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Present

  • Ken Skates AM (Chair)
  • Mark Drakeford AM (until item 3)
  • Vaughan Gething AM (until item 3)
  • Lesley Griffiths AM
  • Hannah Blythyn AM

Leaders of North Wales Local Authorities – for items 1 and 2 on the agenda

  • Cllr Mark Pritchard, Wrexham
  • Cllr Ian Roberts, Flintshire
  • Cllr Sam Rowlands, Conwy
  • Cllr Llinos Medi Huws, Anglesey
  • Cllr Dyfrig Siencyn, Gwynedd
  • Cllr Hugh Evans, Denbighshire
  • Stephen Jones, WLGA
  • Carys Evans, Deputy Director, Principal Private Secretary to the First Minister
  • Paul Griffiths, Special Adviser
  • Andrew Johnson, Special Adviser
  • Clare Jenkins, Special Adviser
  • Alex Bevan, Special Adviser
  • Damian Roche, Cabinet Secretariat (minutes)
  • Sophie Jones, Cabinet Secretariat
  • Andrew Goodall, Director General, Health and Social Services
  • Sioned Rees, Head of Escalation and Special Measures Support, H&SS
  • Gwenllian Roberts, Chief Regional Officer, North Wales
  • Bryn Richards, Head of Regional Planning, North Wales
  • Claire Germain, Deputy Director, Local Government Transformation and Partnerships

Item 1: North Wales Local Authority Leaders Discussion – CAB-NW(19-20)03

Introduction

1.1.    The Minister for Economy and Transport welcomed the Local Authority Leaders to a meeting of the Cabinet Committee on North Wales.

1.2.    The Local Authority Leaders welcomed the opportunity to discuss the issues at hand at the Cabinet Sub-Committee and looked forward to further opportunities for continued joint working.

Devolution to the North Wales Region

1.3.    The Sub-Committee discussed the potential for further regionalisation of Welsh Government functions in North Wales and agreed that there was a strong appetite for it, but further clarity was sought about the Welsh Government’s aims and objectives. 

1.4.    It was noted that the Welsh Government’s objectives were very similar to those of Local Authorities (LAs), whereby local decisions should be made, based on local knowledge of the issues.

1.5.    Retaining local accountability for any decisions made was particularly important to the region, alongside recognising the benefits that partnership working could bring.

Potential devolution vehicles – Corporate Joint Committees

1.6.    The Sub-Committee discussed the establishment of Corporate Joint Committees (CJCs) as part of the forthcoming Local Government and Elections (Wales) Bill. 

1.7.    It was suggested that CJCs should stand as a framework and consistent vehicle for local government regional collaboration. They would be designed to create the coherence, consistency and simplification needed for governing collaborative arrangements, whilst retaining democratic control and oversight.

National Development Framework

1.8.    The Sub-Committee discussed the National Development Framework, which set out a national spatial strategy and policies for development and land use for the next 20 years.

Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board – A&E Services in North Wales

1.9.    The Sub-Committee discussed the situation in relation to A&E services in the BCUHB region. 

1.10.    It was recognised that winter pressures had been exceptional again this year and many of the issues had arisen due to increased demand on services. The Sub-Committee commended the resilience of staff in the face of significant difficulties and recognised their appetite for improvement in services.

1.11.    The Sub-Committee welcomed the joint approach that the North Wales Region was taking towards addressing the difficulties in health and social care services.

Item 2: Summary of discussion with Local Authority Leaders

2.1    The Minister for Economy and Transport reflected on the positive discussion that had taken place with the Local Authority Leaders and recognised that this forum was particularly useful to maintain open dialogue and engagement with the North Wales Region.

Item 3: Corporate Joint Committees – Emerging Proposals in the context of North Wales - CAB-NW(19-20)01

3.1    The Minister for Economy and Transport introduced the paper, which provided an update on the latest proposals for the establishment of Corporate Joint Committees (CJCs) in the context of North Wales.

3.2    The Cabinet Sub-Committee noted the paper.

Item 4: Health – Current Position in relation to Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board – CAB-NW(18-19)02

4.1    The Minister for Economy and Transport introduced the paper on behalf of the Minister for Health and Social Services, which provided an update on the current position in relation to health services in North Wales and Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board (BCUHB). The paper covered next steps to drive a more transformative approach to deliver improvement. 

4.2    The Sub-Committee noted the paper.

Cabinet Secretariat
February 2020