Y Pwyllgor Cyfrifon Cyhoeddus - Y Bumed Senedd
Public Accounts Committee - Fifth Senedd18/01/2021
Aelodau'r Pwyllgor a oedd yn bresennol
Committee Members in Attendance
|Angela Burns MS|
|Delyth Jewell MS|
|Gareth Bennett MS|
|Jenny Rathbone MS|
|Nick Ramsay MS||Cadeirydd y Pwyllgor|
|Vikki Howells MS|
Y rhai eraill a oedd yn bresennol
Others in Attendance
|Adrian Crompton||Archwilydd Cyffredinol Cymru|
|Auditor General for Wales|
|Alun Williams||Swyddog Arweiniol Corfforaethol, Cyngor Sir Ceredigion|
|Corporate Lead Officer, Ceredigion County Council|
|Annwen Morgan||Prif Weithredwr, Cyngor Sir Ynys Môn|
|Chief Executive, Isle of Anglesey County Council|
|Diana Davies||Rheolwr Corfforaethol, Cyngor Sir Ceredigion|
|Corporate Manager, Ceredigion County Council|
|Dr Caroline Turner||Prif Weithredwr, Cyngor Sir Powys|
|Chief Executive, Powys County Council|
|Emma Palmer||Pennaeth Trawsnewid a Chyfathrebu, Cyngor Sir Powys|
|Head of Transformation and Communications, Powys County Council|
|Gethin Morgan||Rheolwr Rhaglen, Cynllunio Busnes a Pherfformiad, Cyngor Sir Ynys Môn|
|Programme Manager, Business Planning and Performance, Isle of Anglesey County Council|
|Karen Armstrong||Swyddog Gweithredol Busnes a Chyfathrebu Corfforaethol, Cyngor Sir y Fflint|
|Corporate Business and Communications Executive Officer, Flintshire County Council|
|Llyr Gruffydd MS||Cadeirydd y Pwyllgor Cyllid|
|Chair of the Finance Committee|
|Tim Buckle||Archwilio Cymru|
Swyddogion y Senedd a oedd yn bresennol
Senedd Officials in Attendance
|Claire Griffiths||Dirprwy Glerc|
|Tom Lewis-White||Ail Glerc|
Cofnodir y trafodion yn yr iaith y llefarwyd hwy ynddi yn y pwyllgor. Yn ogystal, cynhwysir trawsgrifiad o’r cyfieithu ar y pryd. Lle mae cyfranwyr wedi darparu cywiriadau i’w tystiolaeth, nodir y rheini yn y trawsgrifiad.
The proceedings are reported in the language in which they were spoken in the committee. In addition, a transcription of the simultaneous interpretation is included. Where contributors have supplied corrections to their evidence, these are noted in the transcript.
Cyfarfu'r pwyllgor drwy gynhadledd fideo.
Dechreuodd y cyfarfod am 09:31.
The committee met by video-conference.
The meeting began at 09:31.
Okay, can I welcome everyone to this morning's meeting of the Public Accounts Committee? Can I also particularly welcome Llyr Gruffydd, who's joining us today as well to provide his input? Thanks for being with us. We've received one apology from Rhianon Passmore. Do Members have any declarations of interest they'd like to make at the start of the meeting? Great. I think you're all happy with the translation, and all the usual housekeeping rules apply.
So, item 2, and barriers to the successful implementation of the Well-being of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015, and this is our fifth evidence session. So, can I welcome our witnesses? Thanks for being with us today. I know that circumstances at the moment aren't quite normal, so we're always grateful for you being able to join the committee to help us with our inquiry. Would you like to give your name and position for the Record of Proceedings? Who wants to start?
Bore da, Annwen Morgan, prif weithredwraig Cyngor Sir Ynys Môn.
Good morning, I'm Annwen Morgan, chief executive of Isle of Anglesey County Council.
Bore da. Gethin Morgan, rheolwr cynllunio busnes, rhaglen a pherfformiad, Cyngor Sir Ynys Môn.
Good morning. Gethin Morgan, programme manager, business planning and performance, Isle of Anglesey County Council.
Alun Williams, corporate lead officer for policy, performance and public protection, Ceredigion County Council.
Bore da, Diana Davies ydw i. Dwi'n rheolwr corfforaethol ar bartneriaethau a pherfformiad i Gyngor Sir Ceredigion.
Good morning. I'm Diana Davies, corporate manager of partnerships and performance for Ceredigion County Council.
Great. Thanks for being with us, as I said, and we've got a number of questions for you, so I'll kick off with the opening questions. Briefly, what has been the biggest challenge for your organisation in implementing the Act? Who'd like to kick off?
Ydych chi eisiau i fi ddechrau, gan fod sir Fôn ar y top a bod fy enw'n dechrau efo 'A'? [Chwerthin.]
Would you like me to start, because Anglesey is at the top and my name begins with 'A'? [Laughter.]
Mi wnawn ni gymryd y rhesymeg yna. Y prif sialensau ydy capasiti a'r adnoddau i weithredu'r newidiadau. Buaswn i'n dweud bod yr ymwybyddiaeth o'r Ddeddf yn dda ymhlith rheolwyr ac arweinyddiaeth ym Môn, ond y capasiti: does yna ddim arian ychwanegol, does yna ddim capasiti. Mae llywodraeth leol wedi mynd drwy gyfnod o doriadau ac yn parhau i wneud arbedion—galwn ni o felly—yn y blynyddoedd diwethaf yma, ac felly does yna ddim capasiti ychwanegol, os liciwch chi, i wreiddio'r Ddeddf yma mewn gwaith o ddydd i ddydd. Wrth gwrs, mae pob cyngor yn gwneud beth allan nhw, drwy hyfforddiant, drwy godi ymwybyddiaeth a thrwy enghreifftiau penodol, a dwi'n siŵr y cawn ni gyfle i rannu'r enghreifftiau penodol yna efo pawb o gwmpas y bwrdd y bore yma. Ond buaswn i'n dweud mai dyna ydy'r prif sialensau.
Ac i wynebu'r dyfodol wedyn, dydyn ni ddim yn gwybod beth fydd effaith Brexit, dydyn ni ddim yn gwybod beth fydd yr effaith ar yr economi, ac yn sicr dydyn ni ddim yn gwybod beth fydd yr effeithiau hirdymor pan ddown ni allan o'r pandemig yma, er enghraifft, yr effaith ar iechyd meddwl, absenoldebau staff ac efallai y gofynion uwch fydd gennym ni yn ein holl wasanaethau er mwyn gwasanaethu wedyn ein holl gymunedau. Diolch. Dwi ddim yn gwybod os ydy Gethin eisiau ychwanegu rhywbeth pellach.
We'll accept that reasoning. So, the main challenges are the capacity and the resources to implement the changes. I would say that awareness of the Act is good among managers and the leadership in Anglesey, but the capacity: there are no additional resources and there's no capacity. Local government has gone through a period of cuts and is continuing to make savings—we'll call it that—in recent years, and so there is no additional capacity, if you like, to embed this Act in the day-to-day work. Of course, every council is doing what they can, in terms of training, awareness raising and through specific examples, and I'm sure we'll have time to share those specific examples with everyone around the table this morning. But I would say that those are the main challenges.
Looking to the future, then, we don't know what the impact of Brexit will be, we don't know what the economic impact will be, and, certainly, we don't know what the long-term impact will be when we come out of this pandemic, for example, the impact on mental health, staff absence, and the higher demands that we may have on all our services in order to provide services for all of our communities. Thank you. I don't know whether Gethin wants to add anything to that.
Na, dim mwy gennyf fi, Annwen. Dwi'n meddwl eich bod chi wedi taro'r hoelen ar ei phen yn fanna gyda'r ymateb. Diolch.
No, nothing more from me, Annwen. I think that you have hit the nail on the head with that response. Thank you very much.
Anyone else? Alun.
From Ceredigion's perspective, I think, obviously, COVID, the pandemic, certainly has changed the situation quite dramatically for us at the moment, and that means that other things are not having as much attention as we would like, because we're having to reflect COVID. The future, really, could well be impacted by that in terms of our resources and our future plans, as we have to recover from that. Recovery from that will be a huge resource implication for us.
In terms of the Act, it's a really important Act, and I think, as has been said, a lack of resources in terms of capacity is certainly a big challenge. So, I think that and all the things that have gone on in these last 12 months, I would see as quite a challenging future for us in implementing the Act even further. I don't know whether Diana wants to come in on that.
Jest un peth i ategu, os caf i, Alun. Dwi'n credu y rhan lle roedden ni wedi cyrraedd cyn y pandemig, roeddwn i'n credu ein bod ni wedi gwneud gwaith da yn cyfathrebu beth yw'r Ddeddf a beth mae'n ei olygu. Ond dwi'n credu'r her fwyaf inni ar y pryd hynny, cyn COVID, oedd cael pobl i ddeall nad oedd y Ddeddf yn ddarn o ddeddfwriaeth oedd yn eistedd ar ei phen ei hunan, ei bod hi'n rhywbeth sydd i fod i arwain ein gwaith ni i gyd, a bod eisiau i hwnna dreiddio trwyddo ar gyfer popeth rŷn ni'n ei wneud. A hefyd, yr her yna, dwi'n credu, o gael pawb i ddeall y cyfle mae'r Ddeddf yn ei ddarparu, ac mae hwnna, byddwn i'n dweud, yn fwy gyda'r cyhoedd. Achos, wrth gwrs, i gael y Ddeddf i fod yn llwyddiannus ac i wir wireddu'r hyn mae'r Ddeddf yn mynd i'w galluogi nhw i wneud, mae eisiau inni weithio yn agos gyda'n cymunedau a'n trigolion ni. A dwi'n credu po fwyaf fydd y trigolion yn deall goblygiadau'r Ddeddf, bydd hwnna'n ein cynorthwyo ni wrth inni symud ymlaen. Felly, dwi'n credu mai dyna oedd yr heriau cyn COVID, ond wedyn dwi'n cytuno â beth mae pawb arall wedi'i ddweud, o ran y sefyllfa rŷn ni ynddi nawr, wrth gwrs. Diolch.
Just one thing, if I may, to echo Alun there. I think that the part where we'd reached before the pandemic, we thought that we had done some good work in terms of communicating the nature of the Act and what it means. But I think the biggest challenge at that time, before COVID, was to get people to understand that the Act wasn't just a piece of legislation that was a standalone piece of legislation, but it was supposed to lead all of our work and it needed to be embedded in everything that we do. And also, the challenge in terms of getting everyone to understand the opportunity that the Act provides, and I would say that that's more to do with the public, because to get the Act to be successful and to realise what the Act is going to allow them to do, we need to work very closely with our communities and our residents. And I think the more the residents understand the implications of the Act, that will assist us as we move forward. So, I think those were the pre-COVID challenges, but I do agree with what everyone has said in terms of the situation that we are in now. Thank you.
Great. Diolch. It's obviously a question, with the pandemic, of resources at the moment, as, Annwen, you said at the start. So, thank you for that. Okay, if we move on to some other Members now and Llyr Gruffydd.
Ie, diolch yn fawr iawn, Cadeirydd. Bore da, bawb. Wel, rŷch chi wedi dechrau yn union lle roeddwn i eisiau mynd, a dweud y gwir, sef ar ôl ymwybyddiaeth a dealltwriaeth o'r Ddeddf. Mi soniodd Annwen ar y cychwyn fod yna ymwybyddiaeth dda ymhlith rheolwyr ym Môn—byddwn i'n disgwyl bod hynny'n wir, wrth gwrs—ond wedyn, fel awgrymodd Diana, mae angen dealltwriaeth ymhellach i lawr y tsiaen hefyd, onid oes e? Wedyn, roeddwn i jest eisiau cychwyn drwy ofyn, a dweud y gwir: i ba raddau mae yna wir ddealltwriaeth o oblygiadau ac ystyr y Ddeddf o fewn eich sefydliad chi drwyddi draw, yn hytrach na dim ond efallai yn yr haenau sy'n ymwneud yn fwy uniongyrchol â rheoli ac ymateb i ddeddfwriaeth?
Thank you very much, Chair, and good morning, everyone. Well, you started exactly where I wanted to go, namely on the awareness and understanding of the Act. Annwen mentioned at the outset that there is good awareness among managers in Anglesey—I would expect that to be true, of course—but as Diana suggested, we need understanding further down the chain. So, I just wanted to ask: to what extent is there genuine understanding of the implications and the meaning of the Act within your organisations, throughout the organisation, not just in the tiers that deal directly with managing and responding to legislation?
Iawn. Dwi'n mynd i roi ateb syml, syml, a dwi am droi at Gethin i roi enghreifftiau penodol. Buaswn i'n dweud bod o'n amrywiol. I ateb eich cwestiwn chi mewn gair: yn amrywiol iawn. Gethin.
Well, I'm going to give a very simple answer, but I'm going to ask Gethin to give specific examples. I would say that it varies. To give you an answer in one word: great variation. Gethin.
Diolch, Annwen. Ie, dwi'n credu, yn ymateb i'r cwestiwn, o ran Cyngor Sir Ynys Môn, dwi'n meddwl gwnaethon ni gymryd approach eithaf pragmatig ar faterion pan ddaeth y Ddeddf i rym. Ac yn hynny o beth, gwnaethon ni ganolbwyntio ar sicrhau'n hunain—a sicrhau'n hunain cystal â phosibl—ein bod ni'n gwreiddio'r pum ffordd o weithio sy'n gysylltiedig â'r Ddeddf mewn lle, a hwnnw, rili, sydd wedi bod yn ffocws inni fel cyngor: ein bod ni'n medru sicrhau eu bod nhw'n cael eu gweithredu, ond hefyd ein bod ni'n medru sicrhau eu bod nhw'n cael eu tystiolaethu. Ac yn y modd o ran tystiolaethu, rydyn ni wedi medru sicrhau eu bod nhw'n greiddiol yn ein cynlluniau darparu gwasanaeth blynyddol. Rydyn ni hefyd yn sicrhau ein bod ni'n gofyn y cwestiynau perthnasol o safbwynt pan rydyn ni'n mynd â nhw o flaen ein pwyllgor gwaith ni a'r pwyllgorau craffu, ac yn ychwanegol i hynny, dwi'n meddwl eu bod nhw'n cael eu herio ac yn cael eu cwestiynu, mae'n siŵr, mewn fforymau sydd gennym ni o reolwyr ar draws y cyngor. Ac mae hwnna'n digwydd yn chwarterol os nad yn fwy aml yn ddiweddar oherwydd, yn amlwg, y cyfnod rydyn ni ynddo.
Thank you, Annwen. I think, in response to the question, in terms of Anglesey council, we took a pragmatic approach to issues when the Act came into force. And in that sense, we focused on assuring ourselves—and assuring ourselves as much as possible—that we were embedding the five ways of working that are associated with the Act, and that, really, has been our focus as a council: that we can ensure that they are implemented, but also that we can ensure that they can be evidenced. And in terms of evidencing this, we've been able to ensure that they are a core part of our annual service delivery plans. We also ensure that we ask the relevant questions in terms of when we take them before our executive and the scrutiny committees, and, as well as that, I think that they are challenged and that they are questioned, I'm sure, in the forums that we have of mangers across the council. And that is happening on a quarterly basis if not more often more recently because of, obviously, the period that we're in.
Wrth gwrs. Ac yng nghyd-destun Ceredigion, o safbwynt o fewn y cyngor i gychwyn.
Of course. And in the context of Ceredigion, within the council initially.
Wel, bydden i'n dweud mai un o'r pethau dŷn ni wedi'i wneud yw datblygu hyfforddiant a hefyd galluogi a disgwyl pob aelod o staff i wneud yr hyfforddiant drwy'r we, ac mae e'n rhywbeth rŷn ni wedi'i ddatblygu. So, mae hwnna'n rhywbeth: rŷn ni'n disgwyl bod pob aelod o staff yn gwneud yr hyfforddiant hynny, felly mae hwnna'n meddwl bod staff yn ymwybodol ohono fe.
Yn ogystal â hynny, mae gyda ni integrated impact assessment bob tro rŷn ni'n edrych ar bolisïau newydd neu'n mynd â pholisi i'r cyngor neu i'r cabinet yn y cyngor sir, ac mae hwnna'n meddwl wedyn bod checklist fanna yn sôn am yr Act, a'r ffordd rŷn ni'n gweithio a'r saith nod. Ac felly mae'n rhaid i bawb fynd drwyddo'r ddogfen honno pan maen nhw'n dechrau meddwl am eu polisïau newydd cyn eu bod nhw'n mynd â nhw ymhellach. Wedyn mae hwnna hefyd ar gael i scrutiny, iddyn nhw gael gweld faint o waith sydd wedi cael ei wneud ynglŷn â'r Act. So, drwy'r ffordd hynny, rŷn ni'n treiddio'r Ddeddf yn eithaf da, byddwn i'n meddwl. Wrth gwrs, mae e'n hawdd i bobl i ganolbwyntio ar eu gwaith nhw eu hunain a ddim meddwl am yr Act, ond mae'r IIA yn eu tynnu nhw nôl i wneud hwnna. Ac mae rôl gyda ni hefyd i'w monitro nhw i weld faint ohonyn nhw sy'n cael eu gwneud, ac, ambell waith, os oes rhywbeth yn mynd heb un, fe wnawn ni godi'r ffôn a gofyn, 'Ydych chi wedi ystyried bod angen ichi wneud hwn?' ac wedyn maen nhw, ambell waith, yn gorfod aros nes y cabinet nesaf tra'u bod nhw'n ei wneud e.
Well, I would say that one of things that we've done is develop training and also enable and expect all staff members to undertake training online on this, which is something we've developed. So, that's something that we expect every staff member to undertake, that training, so that does mean that the staff are aware of it.
As well as that, we have an integrated impact assessment every time we look at new policies or take policies to the council or to the cabinet in the council, and that means that that checklist does mention the Act, and the way in which we operate and the seven well-being goals. And so everyone has to go through that document when they start to think about their new policies before they take them any further. And so that is also available for scrutiny, for them to see how much work has been done on the Act. So, that way, we do embed the Act quite well, I would think. Of course, it is easy for people to focus on their own work and not think about the Act, but the IIA draws them back into doing that. And we also have a role in monitoring them to see how many of them have been done, and sometimes, if something is going without one, we need to pick up the phone and ask people, 'Well, have you considered that you need to do this?' and then, of course, sometimes they have to wait until the next cabinet meeting while that gets done.
Felly, oes yna benderfyniadau wedi cael eu gwneud nawr fyddai ddim wedi cael eu gwneud yn flaenorol? Achos y perygl yn aml iawn gyda rhywbeth fel hyn yw bod e jest yn dri chwestiwn ychwanegol ar impact assessment neu rywbeth. Dyna'r perygl. Ond, yn ei hanfod, oes yna benderfyniadau o fewn eich cynghorau chi sydd yn wahanol nawr i beth fydden nhw oni bai bod y Ddeddf wedi'i chyflwyno?
So, are there any decisions that are being made now that wouldn't have been made previously? Because the risk with something like this is that it's just three additional questions on an impact assessment. That's the risk. But, basically, are there any decisions within your councils that are different now to what they would have been if we hadn't had the Act?
