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Summary

  1. Plenary begins at 13.30 with Questions to the Cabinet Secretary for Finance and Local Government
  2. Questions to the Assembly Commission
  3. Topical Questions
  4. Debate on the Children, Young People and Education Committee's inquiry into the Education Improvement Grant: Gypsy, Roma and Traveller, and Minority Ethnic Children
  5. Plaid Cymru debate: local public services
  6. United Kingdom Independence Party debate: energy generation policies and environmental impact policy
  7. Short Debate: School of Politics - empowering the next generation of active citizens in Wales

Live Reporting

By Alun Jones

All times stated are UK

  1. Hwyl

    That's the end of today's proceedings in the Siambr.

    Senedd Live will be back on Tuesday 9 May.  

    Senedd
  2. School of Politics

    Finally in the Siambr today is a Short Debate by Hannah Blythyn.

    The subject: School of Politics - empowering the next generation of active citizens in Wales. 

    Hannah Blythyn
  3. Plaid Cymru motion fails

    The Plaid Cymru motion - including a call on the Welsh Government to scrap zero hours contracts in the social care sector - fails with 12 members for, 35 against.   

    vote
  4. Energy Wales policy strategy

    On behalf of the Welsh Government, Jane Hutt (Vale of Glamorgan)proposes deleting all and replacing with a proposal that the assembly:

    1. Notes the Welsh Government’s energy policy strategy Energy Wales.

    2. Notes the legislative target of reducing greenhouse gas emissions in Wales by at least 80 per cent by 2050.

    3. Recognises the planning system provides opportunities to both protect Wales’ unique landscape and also promote opportunities for renewable energy generation.

    Jane Hutt
  5. 'Opportunity to be a world leader'

    Conservative David Melding says "Wales has the opportunity to be a world leader in renewable technologies. 

    "It's a route to localism and empowerment of local communities". 

    David Melding
  6. 40 per cent reduction in carbon emissions by 2020

    Plaid Cymru propose the following amendments:

    Insert at end of point 1:

    ‘with the aim of achieving a 40 per cent reduction in carbon emissions by 2020, an 80 per cent reduction in carbon emissions by 2050 and a zero-carbon economy.’

    Delete point 2.

    In sub-point 3(a) delete ‘the final’ and replace with ‘a’.

    Insert at end of sub-point 3(a):

    ‘through their democratic local and national decision-making structures based on the principles of the Well-being of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015.’

    Delete sub-point 3(b).

    Delete sub-point 3(c) and replace with:

    ‘the method of reducing residential, public sector and business energy usage should be supported by strengthened building regulations for new buildings to be nearly zero energy and through a large-scale retrofitting programme for existing residential homes.’

  7. Repeal the Climate Change Act?

    Labour's Huw Irranca-Davies asks "whether it is still UKIP's national position to repeal the Climate Change Act entirely and to ditch decarbonisation targets, because that's not in the spirit of what you have just said?" 

    David Rowlands replies, "absolutely it's not,  but we don't come under the whip as all other parties. We can have our own policies within the Welsh Government if that is what we feel we have to do". 

    David Rowlands
    Image caption: David Rowlands
  8. Aim of a zero-carbon economy

    Members move on to the UKIP debate, proposing that the assembly:

     1. Directs the Welsh Government to review its energy generation policies and environmental impact policy.

    2. Notes that there is an aim of achieving a zero-carbon economy in Wales.

    3. Believes that:

    a) communities should have the final say over whether to approve solar farms in their locality;

    b) mature woodland should not be cut down to build solar farms; and

    c) the method of reducing residential, public sector and business energy usage should be supported by:

    i) encouraging the installation of triple glazing in residential and other properties; and

    ii) encouraging the installation of fuel-efficient boilers.

  9. Prosperity and wellbeing

    As proceedings resume, the Welsh Government proposes deleting all after point 1. 

    Mark Drakeford says he seeks to align the assembly with something all parties can agree, "that quality local public services are key to the prosperity and wellbeing of our nation". 

    Mark Drakeford
  10. Proceedings suspended

    Proceedings are suspended in the Senedd due to "technical problems". 

  11. 'Legally binding vote on major planning decisions'

    Gareth Bennett says UKIP "agree with the broad thrust of the Plaid Cymru motion". 

    He says for the second time today that local people should have a legally binding vote on major planning decisions.   

  12. 'Designed for Twitter'

    Labour's Hefin David says today's motion on zero hours contracts by Plaid Cymru is "designed for Twitter".  

    Hefin David
  13. Conservative amendments

    Janet Finch-Saunders moves the Conservative amendments: 

    Delete point 2 and replace with:

    Regrets that since 2013-14, funding for local authorities in Wales has decreased by 6.78 per cent, disproportionately affecting our rural communities, including cuts of 9.98 per cent to Monmouthshire, 9.36 per cent to Vale of Glamorgan and 7.96 per cent to Conwy.

    Delete point 4 and replace with:

    Notes that the Chief Executive salary for Welsh Conservative-led Monmouthshire County Council is one of the lowest in Wales, and commends the transparency of the council in publishing all expenditure.

