Opposition parties are demanding that the Transport Minister confirms that the Great Western main line will still be electrified through to Swansea by 2018. Patrick McLoughlin told MPs that the project was a top priority and is going ahead when other electrification schemes are being "paused". But he told Plaid Cymru's Jonathan Edwards that he'd have to write to him about the completion date.
Mr Edwards said he was "concerned by the ambiguity" of the minister's response. The Liberal Democrats' spokesperson in the Assembly says she'll also be writing to Patrick McLoughlin.
But the Wales Office Minister Alun Cairns has backed today's announcement.
The Welsh Liberal Democrats say the decision to hand control of the Wales and borders rail franchise to the Welsh Government demonstrates their influence in the Westminster coalition. But Plaid Cymru say the railway track itself should have been brought under Welsh control.
Eluned Parrott also said she was "absolutely delighted" that the Welsh and UK Governments had resolved the funding of Valleys lines electrification. Plaid Cymru's spokesperson, Rhun ap Iorwerth also welcomed it as a "good step in the right direction" but said his party would continue to argue for complete Welsh control of the railway.
The Welsh Liberal Democrats say today's go ahead for a new motorway around Newport by 2021 is a "huge mistake" by Economy and Transport Minister Edwina Hart. They say it ignores environmental concerns raised during the consultation on alternative proposals.
Welsh Liberal Democrats are setting out ways to encourage more young people to take up apprenticeships. Business spokesperson Eluned Parrott says it should be considered in the same way as applying to attend university.
The Welsh Liberal Democrats are setting out a series of ideas which they say would encourage more young people to consider taking up apprenticeships.
- A schools liaison programme to boost the image of apprenticeships
- Apprentice Ambassador scheme
- Competitions to celebrate skills
- University-style application process including clearing
- A single information, application and support system
Business spokesperson Eluned Parrott said:
First Minister Carwyn Jones has ordered a full investigation into allegations that a Welsh Government-supported website offered young people advice that included:
- How to set up your own escort agency
- How to set up your own lap dancing club
- How to become a stripper
He was told in the Senedd that links to factsheets on all three topics had appeared on the Big Ideas Wales website, which aims to help young people start their own businesses.
Links to the factsheets are not currently available on the Big Ideas Wales website
There's no doubt the Liberal Democrats have paid a heavy price in Wales for their party's decision to join forces with the Conservatives at Westminster. But with just two years before the next UK election, have they turned the corner or could things get worse for them?
Our Political Editor Adrian Masters brought together fFormer leader Lord Michael German, Assembly Member Eluned Parrott and Deputy Leader of Monmouthshire council, Phillip Hobson to try to answer that question.
Welsh Liberal Democrat Transport spokesperson Eluned Parrott says, now the Welsh Government has bought Cardiff Airport, it should publish its plans for transforming it.
For the Welsh Liberal Democrats, there's a lot riding on today's regional pay vote in Brighton. (There are more details here.) If they succeed they'll have set their party against any attempt by the Coalition Government to introduce different public sector pay levels in different parts of the UK.
It's a major challenge too for Eluned Parrott who only became an AM last year but is leading the debate which starts at 4pm this afternoon. She told me that she wants to win over heads as well as hearts, presenting economic arguments against regional pay as well as appealing to a sense of fairness.
She and leader Kirsty Williams have also seized every opportunity to try win over senior figures in a series of formal and informal meetings. Danny Alexander, who earlier this year said he was 'keen' to see local pay, will be in the front row. Have the Welsh Lib Dems succeeded in changing his mind?