I gychwyn, dwi ddim yn meddwl bod yna benderfyniadau gwahanol; beth sydd yna ydy bod y penderfyniadau sy'n cael eu gwneud, efallai, yn fwy ystyrlon ac yn ystyried y pum ffordd o weithio, ac yn sicr yn meddwl yn hirdymor. Dwi'n meddwl mai un enghraifft o'r sialensau mwyaf sydd gyda ni, roedd o'n benderfyniad o fewn y cyngor, oedd, ond o weithio—. Rydyn ni i gyd yn gwybod am ddatblygiad Wylfa Newydd a'r bwriad i roi peilonau ar draws yr ynys, ac un ffordd roedd y Ddeddf yn ein cynorthwyo ni oedd, os liciwch chi, atgoffa'r datblygwyr o bwysigrwydd y Ddeddf a'r ffaith nad oes unrhyw benderfyniad yn cael ei wneud yng Nghymru bellach heb ystyried y pum ffordd o weithio a'r saith nod. Wedyn yn sicr roedd hwnna o gymorth, os liciwch chi, i warchod cymunedau ac i feddwl yn fwy hirdymor. Dim bod yn erbyn y penderfyniad o gwbl, nid dyna dwi'n ddweud, ond bod y penderfyniad, os liciwch chi, yn fwy ystyrlon. Ond, wrth gwrs, mi oeddech chi'n cael—nid tensiwn buaswn i'n ei alw fo—ond roeddech chi'n cael efallai diffyg dealltwriaeth gan y bobl oedd yn datblygu o wlad arall, diffyg ymwybyddiaeth o'r Ddeddf, ac o gyrff ac o Lywodraethau eraill o bwysigrwydd y Ddeddf yng Nghymru. Dyna ichi ddwy enghraifft yn fanna oedd yn helpu'r penderfyniad roedden ni yn ei ddymuno ar Ynys Môn.
To start, I don't think there are any different decisions; what there is, is that the decisions that are made are maybe more meaningful and take consideration of the five ways of working, and certainly consider the long term. I think that one of the biggest challenges we have, it was a decision within the council, but in working—. We all know about the development of Wylfa Newydd and the plan to put pylons across the island, and one thing that the Act did assist us with was reminding the developers of the importance of the Act and the fact that no decision is made in Wales without considering the five ways of working and the seven goals. So, certainly, that assisted us in terms of protecting communities and thinking more long term. Not being against the decision, I'm not saying that, but that the decision was more considerate or meaningful. But, of course, you had—not tension, I wouldn't call it that—but you had maybe a lack of understanding among people who were doing the developing from another country, a lack of awareness of the Act, and from bodies and other Governments in terms of the importance of the Act in Wales. Those are two examples there that helped or assisted with a decision that we wished to see on Ynys Môn.
So, roedd cyd-destun y drafodaeth yn wahanol i bob pwrpas, onid e?
So, the context of the conversation was different.
Oedd, yn hollol wahanol.
Yes, it was very different.
Ocê. Wedyn, jest yn ôl gan eich bod chi wedi sôn am bartneriaid allanol mewn trafodaethau o'r fath a dwi'n meddwl yn benodol am ddefnyddwyr gwasanaethau hefyd eich cynghorau chi, a gwnaeth Diana gyffwrdd ar yr angen i godi ymwybyddiaeth ymhlith y boblogaeth ehangach yn lleol, ydy hynny'n digwydd? A beth ŷch chi'n ei wneud i gyflawni hynny? Dwi'n gwybod bod amgylchiadau efallai ddim yn caniatáu i lot o hynny ddigwydd ar hyn o bryd, ond drwy'r ffordd ŷch chi'n gweithredu, mae hwnnw'n bownd o raeadru i lawr ryw ffordd, onid yw e, i rai o'r cymunedau. Efallai byddai Diana eisiau ymhelaethu ar y pwyntiau oedd hi'n eu gwneud ar y dechrau.
Well, just, then, returning, given that you've talked about external partnerships in the discussions, and I'm thinking about service users particularly in your councils, and Diana touched on the need to raise awareness among the local population more broadly, is that happening? What are you doing to deliver that? I know that circumstances perhaps don't allow much of that to happen at present, but through the way in which you work, it's bound to cascade down somewhat to some of those communities. So, maybe Diana might want to expand on some of the points that she made at the outset.
Rwyf i'n credu os ŷn ni'n cymryd yn ystod y pandemig, yn amlwg mae fel ŷn ni wedi medru cynnwys y boblogaeth wedi gorfod newid oherwydd ein bod ni'n methu â mynd mas a gwneud yr ymgysylltu wyneb i wyneb yna y bydden ni fel arfer wedi ei wneud, ond mae gyda ni esiamplau o ban, gyda natur y pandemig, rŷn ni wedi gorfod gwneud penderfyniadau yn go glou, rŷn ni wedi bod yn cynnal ymgynghoriadau ynglŷn â'r parthau diogel yn ein trefi ni dros yr haf. Mae hynny'n un esiampl o le, eto—a mynd nôl i beth oedd Alun yn sôn amdano yn gynharach ynglŷn â'r asesiad effaith integredig—achos bod conglfeini'r Ddeddf wedi eu cynnwys yn y math yna o wneud penderfyniadau, drwy ddilyn y broses yna roedden ni'n gwneud yn siŵr ein bod ni yn cynnwys y boblogaeth yn y penderfyniadau a sut oeddem ni'n mynd ynglŷn â pharhau i wneud newidiadau i'r parthau diogel yna. Felly, hyd yn oed yn ystod y pandemig, rŷn ni wedi gallu dangos a thystiolaethu sut ŷn ni yn cynnwys y boblogaeth yn y penderfyniadau rŷn ni'n eu gwneud.
Mae mwy o waith inni ei wneud fel corff, rwyf fi'n siŵr fel y byddai pob corff arall yn ei ddweud, ac roedd gyda ni gynlluniau eleni i edrych ar sut i wneud ymgysylltu yn wahanol—sori, y llynedd, sut i wneud ymgysylltu'n wahanol gyda'r boblogaeth, gan ddefnyddio methodoleg gymysg a'r math hwnnw o beth, o ran sut oedden ni'n gwneud yn siŵr ein bod ni'n cyrraedd pawb ar draws yr ystod oedran a'r nodweddion gwarchodedig yna yn y Ddeddf Gydraddoldeb 2010, wrth gwrs. Felly, rŷn ni wedi gorfod—sut allaf i ddweud—ailedrych ar sut ŷn ni'n gwneud pethau, ond rwyf fi'n credu, gobeithio y byddai Alun yn cytuno, ein bod ni'n dod i ben â'i wneud e mewn ffyrdd gwahanol.
I think that if we take the pandemic period, the way in which we've been able to include the population has had to change, because we can't go out and do the engagement work face to face as we would have usually done, but we have examples of when, due to the nature of the pandemic, we've had to make very rapid decisions, and we have undertaken consultations on the safe zones in our towns over the summer. That's one example of where—returning to what Alun said earlier in terms of the integrated impact assessment—because the Act was included in that type of decision making, by following that process we ensured that we were including the local population in the decisions and how we were proceeding with making changes to those safe zones. So, even during the pandemic, we've been able to show and evidence how we are including the population in those decisions that we make.
There is more work to be done as a body, as I'm sure every body would say. We had plans this year to look at how to do consultation and engagement differently—sorry, last year—with the population, and using a mixed methodology, in terms of ensuring that we reach everybody across the age ranges and the different protected characteristics in terms of the Equality Act 2010. So, we have had to—how can I say—re-examine how we do things, but I hope Alun would agree that we are managing to do that in different ways.
Mae Gethin eisiau dod i mewn, rwy'n meddwl.
Gethin wants to come in here.
Dwi'n meddwl bod yr un neges yn dod drwyddo gennym ni fel cyngor sir, dwi'n meddwl, achos pan wnaeth y Ddeddf gael ei sefydlu, fe wnaethon ni weithredu, neu fe wnaethom ni sefydlu, bwrdd corfforaethol oedd yn ffocysu'n benodol ar sut ydyn ni'n ymgysylltu ac yn ymgynghori, ac roedd hwnnw'n fwrdd oedd yn dod â phartneriaid allanol i mewn iddo fo ac yn cyfarch haenau gwahanol o sut oedden ni'n ymgysylltu. Un o'r materion, neu un o'r haenau hynny, oedd haen roedden ni'n ei alw yn haen o adeiladu cymunedau, lle roedden ni'n cael, yn union fel oedd Diana yn ei nodi, trafodaethau hir—trafodaethau oedd yn cymryd amser gyda stakeholders gwahanol o'r cymunedau oedd wedyn yn arfogi'r gymuned yna i fedru adnabod eu blaenoriaethau eu hunain ac wedyn yn ein helpu ni i fedru adnabod sut buasen ni'n medru eu cynorthwyo nhw i'w gwireddu nhw. So, roedden ni'n eu harfogi nhw yn hynny o beth ac yn eu cynnwys nhw yn sut oedden nhw'n rhoi'r agenda mewn lle. Rydyn ni wedi cael, ac mae'n siŵr—. Sori, Llyr.
I think that the same message is coming through from us as a council, because when the Act was set up, we established a corporate board that focused specifically on how we engage and consult, and that was a board that brought external partners together and addressed different tiers of how we did engage. One of the issues, or one of those tiers, was a tier that we called building communities, where, as Diana said, we had discussions—discussions that took a long time with different stakeholders from the different communities that then tooled up those communities to be able to identify their own priorities and then help us to be able to identify how we could assist them to realise them. So, we tooled them up and included them in how the agenda was realised. We have had, and I'm sure—. Sorry, Llyr.
Roeddwn i jest eisiau holi faint o gymharu nodiadau sy'n digwydd ar draws y cyrff cyhoeddus, achos rŷn ni wedi clywed Alun yn sôn am ryw bethau ar lein, Diana yn sôn am ymwneud â'r gymuned, rŷch chi'n sôn am randdeiliaid eraill. Ydych chi'n glir yn eich meddyliau chi beth mae implementation da yn edrych fel ac oes yna—dim bod rhywun eisiau un system gyfan ar draws Cymru, ond bod yna ddysgu oddi wrth eich gilydd, pigo i fyny ar arferion da ac yn y blaen a'u rhannu nhw?
I just wanted to ask how much comparing of notes is happening across the public bodies, because we've heard Alun talking about online issues, Diana talking about engaging with the community, and you're talking about other stakeholders. Are you clear in your minds as to what good implementation looks like, and not that one wants one system for the whole of Wales, but that you learn from each other, pick up on good practice and so forth and share it?
Rydyn ni'n cael enghreifftiau gan swyddfa'r comisiynydd, ond na, does yna ddim digon o amser, ac mae angen gwneud mwy ohono fo, i ateb eich cwestiwn chi yn hollol, hollol blaen. Mae angen amser i'w wneud o, oes, a hwnna sy'n brin, efo llai o adnoddau a staff i'w wneud o. Ond mae'r comisiynydd yn rhannu arferion.
We are getting examples from the commissioner's office, but no, there's not enough time, and we need to do more, to answer your question very plainly. We do need time to do this, yes, and that's what we're short of, with insufficient resources and staff. But the commissioner shares good practice.
Rydw i'n meddwl bod hwnna'n bwynt pwysig i'w nodi, achos rydyn ni wedi—ac eto yn deillio allan o'n hymwybyddiaeth ni fel corff, rydyn ni wedi cael ein cwestiynu gan reolwyr ynglŷn â sut ydyn ni'n gwneud hwn mewn i'r dyfodol, o gofio'r sefyllfa rydyn ni ynddi. Ac rydym ni wedi bod yn edrych ar, ac yn gofyn am—os oes yna—unrhyw fath o arferion da drwy Gymru gyfan, fel petai, fel ein bod ni'n medru pigo i fyny ar y newidiadau neu'r pethau da sy'n digwydd yn y sector drwyddi draw.
I think that's an important point to note, because stemming from our awareness as a body, we've been questioned by managers about how we do this in the future, given the situation that we're in, and we have been looking for and asking whether there are any good practices throughout Wales so that we can pick up on those changes or the good things that are happening in the sector as a whole.
Roedd Diana hefyd eisiau dod i mewn.
Diana wants to come in here.
Ie, diolch. Jest i ategu hwnna o ran sut rŷn ni'n rhannu arfer da a sut rŷn ni'n gweithio gyda chyrff eraill, mae gennym ni brosiect ar y gweill ar draws ranbarth Hywel Dda, le rydym ni'n gweithio gyda'n gilydd fel sefydliadau i edrych ar ymgysylltu ac ymgynghori, a sut rŷn ni'n gallu gwneud hynny fel cyrff cyhoeddus gyda'n gilydd, yn hytrach na bod pob un yn mynd mas yn unigol ac yn gofyn cwestiynau tebyg, ac er mwyn osgoi consultation and engagement fatigue, fel maen nhw'n dweud. Felly, roedd y prosiect hynny'n magu traed yn dda iawn cyn y pandemig, ac wedyn rŷn ni wedi gorfod newid cwrs tamaid bach. Ond mae hwnna'n esiampl o sut rŷn ni'n gweithio ar draws cyrff i wireddu'r hyn sydd yn y Ddeddf, a dweud y gwir.
Yes, thank you. Just to echo that in terms of how we share good practice and how we work with other bodies, we have a project in the offing in the Hywel Dda region, where we work together as organisations to look at engagement, consultation and how we can do that as public bodies together, rather than everyone going out individually and asking very similar questions and in order to avoid consultation and engagement fatigue, as they say. So, that project was gaining ground and being embedded very well before the pandemic, but, of course, we've had to change course somewhat. But that was an example of how we work across public bodies to realise what's in the Act.
Dwi'n ymwybodol bod amser yn mynd yn ei flaen, so un cwestiwn olaf gen i. Yn y dystiolaeth rydyn ni wedi ei derbyn o wahanol gyfeiriadau, fel y gallwch chi ddychmygu, mae yna ganfyddiad bod yna disconnect rhwng yr archwilydd cyffredinol, Llywodraeth Cymru a chomisiynydd cenedlaethau'r dyfodol. Hynny yw, bod yna ddiffyg neges unedig, bod yna ddiffyg approach unedig, a bod yna ddiffyg disgwyliadau unedig ar draws y tri yna. Ydych chi'n cytuno bod yna rhyw fath o disconnect, ac os ydych chi, sut ydych chi'n credu y dylai hwnna gael ei daclo?
I'm aware that time is running out. I have one further question. In the evidence that we've had from different directions, there is a perception that there is a disconnect between the auditor general, the Welsh Government and the future generations commissioner. That is, that there is a lack of a unified message and unified approach, and a lack of unified expectations across those three. Do you agree that there is a disconnect? And if you do agree with that, how should that be tackled?
Dwi ddim yn meddwl medraf i ateb ynglŷn â'r union gwestiwn disconnect; yr unig beth y medraf i ei ddweud ydy bod gofyn i'r Ddeddf yma fod yn—mae'n rhaid i bob corff cyhoeddus fod yn atebol i'r Ddeddf yma, ac mi fyddai hynny'n gwneud pethau'n llawer, llawer iawn haws, bod pawb yn atebol i'r Ddeddf yma a bod yna ymwybyddiaeth hefyd o'r Ddeddf yn Lloegr. Dyna fuaswn i'n ei ddweud, yn gynnil iawn.
I don't think I can answer in terms of the disconnect question specifically. The only thing I can say is that this Act—every public body should be held accountable to this Act, and that would make things much easier, that everyone would be accountable under this Act and that there was an awareness of the Act in England. That's what I would say, very briefly.
Iawn. Roedd Alun eisiau dod i mewn, dwi'n credu.
Alun wanted to come in there.
Ie, jest o ran ateb y cwestiwn, dwi ddim yn gweld y disconnect fel y mae rhai wedi ymateb. Maen nhw wedi cael memorandum of understanding, a gwnaethon nhw rannu hwnna gyda ni i gyd ar y pryd. Mae'n ddigon clir i fi eu bod nhw'n gwneud dau wahanol beth. Dwi'n deall bod Archwilio Cymru yn edrych ar sut rydyn ni, fel awdurdodau, yn gwneud ein penderfyniadau, y math o culture sydd gennym ni, ac a ydyn ni'n defnyddio'r pum ffordd o weithio, le mae'r comisiynydd, dwi'n credu, llawer mwy clir mai edrych ar a ydyn ni wedi cyrraedd yr objectives rydyn ni wedi penderfynu arnyn nhw. Maen nhw yn cydweithio, maen nhw'n dweud wrthyn ni drwy'r amser eu bod nhw'n cydweithio, a dwi'n gwybod eu bod nhw yn cwrdd, ond hyd yn hyn, rydyn ni wedi deall mai fel yna maen nhw'n gweithio, ac wrth gwrs mae roles gyda nhw sydd yn gymhleth. Mae'n rhaid i'r auditor general gwneud awdit o sut ydyn ni'n gorfforaethol. So, dwi'n gweld bod yn rhaid—i wneud hwnna'n iawn, mae'n rhaid defnyddio'r Ddeddf. Felly, rydych chi'n ffaelu gadael i un ei wneud e a'r llall ddim; mae'n rhaid iddyn nhw gydweithio, a deall hwnna yw'r peth cyntaf. Efallai ei bod hi'n anodd i bawb i ddeall y neges yna am y distinction, ond dyna fy ateb i o ran Ceredigion. Dwi ddim yn gwybod os wyt ti, Diana, yn meddwl yr un peth.
Yes, just in terms of this question, I don't see the disconnect as some have seen it. They have had a memorandum of understanding, and they shared that with all of us at the time. It's quite clear to me that they are doing two different things. I understand that Audit Wales is looking at how, as authorities, we make decisions and the kind of culture we have, and whether we use the five ways of working, whereas the commissioner is much more clear in terms of looking at whether we have reached the objectives that we have set. So, they do collaborate, and they tell us all the time that they are collaborating, and we know that they do meet. But, so far, we've understood that that's the way in which they work. And, of course, they do have roles that are complex. The auditor general has to do an audit of our corporate activities, so I do understand that, to do that properly, he has to use the Act. So, you can't have one doing it and the other not; they have to collaborate. And understanding that is the first thing. Maybe it's difficult for everyone to understand that message in terms of the distinction, but that is my response for Ceredigion. I don't know whether Diana agrees or has something to add.
Ydy, dwi'n cytuno. Dwi'n credu, wrth symud ymlaen, fod yna gyfleoedd efallai i gasglu tystiolaeth unwaith a bod y cyrff gwahanol, p'un ai Llywodraeth Cymru, yr archwilydd cyffredinol neu'r comisiynydd, bod yna fwy, efallai, o synergedd os oes un corff wedi datblygu a chasglu tystiolaeth, a'u bod nhw'n gallu rhannu hwnna yn eang a bod yna rhyw fath o fframwaith a rhywbeth sydd wedi ei sefydlu sy'n galluogi hwnna i ddigwydd yn rhwydd. Dyna'r unig beth y byddwn i eisiau ei ychwanegu. Diolch.
I agree. In moving forward, I think there are opportunities to gather evidence and that the different bodies, whether that's the Welsh Government, the auditor general or the commissioner, that there is more synergy if one body has gathered evidence and they can share that more broadly, with a framework and something that's been established to facilitate that. That's all I would want to add. Thank you.
