Appointment of the next Children’s Commissioner for Wales »The current Children's Commissioner's tenure will come to an end on 28 February 2015.Learn more »
Assembly to vote on landmark Violence against Women, Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence (Wales) Bill
Assembly to vote on landmark Violence against Women, Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence (Wales) Bill.
- Launch of Creative Learning through the Arts – an Action Plan for Wales
- 34,000 alcohol-related hospital admissions cost Welsh NHS £109m a year
- Assembly to vote on landmark Violence against Women, Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence (Wales) Bill
- Proposals to amend existing powers to tackle waste crime and poor performing sites in the waste management industry
- Developing a Landfill Disposals Tax
- Collection and publication of fire statistics
- Talk to me 2
- Flood and Coast Investment Programme (FaCIP)
- Teacher assessment: strengthening arrangements to improve reliability, consistency and confidence
Featured consultation »Use and effectiveness of Civil Sanctions for environmental offences
27 days left
Section highlightRegulation and Inspection of Social Care (Wales) BillThe Bill will improve the quality of care and support in Wales and strengthen protection for citizens.
Legislative programme 2014 - 2015 »
Bills that the Welsh Government will bring forward in 2014/2015.Learn more »
Section highlightTaxes in Wales
The devolution of some taxes to Wales from April 2018 provides us with the opportunity to reshape those taxes to better meet our circumstances and priorities.
Final Budget 2015-16 »
The amount of funding allocated to Welsh Government Departments for 2015-16 is £15·3bn.Learn more »
- Statistics & Research
Wales’ 22 unitary authorities (county and county borough councils) deliver a wide range of services.
Some, for example education, must be made available under UK and Welsh law; others are provided at the discretion of individual authorities. A typical list of local authority services would include:
- trading standards
- libraries, leisure and tourism
- environmental health, refuse and recycling
- transport and highways
- social services.
While the history of local government in Wales stretches back at least to the 16th century, the existing 22 Welsh single-tier, unitary authorities date from 1996. They are not divided into county and district councils, as local authorities are in much of England. On a more local level, community and town councils provide services in their immediate areas.
All local authorities are democratically accountable through elections held every 4 years. Local authorities have a cabinet-style executive with the dominant political group or coalition making decisions under the scrutiny of the council as a whole. They have extensive staff structures headed by a chief executive, who works with other senior officers on day-to-day business and decision-making.
Local authority funding and policy
Welsh unitary authorities spend almost £7bn a year on their services. The sums making up this total vary considerably between larger authorities such as Cardiff and smaller ones like Merthyr Tydfil and Anglesey. The Welsh Government provides around 80% of unitary authority revenue funding, whilst council tax makes up most of the remainder.
The Welsh Government sets the broad policy agenda for local authorities in Wales, but avoids using its powers to control how they operate. Our work with local authorities is firmly on the basis of partnership. Local authorities also work in close partnership with other bodies, such as the NHS and the police.
All unitary authorities in Wales are members of the Welsh Local Government Association (WLGA). The WLGA represents their collective views and interests and advises and supports individual authorities. The Welsh Government funds some WLGA projects, such as its work on equality and service improvement.
Working in Partnership provides information about the working relationship between the Welsh Government and local authorities.