Connect with us
Advertisement
Advertisement

Politics

M4 relief road could be ‘dead in the water’

Published

on

Screen Shot 2016-04-15 at 12.11.32An M4 Relief Road is ‘dead in the water’ if Labour do a deal with Plaid Cymru after the election, says Welsh Conservative Leader Andrew RT Davies.

The party will pledge to get ‘diggers in the ground’ on an M4 relief road within twelve months of forming a Government – as transport companies and local businesses highlight the importance of action on the project.

Andrew RT Davies AM and William Graham AM will visit Hicks Logistics in Caldicot to discuss the project at 3pm on Thursday, as part of a series of visits related to the project.

Improving infrastructure to create more jobs in Wales is a key plank of the Welsh Conservative Party’s policy platform. On the visits, Welsh Conservatives will also highlight that a solution to the gridlock around Newport is under threat with Labour and Plaid Cymru.

Mr Davies will also warn of the perils of five more years of “life in the slow lane” under Welsh Labour.

Welsh Conservatives recently pledged to get “diggers in the ground” on a relief road within 12 months. Mr Davies says Wales’ most important infrastructure project in a generation would be “dead in the water” if Plaid Cymru and Labour were to do a deal after May 6th.

The project has already been cast into doubt after the Welsh Labour Government admitted that the planned M4 relief road could cost more than £1 billion, despite earlier assurances from the First Minister that it would cost significantly less.

Mr Davies said: “Make no mistake, the M4 relief road is dead in the water if Labour do a deal with Plaid Cymru after the election in May.

“The nationalists have already made it a red line issue, and it’s pretty clear that Leanne Wood will prop Labour up yet again for a sniff of power.

“The daily congestion around that stretch of the M4, near Newport, has long been a huge barrier to economic growth and progress must be made.

“That’s why the stakes are so high in this election, and that’s why people have to vote Welsh Conservative in May if they want to see progress on the most important infrastructure project in a generation.”

Meanwhile, Shadow Economy Minister – William Graham – said that Labour dithering on infrastructure projects has held the Welsh economy back and warned of the risk Labour pose to Wales’ economic development.

He said: “The relief road should have been built fifteen years ago. But like so many other transport projects under Labour, it fell by the wayside.

“Wales endured thirteen years of Labour in office at Westminster and yet not a single inch of train track in Wales was electrified.

“We’ve had 17 years of Labour in Cardiff Bay and there has been no progress on an M4 relief road, no progress on addressing the chronic congestion on the A40, and no progress on a third Menai crossing.

“Having spent more than a decade deliberating the need for an M4 relief road in South Wales and almost £30millon of public money on consultation fees, it is disgraceful that there are now doubts surrounding the project.”

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

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

News

Council takes steps to focus social housing allocations for those in greatest need

Published

on

CARMARTHENSHIRE COUNTY COUNCIL says that it is taking the first steps towards delivering on Welsh Government’s Rapid Rehousing approach by introducing an Emergency Social Housing Allocations Policy to focus the way the housing needs of residents are met in Carmarthenshire.

The Emergency Policy, developed by Communities Scrutiny Task and Finish, will be considered by the Committee on Thursday 26th January and has been created to help address housing pressures and reduce the time that those in greatest need wait for social housing.

The Policy will enable direct matching of homes to applicants most in need, such as those who are homeless, are at risk of homelessness or in urgent housing need. It will also enable homes to be allocated more quickly and to those residents they are most suitable for.

The proposed Emergency Social Housing Allocations Policy has three defined bands:

Band A: Additional preference – Those who are homeless, are at risk of homelessness or have an urgent housing need.

Band B: Housing need: Reasonable preference – Including residents who need to move due to medical/welfare needs, are looking to transfer to a smaller property (under-occupying), want to move from an adapted home they no longer need or are currently living in an overcrowded/insanitary property.

Band C: Applicants who have no housing need

Applicants who can financially meet their own housing need, do not have a local connection to Carmarthenshire or they/a member of their household have been found guilty of unacceptable behaviour will be given no preference under this Policy.

