Julie James AM, Minister for Housing and Local Government
I will be using my powers under section 28 of the Local Government (Wales) Measure 2009 to provide a package of support to Merthyr Tydfil County Borough Council with immediate effect.
In response to a formal request from Merthyr Tydfil County Borough Council leader Kevin O’Neill and following a positive meeting with him last week, I have agreed to commission an initial phase of support (both letters are attached at the Annex for information – English only). This will involve an external advisor undertaking a scoping review to provide the Welsh Government and the leader with a rigorous and independent assessment of the council’s key challenges and advise about the immediate actions required and further support needed. The results will inform further support, which will be decided in discussion with the council.
I have also agreed an experienced political leader will work with Merthyr Tydfil Council members to develop and strengthen working relationships across all political groups and between members and officers.
I look forward to working with the council to ensure it is able to fulfil its ambition to serve people in Merthyr Tydfil effectively and efficiently. In doing so, I will be relying on full and effective commitment from all members and officers of the council so we can achieve our shared goal of a sustainable future for the council.
I will provide a further update to Assembly Members once the individuals who will support the council have been appointed.