Scrap the chaffeur-driven cars, AM says

First published in Gwent news by

A CONSERVATIVE AM has called on the Welsh Government to ditch its chauffeur-driven Volvos, which have cost taxpayers more than £400,000 in three years.

Byron Davies AM said Labour ministers should follow the lead of the secretary of state for Wales Stephen Crabb, who got rid of the Wales Office’s Jaguar to save money.

The shadow minister for transport received the figures following a Freedom of Information request to the Welsh Government which included maintenance, fuel bills, insurance and road tax, but do not take into account the salaries of all the chauffeurs.

A Welsh Government spokesman said the proposal is "nonsense" as consideration is taken into the most economical travel arrangements.

Mr Davies, who represents South Wales West, said: “Hardworking people don’t pay their taxes so Labour ministers can travel around in chauffeur-driven executive cars.

“It is an unnecessary extravagance for Carwyn Jones’ Labour cabinet to have its own fleet of ten top of the range Volvos at their disposal.

“Labour ministers should follow the thrifty example of Stephen Crabb who, on his appointment as Secretary of State for Wales, scrapped the Wales Office’s ministerial Jaguar in order to save taxpayers’ money.

“At a time when many families have faced a squeeze on their disposable income, it is poor judgement that Labour’s spending on chauffeur-driven cars has risen by 50 per cent.

“It is astonishing hypocrisy that Labour ministers will stand up in the Assembly Chamber and preach about sustainable public transport, then travel home in their gas-guzzling taxpayer-funded executive cars.

“Carwyn Jones and his Labour colleagues have their priorities completely wrong, spending nearly half a million pounds every year on luxury travel, but won’t commit a few million pounds for a Cancer Treatments Fund to end the postcode lottery in access to cancer medicines.

“If Labour ministers can’t bring costs down, they should either take public transport or drive themselves to work commitments like everyone else.”

The Welsh Government spokesman said: "Is Byron Davies asking all of his Conservative ministerial colleagues in London to do the same? "This is utter nonsense and portrays a complete lack of understanding of both the workings of Government and the pressure on ministerial diaries.

"Welsh ministers often undertake several engagements in a single day and consideration is always given to the most economical and efficient way of conducting as many engagements as possible, to maximise value for money.

"During these car journeys, ministers will continue to work, and have access to a range of confidential information, which they could not do on public transport or by other means of travel."

Comments (14)

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8:30am Mon 25 Aug 14

Independentvoter says...

Cannot believe I am saying this but well done Byron Davis just hope no one else in your party are doing the same. Only time will tell when Labour reply.
Cannot believe I am saying this but well done Byron Davis just hope no one else in your party are doing the same. Only time will tell when Labour reply. Independentvoter
  • Score: 18

9:19am Mon 25 Aug 14

On the inside says...

When Camporon does it then Carwyn can do it. Anyone remember Camoron on a bike? He 'forgot' to mention the limo following him. Typical Tory diversion from the real issues.
When Camporon does it then Carwyn can do it. Anyone remember Camoron on a bike? He 'forgot' to mention the limo following him. Typical Tory diversion from the real issues. On the inside
  • Score: -10

9:31am Mon 25 Aug 14

Stevenboy says...

On the inside wrote:
When Camporon does it then Carwyn can do it. Anyone remember Camoron on a bike? He 'forgot' to mention the limo following him. Typical Tory diversion from the real issues.
Ah the old 'two wrongs making a right' argument. I knew that wouldn't be long coming. The claim of the Welsh politicians that without them they'd be 'less efficient' is hilarious, given that everything they do turns to rat-manure. Taken to it's logical conclusion we'd all be better off if they never came to work at all.
[quote][p][bold]On the inside[/bold] wrote: When Camporon does it then Carwyn can do it. Anyone remember Camoron on a bike? He 'forgot' to mention the limo following him. Typical Tory diversion from the real issues.[/p][/quote]Ah the old 'two wrongs making a right' argument. I knew that wouldn't be long coming. The claim of the Welsh politicians that without them they'd be 'less efficient' is hilarious, given that everything they do turns to rat-manure. Taken to it's logical conclusion we'd all be better off if they never came to work at all. Stevenboy
  • Score: 14

9:41am Mon 25 Aug 14

Katie Re-Registered says...

I wonder if it would be cheaper for the Assembly to have an agreement with a taxi firm instead - like most other organisations and businesses in the area?
I wonder if it would be cheaper for the Assembly to have an agreement with a taxi firm instead - like most other organisations and businesses in the area? Katie Re-Registered
  • Score: 20

9:55am Mon 25 Aug 14

macbumble says...

