The Compact, recommended in the Simpson Review of local government services, was signed by the Welsh Government and Welsh Local Government Association (WLGA) following the Partnership Council for Wales meeting in Cardiff.
The Compact sets out the terms of a new approach between the Welsh Government and local government aimed at increasing the pace of public service reform driven by strong collaborative leadership.
The purpose of the Compact is to deliver more effective, locally responsive services for the people of Wales against the background of these challenging financial times. It fully recognises the vital role that local Councillors undertake in driving improvement and bringing democratic accountability.
The Compact provides clarity on timelines that will enable accountability for delivering the necessary reforms. The Partnership Council will provide the collective political leadership in reviewing achievements and steering future ambitions.
Local Government Minister Carl Sargeant said:
“The harsh economic climate and increasing service demands have led to significant challenges in relation to performance. Collaboration is one of the key tools in dealing with these challenges.
“The financial challenges for the public sector are unlikely to ease in the next few years. Making these fundamental changes quickly is critically important to protecting and improving public services. This Compact is a visible symbol of the commitment of the Welsh Government and local government to work together in partnership to deliver for the people of Wales.”
Steve Thomas, WLGA Chief Executive said:
“The signing of the Compact at a national level by the WLGA represents a new era in central-local relations. By signing the agreement the WLGA provides a national endorsement of the Compact but it is essential that individual Councils also ratify the Compact to signal their commitment to this new approach at a local level. I expect that this will occur in the next few months.”