“We have seen a real tale of two budgets from Plaid Cymru, and to paraphrase Charles Dickens it has been the worst of times and an age of foolishness from them” said Councillor Jeff Edmunds, leader of the Labour Group on Carmarthenshire County Council. “Here in Carmarthenshire they opposed our proposals to protect the people of Carmarthenshire’s services and have now joined forces with UKIP to oppose the Assembly’s supplementary budget that gives extra money for vital community services.”
Jeff continued, “Here in Carmarthenshire, Plaid refused to listen to Labour’s fully costed proposals to protect people’s services, preferring to put up the cost of school meals and meals on wheels, remove the support for those children with additional learning needs, cut school crossing patrols, close local libraries, reduce the ability to enable people to get back home from hospital quickly, and reduce the education budget over the next three years cutting teachers and learning support assistants.”
Labour’s budget spokesperson Councillor Deryk Cundy added: “Plaid seem to think these things don’t matter, but they do matter to the children, the parents, the housebound, the poorly, the vulnerable the people of Carmarthenshire who could all have benefitted from our proposals, but are now going to suffer the effects of this budget.” Deryk added “our carefully costed proposals would only have cost the equivalent of an extra 3p per day on top Plaid’s own budget increase on the average band D council tax bill. This means that all of these service gains would cost a total of 7p per day.”
Jeff Edmunds further added, “this Plaid budget in Carmarthenshire is an election sham to pretend to keep Council tax low this year by playing with the reserves, but their own papers show that next year there will be a ‘4.1% increase next year and a 3.88% rise the year after’, as they can not to quote “assume any further support for future years budgets from the current General reserves.”
Speaking about the vote on the Labour Welsh assembly’s supplementary budget, Llanelli AM Lee Waters, said “I was shocked that Plaid Cymru joined the Tories and UKIP in voting against the supplementary budget. They voted against a budget that invests in key services and projects across Wales and here in Carmarthenshire.
Some of the things that Plaid voted against included measures that would have improved health care in Carmarthenshire, including £50 million to address winter pressures and to sustain and improve performance during the winter period and further additional funding specifically for Hywel Dda University Health Board.
Plaid also continued to fail our education services by voting against an additional £20m funding for Higher Education helping people upskill and improve their life chances.
They even opposed a payment of £100,000 to fund World War 1 commemorations across Wales!”
Jeff Edmunds concluded; “People now have a real choice here in Carmarthenshire vote Labour to protect services for our community or vote Plaid to see them cut.”
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