Iawn. Diolch yn fawr iawn, Gadeirydd. Diolch.
Thank you very much, Chair.
Great, okay. Moving on, and Jenny Rathbone.
Thank you. Bore da. Thank you very much indeed for coming along. I just want to look at how resources are deployed to implement the Act. If I could start with asking how the public service boards are operating, because I know, Ynys Môn: you made a decision to amalgamate your public service board with your adjacent local authority in Gwynedd, so has that enabled you to deliver services more cost-effectively, or is it yet to reap the benefits of that?
Bore da. Buaswn i'n dweud mai ar y daith ydyn ni. Mi fedraf i roi enghraifft i chi: mi wnaethon ni sefydlu, ar y cyd efo'r bwrdd iechyd, uned arbennig ar gyfer pobl yn dioddef o ddementia drwg iawn yn ardal Caergybi, ac roedd hwnnw yn y pen draw yn arbed arian. Ond ar y daith, mi fuaswn i'n dweud, ydyn ni. Mae'r bwrdd yn llawn ymwybodol o'r pum ffordd o weithio, ac wrth gwrs, dŷn ni i gyd yn aelodau rownd y bwrdd, ond o ran yr adnoddau ychwanegol i weithredu, nac oes.
Good morning. I would say that we're on that journey. I can give you an example: we established jointly with the health board a special unit for people suffering from very bad dementia in the Holyhead area, and that did save money ultimately. But we're on the journey, that's where we are. We're very aware of the five ways of working, and of course, we're all members of the board around the table, but in terms of additional resources, no.
Okay. So, obviously, Ceredigion made a decision to stick with the footprint that it occupies as a local authority, so do you feel that your public service board, which obviously brings in a lot of other public bodies in your area, has enabled you to deploy resources more efficiently and effectively?
Ŷch chi moyn i fi i ateb, Alun?
Would you like me to answer, Alun?
Cer di, Diana. Dechreua di.
Yes, you go first, Diana.
Dwi'n credu beth mae e wedi golygu yw ein bod ni wedi gallu—mae gyda ni esiamplau o brosiectau da. Efallai nad yw e wedi treiddio ar draws popeth rŷn ni'n ei wneud a holl flaenoriaethau y cynllun llesiant, ond mae yna esiamplau o waith da—er enghraifft, y gwaith rŷn ni wedi ei wneud gydag adleoli ffoaduriaid, yn enwedig o Syria. Rŷn ni wedi rhoi grŵp at ei gilydd o asiantaethau y bwrdd gwasanaethau cyhoeddus, ac mae'r grŵp yna wedi medru cyflawni tipyn, a thrwy edrych arno fe fel multi-agency approach math o beth, rŷn ni wedi gallu bod yn llwyddiannus iawn yn y cynllun hynny. Felly, dwi'n credu bod e'n amrywio gyda ni fesul thema. Rŷn ni yn gweithio gyda asiantaethau rhanbarthol hefyd, ac rŷn ni wedi medru adnabod ble mae yna gyfleoedd i gymryd rhai adrannau, neu rai darnau o waith oedd yn debyg ar draws y rhanbarth, a bod y rheini'n gallu symud i gael eu gwireddu yn rhanbarthol, gyda lot o bethau wedyn yn parhau yn lleol. Felly rŷn ni wedi gallu gwneud fel math o mixed approach iddo fe, ta beth.
I think what it's meant is that we can—we have examples of good projects. Maybe it hasn't been embedded in everything we do and all of the priorities of the well-being plan, but there are examples of good work—for example, the work that we've done with relocating refugees, particularly from Syria. We've put a group together of agencies, the public services boards, and that group has been able to deliver a lot, and in looking at that through a multi-agency approach, we've been able to be very successful in that scheme. So, I think it does vary with us per theme. We are working with regional agencies as well, and we've been able to identify opportunities to take some pieces of work that were similar forward across the region and they can move towards being realised on a regional basis with lots of things then continuing on a local level. So, we have been able to implement a mixed approach.
Byddwn i'n dweud bod perchnogaeth lleol yng Ngheredigion o'r PSB yn dda. Rŷn ni'n cael yr asiantaethau i gyd yn troi lan, ac mae'r rheini efallai mwy eang na rhai eraill, achos mae gyda ni bobl fel y llyfrgell genedlaethol yn rhan ohono, a hefyd rŷn ni'n keen iawn i gael y brifysgol a felly. So, mae nifer o bartneriaethau gyda ni efallai sy'n fwy na rhai eraill sy'n ei wneud e ychydig bach mwy lleol, sy'n meddwl ein bod ni yn cael y ffocws yna sydd ei angen arnom ni. Ond fel mae Diana'n dweud, mae gyda ni—. Rŷn ni'n cwrdd yn flynyddol fel pedwar PSB ta beth. Yn anffurfiol, rŷn ni'n cael y cyfarfod hyn i edrych ar themâu sy'n mynd ar draws y pedair sir—a dwi'n meddwl sir Gaerfyrddin, Powys, a sir Benfro—ac rŷn ni'n tynnu pethau at ei gilydd fel yna. Hefyd y themâu sydd efallai'n fwy rhanbarthol, a rŷn ni'n gweithio wedyn gyda'r RPBs fanna hefyd, y regional partnership boards.
I would say that local ownership of the PSB is very good in Ceredigion. We have had the agencies all turning up, and it's more broad-ranging than others perhaps, because we have bodies like the national library being part of this, and also, we're very keen to have the university and so forth involved. So, there are a number of partnerships that we have, more than others perhaps, which makes it more local, which does mean that we have that focus that we need. But as Diana says, we meet annually as the four PSBs in any case. Informally, we have this meeting to look at different themes that are cross-cutting across the four counties—and I'm thinking Carmarthenshire, Powys and Pembrokeshire—and we do draw things together on that basis in terms of the themes that are more regional in nature and we work with the RPBs there too, the regional partnership boards.
Okay. Speaking of resources, both Diana and Annwen mentioned some excellent projects, but they're not the sort of big-ticket items that affect all of us, like, for example, obesity across Wales. We have the worst epidemic of obesity in the whole of western Europe. So, are you finding this a way of, if you like, being able to look at the wicked issues that affect us all, and enabling you to be tackling them as one rather than just as separate agencies?
Mi fuaswn i'n dweud ein bod ni. I roi enghraifft i chi, tua dau fis yn ôl, mi gawson ni weithdy rhithiol fan hyn, a gyrron ni holiadur at bawb ym mhob awdurdod—y rheolwyr—fel ydych chi'n dweud, 'Beth ydy'r issues rŵan?', 'Beth oedd yr issues oedd yna gynt, a beth ydy'r materion sy'n codi oherwydd COVID a Brexit a ballu?' Roedd y rhestr yn hirfaith—pethau fel gordewdra ac yn y blaen. Yn y gweithdy, beth wnaethon ni benderfynu oedd edrych ar beth mae'r RPB yn ei wneud, a beth mae'r bwrdd ar y cyd rhwng Môn a Gwynedd yn ei wneud. Achos y peth diwethaf rydyn ni eisiau ydy ailadrodd a sathru ar draed ein gilydd. A chawsom ni gytundeb yn fanna: 'Na, mae hwn yn waith y mae'r RPB eisoes yn ei wneud.' Beth yn wahanol, os liciwch chi, mae'r bwrdd gwasanaethau cyhoeddus ym Môn yn mynd i allu gwneud?
Un enghraifft arall ydy tai. Mae tai yn effeithio ar bawb. Heb dŷ, heb aelwyd, heb urddas, ac mae hynny yn dod â phroblemau at ein drws cefn ni, ac yn creu pob math o broblemau. Enghraifft yn fanna ydy ein bod ni'n gweithio ar gynlluniau tai ac adnabod tir—pa dir sydd gan y bwrdd iechyd, pa dir sydd gan y cynghorau, pa dir sydd gan y brifysgol, pa dir sydd gan Gyfoeth Naturiol Cymru, er mwyn datblygu tai mewn ffyrdd gwahanol. Mae'r cymdeithasau tai yn rhan o'r thema yna.
Wedyn, ydyn, mi ydyn ni'n taclo'r issues—gordewdra yn fanna, tai yn fan hyn—ond mae yna linell reit glir o ran beth mae pawb yn ei wneud, rhag sathru a gwastraffu adnoddau prin yn y pen draw, a hefyd, lle rydyn ni'n gallu gwneud gwahaniaeth go iawn. Dyna sut rydyn ni wedi mynd o'i chwmpas hi ym Môn a Gwynedd ar y funud; dydyn ni ddim yn gwybod sut bydd pethau'n datblygu ar gyfer y dyfodol.
I would say that we are. I'll give you an example. Very early, or about two months ago, we had a workshop, a virtual workshop here, and we sent out a questionnaire to everyone in every authority—the managers—as you said, asking them what the issues are now, what the issues were previously, and what are the issues arising because of COVID and Brexit and so forth. The list was very long—things such as obesity and so forth. In the workshop, what we decided was to look at what the regional partnership board was doing and what the joint board between Môn and Gwynedd was doing. Because the last thing we want is to repeat things and step on each other's toes. We had an agreement there that, 'No, this is the work that the RPB already does.' What is the different thing that the public board on Anglesey is going to be able to do?
Another example is housing, and housing affects everyone, of course. Without a house, you have no dignity, and that brings problems to our back door, and causes all kinds of problems. An example there is we're working on housing schemes to identify land—land that the health boards have, land that the councils have, the universities, and land NRW has in order to develop housing in a different way. The housing associations are part of that theme.
So, yes, we are tackling the issues—obesity and housing and so forth—but there is a very clear line in terms of what everyone does, rather than stepping on each other's toes and wasting valuable resources. Where we can make a proper difference—a genuine difference—that's how we've proceeded in Anglesey and Gwynedd at present. We don't know how things will pan out in the future.
Thank you very much. Specifically Ceredigion, you in your written evidence have said that Welsh Government grants are still delivered in silos, which deters innovative approaches to long-term preventative work. That's obviously a serious point, and one we will need to put to the Welsh Government, but I'm wondering if you can just elaborate on what you mean by that. Can you give us a specific example?
Wyt ti eisiau i mi fynd, Alun? Diolch. Dwi'n credu beth rydyn ni'n gweld yw, i dreiddio'r Ddeddf hon, dwi'n credu bod eisiau i'r pum ffordd o weithio a'r nodau llesiant cenedlaethol fod ar flaen y gad mewn unrhyw bolisi, arian sy'n cael ei ddyrannu, ac yn y blaen. Ar hyn o bryd, mae'n teimlo fel ei fod e'n add-on math o beth yn hytrach na'r peth sy'n arwain y grant. Hefyd, beth sydd, dwi'n credu, yn y cefndir o ran pam rŷm ni wedi rhoi'r datganiad yma yn ein hymateb ni oedd bod lot fawr o pots o arian rŷn ni'n eu croesawu, wrth gwrs, ond maen nhw'n dod yn hwyr yn y dydd, ac mae'n anodd wedyn i falansio rheini gyda chynllunio yn y hirdymor, sydd eto yn tynnu, efallai, bant o beth yw nod y Ddeddf yn y hirdymor.
Hefyd, mae yna rai grantiau yn dod gyda chanllawiau eithaf llym, sydd ddim, efallai, yn rhoi'r hyblygrwydd yna i allu edrych ar draws i wneud pethau mwy innovative. So, dwi'n credu mai dyna beth oedd y cefndir, a'r rheswm i roi hwnna yn yr ymateb. Dwi ddim yn gwybod os yw Alun eisiau ategu o gwbl.
Do you want me to go first? I think what we see is that to embed this Act we need the five ways of working and the national well-being goals to be in the vanguard of any policy or funding that's allocated, and so forth. At present, it feels like an add-on rather than the thing that’s leading the grant. Also, in terms of the background of why we included that statement in our evidence, there are several pots of funding, which we welcome, of course, but they do come very late in the day. It's difficult then—how can I say this?—to balance that with planning for the long term, which also takes away from the aim of the Act in the long term.
There are some grants that come with quite severe guidance, that perhaps doesn't give us the flexibility to be able to look across issues and to do more innovative things. So, that was the background, and the reason for including that in our response. I don't know whether Alun wants to add anything.
Alun, did you want to add anything? No. Okay. I want to press you all on, really, how you make decisions about—. Ynys Môn, you talked about how it's very difficult when you've got to make savings to deliver day-to-day services and to then be looking to the future and different ways of working. But, setting coronavirus to one side, the UK Government's austerity programme, as far as we're aware, isn't going to go away. So, how can you use the Act to ensure that whatever reductions in funding we may all experience will, nevertheless—. How will the Act help you deliver services differently, because salami-slicing really doesn't cut it after a certain point?
Na, ddim o gwbl. Mi wnaf i gychwyn ac fe ddaw Gethin i fewn ar fy ôl i, dwi'n siŵr. Yn sicr, y COVID a'r Brexit, mi fydd pob cyngor yn gweithio'n wahanol wedi'r cyfnod yma, ac fel rydych chi wedi dweud, dydy'r salami-slicing ddim yn 'cut it', fel rydych chi'n dweud, yn sicr, ac mi fyddwn ni'n meddwl am ffyrdd gwahanol o weithio. Enghraifft syml ydy y bydd yna lai o deithio i gyfarfodydd a mwy o gyfarfodydd fel hyn, dwi'n siŵr. Mae hynny hefyd yn help i'r amgylchedd, ac yn y blaen. Ond fe rof i enghreifftiau i chi, gan gyfeirio at beth ddywedodd Diana ac Alun, o ddefnyddio grantiau. Un peth mae'r Ddeddf yn ei wneud ydy'n helpu ni, os liciwch chi, i gael y rhesymeg drosodd i'n cymunedau ni pam mae gwneud penderfyniadau rŵan yn bwysig ar gyfer y dyfodol. Enghraifft sydd ddim yn boblogaidd efo pawb ydy moderneiddio ysgolion ac, wrth sôn am foderneiddio ysgolion, mae gwneud penderfyniadau rŵan, manteisio ar y grant sydd yna, trio dweud wrth bobl, 'Yr ysgol yma, fydd y to a'r brics ddim yn gallu dal am ddwy ganrif arall', felly mae'n rhaid i ni fanteisio ar y grantiau yma ar gyfer symud ymlaen ar gyfer y dyfodol, a gwneud y penderfyniadau anodd yn fanna, a gwneud arbedion.
Ar y funud, mi fuaswn i'n dweud, o ran capasiti, mai ewyllys da sy'n cario'r dydd i gyflawni lot o waith mewn cynghorau. Mae hynny wedi dod yn amlwg—sut mae llywodraethau lleol wedi dangos i Gymru ac i'r cymunedau sut rydyn ni'n gallu ymateb i'r COVID. A hefyd, mae'r un peth yn wir wrth ymateb i'r Ddeddf yma. Mae yna lawer iawn o ewyllys da, pobl yn mynd yr ail filltir, ond mae rhywun yn gofyn, 'Am ba hyd y gall hyn bara?' Dwi'n meddwl bod hynna yn ddigon o ragarweiniad gennyf i. Gethin, mi fyddaf i wedi mynd â dy amser di i gyd.
No, not at all. I'll start and maybe Gethin can come in afterwards. Certainly, following COVID and Brexit, every council will work differently after this period, and, as you said, salami-slicing doesn't cut it and we will no doubt be looking at different ways of working. A simple example is there'll be less travel to meetings and more meetings like this. That will also benefit the environment, and so forth. But I'll give you examples, and refer to what Diana and Alun said, in terms of grant use. One thing that the Act does is it helps us to get the logic across to our communities as to why making decisions now is important for the future. An example, which isn't popular with everyone, is modernising schools and, in terms of modernisation, making decisions now and taking advantage of those grants, telling people, 'This school's roof and the bricks won't be able to sustain another 200 years', so we need to take advantage of these grants to move forward for the future, making those difficult decisions and making savings.
At present, I would say, in terms of capacity, that goodwill is carrying the day as regards delivering the work in councils. It's become evident in terms of how the local authorities have shown Wales and their communities how we can respond to COVID. And the same thing is true as we respond to this Act. There's a lot of goodwill, people going that extra yard, but one asks, 'How long can this go on?' I think that's enough from me, or I will have taken all of Gethin's time.
Diolch, Annwen. Dwi'n meddwl y buaswn i'n cytuno efo beth mae Annwen yn ei nodi. Yr un peth dwi'n credu rydyn ni angen edrych arno fo—ac mae'n mynd yn ôl at y pwynt roedd Diana yn ei nodi—ydy bod angen i'r Ddeddf gael ei gwreiddio ar draws holl bolisïau Llywodraeth Cymru. Hynny yw, mae angen iddi hi fod, fwy neu lai, y sylfaen i sut mae pob un polisi yn cael ei weithredu, fel petai. Dwi'n meddwl, o safbwynt yr adnoddau hefyd, fod angen yr hyblygrwydd yna ar lywodraethau lleol i fedru eu defnyddio nhw er budd y cymunedau yn lleol, achos mae yna fodd o feddwl, efallai, fod yr hyn sydd yn bwysig i gymunedau ym Môn ac yng Nghaergybi ddim mor bwysig i gymunedau bae Caerdydd. Ond, ar hyn o bryd, mae o'r un diffiniad, fel petai. Dwi'n meddwl bod yr enghraifft mae Annwen yn ei nodi, ynglŷn â'r ffaith bod yna bot o arian gan Lywodraeth Cymru o ran ysgolion yr unfed ganrif ar hugain, yn enghraifft dda o sut allwn ni fel cenedl fod yn gweithredu er budd ein cenedlaethau ni i'r dyfodol, a hefyd yn medru defnyddio'r Ddeddf yma i wireddu'r math yna o ddisgwyliadau.
Thank you, Annwen. I think I would agree with what Annwen identifies. The one thing that I think we need to look at—and this goes back to the point that Diana made—is that the Act needs to be embedded across all of the policies of the Welsh Government. That means that it needs to be the basis for how every policy is implemented, as it were. In terms of resources, I think that we need that flexibility for local authorities to be able to use those for their local communities, because there is a way of thinking that what's important to communities in Anglesey or in Holyhead isn't so important to communities in Cardiff bay. But, at present, it has the same definition, as it were. I think the example that Annwen gave, in terms of the fact that there is a Welsh Government pot of money for the twenty-first century schools programme, is a good example of how we as a nation can be operating or acting for the benefit of our future generations, and can use this Act to realise those expectations.
So, do you feel that you have the tools locally to really galvanise the resources you need to deliver your local priorities, in combination with other public, private and third sector organisations?
Dwi'n meddwl, pan fyddwch chi'n sôn am y tŵls—. O wneud hynna, mae'n rhaid iddo fo fynd o rywle arall. Fedrwn ni ddim gwneud pob peth. Rydym ni'n addasu a symud pobl o gwmpas, a dyna'r unig beth fedrwn ni wneud, a phenderfynu beth ydy ein blaenoriaethau ni. Fedrwn ni ddim gwneud pob peth. Mae o'n llai. Mae'r adnoddau yn llai.
I think, when you're talking about the tools—. In doing that, it has to come from somewhere else. We can't do everything. We adapt and we move people around, and that's the only thing that we can do, and decide what our priorities are. We can't do everything. It's less. There are fewer resources.