What about the AMs train Cardiff to Holyhead which is getting on for a million a year ( so I was told)
What about the AMs train Cardiff to Holyhead which is getting on for a million a year ( so I was told) macbumble
  • Score: 26

9:58am Mon 25 Aug 14

Cymru Am Beth says...

And the 'gravy train' continues.
And the 'gravy train' continues. Cymru Am Beth
  • Score: 27

10:12am Mon 25 Aug 14

Magor says...

This is peanuts to save some real money get rid of WAG we dont need it.
This is peanuts to save some real money get rid of WAG we dont need it. Magor
  • Score: 23

10:14am Mon 25 Aug 14

Banjalucka says...

So all these these extremely important AMs (Labour who fight hard for the working class!) waste a massive amount annually. What's news? Their egos are way above the hoi pouli who put them there.
So all these these extremely important AMs (Labour who fight hard for the working class!) waste a massive amount annually. What's news? Their egos are way above the hoi pouli who put them there. Banjalucka
  • Score: 21

10:17am Mon 25 Aug 14

coalpicker says...

Katie Re-Registered wrote:
I wonder if it would be cheaper for the Assembly to have an agreement with a taxi firm instead - like most other organisations and businesses in the area?
Especially they have illegal immigrants driving them ?
[quote][p][bold]Katie Re-Registered[/bold] wrote: I wonder if it would be cheaper for the Assembly to have an agreement with a taxi firm instead - like most other organisations and businesses in the area?[/p][/quote]Especially they have illegal immigrants driving them ? coalpicker
  • Score: 1

11:02am Mon 25 Aug 14

jazzyjab says...

What a ridiculous piece, clearly it's the silly season. Ministers carry out many engagements on any given day, and without ministerial cars, they would go nowhere. It's the summer, and the ridiculous headlines flying around (remember the subsidised canteens, yes the ones that all politicians and journalists enjoy?) are proof that they need to get back to the bay and do some work, oh and ther is an election looming....
What a ridiculous piece, clearly it's the silly season. Ministers carry out many engagements on any given day, and without ministerial cars, they would go nowhere. It's the summer, and the ridiculous headlines flying around (remember the subsidised canteens, yes the ones that all politicians and journalists enjoy?) are proof that they need to get back to the bay and do some work, oh and ther is an election looming.... jazzyjab
  • Score: -15

12:06pm Mon 25 Aug 14

blackandamber says...

Just scrap the lot of it, the wag that is, and save the taxpayers a fortune.
Just scrap the lot of it, the wag that is, and save the taxpayers a fortune. blackandamber
  • Score: 19

8:24pm Mon 25 Aug 14

gingertom says...

They got enough money to pay out of their own pocket for someone to drive them around in their own car.
They got enough money to pay out of their own pocket for someone to drive them around in their own car. gingertom
  • Score: 3

10:40am Tue 26 Aug 14

Heinz Kiosk says...

jazzyjab wrote:
What a ridiculous piece, clearly it's the silly season. Ministers carry out many engagements on any given day, and without ministerial cars, they would go nowhere. It's the summer, and the ridiculous headlines flying around (remember the subsidised canteens, yes the ones that all politicians and journalists enjoy?) are proof that they need to get back to the bay and do some work, oh and ther is an election looming....
Sounds like the same clerk from the Great Big Welsh Council in Cardiff who was calling the suggestion "nonsense" These minor functionaries ("Ministers"? Oh spare us) would not be missed if they forthwith ceased all their "engagements"
[quote][p][bold]jazzyjab[/bold] wrote: What a ridiculous piece, clearly it's the silly season. Ministers carry out many engagements on any given day, and without ministerial cars, they would go nowhere. It's the summer, and the ridiculous headlines flying around (remember the subsidised canteens, yes the ones that all politicians and journalists enjoy?) are proof that they need to get back to the bay and do some work, oh and ther is an election looming....[/p][/quote]Sounds like the same clerk from the Great Big Welsh Council in Cardiff who was calling the suggestion "nonsense" These minor functionaries ("Ministers"? Oh spare us) would not be missed if they forthwith ceased all their "engagements" Heinz Kiosk
  • Score: 2

11:59am Tue 26 Aug 14

Cymru Am Beth says...

I think that this is the trouble not just with the WAG, but also Councils, Central Government and the EU.
Because it is not coming out of their pockets, they just don't care.
Imagine how much money they could save to spend on more pressing matters, if they cut back on the non-essentials?
They cut back on services and put the Council Tax up, but the perks are not affected.
I think that this is the trouble not just with the WAG, but also Councils, Central Government and the EU. Because it is not coming out of their pockets, they just don't care. Imagine how much money they could save to spend on more pressing matters, if they cut back on the non-essentials? They cut back on services and put the Council Tax up, but the perks are not affected. Cymru Am Beth
  • Score: 4

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