February 2013

28 February 2013

Pembrokeshire County Council Withdraws Mince Products Following Horsemeat Scandal

Pembrokeshire County Council has withdrawn all mince products from its menus following the discovery of horsemeat in a supplier product of Welsh Bros, a company from Newport. The Council is a member of the Welsh Purchasing Consortium (WPC) which enables local authorities to procure a range of goods and services in collaboration. Pembrokeshire council has also said it had also been made aware that frozen beef products supplied to Sodexho had also tested positive for horsemeat. It is understood that Sodexho has withdrawn all frozen beef products from its UK catering operations.

Mr Davies said, "I'm pleased that the Council has worked quickly to remove all mince products supplied by Welsh Bros from its menus. This development will undoubtedly cause concern for many people across Pembrokeshire and so I'm pleased that the Council has taken swift action by removing mince products from its menus. It's now essential that the Welsh Government also responds to this quickly and works closely with council officials and the FSA."

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21 February 2013

Consultancy Costs Must Provide Value For Taxpayers

Commenting on the publication of a report by the Wales Audit Office into the procurement and management of consultancy services, Paul Davies AM, Shadow Minister for Finance, said:

"It is right that public bodies should be able to outsource certain operations to make the best use of available expertise to help improve the delivery of services.

"However, unless there are robust measures in place to manage expenditure on consultancy services, costs can easily spiral and public bodies risk ending up writing blank cheques.

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14 February 2013

Paul Davies Launches High Street Policy in Pembrokeshire

Paul is pictured with Steve Hopkins and Andrew Humble.Preseli Pembrokeshire AM Paul Davies has met with local traders to discuss the Welsh Conservatives' high street regeneration policy, this week. Sadly, footfall in town centres has fallen by a fifth in the last five years, while the shop vacancy rate in Wales is 4% above the UK average. Wales also has one of the lowest enterprise birth rates of all the UK nations and regions.

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13 February 2013

Paul Davies Visits Milford Haven’s Super Surgery

Paul is pictured at the new Manchester Square Health Centre in Milford Haven.Preseli Pembrokeshire AM Paul Davies has recently visited Milford Haven's new health centre, located at Manchester Square. The new facility replaces the previous GP surgery buildings of Barlow House and Robert Street.

Mr Davies said, "I was delighted to visit the new health centre in Milford Haven. Milford Haven serves a large community, and as a consequence, it has increased health and social care demands. Therefore, the new facility at Manchester Square is very much welcomed and I'm pleased that the area finally has the health facilities that it needs. The new facility is impressive and includes two medical practices and a pharmacy."

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12 February 2013

External Government Legal Advice Tops £3m

Welsh Conservatives have criticised the amount of money spent by the Welsh Government on external legal advice, following the disclosure of costs by the Finance Minister.

According to information obtained by the North Wales Assembly Member Antoinette Sandbach, 3.1 million pounds was spent between the beginning of February 2011 and the end of October 2012.

External legal advice was procured by the government on 365 occasions during the course of those 21 months.

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11 February 2013

Call for Invest Wales Model of Access to Finance

The Institute for the Study of Civil Society today called for improved access to finance building on the German model of local community-based banks.

The call echoes policy proposals announced by the Welsh Conservatives last month.

The Party proposed to create six local banks operating under the Invest Wales banner, working in conjunction with existing retail banks.

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Paul Davies Urges Support for Local Butchers

Preseli Pembrokeshire AM Paul Davies is highlighting the value of buying fresh meat locally, in response to the news that the Food Standards Agency is ordering all retailers to carry out tests on processed meat. Mr Davies is urging the people of Pembrokeshire to take advantage of the range of produce available in the local area.

Mr Davies said, "There will undoubtedly be a number of concerns following the recent news about processed meat across the UK. However, this news also highlights the value of buying from a local butcher. In Pembrokeshire, we have a number of quality butchers, with wonderful produce, and we should take advantage of it. The quality of Welsh meat is exceptionally high and local and independent suppliers will often know the farm on which an animal was reared. Therefore, there is no better time to support your local butcher and the local agricultural industry. So I urge the people of Pembrokeshire to buy locally and support Pembrokeshire's butchers."

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07 February 2013

Paul Davies Makes an Exhibition of Himself for Lung Cancer!

Paul is pictured holding a lung x-ray image as part of an Assembly photographic exhibition to raise awareness of lung cancer.Preseli Pembrokeshire AM Paul Davies has recently appeared in a one off unique Assembly photographic exhibition to raise awareness of lung cancer, the most common cancer worldwide. The exhibition is a joint project between the Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation charity and the pharmaceutical company Boehringer Ingelheim Ltd. It shows photographs of AMs holding lung x-ray images, which are accompanied by statements explaining their involvement in the project.

Mr Davies said, "I was delighted to 'make an exhibition of myself' to help raise awareness of lung cancer in Wales. Sadly, cancer will touch us all at some point in our lives and so it's essential that everyone plays their part to support those who are fighting to improve survival rates. The common signs and symptoms of lung cancer include coughs and breathlessness and it is important that these signs are noted early on and an appointment with a GP is made. Lung Cancer can be successfully treated if it's picked up at an early stage, when treatments have the best chance of working."

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06 February 2013

Welsh Labour Government Backs Implementation Board

Preseli Pembrokeshire AM Paul Davies has expressed his shock and anger over the Welsh Government's decision to support Hywel Dda health board's establishment of an implementation board, to carry out their controversial reorganisation plans. The Welsh Labour Government is supporting this despite the fact that the reorganisation process itself has not yet come to an end.

Mr Davies said, "It is appalling that the Welsh Labour Government is supporting Hywel Dda's plans to establish an implementation board, whilst the process has not yet finished. I'm surprised that the Minister has taken this premature position, as the local community health council is still considering the health board's plans, which includes closing the special care baby unit at Withybush hospital. Should the CHC oppose the health board's proposals and refer the matter to the Health Minister, then she has made her intentions absolutely clear. Her support for the implementation board has shown how she wants to see health services develop in west Wales. It's a very sad day for the people of Pembrokeshire, who have campaigned long and hard for the protection of services at Withybush hospital. However, we will continue to fight against these changes and put pressure on the local health board and the Welsh Labour Government at every opportunity."

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AM Supports “First Aider on Every Street” Campaign

Paul signing in support of the “First Aider on Every Street” campaign.Preseli Pembrokeshire AM Paul Davies attended a taster session offered by St John Cymru - Wales to practice basic first aid skills, to pledge his support 'to have a first aider on every street in Wales'. The first aid charity showed Assembly Members what to do in an emergency and how, simple skills, by first aiders as young as 10 years–old, could save a life. They were also given the chance to find out more about the work of the charity in local communities across Wales.

The session also focused on the treatment of everyday accidents and conditions including bleeding, heart attacks and choking.

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