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Powys County Council committee structure shake up, and councillors agree

A SENIOR Powys councillor has called for town and community councillors to be put back on to Powys Public Service Board (PSB).

At a Powys County Council meeting on Thursday, March 2 as part of a committee structure shake up, councillors agreed that only county councillors should be members of the Powys Public Service Board scrutiny committee.

This brought up an incident from earlier this week.

Just before the PSB were due to meet on Monday, February 27, two town and community councillors were told they are no longer board members and are not allowed to attend meetings

Ystradfellte community councillor, Hugh Pattrick is the One Voice Wales (OVW) representative for Brecon and Radnorshire, and Trefeglwys community councillor Derrick Pugh is the Montgomeryshire OVW representative.

They understood that a membership review was taking place – but expected the item to be discussed at the meeting – with them allowed to have their say on proposals.

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Planning committee chairman, Cllr Karl Lewis said: “I always thought that One Voice Wales were part of the PSB.”

Director or corporate services, Emma Palmer said: “There’s a set membership in terms of the legislation for statutory partners and then invited attendees.”

Ms Palmer explained that the membership had been looked at recently and it had been decided to “revert back” to only have those organisations that are legally expected to attend board meetings.

Ms Palmer said: “OVW were part of the wider invitees beyond the legislation.
“We are in line with the legislation.”

Cllr Lewis said: “Who decided to remove OVW.

“They provide a really important role linking in to town and community councils and we need to hear those voices.”

Ms Palmer said: “There had been a PSB workshop where there was discussion around the statutory invitees.

“Then a letter was sent from the chair or the PSB (Powys council leader Cllr James Gibson-Watt) to inform them we were reverting back to the statutory membership.”

Cllr Lewis said: “I’m very disappointed to hear that.

“I would recommend that OVW is put back on the list, they provides a very important role.

“I’d like to see them back on there.”

Town and community councillors were invited to become board members in 2019.

PSBs have been set up in Wales under the 2015 Well Being of Future Generations Act.

The legally required partners for the PSB in Powys are:

• Powys County Council.
• Powys Teaching Health Board.
• Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service.
• Natural Resources Wales.

Invited participants are:

• Dyfed Powys Police.
• Office of the Dyfed Powys Police and Crime Commissioner.
• National Probation Service.
• Powys Association of Voluntary Association.
• Brecon Beacons National Park Authority.