It goes without saying, if we're going to prioritise something, we're going to have to deprioritise another thing. Does Alun or Diana want to make any final comment on this resource issue?
Well, only in that the recovery stage is obviously going to be extremely difficult for all of us, as we have to prioritise things, and to get, particularly—. The economy, I think, is one of our main concerns—about the impact on the local economy. That is going to have to be one of our priorities in our strategic plans. We've always wanted to boost the economy. I think the PSB, as well, recognises that. That's why we're embarking on the Growing Mid Wales partnership, because we recognise that, as well as the brain drain we experience in Ceredigion, where we turn out quite a lot of educated individuals who go to work elsewhere in Wales and in the UK. To maintain them to work and stay in our communities is a huge ambition of ours. So, that would be part of it, of our ambition. But I think, on the resource element, the main resource we've got is our people. The grants help, but it's how we get people to think, their attitude, and the can-do attitude that we need, really, to deal with this crisis.
Great. Vikki Howells.
Thank you, Chair. I've got some questions around your practical involvement with the future generations commissioner and her office. Firstly, could you just give us an overview of how your organisation has interacted with the future generations commissioner and how effective you feel the support has been?
Wyt ti eisiau i fi ddechrau, Gethin? Dwi'n meddwl y gwnaf i ddechrau efo enghreifftiau, fel rydych chi'n dweud, penodol. Pan oedden ni'n ymwneud â phroses Wylfa Newydd, a phan oedden ni'n ymwneud yn benodol gydag adeiladu llinell arall o beilonau ar draws yr ynys, mi gawsom ni lot o ymwneud efo swyddfa'r comisiynydd ac mi gawsom ni lot o gefnogaeth, yn naturiol, drwy'r twrneiod oedd yna, ac mi gawsom ni gymorth, yn wir, i gynnal gweithdy gyda rhanddeiliad a chwmni'r National Grid pan oedden ni'n sôn am sut oedd gwreiddio'r Ddeddf mewn penderfyniadau pan yn ymwneud ag adeiladu llinell arall o beilonau. Mi gawsom ni lot o gymorth ymarferol ar yr adeg hynny, felly. Mae'n dibynnu, mae'n siŵr, ar y pwnc. Dwi wedi dechrau efo dwy enghraifft yn fanna am fy mod i'n bersonol wedi bod yn ymwneud â'r ddau fater yna, wrth reswm. Gethin.
Do you want me to start, Gethin? I think I'll start with examples, as you said, that are specific. When we were involved with the Wylfa Newydd process, and when we were involved specifically with the building of another line of pylons across the island, we had a lot of involvement with the commissioner's office and a lot of support, naturally, through the lawyers that were there, and we had support to undertake a workshop with stakeholders and National Grid when we were talking about how the Act could be embedded in decisions in the context of constructing another line of pylons. We had a lot of practical support at that time. It does depend, I would have thought, on the subject. I've started with those two examples as I was involved personally. Gethin.
Diolch, Annwen. Ie, dwi'n meddwl bod y cymorth a'r gefnogaeth rydym ni wedi eu cael gan y swyddfa wedi bod yn ddefnyddiol, achos maen nhw wedi bod yn barod—ar y pryd, pan oedd hyn yn digwydd—i deithio i fyny i'r gogledd i roi cyflwyniadau i ni a rhoi cymorth ychwanegol ar sut i wreiddio gwahanol elfennau neu'r tŵls yna roedden nhw wedi eu sefydlu o fewn y swyddfa. Mae hynny, dwi'n meddwl, wedi cael ei weld yn rhywbeth cefnogol iawn gan yr holl awdurdodau yng ngogledd Cymru. Yr un peth dwi'n meddwl rydym ni wedi medru ei gynnig yn ôl fel adborth adeiladol, dwi'n gobeithio, ydy bod angen meddwl yn ddwysach, weithiau, ar ba bryd mae'r cymorth a'r gefnogaeth, a'r disgwyliadau mae'n siŵr, sydd gan y swyddfa yn digwydd, o gofio bod gan gorff mor gymhleth ag awdurdod lleol ddisgwyliadau statudol eraill. Dwi'n meddwl roedd yna ddisgwyliad ychydig o flynyddoedd yn ôl inni fod yn adrodd yn ôl, neu'n rhoi adborth, ar ein hunanasesiadau ein hunain, mewn cyfnod pan oedd y gyllideb yn cael ei rhoi mewn lle ac roeddem yn cynllunio ar gyfer y flwyddyn wedyn, ac yn y blaen. Ond, heb os, mae'r gefnogaeth dŷn ni wedi'i chael wedi cael ei gweld yn ddefnyddiol iawn ar y cyfan.
Thank you, Annwen. Yes, I think that the support that we've had from the office has been very useful, because they have been willing—at the time, when this was happening—to travel up to north Wales to give us presentations and additional support as regards how to embed different elements or the tools that they'd established within the office. I think that that's seen as a very supportive way of working by all the authorities in north Wales. The one thing that we've been able to offer in retrun, in terms of constructive feedback, is that we need to think more carefully about the timing of the office's help and support, and the expectations, given that such a complex body as a local authority has other statutory responsibilities. I think that there was some expectation some years ago for us to be reporting back, or giving feedback, on our own self-assessments, at a time when the budget was being put in place and we were planning for the next year, and so forth. But, without doubt, the support that we've had has been seen as being very useful on the whole.
Byddwn i'n ategu hwnna—ein bod ni'n cael cefnogaeth dda o'r comisiynydd. Un o'r pethau, rwy'n credu, yw dŷn ni ddim yn gweld cymaint na chael cymaint o interaction gyda hi eleni, ond mae hynny achos ein bod ni yn y pandemig. Ac mae'n rhaid eu canmol nhw, achos maen nhw wedi dweud wrthym ni, er enghraifft, nad yw eu disgwyliadau nhw eleni gymaint ag yr oedden nhw y llynedd ac fel y byddan nhw'r flwyddyn nesaf. Maen nhw wedi cymryd i ystyriaeth y sefyllfa rŷm ni ynddi ac rwy'n croesawu hynny, achos rwy'n credu ei fod yn sensitif a'r peth diwethaf rŷn ni'n moyn yw bod y comisiynydd a'r regulators i gyd yn rhoi mwy o pressure arnom ni eleni, o bob blwyddyn. So, mae bach o common sense yna hefyd, byddwn i'n dweud, o ran fel maen nhw'n ymddwyn. Ond rŷn ni'n gwerthfawrogi'r math o adborth rŷn ni'n ei gael ganddyn nhw. Cawsom adborth eithaf da oddi wrthyn nhw yn ôl ym mis Mai diwethaf, ac mae wedi rhoi gwaith inni ei wneud—targedau newydd i ni wella arnyn nhw, ac mae hynny'n beth da. A dyna yw ei gwaith hi, rwy'n gweld. Diana, wyt ti'n moyn dweud rhywbeth amboutu hwnna, yn ychwanegol?
I would echo that—that we've had good support from the commissioner. One point is that we haven't had as much interaction this year with her, but that's because we're in this pandemic. And we have to praise them, because they have told us, for example, that their expectations this year aren't as great as they were last year, or will be next year. They've taken into consideration our situation and I do welcome that because I think it shows a sensitivity, and the last thing we want, really, is that the commissioner and the regulators are all putting more pressure on us this year, of all years. So, there is some common sense at work there in terms of the engagement. But we do appreciate the kind of feedback that we receive from them. We had good feedback back in May and it has given us some work to do—new targets to improve on, and that's a good thing. And that's her objective, I would say. Diana, do you want to add anything?
Dim ond cytuno, a dweud y gwir. Mae wedi amrywio, y llynedd, wrth gwrs, oherwydd y pandemig, ond rwy'n credu mai beth sy'n bwysig nawr yw gwneud yn siŵr bod lle rŷn ni'n mynd yn y dyfodol yn mynd i fod yn adeiladol a beth yw'r camau nesaf o ran ein partneriaeth. Mor belled ag yr ydw i yn y cwestiwn, ac yn bersonol fel rhywun sy'n gweithio ar draws y cyngor gydag Alun i drio treiddio'r Ddeddf, fel bod pob aelod o staff yn sylweddoli beth mae'r Ddeddf yn ei olygu iddyn nhw, rwy'n credu mai beth fyddwn i'n gobeithio ei gael allan o'r gefnogaeth yna o swyddfa'r comisiynydd dros y cyfnod sydd i ddod yw sut i gyfieithu'r future generations report i mewn i ddarnau bach o wybodaeth sy'n mynd i fod o fudd i'r bobl sy'n gweithio yn eu hadrannau gwahanol ar draws y cyngor. Mae gyda ni berthynas adeiladol iawn gydag aelodau o staff sy'n gweithio i'r comisiynydd.
Ac rŷn ni hefyd, yn debyg i Ynys Môn, wedi cael profiadau o weithio'n agos gyda'r comisiynydd yn y gorffennol, lle'r oeddem yn rhan greiddiol o ddatblygu'r fframwaith ar gyfer aelodau ar gyfer craffu. Fe wnaethom ni dipyn o waith gyda'n haelodau ni a thipyn o weithdai er mwyn bwydo i mewn i'r fframwaith hwnnw. Felly, byddwn i'n ategu ein bod ni'n ei gweld yn berthynas adeiladol. Diolch.
It has varied, of course, last year, because of the pandemic, but I think what's important now is ensuring that where we go in the future is constructive, and what the next steps are in terms of our partnership. As far as I'm concerned personally, as someone who works across the council with Alun to try and embed the Act and ensure that every member of staff understands what the Act means for them, I think what I would hope to get out of that support from the commissioner's office over the period to come is how to transpose the future generations report into smaller pieces of information that can be of benefit to the people working in their different departments across the council. We have a very constructive relationship with members of staff who work for the commissioner.
And, like Ynys Môn, we've had experiences of working closely with the commissioner in the past, where we were a core part of developing the framework for scrutiny, for members, and we did a lot of work with the members and held workshops in order to feed into that framework. So, I would just echo the fact that we do see it as a constructive relationship. Thank you.
Thank you, all. My next question is: what barriers do you think the commissioner and her office face as they look to discharge their responsibilities under the Act?
Dŷch chi eisiau i fi gychwyn? Ocê, so gwnaf i gychwyn a chaiff Gethin ddod i mewn. Dwi'n meddwl y barriers, rŵan, fydd trio deall effaith COVID ar ein holl gymunedau ni ac effaith Brexit. Mae hynny'n bwysig iawn. A dwi'n meddwl y byddai, ar gyfer y dyfodol, cael cynrychiolydd o swyddfa'r comisiynydd, yn hytrach na'u bod nhw yng Nghaerdydd, ym mhob un rhanbarth fel ein bod ni'n gallu cael mynediad hyd yn oed yn haws, at bob un aelod o swyddfa'r comisiynydd—. Buasai eu presenoldeb nhw ym mhob rhanbarth, os nad ym mhob sir os oes ganddyn nhw ddigon o staff, yn dra derbyniol gennym ni. Dyna ydy'r headline mawr gennyf i. Gethin.
Should I start? Okay, I'll start and Gethin can come in, perhaps. I think the barriers will be trying to understand the impact of COVID on all our communities and the impact of Brexit. I think that's very important. And I think that, for the future, having a representative of the commissioner's office, rather than them being in Cardiff, in every region so that we can have even easier access to each member of the commissioner's office—. If they were present in every region, if not in every county should they have enough staff, would be very welcome. That's the headline issue that I wanted to raise. Gethin.
Buaswn i'n cytuno efo Annwen. Dwi'n meddwl mai'r hyn dŷn ni eisiau ei weld, efallai'n fwy, ydy ein bod ni'n medru gweld sefydliad cenedlaethol, fel swyddfa'r comisiynydd, yn medru ein helpu ni fel cyrff sydd, yn eu hanfod, wedi mabwysiadu'r mindset yna o fod efo gwelliant parhaus, i fedru dwyn—benthyg—syniadau gwahanol gan gyrff gwahanol ar draws y sector yng Nghymru. A dwi'n meddwl bod yna rôl hanfodol yn fanna i swyddfa'r comisiynydd fedru'n helpu ni er mwyn gwireddu disgwyliadau'r Ddeddf ac, o ganlyniad, diwallu eu disgwyliadau nhw o'r Ddeddf hefyd.
I would agree with Annwen. I think what we want to see, perhaps to a greater degree, is that we can see a national organisation, such as the commissioner's office, being able to help us as bodies that, basically, have adopted a mindset of ongoing improvement or continuous improvement, to be able to borrow different ideas from different organisations across the sector in Wales. And I think that there is a vital role there for the commissioner's office to be able to help us realise the expectations of the Act, and then meet their expectations of the Act as well.
Cyn inni symud at Geredigion, dwi'n meddwl mai un lle sydd angen trafodaeth yn blaen ydy rhwng Llywodraeth y Deyrnas Unedig a Llywodraeth Cymru i gael gwell dealltwriaeth o Loegr o bwysigrwydd a statws y Ddeddf yng Nghymru. Wnaf i ddim mynd i ymhelaethu fan hyn rŵan, ond pan oeddwn i'n cael pobl yn dweud, 'Ond rydym ni'n ddatblygwyr o Loegr, dyw'r Ddeddf ddim yn berthnasol i ni, felly', 'Ond rydych chi yng Nghymru' meddaf i. 'Rydych chi yn Sir Fôn; mae'r Ddeddf yn berthnasol i ni.' Dwi'n meddwl bod hynny yn rhywbeth y bydd yn rhaid ei thaclo ar ei phen. Diolch yn fawr.
Before we move on to Ceredigion, I think one place where we do need a discussion is between the UK Government and the Welsh Government to have a better understanding in England of the importance and the status of the Act in Wales. I won't expand here, but we hear from developers from England that, 'The Act is not relevant to us', but I say, 'Well, you're in Wales, you're in Anglesey; the Act is relevant to us.' I think that's something that we need to tackle. Thank you.
Byddwn i'n ategu'r pwynt yna, rwy'n credu. O ran barriers, rwy'n credu un o'r pethau efallai byddai'r comisiynydd yn ei ddweud yw efallai dyw fel mae hi'n cael ei hariannu ddim yn ddigonol, o ran adnoddau iddyn nhw. Rwy'n credu mai beth roedd Annwen yn ei ddweud amboutu cael pobl ym mhob cwr o'r wlad oedd y byddai'n costio'n fwy iddi wneud hynny, a dyna'r balans mae'n rhaid iddi hi edrych arno fe hefyd. So, rwy'n cytuno yn gywir gyda beth roedd Annwen yn ei ddweud ynglŷn ag asiantaethau eraill cenedlaethol UK efallai ddim yn sylweddoli pwysigrwydd y Ddeddf, ac mae hwnna'n barrier iddi hi, byddwn i'n ei ddweud. Definite.
I would echo that point. In terms of the barriers, one of the things that the commissioner would perhaps say is that perhaps how she is funded isn't adequate in terms of resources for them. I think that what Annwen said about having people in every part of the country is that it would cost her more to do that, and that's the balance that she needs to examine. So, I agree with what Annwen says about other national agencies in the UK not perhaps understanding the importance of the Act, and that is a barrier for her, I would say, yes.
Anyone else want to come in? Diana.
Jest i ategu, rwy'n credu, fel mae'r Ddeddf wedi'i strwythuro, mae rôl y comisiynydd yn un rhan o'r jig-so; i gael y Ddeddf i lwyddo, mae eisiau i'r cyrff unigol, y comisiynydd, yr archwilydd cyffredinol a Llywodraeth Cymru—mae eisiau i ni i gyd, efallai, i gymryd cam lan er mwyn gwneud yn siŵr bod hon yn Ddeddf sydd yn gwneud gwahaniaeth, y gwahaniaeth mae hi wedi cael ei deddfu ar ei gyfer. Felly, dwi ddim yn credu ein bod ni yn gallu edrych ar un rhan o'r Ddeddf heb edrych arni yn ei chyfanrwydd a'r cyfle mae hwnna'n ei roi i ni fel cenedl, rili.
Just to echo that, I think, the way in which the Act is structured, the commissioner's role is one part of the jigsaw. And to get the Act to succeed, the individual bodies and the commissioner and the auditor general and the Welsh Government—we all need to take a step up to ensure that this is an Act that does make a difference, the difference that it was designed for. I don't think that we can just look at one part of the Act without looking at it as a whole and the opportunity that that gives us as a nation.
Thank you. And a final question from me: do you think that the role of the commissioner needs to change, moving forward? And, if so, how?
Wel, dwi'n meddwl fy mod i'n mynd i ategu eto—. Yn naturiol, dwi'n meddwl bydd rôl pob un ohonom ni yn newid i'r dyfodol—yn arweinydd unrhyw gorff cyhoeddus—a dwi'n meddwl bydd rôl Llywodraeth Cymru yn newid i'r dyfodol. Felly, dim jest y comisiynydd—pawb, dwi'n meddwl. Rôl y comisiynydd ydy cael mwy o bresenoldeb, buaswn i'n ei ddweud, mewn ardaloedd penodol yng Nghymru, yn sicr, ac, ar ôl y cyfnod pandemig yma rŵan, dod yn ôl, os liciwch chi, i ail-lansio a bod yn fwy gweladwy, fel ag yr oedd hi i gychwyn, a'r swyddfa i gyd. Ond, fel dywedodd Alun, mae wedi mynd dipyn bach yn dawel, yn naturiol, ac mae rhywun yn deall pam, yn ystod y cyfnod hwn. Diolch. Alun, wyt ti eisiau dweud rhywbeth?
Well, I think that I'm once again going to echo—. Naturally, I think all of our roles will change in the future—the leader of any public body—and I think the role of the Welsh Government will change in the future as well. So, it's not just the commissioner, but everyone. The role of the commissioner, yes, is having a greater presence, I would say, in specific areas in Wales, certainly, and, in the post-pandemic period, to come back and relaunch and be more visible, as she was initially, and the office as well. But, as Alun says, they've been quite quiet, but we understand why, during this period. Thank you. I don't know if Alun wants to add anything.
Ie, cytuno. Yn amlwg, dros y flwyddyn ddiwethaf, gyda Brexit a phethau eraill, mae llawer fwy o here and now decisions yn ddyddiol. Ond dyw'r ochr yna, o edrych ymlaen, efallai ddim cweit mor flaengar ag oedd e ac y dylai fe fod o dan yr Act. Mae ategu yna a chael hwnna yn ôl ym meddylfryd pob un yn mynd i fod yn sialens, ond yn rhywbeth byddwn i'n gefnogol i'r comisiynydd ei wneud, a byddwn i'n ei gefnogi e.
Yes, we agree. Over the last year, with Brexit and COVID, we've been making more here and now decisions on a daily basis. And that side, in terms of looking forward, isn't quite as prominent as it was and should be under this Act. And getting that back as part of everyone's mindset is going to be a challenge, but something that I would be supportive of in terms of what the commissioner should do, and I would support that.
Thank you, Chair.
Are you done? Yes. Delyth Jewell.
