Thank you for writing to me concerning the funding of local services.
As you will be aware, these matters are devolved here in Wales, and therefore the funding of Councils is the responsibility of the Welsh Government. This is why my colleagues and I in the Welsh Conservatives regularly call for the Labour Government in Wales to provide more funding to councils in order to support families with the rising cost of living and ensure that the public services they oversee are delivered to the best possible standard.
The Welsh Government have routinely underfunded and undervalued rural and northern local authorities in Wales, despite them being home to many people who arguably need particularly acute support from their Councils. Welsh Conservatives have been long-time endorsers of increased funding for all local authorities, which is why we believe the Welsh Government could be making far better use of the £18 billion a year pledged to the Welsh Government over the next three years, the largest annual funding settlement to Wales since devolution began.
Local authorities in Wales are at the forefront of tackling the cost of living challenge in Wales and need to be adequately funded in order to play this vital role. This is why the Welsh Conservatives have opposed the frivolous spending by the Labour government over the years, such as the many millions of pounds that have been poured away on failed business ventures, compensation, redundancies and bad debts in recent years.
Unfortunately, excessive spending has also taken place during this difficult time – including the pledge to expand the Senedd, which will cost up to £120 million, as well as blanket 20mph speed limits costing the Welsh economy up to £9 billion. This is money that could and should be supporting our local public services and ensuring that the Welsh Government delivers for the people of Wales.
My colleague Sam Rowlands MS, Shadow Minister for Local Government, will write to the Minister for Finance and Local Government, Rebecca Evans MS, to ensure that Welsh Government pledges an adequate amount of funding to support our local authorities and public services throughout Wales.
Thank you again for taking the time to contact me.