Do not renege on bypass

Plaid Cymru politicians for Carmarthen East and Dinefwr, Adam Price AM and Jonathan Edwards MP, have challenged the Labour Government to honour its pledge over the Llandeilo bypass.

Local Assembly Member, Adam Price, who led budget negotiations with Mark Drakeford, the Finance Minister at the time, to secure a £50million investment for a bypass around the town of Llandeilo.

Since that agreement was struck, the Labour Welsh Government subsequently applied their WelTAG guidance to assess transport options which has led to a series of delays and postponements.

The latest delay came in December 2019 when the Labour Welsh Government postponed a series of public meetings that were scheduled to take place in Llandeilo.

The public meetings were advertised to put forward further information following an appraisal of a short list of transport options in which the local community were consulted upon in April 2019.

It is understood that the latest meetings have been postponed following concerns raised by the Future Generations Commissioner and the charity Sustrans regarding the transport options that had been put forward.

Further, following written correspondence, Mr. Price has raised concern over the latest information provided by the Labour Welsh Government on the timetable for the project, with the Economy and Transport Minister stating that 'a project would potentially be ready for construction in 2022'.

Mr. Price has now requested an urgent meeting with the Minister.

Local Assembly Member and Leader of Plaid Cymru, Adam Price said:

"In 2016 I sat with the then Finance Minister and agreed a multi-million pound budget package between Plaid Cymru and the Welsh Government, including £50million specifically for Llandeilo bypass.

"That Finance Minister was Mark Drakeford – now the First Minister of Wales. To think that the holder of the highest elected office in our country could now be going back on our agreement would not only be a kick in the teeth to Carmarthenshire residents, but would amplify the already deep mistrust in politics and bring our entire democratic system into disrepute.

"Since our agreement I have also had a series of meetings with the Transport Minister to discuss and confirm progress of delivering the bypass. This is the same Transport Minister who told various media outlets in 2016 that he expected the road to be open in 2021.

"Labour Ministers have looked me in the eye to pledge the £50million investment and have made their promise on the public record. On no occasion have ministers suggested the bypass wouldn't be honoured, but that now appears to be a real risk.

"I am seeking an urgent meeting with the Welsh Government, but in doing so I send this message to the Labour ministerial offices in Cardiff Bay: "If you are going to retrospectively move the goalposts and ultimately renege on your promise to build a bypass, I pledge to the residents of Carmarthenshire I will do everything I can to kick Labour out of office and make Llandeilo bypass a non-negotiable investment in a Plaid Cymru government next year."

Member of Parliament, Jonathan Edwards added:

"When Adam secured the £50million I started to think we may actually begin to see investment outside of Cardiff and the south east where the Labour Welsh Government always like to prioritise. It goes to show, however, that you cannot trust a word that comes out of the mouth of any Labour Minister. Of that, Carmarthenshire residents can be in no doubt.

"Labour representatives, councillors, election candidates and Welsh Government Ministers, have been brazen enough to claim victory for the investment in the bypass, only for their own party to apply a retrospective change in policy which risks putting the final nail in the coffin of the bypass.

"It's very clear that the only way the Llandeilo bypass will be delivered and we can properly end the dangerous levels of pollution in the town is when Adam Price is elected as the First Minister of Wales next year, and we see the back of these dithering Labour ministers. Anyone wishing to help us achieve that is welcome to contact my office."


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