As a part of the Policy, applicants will be sent reminders to re-register their interest on the 6 and 12 month anniversary of their registration date. Failure to re-register, to use their account or to bid for properties that meet their needs may mean that applicants will be removed from the Housing Register to ensure that only those in need of the service are registered. Help to do this will be provided for people who need it.

Cllr Deryk Cundy, Chair of the Scrutiny Task and Finish Group responsible for developing the Policy said: “As Chair of the cross-party working group that developed this Emergency Policy, I am delighted to be able to present this Emergency Social Housing Allocations Policy to Scrutiny. I am confident that if approved this will have a major impact on the lives of residents in housing need in Carmarthenshire.”

Cllr Linda Evans, Cabinet Member for Homes said: “If approved, the Emergency revised Social Housing Allocations Policy will transform the way social housing is allocated in Carmarthenshire.

“By more clearly defining the needs of those on the housing register, the Council can provide suitable housing more quickly to those who need it by directly matching properties to applicants. Only if a property cannot be matched to someone in exceptional circumstances or Band A of the register will it be advertised on home finder website, Canfod Cartref.”

If approved at the Council’s Scrutiny Committee, the Policy will be considered by the Council’s Cabinet and then submitted for Full Council approval.

Continue Reading

News

Anger as Pembrokeshire misses out on latest round of ‘Levelling Up’ funding

Published

on

CEFIN CAMPBELL, Plaid Cymru Member of the Senedd for Mid & West Wales, has criticised the UK Government’s methodology for allocating funding under its ‘Levelling Up Fund’ after a UK Government announcement today revealed that Pembrokeshire will not receive any funding.

A total of eleven projects in Wales have been allocated around £208 million from round two of the Levelling Up Fund. The UK Government has claimed that these projects will create jobs, drive economic growth, help restore people’s pride in the places where they live and spread opportunity more equally.

However, Pembrokeshire is among eleven Welsh local authorities that have not received any money under today’s announcement. This comes despite announcements that wealthier areas, including Rishi Sunak’s constituency of Richmond in Yorkshire, will receive funding.

Responding to the UK Government’s announcement, Cefin Campbell MS said:

“Ceredigion, Pembrokeshire, Powys and Carmarthenshire are amongst the eleven Welsh local authorities that will not receive a single penny from today’s ‘Levelling Up’ round.

“This is despite the real need for ‘levelling up’ in these communities across mid and west Wales – with rural poverty, a housing crisis and poor infrastructure continuing to hamper economic growth and opportunities.

“The Tories promised that Brexit would leave Wales no worse off, and that European funding would be replaced, pound-for-pound. This promise has rung disgracefully hollow, with Wales now looking at a funding shortfall of £1.1bn compared with previous EU schemes.

“The way in which the ‘Levelling Up’ Fund has been allocated appears to reflect cynical political decision-making rather than any real assessment of Wales’ material need – and appears to be little more than a Tory stich up.”

Ben Lake MP, Plaid Cymru Treasury spokesperson added:

“Between 2009-2020 local authority spending per head in Wales fell by 9.4%. The idea that we should now be grateful for the privilege of competing over a small pot of money is frankly insulting. The arbitrary and ad-hoc way in which Westminster is allocating this funding is not conducive to the kind of cohesive long-term economic planning needed to break the poverty cycle.

“From the outset, Plaid Cymru have called for funding to be allocated according to need. If the UK Government want to redeem any credibility on ‘levelling up’, they should revise their criteria so that Wales receives funding according to our relative need.”

Continue Reading

News

Council launches social care campaign to support the NHS and those most in need

Published

on

PEMBROKESHIRE COUNTY COUNCIL has launched Operation Nightingale 23, a campaign to support and reduce pressure in our hospitals.

The Council is acutely aware of the considerable challenges currently being experienced within the NHS in Wales including within our local hospital at Withybush.

Withybush has a significant numbers of patients who need to leave hospital but are waiting for an assessment of continuing care need or the right care package in the community.

Under Op NG 23, Pembrokeshire County Council will deliver a variety of measures to help increase the flow of patients out of hospital including:

  • the short-term redeployment of staff into community support roles
  • additional social work capacity
  • the redeployment of existing social care capacity into the hospital teams to prioritise patient care assessment and care package allocation

This will also include the engagement of community groups and volunteers to allow people to safely leave hospital and return home.

