Islwyn MP Chris Evans gives warning over council shake-up

South Wales Argus: Islwyn MP's warning council over shake-up Islwyn MP's warning council over shake-up

WALES is talking constantly about constitutional issues people don’t care about, a Valleys MP has warned.

Labour Islwyn MP Chris Evans has suggested the Welsh Government is too focused over how Wales is governed, and that the constitutional chatter will turn Wales inward in a time of increasing globalisation.

His comments to the Argus come after the Williams Commission proposed reducing the number of local authorities in Gwent from five to two.

In an interview with the Argus Mr Evans said he agreed with the concerns of Torfaen MP Paul Murphy that council shake-ups prove costly.

He said: “We have to ask ourselves as Paul did, is this the best use of our money?

“Would that money better suited on job creation programmes rather than reorganisation?”

He said Wales gets bogged down in constitutional issues.

“This has been the frustration I’ve had – we talk constantly about constitutional things rather than the real bread and butter issues which are concerning people day to day,” he said.

He suggested money that could be spent on a possible future referendum on income tax would be better spent on health and education.

“We need to get back down to something which Otto von Bismarck called years ago Realpolitik – the Realpolitik here is the cost of living,” Mr Evans said.

The Argus asked if he thought the focus on constitutional issues in Cardiff Bay has meant that the Welsh Government has lost its focus on education and health.

“There’s too much focus on constitutional issues,” he said. “The vast majority writing to me are writing about health, education and transportation issues.

“They are not writing to me about the Silk Commission or the Barnett formula.”

Mr Evans warned that “globalisation is not going to stop suddenly because we’ve got extra powers”. “We can be inward, we can be closed or we can be open,” he said.

“I think when we talk about constitutions we turn inward.”

Meanwhile, Blaenau Gwent leader Hedley McCarthy told followers on Facebook that a council reorganisation could hit morale as services jockey for position.

Comments (5)

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9:45pm Mon 27 Jan 14

Abertillery29 says...

I joined Monmouthshire County Council in 1965 - how many re organisations have there been since then? All most ratepayers have got have been more 'talking shops' who only seem capable of not making a decision other than when the next meeting should be. Mrs Butler says we need more AM's - at what cost to the rest of us with their inflated wages and pensions? We badly need a once and for all sort out and the end to parochial Welsh councils.
I joined Monmouthshire County Council in 1965 - how many re organisations have there been since then? All most ratepayers have got have been more 'talking shops' who only seem capable of not making a decision other than when the next meeting should be. Mrs Butler says we need more AM's - at what cost to the rest of us with their inflated wages and pensions? We badly need a once and for all sort out and the end to parochial Welsh councils. Abertillery29
  • Score: 4

10:42pm Mon 27 Jan 14

Evan Owen says...

Might as well scrap the lot and start from scratch.
Might as well scrap the lot and start from scratch. Evan Owen
  • Score: 4

11:36pm Mon 27 Jan 14

eezageeza says...

Less government is best I say,less councillors, mp's and mep's oh and I nearly forgot we have Am's too don't we jeeeeeeeeeeeez how much government have we got here,time to whittle it all down methinks
Less government is best I say,less councillors, mp's and mep's oh and I nearly forgot we have Am's too don't we jeeeeeeeeeeeez how much government have we got here,time to whittle it all down methinks eezageeza
  • Score: 5

7:01pm Tue 28 Jan 14

Limestonecowboy says...

Abertillery29 wrote:
I joined Monmouthshire County Council in 1965 - how many re organisations have there been since then? All most ratepayers have got have been more 'talking shops' who only seem capable of not making a decision other than when the next meeting should be. Mrs Butler says we need more AM's - at what cost to the rest of us with their inflated wages and pensions? We badly need a once and for all sort out and the end to parochial Welsh councils.
Will you be in line to a handsome pension if so its thanks to a Welsh council!
[quote][p][bold]Abertillery29[/bold] wrote: I joined Monmouthshire County Council in 1965 - how many re organisations have there been since then? All most ratepayers have got have been more 'talking shops' who only seem capable of not making a decision other than when the next meeting should be. Mrs Butler says we need more AM's - at what cost to the rest of us with their inflated wages and pensions? We badly need a once and for all sort out and the end to parochial Welsh councils.[/p][/quote]Will you be in line to a handsome pension if so its thanks to a Welsh council! Limestonecowboy
  • Score: 0

10:21pm Wed 29 Jan 14

Stormin Norman says...

Couldn't agree more with what Chris Evans and Paul Murphy say.

What are the views of Gwyn Price AM (aka Mr Lazy) on this important issue.

Come to think of it, does anyone know what Gwyn Prices views are on anything..actually, has anyone seen the lesser spotted Islwyn assembly member recently?

Perhaps he's still visiting villages that aren't in his constituency?

Someone should offer a reward for the safe return of Mr Lazy?
Couldn't agree more with what Chris Evans and Paul Murphy say. What are the views of Gwyn Price AM (aka Mr Lazy) on this important issue. Come to think of it, does anyone know what Gwyn Prices views are on anything..actually, has anyone seen the lesser spotted Islwyn assembly member recently? Perhaps he's still visiting villages that aren't in his constituency? Someone should offer a reward for the safe return of Mr Lazy? Stormin Norman
  • Score: 0

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