Diolch, Cadeirydd. Roeddwn i eisiau gofyn—wel, mae hwn yn dilyn ymlaen mewn ffordd reit dda—am rôl Llywodraeth Cymru yn hyn i gyd. Roeddech chi jest yn sôn am y comisiynydd ac fel mae angen efallai dod yn ôl â ffocws gwahanol, sydd, yn ddealladwy, wedi newid oherwydd y pandemig. Ydych chi eisiau ychwanegu unrhyw beth arall ynglŷn â fel mae polisïau a phenderfyniadau Llywodraeth Cymru yn adlewyrchu gofynion y Ddeddf? Neu, os nad ydych chi eisiau ategu mwy am hynny, dŷn ni hefyd eisiau gofyn ichi—mae hyn wedi codi ychydig yn barod—os oes yna unrhyw anghysondebau o ran sut mae'r Ddeddf hon yn cyd-fynd â darnau gwahanol o ddeddfwriaeth gan Lywodraeth Cymru. Er enghraifft, un esiampl dŷn ni wedi'i chlywed mewn nifer o ddarnau o dystiolaeth ydy'r ffaith bod gan rai darnau o ddeddfwriaeth, fel Deddf Gwasanaethau Cymdeithasol a Llesiant (Cymru) 2014—. Mae yna arian yn cyd-fynd â honno mewn ffordd dyw e ddim yn cyd-fynd â'r Ddeddf hon. So, mae rhai pobl yn meddwl bod angen blaenoriaethu'r Ddeddf lle mae yna fwy o arian yn gysylltiedig gyda hi. Felly, o ran unrhyw beth rydych chi eisiau ei ychwanegu, naill ai o ran sut mae polisïau a phenderfyniadau'r Llywodraeth yn cyd-fynd, neu ddim yn cyd-fynd, â'r Ddeddf, a hefyd o ran sut mae'r Ddeddf yma yn cyd-fynd neu, fel mae rhywun yn ei ddweud yn Saesneg, how they align, â darnau eraill o ddeddfwriaeth. Pwy bynnag sydd eisiau mynd yn gyntaf.
Thank you, Chair. I wanted to ask—well, this follows on quite well—about the role of the Welsh Government in this. You mentioned the commissioner and how we need to bring back a different focus, which has, understandably, changed because of the pandemic. Do you want to add anything else in terms of how the policies or the decisions made by the Welsh Government reflect the requirements of the Act? Or, if you don't want to talk about that, I wanted to ask you—this has arisen already—whether there are any inconsistencies in terms of how this Act aligns with other pieces of legislation by the Welsh Government? For example, one example that we've heard about in a number of pieces of evidence is the fact that some pieces of legislation, such as the Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act 2014—there is funding allocated to that in a way that it isn't for this Act. So, people think that we need to prioritise the Act that is more associated with specific funding. So, in terms of anything that you want to add, either in terms of how the policies and the decisions of the Government are aligned or are not aligned with the Act, and also in terms of how this Act is aligned with other pieces of legislation. Whoever wants to go first on that.
Byddwn i'n dweud bod gan Lywodraeth Cymru rôl bendant i hyrwyddo'r Ddeddf ac efallai cyflymu pwyslais a phwysigrwydd y Ddeddf. Mi rof i enghraifft i chi pan fyddwch chi'n gofyn am benderfyniadau. Weithiau—ac mae rhywun yn deall pam—fel dywedodd Alun, mae yna benderfyniadau brys yn cael eu gwneud. Mae'n ymddangos—a dwi'n pwysleisio'r gair 'ymddangos'—i mi fod yna benderfyniadau, er enghraifft, efo teithio a'r holl fusnes efo teithio a bysus a ballu, ac efallai fod yr ateb efo cwmnïau bysus a'r drefn teithio bysus yn ddelfrydol i Gaerdydd, ond, credwch chi fi, i Lanfair-yng-nghornwy a Llannerch-y-medd yng nghanol cefn gwlad, dydy o ddim. Ac mae eisiau defnyddio'r Ddeddf i wneud penderfyniadau lle rydych chi'n gallu cynnwys pawb, ymgynghori ar beth rydych chi'n meddwl ydy'r ateb hirdymor i bobl heb fws, heb ffordd o deithio, beth ydy effaith hynny ar iechyd meddwl, methu â chael mynd at siopau ac yn y blaen. Mae hyn jest yn enghraifft syml, syml iawn. Ydy pob swyddog—? Dwi ddim yn sôn am aelodau etholedig—ydy bob swyddog o fewn bob sefydliad ym mhob llywodraeth, boed hi'n haen llywodraeth leol neu Lywodraeth Cymru, yn ymateb i'r Ddeddf?
Mae'n rhaid i mi ddweud fy marn am ochr y Gymraeg. Mae honno'n un o'r nodau. Dwi ddim yn meddwl bod honno wedi'i gwreiddio ymhlith bob swyddog Llywodraeth Cymru, a does gen i ddim ofn ei ddweud o, ac mae yna angen hyrwyddo hynny. Nid add-on ydy o—mae o i fod yn greiddiol i bob penderfyniad i sicrhau bod y Gymraeg a'n diwylliant Cymreig ni yn ffynnu. Gethin, oes gen ti unrhyw enghraifft bendant?
I would say that the Welsh Government has a specific role in promoting the Act and accelerating the emphasis and importance of the Act. I'll give you an example of what you're asking about in terms of decisions being made. Sometimes—and we understand this—as Alun said, urgent decisions are made. It appears—and I emphasise the word 'appears'—to me that there are decisions, for example, on travel and buses and so forth, and maybe the solution with the bus companies and the bus transport system is ideal for Cardiff, but, believe me, for Llanfair-yng-nghornwy and Llannerch-y-medd and so forth in rural areas, it's not ideal, and we need to use the Act to make decisions where you can include everyone, and consult and ask them what you think the long-term solutions are for people who don't have a bus or a means of travel, and what's the impact on mental health, not being able to get to shops and so forth. This is a very simple example. Does every official—? I'm not talking about elected members, but does every official within every organisation in government, whether local authority or national Government, respond to the Act?
I have to say my views in terms of the Welsh language. That's one of the goals. I don't think that's been embedded in every official in the Welsh Government, and I'm not scared of saying that either, and we need to promote that. It's not an add-on—it needs to be a core part of every decision to ensure that the Welsh language and our Welsh culture prosper. Gethin, do you have any specific examples?
Rŷch chi wedi mute-io, Gethin.
You're muted, Gethin.
Sori. Doeddwn i ddim yn 'unmute-io' na 'mute-io' fy hun cyn rŵan, so dwi'n ymddiheuro. I gytuno efo beth mae Annwen wedi'i nodi, dwi'n meddwl mai un o'r pethau sydd yn angenrheidiol rŵan, yn symud ymlaen, ydy i weld rôl arweinyddiaeth Llywodraeth Cymru yn dod i rym o safbwynt gwireddu'r Ddeddf. Mae'n mynd yn ôl eto at beth roeddwn i'n sôn amdano—bod y Ddeddf yn greiddiol i fel mae polisïau'n cael eu gweithredu ar draws y sector. A dwi'n meddwl ei fod o'n bwysig tu hwnt, gyda'r enghreifftiau neu gyda'r ffordd mae'r Llywodraeth yn gweithredu, o safbwynt rhoi polisïau mewn lle sydd efo targedau penodol, fod yna wedyn ryw fath o adnodd neu arian cyfatebol yn dod gyda fo ac yn arfogi llywodraethau lleol i fedru gwireddu eu disgwyliad. Gwnaf i roi dwy enghraifft benodol. Un, yn amlwg, lle rydym ni'n gweithredu'n dda, o safbwynt Ynys Môn, ydy'r un o safbwynt y gyfradd ailgylchu. Rydym ni wedi gosod y targed ein bod ni'n ailgylchu 70 y cant erbyn 2025, ond rydym ni hefyd wedi gosod y targed ein bod ni'n mynd i fod yn garbon niwtral erbyn 2030. Mae angen i adnodd a phot o arian fod ar gael er mwyn arfogi sefydliadau i wireddu'r math yna o ddisgwyliad, buaswn i'n ei nodi.
Sorry, I hadn't muted or unmuted myself before then, so I apologise for that. I want to agree with what Annwen has said. One of the things that is necessary now in moving forward is to see the leadership role of the Welsh Government coming into force in terms of realising the Act. It returns to what we mentioned previously in terms of the Act being a core part of how policies are implemented across the sector. And I think it's vital, with the examples or with the way in which the Government does operate, in terms of putting policies in place that have specific targets, that there is some kind of resource or match funding that comes with it and tools up local authorities to be able to realise the expectations. I'll give you two examples: one, evidently, where we're working well in terms of Ynys Môn, is the recycling rate. We've set the target that we'll recycle 70 per cent by 2025, but we've also set the target that we'll be carbon neutral by 2030. Resource and a pot of money needs to be available in order to tool up organisations to realise that kind of expectation, I would say.
Diolch, Gethin. Alun neu Diana, oeddech chi eisiau ategu unrhyw beth?
Thank you, Gethin. Alun or Diana, did you want to add anything?
Wyt ti'n moyn mynd yn gyntaf, Diana, neu—?
Do you want to go first, Diana, or—?
Rwy'n credu mai'r unig beth y buaswn i'n ychwanegu yw bod yw Ddeddf yn gofyn inni feddwl yn wahanol ar draws yr holl sbectrwm, ac rŷn ni wedi siarad lot heddiw ynglŷn â chodi ymwybyddiaeth o'r Ddeddf. Ond dwi'n credu mai'r cwestiwn neu'r her y byddwn i'n ei rhoi nôl i'r Llywodraeth yw: sut ydyn ni'n arfogi cenedlaethau'r dyfodol i ddeall y Ddeddf? Ydy e'n rhan o'r cwricwlwm? Jest o ran profiad personol, yr wythnos diwethaf roeddwn i'n gwneud darn o waith cartref, neu waith dysgu o bell, gydag un o'r plant, ynglŷn â phlastig yn y môr. Rŷn ni'n dda iawn am godi ymwybyddiaeth a chael ein cenedlaethau'r dyfodol i edrych ar y problemau a beth ydyn nhw, ond ydyn ni yn cyflwyno'r Ddeddf fel arf ac fel modd i fynd i'r afael â'r broblem? Ac ydyn ni'n dysgu ein plant ni ynglŷn â'r Ddeddf a'r posibiliadau mae'r Ddeddf yn eu rhoi inni i fynd i'r afael â'r wicked problems yma? Rwy'n credu byddai hwnna'n esiampl dda o integreiddio ar draws yr adrannau gwahanol yn y Llywodraeth. Felly cwestiwn yw e, rwy'n credu: a yw'r Ddeddf yn rhan o'r cwricwlwm—a ydyn ni'n dysgu'n cenedlaethau'r dyfodol ni ynglŷn â'r peth?
I think the only thing that I would add is that the Act requires us to think differently, across the spectrum, and we've talked a lot today about raising awareness of the Act. But I think the question or challenge that I would give back to Government is: how do we tool up future generations to understand the Act? Is it part of the curriculum? Just in terms of personal experience, last week I was doing some homework, or remote learning, with one of the children on plastic in the oceans. We are very good about raising awareness in terms of our future generations to look at the problems and what they are, but do we present the Act as a tool and as a way of tackling the problems? And do we teach our children about the possibilities that the Act presents to us in terms of tackling the wicked problems that were mentioned? Maybe that's a good example of integration across the different departments in the Government. So, I think it's a question as to whether the Act is part of the curriculum and whether we are teaching our future generations about that.
Diolch. Alun, ydych chi eisiau—?
Thank you. Alun, did you want to add anything?
Wel, beth oeddwn i'n moyn dweud oedd canmol y Llywodraeth, i ddechrau off, am ddod â'r Ddeddf hon i fod. Fel cenedl, mae'n rhywbeth, rwy'n credu, y dylem ni fod yn falch ohono, achos mae e'n rhywbeth eithaf pellgyrhaeddol o ran meddylfryd. Does dim byd yn bod ag e o ran beth mae e'n trio gwneud o gwbl, a byddwn i'n canmol y Llywodraeth am ddod â'r Ddeddf atom ni fel cenedl. Diwylliant yw e'n fwyaf—'sut ydyn ni'n ei wneud e' attitude—a rwy'n credu mai pobl efallai'n meddwl dyw hwnna ddim yn costio lot o arian. Ond mae eisiau adnoddau i newid diwylliant hefyd. So, byddwn i yn cytuno gydag Annwen a Gethin fod angen mwy o adnoddau er mwyn hynny. Fel roedd Diana'n sôn nawr, mae'r newid diwylliant yn dechrau'n gynnar gyda'r plant hefyd. Dyna beth yw'r Ddeddf. Mae yn her heriol, ond, mae'n rhaid dweud, mae hwn yn amser—fel maen nhw'n dweud, 'strange times indeed'. Mae'n amser ble mae pwysau ofnadwy ar bob Llywodraeth ym mhob wlad ar hyn o bryd, a dim fy mod i'n dweud hwnna'n rhwydd, ond mae e'n anodd ar bob un. Mae pawb yn moyn help i bob adran a phob agwedd o'u bywydau ar hyn o bryd. Dydyn ni ddim wedi bod mewn sut le erioed, dwi ddim yn credu, so mae'n anodd, rwy'n credu, i ganolbwyntio bod yr Act hyn, fel recovery yn enwedig, yn mynd i fod yn hynod bwysig.
Well, what I wanted to say was to praise the Government at the outset for bringing this Act into existence. As a nation, it's something that we should be very proud of, because it is a far-reaching thing in terms of mindset. There's nothing wrong with that in terms of what it's trying to achieve, and I would praise the Government for bringing that Act into existence for us as a nation. It's a culture more than anything—how we do this—and it's an issue of attitude. So, I think people think that it doesn't cost much money, but it does. We do need resources to change culture. So, I would agree with Annwen and Gethin that we do need resources for that. And, as Diana said, changing culture starts early, with children. So, that's what the Act is. It's a challenge, but, it has to be said, these are very strange times indeed, and it's a time when there is great pressure on every authority in every country at present. I don't say that easily, but it is difficult for everyone, and everyone needs support for every department and with every part of their lives. We've never been in this situation before, so I think it is difficult to focus on the fact that this Act, as we recover, is going to be vital.
Diolch, Alun. Rwy'n ymwybodol iawn o amser, felly gwnaf i jest gofyn un cwestiwn arall. Mae hyn wedi codi ychydig yn barod y bore yma—y ffaith bod sawl haen wahanol o bartneriaeth sydd wedi cael ei chreu gan nifer gwahanol o ddarnau o ddeddfwriaeth. Mae rhai pobl sydd wedi rhoi tystiolaeth inni wedi dweud bod y ffaith fod sawl haen wahanol yn gallu tanseilio'r Ddeddf ac mae'n gallu arwain at—. Annwen, roeddech chi'n sôn fel mae angen ichi wneud yn siŵr dyw darnau gwahanol ddim yn sathru ar draed ei gilydd. Ydych chi'n cytuno bod yr haenau gwahanol yn broblem gyda'r Ddeddf, neu ydy e'n rhywbeth sydd ddim yn broblem ond yn fwy bod angen mwy o guidance ar gyfer sut i'w rhoi e mewn i realiti? Beth ydych chi'n teimlo?
Thank you, Alun. I'm very aware of time, so I'll just ask one further question. This has been raised already this morning—the fact that there are several tiers of partnerships that have been created by different pieces of legislation, and some people who have given evidence have said that the fact that there are several different tiers can undermine the Act and it can lead to—. Annwen, you mentioned that you need to ensure that the different pieces don't step on each other's toes. Do you agree that these different tiers or layers are a problem with the Act, or is it something that's not a problem but is more to do with the need for better guidance in terms of how to implement it? What do you feel about that?
Bydd mwy o hynny yn y man, bydd, wrth sefydlu'r byrddau corfforaethol hefyd, y CJCs—wedyn mae hwnna'n rhywbeth i edrych ymlaen ato fo, hyd yn oed mwy o haenau fyth, felly. Ond ddylai fo ddim bod yn broblem. Y pum ffordd o weithio yw'r peth moesol, cywir i'w wneud i bawb sydd mewn sector cyhoeddus, onid e? Ac mae'r saith nod yn rhywbeth creiddiol a ddylai fod yn rhan o enaid pawb sy'n gweithio yn y sector cyhoeddus. Felly, efallai beth sydd angen ydy mwy o gyfarwyddyd a mwy o atebion—mae Gethin eisoes wedi defnyddio'r gair—pragmataidd, i helpu'r gwahanol haenau o bobl. Ffordd o weithio ydy o, a ffordd o feddwl i wneud y gorau fedrwn ni i'n cymunedau ac unigolion.
There will be more of that shortly, in establishing the corporate bodies, the corporate joint committees—that's something to look forward to, even more layers. But it shouldn't be a problem. I think the five ways of working are the morally or ethically right thing to do for everybody in the public sector. And the seven well-being goals are a core part and should be part of the soul of everybody who works in the public sector. So, what we need is more guidance and more solutions—pragmatic solutions, as Gethin said—for the different tiers of people. It's a way of working, and a way of thinking to make the best use of our resources for communities and individuals.
Diolch, Annwen. A oedd unrhyw un—? Gethin, roeddech chi eisiau dweud rhywbeth.
Thank you, Annwen. Did anyone—? Gethin, you wanted to come in.
Buaswn i'n cytuno efo beth mae Annwen yn ei ddweud. Dwi'n meddwl yr un peth sy'n rhaid inni fod yn wyliadwrus ohono fo ydy ein bod ni'n medru defnyddio'r diwylliant newydd a'r pum ffordd o weithio ar y gwahanol haenau. Hynny yw, bod y byrddau sydd i fyny yn y fan yma yn medru cael barn eu stakeholders tra bod y byrddau yn y fan yma yn cael barn hefyd. Mae'n rhaid inni fod yn wyliadwrus sut mae hwnna'n chwarae allan i'r dyfodol, dwi'n meddwl, achos mi fuasai hwnna'n gallu creu ychydig o anhawster, heb os.
I'd agree with what Annwen said. I think that one thing that we have to be careful about is that we can use the new culture and the five ways of working in the different tiers or layers. That is, that the boards that are up here can hear the opinion of their stakeholders while the boards down here have an opportunity also. We have to be aware of how that plays out in the future, because it could create some difficulty, certainly.
Diolch am hwnna. Alun neu Diana.
Thank you for that. Alun or Diana.
Un pwynt yw bod y Ddeddf ddim wedi creu'r PSBs, achos eu newid nhw wnaethon nhw o local service boards i public services boards. Roedden nhw gyda ni cyn hynny, so dyw e ddim wedi adio haen arall inni o ran hynny. Mae nifer o bartneriaethau eraill i gael, ac mae cymaint o collaboration projects gyda ni hefyd sydd yn gallu landio lan fel bach o bureaucratic clutter—eich bod chi'n gorfod ateb iddyn nhw i gyd a 'service-o' nhw i gyd. Ond, ohonyn nhw i gyd, y PSB yw'r un byddwn i'n meddwl sydd gyda'r pwysicaf sydd i gael. Byddai fe'n dda bod llai o bartneriaethau i gael, ond wedyn mae gwaith partneriaethau wedi bod mor bwysig i ni, achos heblaw am waith partneriaethau, byddem ni ddim wedi gallu ymateb mor rhwydd ac mor dda i'r pandemig. Achos rŷn ni nawr yn gweithio mor agos gyda'n partneriaid ni yn ddyddiol, ac mae wedi rhoi'r grounding amdano fe. So, mae gwaith partneriaethau yn hynod o bwysig—allwch chi byth â gwneud dim byd ar eich pen eich hunain. Ond rŷn ni yn gwybod taw'r downside yw efallai fod gormod, ac mae lot o fiwrocrasi ambell waith gyda ni i'w cydlynu ac i'w recordio nhw, a phob gwahanol un i gael gwahanol gynllun et cetera. Dyna ble mae'r PSB, dwi'n credu, a'r overall strategy yma yn eithaf cryf.