The Authority will be looking to its partners and communities for support across a variety of contributing activities that have the potential to have an immediate impact.

Last week the Welsh Government Minister for Health and Social Services

Eluned Morgan MS visited Pembrokeshire County Council and received a briefing on Operation Nightingale 23.

Cllr Tessa Hodgson, Cabinet Member for Social Care and Safeguarding, said:

“We understand that pressures around bed capacity, discharges from hospital and challenges around the provision of care packages in the community, all impact negatively on our most vulnerable citizens.

“Some of the challenges that the council is experiencing in social care are shared across the health sector, not least of all with regard to workforce, winter flu and the ongoing impact of the Covid-19 virus.

“We acknowledge the significant impact this has on those in hospitals and care, and for their families. As part of our work we want to get the best results for everyone.”

It is as a result of these acute pressures, particularly at this time of year, and the risk they create, that Pembrokeshire County Council has decided to launch Operation Nightingale 23.

Cllr Hodgson adds: “This will see the authority and in particular the social care directorate step up to a critical response mode, in order to develop immediate and short term innovative responses to the current pressures, to improve flow of patients out of hospital, and to reduce pressure on our colleagues in the NHS.”

The Authority will review how it can effectively embed this work in the medium to long term, to face the challenges of an aging population for the good of this generation and those to come.

Steve Moore, Chief Executive for Hywel Dda University Health Board, said: “Our hospitals continue to be extremely busy with many sick patients and continuing high demand for emergency and urgent care. This means patients are waiting longer than we would want them to.

“This is always the most difficult period of the year, and we are managing the complexity of flu, Covid and increased urgent and emergency care demand.

“Currently, we have around 300 patients who are medically fit for discharge across the Hywel Dda region. This equates to over a third of the number of beds in our hospitals.

“Operation Nightingale 23 will help to free up some of those beds allowing us to treat patients more quickly and we are grateful to our colleagues in social care in Pembrokeshire for prioritising this work to free up capacity in the system.”

Continue Reading

Business15 hours ago

Ferry staff concerned over rumours Pembroke Dock to Rosslare route coming to an end

CONCERNS are growing amongst Irish Ferries staff operating out of Pembroke Dock as rumours continue to circulate that the company...

News15 hours ago

Man sadly passed away in hospital following incident in Haven Drive, Milford Haven

POLICE and ambulance units were despatched to a residential address in Haven Drive, Milford Haven on Friday following a 999...

News1 day ago

Police: Woman, 31, died in North Court, Haverfordwest on Monday

A WOMAN in her early thirties was tragically pronounced dead at her home in North Court, Haverfordwest on Monday (Jan...

News2 days ago

Off duty firefighters stopped to assist injured motorcyclist

THE MOTORCYCLIST who was involved in the road traffic collision on Steynton Road, Milford Haven on Sunday (Jan 29) was...

News3 days ago

Strikes: Pembrokeshire schools and classes to close this week

SEVEN Pembrokeshire schools will close and 16 will be partially closed during Wednesday’s strikes by teachers. A series of strikes...

News3 days ago

Main road into Milford Haven shut due to serious road traffic collision

THE A4076 Steynton Road in Milford Haven is shut between the Horse and Jockey public house and Milford Haven School...

Business5 days ago

Tenby project began without planning permission on cards for approval

A RETROSPECTIVE application by a former national park committee member for the change of use of historic buildings is expected...

News6 days ago

Pilot whale stranded off Pembrokeshire coast ‘shows impact of climate change’

NEW research into a whale which stranded on the Pembrokeshire coast more than a decade ago has identified it as...

News1 week ago

Valero contractors are back at work following improved bonus offer

GMB members at Valero Refinery in Pembroke are back in work after a dispute which lasted nearly seven weeks.After many...

News1 week ago

Pembrokeshire Libraries scoop Silver award for commitment to unpaid carers

PEMBROKESHIRE’S Libraries have been recognised for their commitment to and support for unpaid carers and their families. All of the...

Popular This Week