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MIXED VIEW OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT FROM GWYNEDD

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The chairman of the planning and economic development committee on Gwynedd CC, Dafydd Iwan, says he has mixed feeli...
The chairman of the planning and economic development committee on Gwynedd CC, Dafydd Iwan, says he has mixed feeling about the future of local government.

Writing in The Western Mail (4 May, p10), he says local government sometimes seems to be under attack both from within its own ranks and from outside.

He says: 'In Wales we have a system reeling from the reorganisation of the mid-1990s which creates as many problems as it solves, and which failed to tackle the real deficiences of local councils.

'One problem we have to address with haste,' he says 'is how more young people and more women can be persuaded to stand for local authorities, as the increase workload which has resulted from the last re-orgaganisation has tilted the balance in favour of older, or retired, better-off males.'

However, he says there are positive things happening in local government. He says in Gwynedd they have been evolving an economic strategy of reviving the local communities using a pronounced 'bottom-up' approach.

'Partnership is also a key word,' he says. Public, private and voluntary sectors have formed a common front to try and ensure that public money is well-spent according to the needs of the area.

'If we cannot always come up with the money, at least local authorities can act as brokers to bridge the divides and to promote closer working partnerships,' he says.

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