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Anna McMorrin MP: Cardiff Council’s 2019/20 Budget proposals

December 21, 2018

My letter to Huw Thomas, Leader of Cardiff Council on Cardiff Council’s 2019/20 Budget proposals

Dear Huw,

I welcome the opportunity to contribute to the consultation on Cardiff Council’s 2019/20 budget proposals and am pleased to see the authority endeavouring to draw as many residents as possible into the consultation process given the importance of the budget in setting the parameters which will affect the lives of the citizens of Cardiff.

I recognise the difficulty faced by Cardiff Council in setting a budget for a year in which once again the resources available will be reduced in real terms as a direct result of UK Government austerity policies, and I congratulate the Council on doing everything in its power, as in the last few years, to introduce a budget that protects  services to residents and takes the necessary steps to plan for the ever changing future of the City.

The steps being taken to fund the greatest part of the additional funding for schools in the city are to be welcomed, though this will still require schools to find additional income or to balance their accounts via additional cuts.  In addition, I agree with the prioritisation being given in the budget to the support for vulnerable children, and the development of a new Fostering Service which seeks the greater involvement of residents in being directly engaged in the delivery of support to young people. The prioritisation of actions to support older people are also welcomed.

In the process of the budget being set, I particularly welcome the commitment of the Leader of the Council to developing a Household Waste Recycling Centre on the north of the City to replace the closed site at Wedal Road, and the retention of £3.3m dedicated to achieving this objective. I look forward to an early announcement of a site for this facility and a timetable for completion which will be appreciated by residents in Cardiff North.

There are a number of other issues that are of particular interest to my constituents, and which I would suggest would benefit from additional consideration before final decisions are taken:

  • In addition to the welcome plan to directly build new homes, there needs to be an increased investment in Council housing to meet the growing needs of the City’s growth plan, delivered with appropriate supportive infrastructure.
  • Further investment in bus services should be made, helping to develop the mass transport strategy necessary if traffic is not to increase with the consequent knock on effects of increased pollution and congestion.
  • A prompt rollout of 20mph zones across the entire city to make the city a safer place particularly for the young and the old, should be considered.
  • Additional resources should be made available to address the backlog of potholes and inadequate pavements which make the city a more dangerous and less welcoming environment, to meet commitments being made elsewhere in the UK.
  • Resources should be committed to support the enforcement of measures to reduce littering following the welcome increase in fines.
  • A reversal of the cuts made to youth services in Llanishen should be considered, given that they are reducing opportunities for young people in the north of the City with adverse effects for the whole community. 

In addition, I would also like to see a reconsideration of the proposed 15% increase in funeral charges to city residents. With growing funeral poverty, I would urge a rethink of this plan, given the impact on families at a time of great vulnerability.

I hope that the points outlined in this letter will be considered sympathetically, and I look forward to continuing my support for the Council in delivering on behalf of Cardiff residents.   

Kind regards/ Cofion cynnes,

Anna McMorrin MP/AS

Labour Member of Parliament for Cardiff North

Aelod Seneddol Llafur dros Ogledd Caerdydd