Mark Drakeford, Cabinet Secretary for Finance and Local Government
Section 73 of the Government of Wales Act 2006 requires Welsh Ministers to make, keep under review, and from time to time remake or revise a Local Government Scheme. That Scheme sets out how the Welsh Ministers propose, in exercise of their functions, to sustain and promote local government in Wales.
I am pleased to present the remade Local Government Scheme to the National Assembly today http://gov.wales/topics/localgovernment/partnership-with-local-government/lgps08/?lang=en. The previous Local Government Scheme was published in 2008. It reflected the public services reform agenda as it then was, which recognised that effective public services must be provided by a wide range of collaborations between public service providers working across geographical boundaries. While there is much that is still relevant in the Scheme, a lot has changed since then.
This new Scheme is framed in the context of the Well-being of Future Generations Act and reflects the themes which underpin the Welsh Government’s approach to reform and the model of service delivery we want to see in the future. It has been developed in partnership with the Partnership Council itself and reflects our shared agenda and agreed ways of working.
The Welsh Ministers are required to publish an annual report on how the Scheme was implemented in the previous financial year and lay a copy of the report before the National Assembly for Wales. In reporting on this new scheme, we will co-produce the report with members and observers of the Partnership Council for Wales.
As part of this, the Partnership Council for Wales provides a forum for the Welsh Government and wider public services to offer advice and make representations to Welsh Ministers about matters affecting local government and agree how they can improve outcomes for citizens in Wales.
I intend to continue to build a new relationship between the Welsh Government and local government as part of a broad programme of local government reform which aims to bolster resilience and renewal in local government. The new Scheme also provides an opportunity to articulate this new relationship and to properly reflect the distinctive relationships Welsh Government has with other bodies represented at Partnership Council.