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  1. Adrian Masters

Councils' coalition talks (8)

Now that Plaid has reached a deal to run Ceredigion, 9 councils remain without overall control after last week's local elections. You know about Powys from my earlier updates. And Gwynedd, where Plaid is a seat away from a majority, awaits the outcome of a by-election on June 14th.

In Monmouthshire, the Conservatives are said to be talking to Lib Dems and independents. Labour there has decided to stay in opposition despite 'overtures.' Vale of Glamorgan, Wrexham, Flintshire will almost certainly be run Labour and Independent coalitions. The same is likely in Carmarthenshire.

An 'anti-Tory alliance' of Independent, Labour, Plaid and Lib Dem councillors which was running Conwy looks set to continue. In Denbighshire, Labour's opted for opposition which means talks continue between Conservative, Plaid, Lib Dem and Independent councillors.


  1. Adrian Masters

Councils' coalition talks latest (6)

Efforts to form an administration in Powys continue to cause interest. I told you here that opposition from Welsh leaders of both Labour and the Conservatives apparently led to the breakdown of what could have been an extraordinary Labour-Conservative-Independent coalition.

I now hear that what looks likely to emerge is a Tory-Independent minority administration which would have tacit support from the Labour group despite opposition from party leaders. The Lib Dems, I'm told, have agreed to sit on the sidelines if they're given the chair of a scrutiny committee.

Labour says its councillors won't get involved in running the council but will play an important role in scrutinising whoever does. And no deal is certain: whatever bad feeling exists between official parties, I gather it's nothing compared to hostility amongst the different groups of Independents.

  1. Adrian Masters

Councils' coalition talks latest (4)

A little more information on the talks to form an administration in Powys. I gather negotiations to reach what would have been an extraordinary deal between some Independent councillors, Labour and the Conservatives has broken down.

I understand that was because both Labour and Conservative parties back in Cardiff were unhappy about the idea. Welsh Labour will only say that it has decided to take an opposition role on the council.

The Lib Dems are said to have ruled themselves out of any talks after losing their leader and the Independents don't have enough numbers to rule as a single group which means it's back to the drawing board.

  1. Adrian Masters

Councils' Coalition talks latest (3)

Talks are still going on at the 9 local authorities left without a single party or group in overall control. What I knew earlier this week is here and here. Today a Labour source tells me the party is still negotiating with Independents in Vale of Glamorgan, Wrexham, Flintshire and Carmarthenshire.

Labour councillors won't take part in running Powys, and look certain to form the opposition in Monmouthshire and Denbighshire.


  1. Adrian Masters

Councils' coalition talks latest

Talks are now taking place to try to form administrations in the 9 local authorities left without one party or grouping in overall control. A Labour source tells me the party is set to form alliances with Independent councillors in order to take charge of Vale of Glamorgan, Flintshire and Wrexham.

Labour expects to be in opposition in Denbighshire, Pembrokeshire and Monmouthshire. It says discussions are ongoing in Carmarthenshire and expects Conwy's power-sharing arrangement, known by some as an 'anti-Tory' coalition, to continue. A Plaid source agrees that that scenario is likely in Conwy.

Plaid's also said it wants to talk to other parties and independents in Ceredigion and Carmarthenshire. I understand the Conservative and Liberal Democrat groups in Monmouthshire are in talks, but have no more details on that yet. I'll update you when I do.

'Hurt and frustrated' but Welsh Lib Dem leader says she won't quit

Welsh Liberal Democrat Leader Kirsty Williams has spoken of 'genuine hurt and frustration' felt by party activists at last week's local election losses. She acknowledged that 'the vast majority (of what went wrong) can be attributed to London' and the effect of being in the UK coalition government.

But she said it would be 'lazy' to blame it all on UK matters and said the Welsh party must see what it could do better and why it managed to hold on in some places and not others. She said,

We need a proper analysis of what happened. There's no consistency to the results. If it was all about London, we'd have been wiped out everywhere and we weren't.

She also said she hadn't thought of resigning, adding that

If anything the results have made me more cross, more angry. I've devote the vast majority of my adult life to this cause; to quit now when it's hard? No, it's made me more blinking determined.

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