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Minister unveils plan to 'rebuild councils from the inside out'

The Public Services minister Leighton Andrews has launched a White Paper promising to 'reduce the cost of politics' in local government. Term limits for councillors have also been proposed.

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Workers "demoralised and fearful" says local govt union

The local government union Unison says today's proposals have left council restructuring no further forward and that the uncertainty is leaving workers demoralised and fearful for their futures.

There is a general consensus across Wales that council restructuring is both necessary and inevitable.

However, despite the fact that this debate has been ongoing for some time now, we appear to be no further forward in terms of a blueprint for the future map of local government in Wales.

This lack of certainty is dangerous for the future of Welsh local government. Ongoing deliberations are leaving the local government workers feeling demoralised and fearful for their futures.

Our members are experiencing a double whammy effect as a result of this indecision.

On the one hand councils are far too often turning to staff to make up budget shortfalls through job loss and cuts to terms and conditions, and on the other hand staff will face further disruption when councils are eventually restructured.

– Dominic MacAskill, Head of Local Government, Unison Cymru Wales

Mr MacAskill warned that further delays will exacerbate the damage being done to services as a result of austerity. He called for council mergers to go ahead as a matter of urgency, as local services could not continue to operate "under a shadow of doubt and indecision".

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