One point to make is that the Act hasn't created PSBs, because they just changed them from local services boards to public services boards. They already existed before then, so it hasn't really added another layer, because they already existed. There are other partnerships, and we have so many collaboration projects as well, which can end up as a bureaucratic clutter—that you have to answer to them and service them all. But, of them all, the PSB is the most important one that we have in terms of these issues. It would be good if we had fewer partnerships, but then the work of partnerships has been so important for us, because without that partnerships work, we wouldn't have been able to respond so easily and so well to the pandemic. Because we are now working so closely with our partners on a daily basis, and it has given us the grounding for that. So, the partnership working is very important, and you can't do anything alone. But we do know that the downside is that perhaps there are too many and there is a lot of bureaucracy sometimes in terms of co-ordinating them, and different ones having different schemes and plans and so forth. That's where I think the PSBs and the overall strategy are quite strong.
Diolch. Dwi'n ymwybodol iawn o amser, felly oni bai, Diana, eich bod chi eisiau ychwanegu—. Na. Grêt. Ocê. Diolch yn fawr iawn i chi i gyd.
Thank you. I am very aware of the time, so unless, Diana, you want to add anything—. No. Okay. Thank you very much.
Thanks, Delyth. Gareth Bennett.
Thanks, Chair. I think my question areas have largely been covered, so it might be better if you go to the next person.
Thanks, Gareth. Angela Burns.
Thank you very much indeed. Again, rather like Gareth—because I wanted to talk about what you would like to see in the future—I think a lot of mine have been covered, because you sort of answered them. But I would like to just explore a little bit of the tensions, perhaps, between Annwen, who thinks that establishing the CJCs would be a good way forward—more guidance and more solution in the future, but that the partnership levels are working well—and Alun, who had a slightly different view, that although it's proven to be very useful during the pandemic, it can be—in short, we could be slightly overgoverned. We see the PSBs as really being the front line of a lot of these partnership boards. Do you think that, going forward, with the implementation of this Act—and it's one of my little favourite sayings I trot out at every single session on this: there's only three-and-a-bit million of us, and we've got an awful lot of layers—that there's any way of consolidating any of that? Would that be useful, or do you think, actually, it would fly against the ambitions of the future generations Act?
Mi wnaf i ddechrau. Dwi'n meddwl fy mod i'n cofio beth ydy'ch cwestiwn chi. Beth ddywedais i am y CJCs ydy—wnes i ddim mynegi barn o blaid neu yn erbyn, jest eu bod nhw'n haen ychwanegol. Ond i roi enghraifft i chi yn fanna o beidio â chreu haen ychwanegol, yng ngogledd Cymru, mae gennym ni'r bwrdd datblygu economaidd, ac rydw i'n meddwl bod hwnna yn fwrdd sydd yn gweithredu fel CJC, a pham felly creu bwrdd gwahanol? Os oes yna rywbeth llwyddiannus yn ei le, dydw i ddim eisiau ei ladd o, mae o yn ei le—teitl gwahanol, mae o yna yn barod yn fanna. Mae'n rhaid i fi wneud hynna yn glir. Dydw i ddim yn gwybod pa mor llwyddiannus, a dydw i ddim yn mynegi barn am ba mor llwyddiannus y bydd y byrddau yna, ac maen nhw'n mynd i ganolbwyntio, fel rydym ni i gyd yn gwybod, ar rai meysydd penodol, ond rydw i'n meddwl bod y byrddau yna hefyd angen canllawiau, cyngor pragmataidd ar sut i weithredu'r Ddeddf, yn ddibynnol ar bwy sydd ar y bwrdd.
I'll start. I think I remember what your question is. What I said about the CJCs—I didn't express a view for or against, but I just said that they were an additional layer. But I'll give you an example of not creating an additional tier. In north Wales, we have the economic development board, and I think that that is a board that does act as a CJC, so why create a different board? If there's something successful already in place, we don't need to kill it, it's in its place—it has a different title, but it's already there. So, I have to make that clear. I don't know how successful and I'm not expressing any view as to how successful those boards will be, and they're going to focus, as we know, on some specific areas, but I do think that those boards need guidance, pragmatic advice on how to implement the Act, depending on who is a member of those boards.
Where do you think that guidance—? You referred to guidance and more solutions. Do you see that coming from Welsh Government, from the future generations commissioner or a combination of all?
Y ddau. Mae pob peth—adain o fewn swyddfa'r comisiynydd, swyddfa Comisiynydd y Gymraeg—yn gorfod cael ei arwain, rydw i'n meddwl, gan Lywodraeth Cymru, a rhaid i bawb chwarae eu rhan, neu mae'r peth yn mynd i fethu, yn fy marn i.
Both. Everything—within the commissioner's office, the office of the Welsh Language Commissioner—has got to be led, I think, by the Welsh Government, and everyone has to play their part, or it's going to fail, in my opinion.
I don't know if anyone else wants to add in, but I just wanted to pick up, Diana, a comment that you made that I thought was really interesting, because, again, we're looking at the future and what can we do, and you made the comment that to embed the Act we need the future generations to be leading policy, and that sometimes it feels like an add-on. What do you think we could do—what recommendation do you think this committee could give that would perhaps try to address that, to make sure that the future generations Act is really embedded in all that policy development?
I think it is—.
I ateb yn Gymraeg, fel gwnes i sôn yn gynharach, y pwysigrwydd yw—. Rwy'n teimlo ambell waith ein bod ni'n dweud ein bod ni'n ei wneud e, ond dydyn ni ddim yn ei wneud e, a'r 'gwneud e', rwy'n credu, yw rhoi esiamplau o sut mae e'n gweithio. Beth mae e'n ei feddwl i fi fel person ar lawr gwlad? Sut mae'r Ddeddf yn—? Pan rwy'n cael pushback ynglŷn â'r Ddeddf, beth rwy'n ei gael yw, 'O ie, wel, dyw hwnna ddim yn ddim byd i fi. Dyw e ddim yn rhywbeth sy’n briodol i'm gwaith i o ddydd i ddydd. Dyw e ddim yn briodol i sut wyf fi'n byw fy mywyd personol.' Dydw i ddim yn dweud bod yr ateb gyda fi fel unigolyn, ond yr her yna yw sut i'w wneud e'n haws i ddeall i rywun ar lawr gwlad. Ac rwy'n credu mai'r unig ffordd i wneud hynna yw addysg a gwneud yn siŵr ei fod e'n treiddio trwy bopeth. Dyma’r her. Dyma sut, drwy ddefnyddio'r Ddeddf, y byddwn ni'n gallu dod at ganlyniadau gwell ar gyfer cenedlaethau’r dyfodol. So, dydw i ddim yn siŵr os ydw i wedi ateb eich cwestiwn chi'n llawn, ond efallai mai her yw e, yn fwy nag ateb, oddi wrthyf i.
To answer in Welsh, as I mentioned earlier, I think the importance is in—. Well, I feel that sometimes we say that we're doing it, but we're not doing it, and 'doing it' is, I think, giving examples of how it works. What does it mean to me as a person on the ground? How does the Act—? When I do have pushback on the Act, what I get is, 'Well, yes, it's not relevant to me. It's not something that's relevant to my work from day to day. It's not relevant to how I live my personal life.' I'm not saying that I have the solution as an individual, but I think that challenge is how to make it easier to understand for someone on the ground. I think that the only way to do that is education and ensuring that it is embedded in everything. This is the challenge. This is how, through using the Act, we will be able to have better outcomes for the future generations. So, I'm not sure whether I've answered your question fully, but it's more of a challenge than an answer from me, perhaps.
That's useful. I must admit that I was really impressed when you talked about how the partnership boards—how you've tried to involve the university and the library and so on and so forth. We've had evidence from other stakeholders in previous sessions where there's definitely not been such a high level of integration throughout all the organisations, including the third sector, other non-governmental organisations, within a particular area. I just wondered: do you think that a way forward—is there any scope to be able to have a learning forum to bring other organisations in Wales up to the kind of levels that your two organisations have very well demonstrated today? Because I tell you, so far, you're quite rare in some of the stuff that we've heard, where organisations are simply not this embedded with the Act, or have the Act embedded within them. So, what we want to know is: how can we get that out to people? How can we get other organisations on board?
Who wants to take that? Annwen.
Dwi'n meddwl ei bod hi'n hynod, hynod bwysig, beth rydych wedi awgrymu. Mae eisiau rhyw fath o fforwm, mae eisiau codi ymwybyddiaeth; mae eisiau ei wneud o, fel mae Gethin ac fel mae Ceredigion wedi dweud hefyd, yn rhan o ddeddfau ac yn rhan o unrhyw benderfyniadau, ac mae angen gwneud hwn yn eithaf buan rŵan, dwi'n meddwl, wrth ddod allan o'r COVID ac wrth wynebu Brexit hefyd.
I think it's very, very important, what you suggested. We need a forum, we need to raise awareness; it needs to be, as Gethin and Ceredigion have said, part of any legislation and any decisions, and that needs to be done quite quickly as we emerge from COVID and as we face Brexit as well.
Do you fear that the amazing working together that's happened because of the pandemic may start to fall apart as we come out of it? Because it's something that has been expressed by a couple of health boards—how they embed and keep hold of that extraordinary working together that's been forced on us all.
Mae hwnna i fyny i iechyd ac i'r cynghorau. Mi fuaswn i'n dweud nad un ffordd ydy hwnna; mae hwnna'n digwydd y ddwy ffordd. Rydyn ni wedi dysgu gan iechyd, ac yn sicr mae iechyd wedi dysgu gan gynghorau hefyd. Rydyn ni nôl, dwi'n meddwl, i egwyddorion craidd o gydweithio, ac yn bwysicach na dim, cyd-barch at y naill sefydliad a'r llall. Ac mae hwnna'n dod wedyn i'r arweinyddiaeth i blannu'r egwyddorion yna ymhlith yr holl swyddogion.
That's up to health and to the councils. I would say it's not just a one-way thing; it's a two-way thing. We've learned from health, and certainly health have learned from councils as well. I think we return to the core principles of collaboration and, more important than anything, mutual respect from both organisations. And I think that that comes back to the leadership to embed those principles among all the officials.
Byddwn i'n cytuno â hwnna'n llwyr. A byddwn i'n siomedig iawn os byddem ni ddim yn cadw ymlaen i gydweithio yn ystod y recovery ac ar ôl hynny. Rŷn ni'n nabod ein gilydd fel pobl yn well; rŷn ni'n siario'r un math o egwyddorion obeutu i ble rŷn ni'n moyn mynd, et cetera. Dyna holl bwynt y cynllun PSB. Ond mae gofid wastad y gallai pethau fynd yn llai tyn, so mae beth rŷch chi wedi ei ddweud, Angela, yn syniad da.
I would agree with that entirely. I would be very disappointed if we didn't continue to collaborate during the recovery period and after that. We know each other much better now and we know that we share the same principles in terms of where we want to go, and that's the whole point of the PSB scheme. There is a concern that things could deteriorate, but what you've said, Angela, is a good idea.
Thank you. I just want to finish off by asking you—. As you answered other people's questions throughout this session, you've talked about now and you've talked about what you'd like to see, or how you think it can be improved. Is there anything that you think that you've left unsaid? Are there any particular points? This is about how we can make sure that going forward, the future generations Act and the barriers to the implementation of it are removed. Are there any particular key areas you would like to highlight again, or anything you feel you didn't have a chance to say in your answer to anybody else?
Jest i ailadrodd, dwi'n meddwl bod rhaid ail-lansio hwn, mae'n rhaid cael arweinyddiaeth gan Lywodraeth Cymru, mae'n rhaid i bob corff cyhoeddus fod yn ymrwymedig ac yn atebol i'r Ddeddf yn fan hyn, a'r ochr capasiti. Dyna'r pedwar peth buaswn i'n dweud.
Just repeat the fact that we need to relaunch this. We need leadership from the Welsh Government, every public body has to be committed and accountable to the Act, and the capacity side. Those are the four things I would say.
That very much brings us back around full circle to my opening question, so thanks, Angela. Obviously, this has been a huge piece of work for the Government and groundbreaking, but it's about making sure that things happen on the ground.
I didn't ask at the start, but in terms of the final question, we've obviously got the pandemic on our hands at the moment. In your view, is the future generations legislation providing a valuable tool as we go through the pandemic, or is it something that at the moment is going on the back burner, and old ways of working emerge because of an emergency situation? Who would like to—?
As I said earlier, there's a danger of it not being at the forefront of our minds as much, because of the day-to-day decisions we've got to make as regulations change every three weeks and new information comes on board, and the demands for new funding for things like test and trace, et cetera. It is a very, very busy time for us in local government. It's one decision after the other that has to be looked at, and to maintain the discipline of the five ways of working can be difficult, I'll be honest. But it is something that we must strive to do, and as Diana gave the example earlier, in terms of our town centres and the safe zones that we created to pedestrianise them, particularly in the tourism times when our streets are crowded—we had nearly 3 million visitors over the summer—that is really important, and we did talk to people, and we continue to discuss that because not everybody wants it, and we have to listen to the reasons why that is.
Yn fy marn i, mae'r Ddeddf rŵan, wrth ddod allan o COVID, yn bwysicach nag erioed o'r blaen, yn bwysicach oherwydd, os ydych chi eisiau Cymru lewyrchus, Cymru gydnerth, Cymru iach, mwy cyfartal, mae'r rheini'n egwyddorion creiddiol nid yn unig i Gymru, ond i bob gwlad drwy'r byd yn gyfan gwbl. Rydyn ni wedi dysgu lot o wersi, a dyna beth rydyn ni eisiau fel Cymru yn dod allan o'r pandemig. A'r ffordd o'i wneud o, yn bosibl efo llai o adnoddau, yw bod yn rhaid i ni weithio efo'n gilydd, ac mae'r pum nod, y pum ffordd o weithio yma yn bwysicach nag erioed ar ôl COVID—y Ddeddf.
In my opinion, the Act now, in emerging from COVID, is more important than ever before. It's more important because you want a prosperous Wales, a resilient Wales, a healthy Wales, a more equal Wales, and I think that those are core principles not only for Wales, but for every country throughout the world. We've learned a lot of lessons and that's what we want as a nation as we emerge from the pandemic. The way to do that with fewer resources is that we all have to work together, and the Act's five ways of working are more important than ever post COVID.
We're out of time and I think that's a positive note to end on. So, can I thank our witnesses for being with us today? Diolch yn fawr. It's much appreciated given, as I said, the current circumstances. So, we'll send you a transcript of today's proceedings just for you to check for accuracy before that's formalised. Diolch yn fawr.
I propose we take a 10-minute break, if Members are happy with that. Good.
Gohiriwyd y cyfarfod rhwng 10:52 ac 11:05.
The meeting adjourned between 10:52 ac 11:05.
We've got our next evidence session now into the barriers to the successful implementation of the well-being of future generations Act. Would our witnesses like to give their name and position for the Record of Proceedings?
Bore da. I'm Dr Caroline Turner. I'm chief executive of Powys County Council.
Good morning. I'm Emma Palmer, head of transformation and communications at Powys County Council.
Great. We have a fair number of questions for you, so feel free to be succinct in answers, and in the questions as well. I'll kick off with a general question. What do you feel has been the biggest challenge for your organisation in implementing the legislation?
I think, for me, one of the things I'm very aware of is just the scope of the Act and what it requires all of the organisations to do. When we are very focused on key things at a particular time, there's a lot to take into account. For me, one of the barriers is just so much information, so much guidance coming through, and a lot of it very, very broad and very detailed. So, for example, the report that was published in May last year had 299 recommendations for us to consider, and in the middle of dealing with COVID, we did it, and we went through them and we prioritised them, but when I first saw that document, it was pretty overwhelming thinking, 'How are we going to consider 299 recommendations at this particular time and get proper engagement to really understand them thoroughly?'
And, Emma, did you want to come in?
I think, for me, in relation to operationalising it, it's also considering the other Acts that the organisations have to comply with and, quite often, we need to think about the differing priorities within them and how we can align that with the requirements of our cabinet so that we can have one set of coherent priorities that the organisation can deliver, and then make an impact to society.
Clearly, at the moment we're in the middle of the pandemic. How do you see the effect of the pandemic on the legislation? Has the legislation been a hindrance or has it been helpful?
It hasn't been a hindrance in any way and, of course, I don't think any of us thought last March that we would still be in the situation we're in now in terms of infection rates and in terms of so many people working from home and the restrictions. Our thinking early on was much more short term—how do we cope with what's going on on a daily basis. Now that we're into the beginning of 2021, we've got to start now thinking much, much longer term, not just about recovery—we've been doing some work on that—but also how we learn to work and conduct our everyday lives in a different way, and I think the principles of the Act are very suitable for that. There's nothing wrong with the Act, there's nothing wrong with the well-being goals and the ways of working. If anything, they're probably becoming more relevant now and enabling us to move faster, and helping us to have a framework that justifies planning to work and live our lives in a different way.
Emma, did you want to come in?
I think, with the pandemic, we have been very much in response and in the here and now, but as Dr Caroline has said, looking to the future, the pandemic has actually enabled us to work and deliver services in a very different way and to make changes rather rapidly because of the circumstances we find ourselves in. And so, I think there's some learning there, and working with our partners around meeting the requirements of the Act, and taking forward and delivering on the opportunities that now present to continue to work in a different way and at the required pace.
Diolch. Okay, I'll bring in other Members now, and Llyr Gruffydd.
Diolch yn fawr iawn, Cadeirydd. Roeddwn i'n gweld yn nhystiolaeth Powys a sir y Fflint, a dweud y gwir, fod yna gyfeiriadau at ymwybyddiaeth a dealltwriaeth o'r Ddeddf a'i goblygiadau. Roeddwn i'n gweld bod sir y Fflint yn dweud bod yna ymwybyddiaeth sy'n tyfu ac yn cryfhau, ac, o safbwynt Powys, dwi'n meddwl eich bod chi'n dweud ei bod hi'n anodd cael staff o lefel is i gysylltu, efallai, neu i ddod yn ddigon ymwybodol ynglŷn â'r Ddeddf, wedyn. Roeddwn i jest eisiau gwybod, i bob pwrpas, ba mor drylwyr mae'r ddealltwriaeth yna yn eich sefydliadau chi, a beth, wrth gwrs, ydych chi'n ei wneud, felly, i godi ymwybyddiaeth.
Thank you very much, Chair. I saw in the evidence from Powys and Flintshire that there were references to awareness and understanding of the Act and its implications. I saw that Flintshire has said that there was awareness that is growing and strengthening, and, in terms of Powys, I think you said that it was difficult to get lower level staff to engage or to become aware enough of the Act. I just wanted to know, to all intents and purposes, how thoroughly that understanding has been embedded in your organisations and what you're doing to raise awareness.
