Cynon Valley AM welcomes new Welsh Government law plans, including Bill to improve bus services

Local Assembly Member Vikki Howells has welcomed the Welsh Government’s announcement of the new laws it will seek to make during the remainder of the Assembly term.

Amongst the plans outlined by Welsh Labour First Minister Mark Drakeford AM was a new Public Transport Bill, that would improve bus services by reversing some of the negative impacts of de-regulation by enabling local authorities to franchise or run bus services directly.

This would be a key part of wider reforms to bus services and will help the Welsh Government achieve its ambition of creating a truly integrated public transport network.

Other proposed new laws include:-

  • A Local Government and Elections (Wales) Bill that will empower local authorities to deliver modern, accessible, high-quality public services for – and with – the local communities they serve, and give 16 and 17 year olds the vote in council elections;
  • A GP Indemnity Bill that will cover all clinical negligence claims against local family doctors;
  • A Curriculum and Assessment Bill to set in statute the principles, freedoms and structures for the new curriculum; and
  • A Tertiary Education and Research Bill to change how universities are funding, strengthen national and regional planning, reinforce the link between research and education, and deliver a post-compulsory education and training system which is better placed to bring the sector together to provide genuine life-long learning and skills development.

The First Minister said there may also be new laws to address no fault evictions, and progress will continue on the Bill to give children equal protection from assault and to place the Welsh Government’s social partnership ambitions on to a statutory footing.

Outlining his priorities for the remainder of the Assembly term, the First Minister said:-

“This legislative statement sets out the government’s plans for the Bills we will introduce over the remainder of this Assembly term to help create a more equal Wales, rooted in economic, social, and environmental justice.

“This is a legislative programme which delivers progressive, positive change for the people of Wales. It demonstrates our determination to press ahead with an ambitious programme, notwithstanding the uncertainty we face.”

Vikki Howells AM said:-

“I am particularly pleased that we will see a new Bill that will work to underdo the damage caused by de-regulation of bus services, which has failed so many people living in Cynon Valley. People want bus services that are designed around local need and not shareholder dividend, and that is what this Bill will deliver.

“I am also pleased to see the commitment to bring in legislation that will improve our approach towards life-long learning and adult education in particular, building on our commitments to all-age apprenticeships and good-quality skills development.”