‘Bold and Balanced’ £15bn Welsh Budget Announced

An additional £450m for NHS Wales, investing £70m for the flagship childcare offer and an extra £10m to tackle homelessness each year are just some of the proposals outlined in the Welsh Labour Government draft budget for 2018-19.

Wrexham’s Assembly Member, Lesley Griffiths, has praised the bold and balanced budget announcement and said: “In spite of continued cuts by the Conservative UK Government, meaning there is £1.2bn less to spend on public services, the Welsh Government is delivering for the people of Wales.”

“The Welsh Labour Government is continuing to protect frontline services – the NHS, social care and education – as well as investing in its priorities, including its flagship childcare pledge, its target to build 20,000 affordable homes; 100,000 all-age apprenticeships and £100m to raise school standards.”

Despite the ongoing financial uncertainty, the Welsh Government has published 2-year revenue plans for 2018-19 and 2019-20 in a bid to provide certainty and stability for local government and the health service as they plan for the future.  Three-year capital plans, worth over £5bn have been published, boosting infrastructure investment across Wales.

The Welsh Government’s revenue plans include:

  • An additional £230m in 2018-19 and £220m in 2019-20 for NHS Wales
  • Protection for social care and education
  • No cuts to the Supporting People grant – an additional £10m will be allocated in each year to maintain 2017-18 levels
  • Investing £70m over 2 years for the flagship childcare offer
  • An extra £10m to tackle homelessness in each year.

Capital plans over the 3 years include:

  • Releasing £340m, as part of a £1.4bn investment, towards the flagship commitment to build 20,000 affordable homes
  • An extra £40m to accelerate the 21st Century Schools Programme
  • An extra £90m for the NHS Wales capital programme
  • Capital funding will be ear-marked in reserves to buy new rolling stock for the new Wales and Borders franchise, subject to the outcome of the procurement process.

Lesley Griffiths AM added: “Wrexham has already recently benefited from additional funding to tackle homelessness and I am pleased the Welsh Government has prioritised an additional £10m to address the issues.  Vulnerable local residents will continue to be protected by the Supporting People grant and the 21st Century Schools Programme, which has already seen investment in local schools such as Hafod, y Wern, Gwenfro and Ysgol Plas Coch, is set to continue.”