Dwi wedi bod ym Mhowys rŵan bron iawn ddwy flynedd, ac, wrth gwrs, mi oedd llawer iawn o'r gwaith codi ymwybyddiaeth wedi digwydd ar draws Cymru cyn hynny. Felly, yn sicr, ar y lefel uwch—lefel cynghorwyr, cabinet, yr uwch-dîm rheoli—yn sicr mae yna ymwybyddiaeth eithaf trylwyr yn yr holl elfennau yna. Mae yna hefyd ddealltwriaeth reit dda o ran y bobl yn y gwahanol wasanaethau sy'n llunio polisi ac yn gwneud ceisiadau grant, er enghraifft, ond dwi'n meddwl bod ychydig o flynyddoedd wedi bod rŵan ers i ni gael ymgyrch codi ymwybyddiaeth, ac felly, efallai, wrth i staff symud a mynd a dŵad, fod rhai o'r negeseuon yna yn rhai sydd angen eu hail-wneud unwaith eto i godi'r ymwybyddiaeth ar wahanol lefelau. Ond yn sicr ar y lefel uwch, yr hyn rydym ni wedi gwneud ydy gwreiddio egwyddorion y Ddeddf i'n prosesau. Felly, yn unrhyw beth rydym ni'n ei wneud, mae gennym ni brosesau ar draws y cyngor ac ym mhob un gwasanaeth. Mae'r egwyddorion yma wedi cael eu hadeiladu i mewn, felly maen nhw yn rhywbeth rydym ni'n cyffwrdd arnyn nhw'n rheolaidd ac yn ymwybodol iawn pan fyddwn ni'n gwneud hynny hefyd. Ond, wrth gwrs, dros y blynyddoedd diwethaf yma, mae'r pwyslais wedi bod yn fwy ar weithredu: sut ydyn ni rŵan yn ymarferol yn gweithredu gan ystyried yr egwyddorion yma. A phan fyddwn ni'n gwneud hynny, efallai fod rhai o'r negeseuon yn cael eu colli. Mae'n anodd, wrth gwrs, pan fyddwn ni mewn cyfnod fel ydyn ni ar hyn o bryd, gan fod yna gymaint o negeseuon allweddol i'w cyfleu. Ac, wrth gwrs, mae negeseuon COVID yn bwysig ar hyn o bryd, a negeseuon hefyd o ran cynllunio'r gyllideb.
Rŵan, mae yna elfennau sydd yn berthnasol yn y Ddeddf yma, ond efallai fod hwn yn rhywbeth rydyn ni angen dod ato fo yn y cam nesaf. Felly, wrth i ni baratoi ar gyfer y dyfodol, er enghraifft, gweithio mewn ffordd wahanol, annog pobl i weithio o adre, teithio llai, llai o gyswllt, yna mae'r Ddeddf yn berthnasol iawn yn hynny, ac mi fydd y ffordd rydyn ni'n gweithio ar hyn o bryd—. Rydyn ni wedi gweld eisoes y modd mae delio efo'r pandemig wedi—. Mae o wedi bod, wrth gwrs, yn anodd dros ben, ond, o ran yr amgylchedd, mae yna effaith wedi bod, ac felly mae'n rhaid i ni sicrhau ein bod ni'n cadw at rai o'r pethau da sydd wedi dod allan o'r cyfnod diwethaf yma a sicrhau ein bod ni'n parhau i gadw'r manteision bychan yna sydd wedi dod yn amlwg dros y 10 mis diwethaf yma. Felly, mater o bryd rydyn ni'n pwysleisio'r negeseuon a'r egwyddorion ydy o, gan fod yna gymaint o ofynion ar y cynghorau, ac, wrth gwrs, mae'r pwyslais yn mynd i newid o dro i dro.
I've been in Powys for nearly two years and, of course, a lot of the work in terms of awareness raising had happened across Wales before that. So, certainly, at the higher level—councillors, cabinet, and the senior management team—there has been thorough understanding in all of those elements. There is also a good understanding in terms of the people in different services that make policy and deal with grant applications and so forth, but some years have passed now since we had an awareness-raising campaign, and so, maybe, as staff move and come and go, maybe some of those messages are ones that need to be reinforced again, to raise awareness at different levels. But certainly, at the higher level or senior level, we've embedded the principles of the Act in our processes. So, in anything that we do, we have processes across the council and in all of our services. The principles of the Act have been built into those processes and, therefore, they are something that we touch upon regularly and we're very aware when we do that. But, of course, over the last year, the emphasis has been more on action or implementation: how we implement that practically and bear those principles in mind. In doing that, maybe some of the messages are lost. It's difficult, of course, when we're in a period as we're in at the moment, as there are so many key messages to be communicated. And, of course, the COVID messages are very important at present, as are messages in terms of budget planning.
Now, there are elements that are relevant in this Act, but maybe this is something that we need to address at the next stage. So, as we plan for the future, for example to work in different ways, encouraging people to work from home, travelling less and less engagement, then the Act is very relevant to that and the way that we work at present—. We've seen already the way in which dealing with the pandemic has been—. It has been very difficult, of course, but in terms of the environment there has been an impact, and so we have to ensure that we adhere to some of the good things that have emerged from this period and ensure that we continue to retain those small benefits that have emerged over the last 10 months. So, it's an issue of when we emphasise those messages and principles, since there are so many requirements on the councils, and, of course, the emphasis is going to change from time to time.
Iawn. Dwi ddim yn siŵr os ydy Karen yn ein clywed ni ac a fydd hi eisiau ymateb ar ran sir y Fflint. Na, dwi ddim yn meddwl ei bod hi. Ocê. Wel, fe wnaf i ofyn, felly, ymhellach i hynny. Mi glywon ni gan Geredigion yn flaenorol, ac roedd Ynys Môn yn cytuno hefyd, o safbwynt y cynghorau yn fanna, fod ymgysylltu a chreu mwy o ymwybyddiaeth ymhlith rhanddeiliad allanol a'r boblogaeth yn ehangach—hynny yw, trigolion lleol—yn werthfawr, oherwydd mae'r cyngor yn teimlo o hyd eu bod nhw'n gorfod llusgo pobl ar eu holau nhw ar hyd y llwybr yma, yn hytrach, efallai, na fod y dynfa yn dod o'r gwreiddiau i fyny. Dyna'r ddelfryd, efallai, ond dwi ddim yn gwybod os ydych chi'n trio gwneud rhywbeth i gyflawni hynny i raddau, hynny yw, i godi ymwybyddiaeth ymhlith y boblogaeth ehangach ym Mhowys a thu hwnt.
Fine. I don't know whether Karen can hear us. Does she want to answer on behalf of Flintshire council? No, I don't think so. Okay. Well, I'll ask you some further questions on that. We heard from Ceredigion previously, and Ynys Môn also agreed with us, in terms of the councils there, that engagement and creating greater awareness amongst external stakeholders and the wider population—local residents, that is—was valuable, because the council feels that they have to drag people behind them on this journey, rather than it coming from the bottom up. That's the ideal, in any case, but I don't know whether you're doing anything to achieve that and to raise awareness among the wider population in Powys and beyond.
Dydy o ddim yn rhywbeth rydyn ni wedi bod yn fwriadol yn ei wneud dros y ddwy flynedd diwethaf, mae'n rhaid i mi ddweud—ddim yn fwriadol. Ond, wrth gwrs, wrth i ni gyfleu negeseuon, boed am rai o'n cynlluniau mawr, strategol, fel y cynllun trawsnewid ysgolion sydd gennym ni, neu'r cynlluniau mawr sydd gennym ni ar y cyd efo'r bwrdd iechyd o ran cael canolfan iechyd a gofal yn y Drenewydd, yna mae egwyddorion y Ddeddf yn greiddiol i'r cynlluniau yna. Maen nhw wedi bod yn bwysig iawn wrth i ni lunio, ac maen nhw hefyd yn elfennau sydd yn dod drwodd pan fyddwn ni'n ymgynghori efo'r cyhoedd a phan fyddwn ni'n cyfleu negeseuon am beth rydyn ni'n ei wneud a beth ydy budd tymor hir y datblygiadau mawr yna. I rai o'r partneriaid, wrth gwrs, mae'r Ddeddf yn bwysig iawn iddyn nhw o ddydd i ddydd—y parciau cenedlaethol, er enghraifft, a nifer o bartneriaid eraill yn y sector gwirfoddol. Mae partneriaid eraill hefyd yn ymwybodol o'r Ddeddf—byrddau iechyd a'r heddlu—ond efallai nad yw e cweit mor ganolog i'w datblygiadau a'u cynlluniau nhw ag ydy o, efallai, i'r cynghorau a'r parciau cenedlaethol.
It's not something that we've done intentionally over the last couple of years. But, of course, as we do communicate messages, whether it's about our major strategic plans, such as the school transformation programme, or the joint plans with the health board in terms of getting a care and health centre in Newtown, then certainly the principles of the Act are a core part of those plans. They've been very important as we draw them up, and they're elements that also emerge as we consult with the public and when we communicate messages about what we're doing and the long-term benefits of these major developments. For some partners, of course, the Act is very important to them from day to day—the national parks, for example, and a number of other partners in the voluntary sector. Other partners are very aware of the Act—health boards and the police—but perhaps it's not so central to their developments and plans as it is for the councils and the national parks.
Iawn, ocê. Ac, wrth gwrs, mae'r rheini i gyd yn gyrff cyhoeddus. Hynny yw, mae yna lu o gyrff sector preifat hefyd sy'n rhanddeiliaid ac yn gontractwyr ac yn y blaen, ond awn ni ddim ar ôl hynny nawr. Cwestiwn arall roeddwn i eisiau ei ofyn oedd: ydych chi'n hyderus eich bod chi a chyrff eraill yn ymwybodol o beth mae arfer da yn edrych fel? Ydych chi'n gwybod beth yw gweithredu da yng nghyd-destun hyn, ac a oes yna gymharu nodiadau a dysgu oddi wrth eich gilydd a rhannu profiadau? Oherwydd mi glywon ni enghreifftiau gynnau o bethau roedd pawb yn eu gwneud, ond roedden nhw'n swnio'n wahanol i'w gilydd. Wedyn, roeddwn i jest eisiau gwybod os oes yna ryw ddysgu oddi wrth eich gilydd a bod hwnnw hefyd, wrth gwrs, yn treiddio'n is i lawr na dim ond y lefel reolwyr.
Okay. And, of course, these are public bodies. There are a lot of private sector bodies that are stakeholders and contractors and so forth, but we won't pursue that now. Another question I wanted to ask was: are you confident that you and other public bodies know what good practice looks like? Do you know what is good implementation in the context of this Act, and is there a comparing of notes and learning from each other and comparing experiences? Because we heard examples earlier of what people were doing, but they did sound very different. So, I just wanted to know whether there was learning from each other and that that is cascaded down, not just at a senior management level.
Mae gennym ni syniad reit dda o beth mae 'da' yn edrych fel o ran ein prosesau a sut rydyn ni'n cynllunio polisïau newydd ac yn sicrhau ein bod ni wedi ystyried yr elfennau, ac mae o'n dod yn glir yn ein hadroddiadau blynyddol hefyd. Ond efallai bod yna le i gryfhau y rhannu ymarfer da, a hynny ar draws Cymru, wrth gwrs. Mae Cymru'n amrywiol iawn o'r dinesig i'r gwledig, ond mae yna ddigonedd o gyrff yng Nghymru wledig a digonedd o gyrff yn y llefydd mwy dinesig hefyd, felly mae yna ddigon o gyfle i rannu'r ymarfer da, ond dwi ddim yn meddwl ei fod yn rhywbeth rydyn ni'n ei wneud yn rheolaidd ac efallai bod mwy o gyfle inni wneud y math yna o beth wrth i ni symud yn ein blaenau.
We have a good idea of what 'good' looks like in terms of our processes and how we plan new policies and ensure that we have considered the elements, and it's becoming clear in our annual reports as well. But maybe there is scope to strengthen the sharing of good practice across Wales, of course. Wales is very diverse in terms of the urban and rural areas, but there are plenty of bodies in rural Wales and in the more urban areas, so there's plenty of opportunity to share good practice, but I don't think it's something that we do regularly, and maybe there is a greater opportunity for us to do that kind of thing, as we move forward.
Iawn. Ydy Karen yn fy nghlywed i nawr? Ydy Karen eisiau ychwanegu rhywbeth?
Okay. Does Karen hear us now? Can she hear us? Does Karen want to add anything?
I'm with you. I'm really sorry about that earlier.
Welcome back, Karen.
I was wondering whether you wanted to add something in relation to sharing best practice across public sector organisations in this context, but also maybe more generally about cascading down a deeper understanding beyond the upper echelons of local authorities, around the Act and its implications.
Okay. In terms of sharing good practice, I think we do that really, really well in north Wales, and we do it not just across our local authorities, but across our public services board partners as well. We do an awful lot of work within our public services boards, so, just for example, the Flintshire and Wrexham public services boards have recently joined together specifically for community recovery. So, following the pandemic, obviously, we're flexing in and out of response and recovery, but we're doing a lot of work to prepare our communities and support our communities, coming out of community recovery. So, the Act is embedded in everything we do. We might not be doing it consciously, but certainly, in terms of longer term planning, whether that be capital investments in our assets, we're also looking at different ways of working that involve our partners, the voluntary sector and other partners, to ensure that we are providing the best possible service, not just for now, but for the longer term. So, I think there's a lot of really good stuff that we can talk about in terms of how our capital longer term asset planning supports future generations, and how we ensure that the best model that we have in place for those buildings and structures is in such a way that it supports longer term service delivery and collaboration with our communities.
Okay. And you say in your evidence that there's been a steady and growing awareness of the Act and its implications. Could you just expand on what more needs to be done to accelerate that?
I think there was quite a lot of work initially when the Act first came out, and we've embedded it in the council within our governance structures. So, certainly at a senior level, the Act is referred to and becomes part of what we do. As for further extending the knowledge, I think a lot of that comes down—as I almost intimated earlier—to working with our partners, because it's our partners who are working with our staff at lower levels as well. So, they are delivering the services and, as we change our ways of working, the Act gets talked about more and more and it just becomes a natural way of working.
Okay. Just finally from me, then, to the three of you, we've had evidence that points to a perceived disconnect between the Auditor General for Wales, the Welsh Government and the future generations commissioner, and that's illustrated by a lack of unified message and approach to expectations. So, I don't know whether you've picked that up or whether you agree that there might be an element of disconnect—that each of them is looking for something different, or trying to measure something different or are giving out slightly different messages. Is that something that's apparent to you?
From my perspective, I see it reasonably simply—but, then, maybe I'm a simple person—in that it's Audit Wales that are looking at our processes and it's the future generations commissioner that's looking at the outcomes. So, to me, they are two quite distinct pieces of work that do go on, and we are aware that they do obviously have strong relationships anyway. And I think that distinction between the two types of work will become more and more obvious as we get into different programmes from the auditor general and different reports or requirements that are needed from the future generations commissioner.
So, are you content that that's joined up enough, in that if one is looking at processes and the other's looking at outcomes, that they're actually looking—
That's the way I see it, and that's what we've experienced as an authority, yes.
Okay. And is that similar for Powys?
I wouldn't say that there's necessarily a disconnect. I did hear some of the earlier evidence session, but I didn't listen in to all of it, so I'm not sure what the context was there. I wouldn't necessarily say there's a disconnect, and I have seen the auditor general and the future generations commissioner working across and working together, so the report that was published in May last year, for example. Audit Wales also looked at the way we implement the future generations Act last year, as well.
I do see in, not just the auditor general, but in the work that we've been doing with Estyn and Care Inspectorate Wales, there's a consistency. I would say that all are looking and measuring to see are we planning long term, and everything I see there is then consistent with the Act. We're looking at what shall we do differently today, whether it's early intervention or prevention in terms of social services or the work we do in our schools. What is the long-term impact of that on our children, our young people and our families? So, I wouldn't say necessarily there's a disconnect. What I would say is there's a different emphasis at different times from different organisations.
What I would like to mention is, simply, there is so much legislation that creates the framework for the workings of local government. If you're in the police, if you're in the national park, if you're in the health board, you have a much more limited focus in terms of the work. But with local government our services are so wide, we are subject to so much legislation, some of it coming from Wales and some of it coming from England and Wales, and sometimes the different legislation requires different partnership arrangements, they bring with them different governance, they bring different funding pots and, often, will have different lead organisations, and so, for me, that is where some of the complexity and disconnect tends to come in.
So, for example, I think there have been some missed opportunities many years ago in terms of—. We had the Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act 2014 and the future generations Act broadly being developed at a similar time, yet they've created different partnerships, different funding regimes, and a slightly different emphasis. There are similarities as well, but there are differences of emphasis. I'll give you another example: safeguarding. A vital responsibility for local authorities and others, led mainly by local authorities and social services. On the other hand, you have community safety, and that is led more from police legislation and, therefore, England and Wales, and so, different partnerships, different funding regimes, different governance. But, ultimately, we're talking about a similar set of people that need support and need guidance, and so the complexity comes in, I think, in terms of different legislation from different places being developed at different times, and I do think that, moving forward with the work of the future generations Act, there's absolutely nothing wrong with the legislation at all. I must say as well that the current commissioner has done brilliant work in terms of raising awareness, developing the toolkits and the frameworks, but I think my suggestion would be, in the future, working closer with Welsh Government and UK Government as well, so that when new legislation is formulated, the elements are built in at that level rather than at the end of the legislation in the implementation by partner organisations.
Karen wants to come in as well, I think.
Yes, if I could just add to those comments, I agree with Dr Caroline Turner. I think one of the issues that local authorities are left to do is to make sense of all those different sets of legislation. So, for example, Dr Caroline was talking about safeguarding. What we've done, in order to bring all of those aspects together, whether it be community safety or safeguarding per se, is form a corporate safeguarding board. So, we've had to do that. We've had to make sense of the different levels and timing of different legislation practices, in order to help us steer a way through it and make sure that we've got the right people round the table discussing similar sorts of aspects, and that we're not duplicating.
Diolch. Dwi'n gwybod bod yna bobl eraill sydd eisiau mynd ar ôl rhai o'r pwyntiau penodol yna, so gwnaf basio yn ôl i'r Cadeirydd nawr. Diolch.
Thank you. I know there are others who want to pursue some of those specific points, so I'll hand back to the Chair now. Thank you.
Thanks, Llyr. Jenny Rathbone.
Thank you very much, and good morning to all of you. I want to look at how we deploy resources to meet the objectives of the Act, and obviously the context is that we're in the middle of three tsunamis: the pandemic, climate change and all the changes that result from Brexit. So, the challenges may change, but obviously there are huge challenges ahead for all of us.
Dr Turner, in terms of talking about resources in the local authority's written paper, you say that resources are often raised as an issue and a barrier at meetings, but the resource for co-ordinating the public services boards' activities often falls to local authorities, and that makes other bodies think that local authorities are therefore dominating the agenda. But all 46 bodies are obviously required to implement the Act. So, how do you think we can get around that? Because that's quite a complex challenge, I would have thought.
In my experience, both in Powys and when I worked in north Wales as well, it tends to be the local authorities that provide the secretariat and do all the co-ordination, and it does tend to be—. It's quite difficult to have resource located in one organisation that supports a whole range of partners. Whether the resource is based with the police or the health board or the local authority, there tends to be a perception that whoever hosts leads, and it's quite difficult to get beyond that sometimes. It is possible to do, but there is a natural tendency, I think, for organisations to see one organisation as a lead body.
