- Posted by: Joyce Watson MS
- Category: Feature
Local Senedd Members have welcomed a budget focused on public services, the climate and nature emergency, and building a fairer Wales.
Welsh Labour Senedd Member Joyce Watson MS (Mid and West Wales) said:
“I welcome this budget’s plans to build a stronger, fairer, and greener Wales.”
Welsh Labour Senedd Member Eluned Morgan MS (Mid and West Wales) welcomed it, adding:
“The Welsh Labour Government’s Draft Budget supports the Wales of today and shapes the Wales of tomorrow.”
The draft budget outlines measures which focus on funding public services, responding to the climate and nature emergency, and building a fairer Wales.
The Draft Budget delivers:
- Support for the Welsh NHS over the next three years to provide high quality, sustainable healthcare and to help response to and recovery from the pandemic, with an additional £1.3bn in direct funding.
- Close to an additional £75m to local authorities, providing funding to schools, social care, and other vital services.
- More than £250m provided for social services, including £180m within the local government settlement, direct investment of £45m and £50m of additional social care capital.
- Targeted green investment of an additional £160m in revenue and a total capital investment of £1.8bn to support Wales’s response to the climate and nature emergency.
- Funding to support the Welsh Labour Government’s commitment to a national forest as well as biodiversity, active travel, the circular economy, renewable energy, flooding, and decarbonising housing.
- £900m capital funding to improve the quality of school buildings through the 21st century schools programme.
- £1.6bn capital will be invested in providing good quality housing, including £1bn for social housing and £375m for building safety.
Welcoming the budget, Joyce Watson MS said:
“This budget is shaped by Welsh Labour values and principles. It strengthens our public services, puts Wales closer to being a net zero nation and will help create a fairer nation with equality at its heart.”
Eluned Morgan MS added:
“I’m pleased that the budget responds urgently to the pandemic and takes vital action to support the recovery and address the climate and nature emergency, plugging the gaps left by the UK Government’s spending review.
“There is nearly £3bn less than if the UK government had increased our share in line with the economy since 2010-11. Yet even in this difficult financial context I am confident that this budget will help shape the Wales of tomorrow – the country we will hand on to future generations.
“I am proud to support this budget – it provides the foundations for recovery and moves us towards a stronger, fairer, greener Wales.”
Other measures in the Draft Budget include:
- An additional £320m to continue a long-term programme of learning and education reform, tackling inequality and investing in future generations.
- This includes an additional £30million for childcare and early years provision; £40million for Flying Start and Families First; £90million for free school meals; £64.5million for wider schools and curriculum reform; and £63.5million investment in post 16 provisions.
- £61m in the Welsh Government’s Young Person’s Guarantee and employability support, apprenticeship provision, and to expand Personal Learning Accounts.
- Additional economic support for businesses with those in retail, leisure and hospitality receiving 50% non-domestic rates relief for 2022-23. This £116m package of funding, combined with existing Welsh Government permanent relief schemes, will ensure that over 85,000 properties are supported in 2022-23. The funding includes £20m on top of the consequential funding received from the UK Government, and follows the Welsh Government providing business rate support above and beyond the offer from the UK Government in this financial year.
- A further £35m has been confirmed to freeze the non-domestic rates multiplier for 2022-23, ensuring there will be no increase in the amount of rates businesses are paying.
- The Welsh Government has also provided funding to support coal tip safety and support their remediation, reclamation and repurposing, with an additional £4.5m and total capital investment of £44.4m. This follows the UK Government’s decision not to provide funding in October’s Spending Review.