ in ‘big services areas like education and social services’, rather than tackle problems themselves, the Minister went on to say that it was “time for action” on local government in Wales.

Speaking ahead of an address to the Institute of Welsh Affairs on Tuesday (Jan 20), Mr Andrews repeated his determination to reduce the £25m annual cost of senior council officers’ pay ‘very significantly’.

Mr Andrews’ view followed hot on the heels of Plaid Cymru Leader Leanne Woods’ statement regarding senior officer pay, which showed that Pembrokeshire’s Chief Officer received fifteen and a half times the pay of the council’s lowest paid employee.

Responding on the question of pay ratios, Council Leader, Jamie Adams, said: “We do not have a Chief Executive at present and the table does not reflect the current position as regards to the Acting Head of Paid Service. It is still to be established whether or not the Authority appoints a new Chief Executive and therefore the issue of the salary level is still to be decided.”

Mr Andrews’ comments form part of an aggressive campaign by the Welsh Government to shake up local government and public services in Wales. It is known that the Health Minister Mark Drakeford is considering plans to further streamline the structure of health-care provision in Wales, with an emphasis on bringing the few recalcitrant Community Health Council’s into line. While Mr Andrews’ reputation as a political bruiser is demonstrated by the brutal way he dealt with Cardiff Metropolitan University while Education Minister.

The use of local government as a political football is not, however, confined to politicians from Cardiff Bay. Preseli Pembrokeshire MP Stephen Crabb has attracted criticism for his comments about the travails of Pembrokeshire County Council, with Cllr Mike Stoddart saying that the MP’s intervention is ‘a belated attempt to jump on the anti-IPPG bandwagon’.

Mr Stoddart goes on to challenge Stephen Crabb to produce evidence of his public pronouncements on the subject during the last ’well over ten years’; saying that this should not be difficult as he has been ‘saying this for a long time’.

BBC Wales have reported that the council is shortly to reveal just how much it paid in monthly instalments for the former Chief Executive’s Porsche Panamera, having failed in an attempt to conceal it.

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Angle Lifeboat tasked to disabled yacht 22miles from St Ann’s head



Image Credit - RNLI Penny Harris

ANGLE LIFEBOAT and her crew saw out April when they were tasked on 30th of April to a yacht 22miles from St Ann’s head.

Angle Lifeboat and her crew saw out April when they were tasked on 30th of April to a yacht 22miles from St Ann’s head.

The lifeboat was launched at 10:43pm to a 26ft yacht that had reported smoke coming from their engine compartment. The casualty vessel was 22 miles south west of St Ann’s with two crew onboard.

The lifeboat arrived on scene at 11:46pm. The on scene assessment was carried out and both crew were safe and well but the vessel would need to be towed to Milford Haven. The tow was set up and the casualty vessel was under tow at 11:56pm.

The conditions were perfect for the slow tow back which saw a beautiful moon rising and the early glow of dawn.

Lifeboat arrived at Milford and swapped the casualty vessel to an alongside tow to take it alongside in to the lock at Milford Marina where the casualty was safely tied up at 04:49am.

The lifeboat rehoused at 05:15am where she got her well deserved washdown and the crew headed home to get some sleep.

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Meet the Pembrokeshire Mower Doctor



A NEW Pembrokeshire business is proving to be an inspiration for young people after its recent launch.

The Pembrokeshire Mower Doctor is the brainchild of Ewan Griffiths, who turned his dream into reality thanks to the advice and support of Cam Nesa.

The project aims to reduce the number of young people aged 16-24 who are not in education, training or employment.

Before signing up to Cam Nesa, Ewan was out of work and struggling for direction, and anxiety was preventing him from maximising his potential.

Throughout his journey with Cam Nesa, Ewan worked closely with youth worker Donna Wright to devise a plan that provided support and guidance to improve his confidence and self-esteem, and provide mechanisms for coping with anxiety.

In addition, the project provided Ewan with opportunities to gain qualifications and obtain information that would help him with starting his own business.

Ewan’s message to other young people is simple, “If you find yourself struggling, there is help.”

“Cam Nesa supported me in all aspects of my plan, and working with Donna was fantastic.”

“I would definitely encourage others to reach out for support.”

Donna Wright, who supported Ewan throughout his Cam Nesa journey, said that the launch of his new business is a great source of pride for Cam Nesa and Pembrokeshire Youth Service.

“Ewan has come on leaps and bounds, and it was his engagement and determination that has made his outcome with Cam Nesa so successful and inspiring”, she said.

“Congratulations Ewan on your achievements, and we all wish you good luck with your new business.”

The Pembrokeshire Mower Doctor provides repairs and servicing for mowers, strimmers, hedge cutters, and most agricultural engines, with the mobile service providing collection and returns.

For more information, search ‘Pembrokeshire Mower Doctor’ on Facebook.

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Milford Haven: Mount estate death not being treated as suspicious say police



POLICE have confirmed that following a welfare visit to a property in Mount Estate, they discovered a male occupant, in his 30’s, in need of medical help.

Despite the best efforts of medical staff he sadly passed away on Sunday.

A spokesperson for the police confirmed to The Pembrokeshire Herald: “Dyfed-Powys Police attended a property at the Mount Estate, Milford Haven on Friday 30th April 2021, following a report of concern for the welfare of the occupier.

“A male was taken to hospital where he died on Sunday 2nd May 2021.

“The death is not being treated as suspicious.”

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