I think that the key as well is in the implementation. So, for example, at Powys public services board, we have 12 areas where we're co-operating with other organisations. They are all integrated, they are all multi-agency in every one of those different elements. So, there is that very strong co-ordination in reality when it comes to working on specific projects and delivering them. That partnership is seamless and it's just natural. But I think some of the comments in our submission were talking more about the co-ordination and the corporate role. It certainly seems, in terms of co-ordinating everything to do with the board's work, whether it's arranging meetings or arranging the annual report, that does tend to fall on the local authorities, and because of that, I think it's sometimes down to perception more than reality—that the responsibility for the Act does fall to local authorities and that it tends to be in the corporate centre.
Okay. Do you think a rotating chair and secretariat might overcome that, so everybody would get a turn and a responsibility?
Possibly. There are various ways of doing it. Of course, the PSB is one of many partnerships that we have. As well, we've got the regional partnership board, so we are rotating the chair there. There are others as well: the regional safeguarding board and community safety partnerships. So, there are many, many different partnerships. We can't just look at the PSB in isolation. We need to see the PSB as one of many aspects of quite a complex partnership arrangement across many partners across Wales.
Thank you for that.
I don't know whether Emma has anything to add to that.
Karen, in your submission, you've said that the Act encourages public bodies to behave in an ideal world, with multi-year budget settlements et cetera and perfect partnership arrangements, but that that is not the reality at the moment. So, what do you think the solution is? We can't have central Government micromanaging local bodies because you then wouldn't own your solutions.
No, indeed. I think, in terms of resources, when the PSBs were first set up, they were definitely seen very much as a local authority responsibility, and it is our responsibility to provide the co-ordination and pull the annual report together. However, what we've done differently with the new Flintshire and Wrexham board that we've set up around community recovery is that we've very much established a really strong partnership role across health, the Department for Work and Pensions, the police, health boards and various services within the council. I think what we've done is very much give each of our areas of focus—we've got four themes, and each of those is led by a non-local-authority lead.
We are, in effect, as a local authority, providing programme-management support and research support, looking across the piece and joining bits of the jigsaw together. But, what we've done is very much left it with each of those leads from other bodies to give us a different perspective of what they are doing and how they work, and how we can all work together better. We've found that we're coming up with so many more ideas around community recovery than we would have done just through the PSB as it was, because we are all concentrating on the same end, i.e. community recovery. I think it's brought a lot of enthusiasm and real, heartfelt concern about how we want to not just return to what we were but make it better and improve, and that's really come out strongly.
So, how has that collaborative approach with your adjacent local authority area enabled you to deploy resources more effectively to meet the needs of your communities?
I think the main rationale I'd put around that is that a lot of the people who sit on those boards are the same people. So, they'd sit on a Flintshire board, they'd sit on a Wrexham board and they'd sit on a Conwy, Denbighshire and Anglesey board, and they were just getting—. So, fire and rescue, police et cetera—they are regional bodies, especially Natural Resources Wales. They're going to all of these different boards, saying the same thing, so we thought, 'Let's bring it together'. That's certainly been a strong positive that we've had fed back from the other public bodies and the voluntary sector as well, which we've involved very strongly in the work.
Okay, so, how strongly do you think that message is getting across to other local authorities that have chosen to just have a single unitary approach in their local authority? Dr Turner, do you see the merits of having combined PSBs?
I think it varies from area to area. So, for example, I worked in Anglesey until two years ago, and I know you've taken evidence this morning from Annwen Morgen. Of course, there's been a long-standing joint PSB there between Anglesey and Gwynedd, and I can certainly see the value of that between Flintshire and Wrexham—they're so close, geographically, they're both urban areas, they've got a lot in common. But when it comes to Powys, we have 13 neighbours—the counties along our borders—and two of those are in England, and are therefore working under different legislation. We certainly work collaboratively with most of those. So, for example, we work with Hereford on things to do with planning and with the River Wye in particular. We do work with Shropshire on certain things as well, for example in terms of the road network. We work with Wrexham as well, in terms of certain things to do with the countryside and the area of natural beauty that we share. We work very closely with Ceredigion, in terms of not just the mid Wales growth deal, but other elements as well. But, of course, we just need to bear in mind, there's a mountain range between us—we're not 10 minutes away as it is between Flint and Wrexham. Ystradgynlais then—their natural partners are Neath Port Talbot County Borough Council. Crickhowell—neighbouring authorities there are very different. So, the size of Powys means that we've got to look outwards. If we were required to work with one neighbour only, that would constrain us. The one thing we do value at the moment is that we have the freedom and the flexibility to work with multiple neighbouring local authorities, depending on what the circumstances are, depending on what the issues are that we jointly need to address in different areas.
And to both of you: to what extent do you think your budget arrangements affect your ability to implement the Act effectively?
I'm sure this has been mentioned before—annual budgets do not help with long-term planning, do they? You're always on that annual cycle, and although there's relative stability, year to year, we are extremely hampered by short-term grant regimes that come out at the very last minute. We've almost got to have a whole portfolio of projects, potentially waiting to go, in case some money comes up with which we can undertake those.
The other issue is that sometimes projects that are grant funded are then—. Where does the budget come from in order to ensure that that is a longer term and regular part of the services that we deliver? Quite often things have just started, do some really good work, money runs out, stop. And it's down to the local authority to try and put that funding in place, if they see the value for the communities, which then detracts from funding in other areas.
Clearly, if we're going to prioritise one thing, we're going to have to de-prioritise another thing—that is the challenge for all of us, isn't it?
Dr Turner, do you want to add to what Karen Armstrong said?
I agree with everything that Karen has just said there. That's our experience as well. But, of course, the other thing to bear in mind in terms of Powys and many of the rural local authorities—we had a positive settlement for our RSG for this financial year, and we're expecting to have the same for next year. So, that is so welcome for us, given the current context. But we need to remember that, over the previous 10 years, we had cuts in our revenue budgets year on year, and that has meant that our revenue budget is now in the region of about £275 million for next year. We've had to cut £100 million from our budget, and therefore our services, in the previous 10 years. So, when you're then thinking about how you're going to implement new legislation, unless that legislation comes with money behind it, as, for example, the social services and well-being Act has brought in additional money in terms of the integrated care fund and other transformation money, it means then you've got something to focus on and there's money to develop something. It's very difficult. At a time when we've had 10 years of budget cuts, we've had to change the way we provide services, but there was so much we've had to cut year on year. We're now at a place where our budgets are beginning to stabilise, and it enables us to plan longer term. But it's quite difficult, on the one hand—and it has been in previous years—to plan for the long term when you're also firefighting constantly in terms of choosing some very difficult decisions on what services to stop running, and it hardly gives you time, then, to think about, 'So, what services do we want to deliver differently?' So, funding certainly makes a big difference, but it's very difficult when you've got constant budget cuts.
Sorry, Caroline, to interrupt, but I think, Emma, did you want to add to that?
Sorry, Nick, I didn't hear what you said.
Sorry. I just saw Emma—. Emma was—
Oh, okay. Thank you.
Thanks. I agree with both my colleagues, but I also need to demonstrate, particularly from a Powys partnership perspective. The public services board and the regional partnership board have worked extremely closely on two of the steps that are within our longer term plan and have successfully put forward and drawn down grant moneys from Welsh Government to support a programme of work around providing services back in county and new models of care for integrated health and social care. What that means is, whilst we've got the initial funding, to look at something innovative and creative that will make a difference to people locally, what we then have to do is look at our revenue budgets longer term and how that will then change to support and sustain the implementation of that innovation. And so, it's picking up on Karen's point about the annual budget. It becomes quite a challenge, because there's a significant amount of public money being invested in the creative element with uncertainty about the longer term sustainability, and also that transition, because you almost run things in parallel. So, sometimes you need to fund things almost twice for a period of time to transition across to the new way of doing things. But we have been very fortunate to access the funding from Welsh Government's transformation fund, through that joint working and collaboration between the two partnerships, and that has seen the involvement of not just the local authority and health board but the third sector being a major player in that also.
I would never want any of us to underestimate the challenges ahead, both financially and in terms of public health and everything else, but I wondered if I could just put to you the idea that, actually, change never happens in times of plenty because you certainly haven't got the drivers; but transformation occurs because we have to do things differently, because we have fewer resources to do it. I wonder if you'd just finally comment on that.
I think there's a lot of truth in that, and this is why I mentioned earlier on that COVID has forced us, really, to work in very different ways, deliver services in very different ways. And I think the challenge for all of us now is how, out of a very bad year that we've had in terms of public health and the economy, how do we capture some of the things that we've been doing differently, whether it's working from home, delivering services and trying to maintain services by using digital and click and collect, providing services in a very different way. How do we capture those and build them into the future? The same for the health system as well. Virtual GP appointments would have taken years to introduce, but we've all got used to that over the past 10 months. How do we capture that now so that we can bank those benefits, in particular financial benefits and benefits to the environment long term, so that we don't revert to the old ways of doing things that are more costly and more damaging to the environment? So, the challenge for all of us, I think, is to reflect on how we're currently living our lives and working. How can we maintain that long term but bearing in mind the need for human contact, as well, and some face-to-face contact once the pandemic is in a better place? But if we all go back to the way everything was being done before, then we will lose lots of the benefits that we've gained. But I would agree with what you said there, Jenny, in terms of sometimes needing a crisis to force change, and certainly the changes we've seen have happened much, much quicker than had we planned them over a number of years.
I saw you nodding, Karen. Is there anything you want to add to that?
Yes, thank you. I totally agree that—. Certainly, budget reductions—drastic budget reductions—and then COVID on top of that, have been major, major drivers in terms of how we do look at things differently and deliver services in a different way. One of the examples we've got is that we had a very old, dilapidated asset and service provision in terms of our day centres for older people, and what we've done is done a really innovative rebuild of that area, and we've also gone into partnership with a third sector body, called HFT, to actually deliver the services and provide so much more than we could ever have done. So, it's basically a commissioning-type role, but because of their experience in ensuring that people with learning difficulties have got the opportunities to grow, expand, find work et cetera, it's far, far improved and really widened the service offer for those people.
Thank you. Thank you, Nick.
Thanks, Jenny. Vikki Howells.
Thank you, Chair. I've got some practical questions about how you've engaged with the
future generations commissioner's office. So, could you just talk us through how you've found that contact to be and how effective you have perceived it?
I heard Annwen Morgan's evidence earlier about the way the commissioner had worked with Anglesey council in terms of plans for Wylfa Newydd. I worked in Anglesey at the time, and I would agree with Annwen that the links that were created then and the support given was invaluable, but I think that was because of a particular, very large strategic project in one part of Wales. The experience in Powys is different; we haven't got the same types of examples that have needed that focus on a particular development. And so I think there have been fewer direct contacts with the commissioner's office. Preparing for this as well has certainly made me think maybe we need to be more proactive with the commissioner's office, maybe we need to invite the commissioner over to attend some of our meetings, whether they're PSB or council meetings. I think of the way we deal with other regulators, for example. I know the commissioner isn't a regulator in the same way, but we have designated officers that work with us in terms of education, social services, Audit Wales as well. And we get to know the people, they get to know us, and they're able to come on the improvement journey with us. And I don't think we've quite got to that level with the commissioner's office, and I think that is something where there's responsibility on both sides. I don't know whether the commissioner's office has the resources to do that, to be honest with you. But the experience of two local authorities is quite different because the circumstances have differed. But it is Emma's team that deal with the commissioner's office on a more regular basis in terms of looking at the guidance, looking at the new tools that come out, and then we prepare our annual report as well. So, maybe Emma would have more to report than I would in terms of the nature of the support we've had so far, and how that could be improved.
Yes, if I can come in there, now, Vikki, as well, I certainly agree about a sort of relationship manager-type position who could work with us, and, as Dr Turner stated there, about actually understanding what we're doing and how we're doing things and provide practical and research support. We don't have the finances to do research, we don't have the capacity, and I feel sometimes that there's a lot of expectation that we do have that. We make the best of the guidance that the future generations commissioner provides, but there's an awful lot of it. There are pages and pages of recommendations, and trying to get your head around all of those is sometimes just too much, and I think if things were streamlined, prioritised and agreed and worked with us—with us as public bodies—about what the priorities are and how we can all work together towards those similar priorities, we'd have far more impact than we do at the moment.
Emma, was there anything you wanted to add from your experience?
Yes, I agree with both. Certainly, on the reams of recommendations that we received from the commissioner in the current context, that was a challenge in itself to understand across a complex organisation in a very dynamic situation. We have had little interaction with the commissioner's office themselves from a Powys perspective. However, we have utilised the frameworks that have been made available to us, and we've actually tried to incorporate those frameworks and any good practice examples into our ordinary corporate improvement plan, and so we take forward things like the journey checker year on year, so we can see if we're making progress. We've taken the seven corporate approaches, we identify which goals our objectives are meeting, and we also make sure that we weave in the sustainable principles. We've also got all of that within our impact assessments as well.
But I agree with Caroline—I think, with the resource that the commissioner has, maybe we could have greater support or network arrangements with our public services board, and maybe specific themes that we can focus on, tailored to our own longer term plan that would assist us, and also maybe draw examples, picking up on what Karen was saying around the research that's available to us to help us on certain areas of our plans, and the delivery of those, which is the most important component.
Thank you, all. So, my next question is what barriers you think the commissioner and her office face as they look to discharge their responsibilities under the Act.
I'm not sure what the commissioner's resources are. I don't know what her budget is. It's not something I've looked at in detail, but, certainly, as Karen, Emma and I have all said, having more regular direct engagement with us would be helpful. I don't know whether there's resource to do that, but, of course, working in the way we are now, working remotely from home, certainly, the barrier of travel isn't there anymore, and so it might be easier in future for the commissioner to maybe designate some officers to work with certain regions, or certain types of local authorities.
That would remove one of the barriers, I think, because when we receive reports from the auditor general or from some of the other inspectorates, we know that they're on the way—we've worked with them on the content, we've been interviewed, we've had meetings with them, they've been observing our work. We don't have that to the same extent with the commissioner. So, the commissioner's work is a bit more distanced from us, and the perception then is, when the reports arrive, the first reaction is, 'Great, but how are we going to deal with this?' There is so much in there, and often they come with very little advance notice, and there hasn't been meaningful engagement maybe in advance. There may have been some workshops with some of the officers specifically working on PSB work for us. For a lot of us, when they arrive, you think, 'Oh, okay, this is a really chunky document that we've now got to digest.' That's why we've hard-wired so much of the requirements of the Act into our processes. So, the processes are there, and we can demonstrate clearly in everything we do that we do take the Act into consideration. We consider the well-being goals, the ways of working, we do use the simple-changes documents, the journey checker—there are so many things that we do use, but it is Emma and the team beavering away in the centre that put those in the documents. Whether, then, all of the services and the managers are aware of where they came from and what the requirement is, I'm not so sure. At the higher level, the more senior level, they would be, but when it comes to the service managers and the team managers, they'd certainly be familiar with the terminology and the requirements, but I'm not sure that they would know where the requirements came from originally. And I think having that more of a contact with the commissioner's office, with the commissioner and her staff, would make that type of thing more meaningful, so we would be on the journey with them, rather than looking at the website and receiving links to documents. The documents are really good, but it's difficult to digest them when you haven't been involved in the development work with them.
Okay. I'm mindful, everyone, that we've only got about 20 minutes left, and we've still got quite a few questions for Members to get through. So, Vikki, are you okay if I move things on at this point?
Yes, that's fine.
Okay, thanks for that. So, I ask if Members could be succinct, then, and witnesses as well. Delyth Jewell.
Diolch, Cadeirydd. Rôn i eisiau gofyn i chi am rôl Llywodraeth Cymru. Ydych chi'n meddwl, o ran eich gwaith chi gyda'r Llywodraeth, fod y ffordd maen nhw'n gweithio o ran polisïau a phenderfyniadau yn cyd-fynd â gofynion y Ddeddf yma, plis?
Thank you, Chair. I wanted to ask you about the role of the Welsh Government. Do you think that, in terms of your work with the Government, the way in which they work in terms of policies and decisions is aligned with the requirements of this Act?
Dwi ddim yn ymwybodol o lawer sydd ddim yn cyd-fynd efo'r Ddeddf. Mae'r rhan fwyaf o'r hyn maen nhw'n ei wneud yn sicr yn mynd i'r un cyfeiriad. Dwi ddim mor siŵr os ydy hynny'n fwriadol ai peidio, a dwi ddim yn gwybod i ba raddau mae'r comisiynydd a'i staff wedi bod yn rhan o'r datblygu, boed e'n ddeddfwriaeth neu'n bolisïau neu gynlluniau. Does yna ddim llawer dwi wedi dod ar ei draws sydd yn mynd yn erbyn. Mae yna un enghraifft dwi'n ymwybodol ohoni hi roedden ni'n teimlo ym Mhowys oedd yn mynd yn groes i ofynion y Ddeddf, a hynny oedd y datblygiad yn y maes glo yn Nant Helen. Dŷn ni wedi bod yn cydweithio fel partneriaeth ers blynyddoedd i ddarparu cynlluniau arloesol o ran defnydd y safle yna, pan fydd y glo yn dod i ben. Ond mi fuodd yna benderfyniad ryw chwe mis yn ôl wnaeth wneud i ni feddwl dydy penderfyniad y Llywodraeth ar hwn ddim yn gyson efo medddwl am ofynion y dyfodol, darparu safle tymor hir a chreu cyflogaeth yn lleol. Felly roedd hwnna'n un disconnect dwi wedi dod ar ei draws o, ond dŷn ni wedi goresgyn hynny erbyn hyn. Ond dwi yn meddwl efallai fod yna mwy o le i joinio i fyny pethau yn fwy o ran deddfwriaeth Llywodraeth Cymru efo gofynion y Ddeddf a chyngor y comisiynydd. Efallai un peth y dylen ni fod yn gweld mwy ohono fo ydy'r comisiynydd yn rhoi cyngor i Lywodraeth Cymru yn fwy clir, fel bod yr alignment yn gliriach nag y mae o wedi bod, efallai, yn y blynyddoedd diwethaf yma.
I'm not aware of a lot that isn't aligned with the Act. The majority of what they do certainly travels in the same direction. I'm not sure whether that's intentional or not, and I don't know to what extent the commissioner and her staff have been part of the development, whether it's legislation or policies or plans. There's not much that I've come across that goes against that. There is one example that I'm aware of where we in Powys felt that it contravened the requirements of the Act, and that was the development in Nant Helen coal mine. We've been working in partnership for years to provide innovative plans in terms of the use of that site when the coal comes to an end, but there was a decision about six months ago that made us think that the Welsh Government's decision on this wasn't consistent with the needs of the future, providing a long-term site and creating local employment. So, that was one disconnect that I've come across, but we've overcome that by now. But I do think that perhaps there is scope for further joining up of Welsh Government legislation with the requirements of this Act and the advice of the commissioner. Maybe one thing that we should see more of is the commissioner providing advice to the Welsh Government more clearly, so that the alignment is clearer than it's been, perhaps, in previous years.