    Delete point 6 and replace with:

    Notes the right of every child and young person to be given the opportunity to realise their full potential, and highlights the importance of direct funding for schools in enabling parents to be able to choose the best school for their children.

    Delete point 8 and replace with:

    Notes the value of social care workers in relieving overburdened, centralised NHS services, and the importance of integration between the health and social care sectors in Wales.

  14. Plaid Cymru debate

    Next is the Plaid Cymru debate, proposing that the assembly:

     1. Believes that quality local public services are key to the prosperity and wellbeing of our nation.

    2. Regrets that since 2011-12, funding for local authorities in Wales has decreased by 6.5 per cent, disproportionately affecting some of the weakest and most vulnerable people in communities across Wales.

    3. Recognises the important role played by local authorities in:

    a) developing local economies in partnership with the business community;

    b) ensuring that our streets are clean and safe;

    c) delivering quality education; and

    d) delivering social service care that look after the most vulnerable people in communities across Wales.

    4. Notes that the average salary for Chief Executives running Plaid Cymru-led Councils is nearly £22,000 less than those run by Labour Councils in Wales.

    5. Believes that local affordable housing development projects should be rooted in the needs of the community.

    6. Notes the successful child development tracking model, used by Ceredigion Council - the only council judged by Estyn to have excellent performance in Wales in the last full cycle of inspections - to ensure children are reaching their potential, with assistance provided at an early stage to those who are falling behind.

    7. Regrets that, since 2012, the percentage total of local government procurement spend in Wales has remained static at just 58 per cent.

    8. Calls on the Welsh Government to scrap zero hours contracts in the social care sector.

  15. Welsh Government's detailed responses

    The Welsh Government's detailed responses to the report’s recommendations are set out here

    Recommendation 6 was rejected by Education Secretary Kirsty Williams because the Welsh Government "does not consider that any benefit would be served in revisiting the impact assessments undertaken in the previous Assembly term in 2014/15". 

    Kirsty Williams
  16. Effectiveness of the education performance framework

    Committee Chair Lynne Neagle presents the report, which has 14 recommendations for the Welsh Government, including:

    • Keep under review the best model for funding to support the educational outcomes of Gypsy, Roma, traveller and minority ethnic learners
    • Review the arrangements in place to monitor the use of the EIG and evaluate its impact, specifically in relation to these groups of learners
    • Call on Estyn to undertake a review of educational provision for these learners, providing an update since its last thematic report in 2011
    • Do more to improve educational outcomes amongst Gypsy, Roma and Traveller learners and minority ethnic groups with lower than average attainment.
    Lynne Neagle
  17. Gypsy, Roma and Traveller, and Minority Ethnic children

    Now we have the first of this afternoon's debates, which is on the Children, Young People and Education Committee's inquiry into the impact of the Welsh Government’s amalgamation of previously ringfenced grants into the new Education Improvement Grant on Gypsy, Roma and Traveller, and Minority Ethnic children.   

    Between 2013 and 2015, only 15.5% of pupils from Gypsy and Gypsy Roma backgrounds achieved five or more GCSEs at grades A*-C including core subjects - compared to 56% of all pupils.

    Figures out in January showed that had risen to 24.4%.

    classroom
  18. No 90 Second Statements

    We did not have any 90 Second Statements today, which any Member may make on any subject of concern. They can use the statements to, for example:

    • raise matters of pressing concern to their constituents;
    • draw attention to local issues;
    • mark anniversaries or significant dates;
    • pay tributes.
  19. Dementia patients on the Tawel Fan ward

    The second topical question is by Darren Millar (Clwyd West): Will the Cabinet Secretary make a statement into the investigation being undertaken by Betsi Cadwaladr Health Board into reports that the quality of care for dementia patients on the Tawel Fan ward at Glan Clwyd Hospital may have contributed to at least seven deaths? 

    The quality of care on a scandal-hit ward for dementia patients may have contributed to at least seven deaths, BBC Wales revealed yesterday.

    Tawel Fan ward at Glan Clwyd Hospital, Denbighshire, was closed more than three years ago and a report found some patients were treated like animals.

    It has emerged that at least seven patients' families were told treatment may have contributed to their deaths.

    Health Secretary Vaughan Gething reminds members that an investigation was under way.

    Glan Clwyd
  20. Use of Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis

    Jeremy Miles (Neath)welcomes the decision to approve the use of Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis in Wales as part of a study.

    The "game-changing" drug which dramatically cuts the chances of HIV infection will be provided in Wales as part of a three year trial.

    This is despite the All Wales Medicines Strategy Group (AWMSG) advising the Welsh Government not to fund Prep on cost-effectiveness grounds.

    Health Secretary Vaughan Gething has announced that during the research period "those for whom the drug is clinically appropriate can access it".

    The trial will begin this summer.

    An independent HIV expert group had already called the drug, which has got the go-ahead in Scotland, "highly effective" when used with the right groups and in the right doses.

     AWMSG had said there were "several uncertainties and limitations" in the economic model provided by the drug company.  

    pills