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Summary

  1. The Welsh Assembly meets at 13.30 GMT. The session began with questions to the minister for finance and government business.
  2. Questions to the Minister for Public Services.
  3. Debate on the Finance Committee’s report on Best Practice Budget Process Part 2.
  4. Conservatives debate on the importance of rural Wales to the Welsh economy.
  5. Liberal Democrats debate on the Welsh government scheme Jobs Growth Wales.

Live Reporting

By Anwen Lewis, Alun Jones and Leonie Horton

All times stated are UK

Nos da

And that brings today's proceedings to a close.

Join us again on Tuesday 5th May, hwyl fawr.

Summing up

Peter Black is summing up his party's debate, and we will shortly be moving on to voting time.

Jobs Growth Wales

Julie James, the Deputy Minister for Skills and Technology, says in her reply "everywhere I go in Wales....I meet with employers who are falling over themselves to tell me what a great scheme this is."

She added "it's business as usual" as those who joined the scheme in March will continue with their placements until September.

Future Jobs Fund

Former minister Jeff Cuthbert refers to the Future Jobs Fund which was a UK government initiative introduced in 2009, which aimed to help long term unemployed people back into employment.

It was cut by the Coalition government in 2010 "with nothing in it's place", says Mr Cuthbert.

Siambr

Jobs Growth Wales has been a hot topic and was covered by the Conservatives in their

debate last week.

Prime Cymru

Liberal Democrat Aled Roberts expresses concern about unemployed older people not only those aged 16-24.

Mr Roberts says

Prime Cymru looks at helping those over the age of 50.

Closure

Last year, the scheme's budget was cut in order for cash to go to the NHS.

But the Labour-run Welsh government said this had not affected the scheme which had hit all its targets. Criticism has followed the closure. Read more

here.

Department for Education and Skills

The Department for Education and Skills (DfES) are currently in the "transition phase" between the current Jobs Growth Wales programme and its successor. DfES are aiming to launch the new programme by mid-May.

Scheme comes to end

Jobs Growth Wales was part funded by the European Social Fund and the current round of programmes came to an end on 31st March 2015 for new entrants only.

Jobs Growth Wales

Liberal Democrat Eluned Parrott says whilst opening the debate that it's "astonishing" that Welsh government allowed Jobs Growth Wales to come to an end without a replacement in place.

Jobs Growth Wales

The Jobs Growth Wales scheme started in April 2012 and aimed to create 16,000 job opportunities over 4 years for unemployed 16-24 year olds throughout Wales. The programme catered for young people that were job ready but had difficulty securing employment.

Reply

Nick Ramsay is replying to his party's debate. We will shortly move on to the last debate of the day, the Liberal Democrats' debate on Jobs Growth Wales.

Food Tourism Action Plan

Rebecca Evans, Deputy Minister for Farming and Food says the "Food Tourism Action Plan will be announced tomorrow."

Pub Closures

Conservative Mohammed Asghar refers to The Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA)'s claim that two pubs close in Wales every week.

Common Agricultural Policy

Plaid's Llyr Gruffydd is speaking about The

Common Agricultural Policy's different pillar payments.

YFC funding

Mr Powell says reinstating YFC funding long-term is a "major priority for us".

Farmers

Liberal Democrat member William Powell speaks about the 2015 UK Government Budget to extend the period that self-employed farmers can average their profits for income tax purposes from 2 years to 5 years saying it "will help over 3,000 individual farmers in Wales."

Broadband

The Welsh government 'aims to make fibre (optic broadband) available to 96 per cent of premises in Wales by Spring 2016'.

Super Fast Cymru

Mr George refers to

Super Fast Cymru and asks whether it will receive extra funding to reach it's targets.

YFC

Back in January it was

announced Young Farmers' Clubs in Wales were to lose £360,000 from a Welsh government-backed grant.

Conservative Debate

Russell George opens the debate for the Conservatives.

He welcomes the reinstatement of YFC funding but says it needs to be "long-term."

Reply

Jocelyn Davies is replying to the debate, up next is the Conservatives debate looking at the importance of rural Wales to the Welsh economy.

Committee Chair: Jocelyn Davies

Jocelyn Davies
BBC

NHS

"£9bn of the Welsh money goes to the NHS," says Peter Black.

15 years

Nick Ramsay says "things have moved on a lot since devolution" 15 years ago and the Assembly should move along with this.

Holtham Report

Part 2 looks at tax and borrowing issues identified in the

Holtham Report.

Evidence submitted

The committee held a consultation to gather evidence on Best Practice Budget Process - you can click

here for the submitted evidence.

Two parts

Part 1 looked at Budgetary best practice and its applicability to Wales and was completed in July 2014.

Part 2 involves planning and implementing new budget procedures.

Finance Committee Report

The Finance Committee agreed to undertake an inquiry into best practice budget processes to ensure that effective budget processes are in place for the scrutiny of the financial powers contained in the Wales Bill.

Best Practice Budget Process

We're on to the first of three debates this afternoon.The chair of the Finance Committee, Jocelyn Davies opens the debate on the committee's report on Best Practice Budget Process Part 2.

Zero Hour Contracts

Zero hour contracts raised by Plaid's Simon Thomas. Zero-hours contracts, or casual contracts, allow employers to hire staff with no guarantee of work. They mean employees work only when they are needed by employers, often at short notice. Their pay depends on how many hours they work.

Councillor terms

Minister says he has "no intention of extending councillor terms to 6 or 7 years." Back in February Mr Andrews said term limits for councillors will break up "t

he old boys' club".

Picture: Leighton Andrews

Leighton Andrews
BBC

Local Authorities

BBC Cymru Wales

Challenging

cuts have been made to public services including libraries and youth services.

Cuts

David Rees speaks about cuts to local authorities affecting facilities, for example leisure centres.

Grass fires

@GriffithsJECtrl says 20 further deliberate grass fires were lit in the South Wales Fire and Rescue Service area yesterday, bringing the total to 874 in April.

New question

Peter Black is the Liberal Democrat spokesperson for public services.

Firefighter fitness

Ann Jones asks the minister about firefighter fitness in Wales.

Fire service

A campaign has been launched to attract more women to join the fire and rescue service in Wales.

Public Services minister

Leighton Andrews rejoined the cabinet in September 2014 as minister for public service, 15 months after he resigned. He is responsible for delivering local government changes.