Tackle blight of empty homes call

Tomorrow, Welsh Conservatives will hold a debate on their Vision for Welsh Housing, including a commitment to tackle the blight of empty homes in Wales. The Welsh Government has underestimated the scale of the problem of empty homes in Wales, claiming there are 23,000, of which 5,000 will be brought back into use by 2016.

Tuition fee subsidy was unsustainable

Commenting on the announcement that Labour’s Education Minister is to launch a review of Higher Education funding, including the Welsh Government’s £3.6billion tuition fee subsidy to Welsh-domiciled students, Angela Burns AM, Shadow Education Minister, said:

Welsh Government’s toolbox stocked

Commenting on the UK Government’s announcement on the detail of its response to the first set of recommendations of the Silk Commission, Paul Davies AM, Shadow Minister for Finance, said:

"We welcome the UK Government’s announcements on the support for the implementation of almost all the Silk Commission’s 31 recommendations.

Business rates devolution backed

Commenting on the announcement from the UK Government that the Welsh Government is going to be given full power over non-domestic business rates raised in Wales, Nick Ramsay AM, Shadow Minister for Business, said:

NHS waiting times fiasco 'will only get worse'

Commenting on the publication of today’s NHS waiting times – which show the number of people waiting more than 36 weeks for their hospital appointment now stands at 11,672, when the Welsh Government’s target is for no-one to wait that long – Shadow Minister for Health Darren Millar AM said: “NHS waiting times in Wales passed crisis point weeks ago – yet still Carwyn Jones stands idly by as the elderly and vulnerable suffer most."

A Vision for Welsh Housing

Welsh Conservatives today published a series of proposals to rejuvenate the Welsh housing market by reforming the Right to Buy, tackling the blight of empty homes and introducing ambitious targets for house building.You can read the policy here.

A and E: Target missed again, as winter looms

Commenting on the publication of accident and emergency waiting time figures – which show that the Welsh Government’s target of 95 per cent of patients seen within four hours has been missed again (and has not been met since 2009) – Shadow Minister for Health Darren Millar AM said:   “As pressures build and demand increases, our NHS is beginning the winter way behind the starting blocks yet again."

Neonatal changes: 'North Wales deserves an end to uncertainty'

Commenting on the publication of recommendations for the future provision of neonatal services in north Wales – by the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health – Shadow Minister for Health Darren Millar AM said:   “Communities across north Wales deserve an end to their uncertainty and this report goes some way to achieving that."

Rising Blood Service imports: 'Further evidence of an NHS in chaos'

Commenting on figures obtained by ITV Wales – which show low blood stocks and rapidly rising costs associated with importing blood from outside the Welsh Blood Service area – Shadow Minister for Health, Darren Millar AM, said: “The Welsh Labour Government is ultimately responsible for the management of the NHS and that includes the Welsh Blood Service."