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Ceredigion gets biggest cut

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ceredigion2THE CASH allocated to Ceredigion Council for 2015-16 was announced on December 10, showing that the funding allocated to Ceredigion has decreased by 4.5%, and that Welsh Local Authorities as a whole have seen an average fall of 3.4%. The disappointing news, said the Council, was that Ceredigion is the county to receive the harshest cut of 4.5%, reducing the grant we receive to £99.256 million for 2015-16.

Having had to already find budget cuts of £9.5m during 2014-15, the funding reduction means that we have to find a further £10m savings for 2015-16, and work is well under-way to achieve this target. Ellen ap Gwynn, Leader of Ceredigion County Council told The Herald: “Last week’s announcement of the Final Settlements for 2015-16 by Leighton Andrews is unfavourable to Ceredigion. Drawing up a budget for 2015-16, and the subsequent years, is a very challenging process, and as a result we will have to make difficult decisions in order to balance the budget.”

She added: “The public engagement and consultation that took place over the last couple of months has given us guidance regarding the priorities of the people of Ceredigion. We will now need to look closely at all our services to see if they can be provided more cost effectively, if not, then hard decisions will have to be made to either cut or transfer to other bodies to provide on our behalf. The final decisions for proposals will be going to full Council in the New Year. We will try as best we can to keep services going for the benefit of Ceredigion citizens at this difficult time.”

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New Quay RNLI lifeboat crew trains with lifeguards

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NEW QUAY lifeboat station hosted a special training evening with the lifeboat crew and Ceredigion’s RNLI lifeguards last week.

Pete Yates, one of New Quay RNLI’s inshore lifeboat helms, worked closely with Ceredigion lifeguard supervisor, Tirion Dowsett, to plan scenarios for the teams to practice working together in casualty care situations.

A large scale scenario included four casualties to be dealt with by the inshore lifeboat crew and two lifeguard teams on a nearby beach, whilst a third lifeguard team and lifeboat crew members dealt with a separate scenario at the lifeboat station.

Pete said: “It was a great evening of training. We had 9 lifeguards and 13 lifeboat crew in attendance.

“The main scenario included casualties suffering from hypothermia and propeller injuries. A second scenario involved a mechanic suffering head injuries in the forepeak of the all-weather lifeboat and requiring extraction on a stretcher.

“On completion of these scenarios we all gathered back at the station where one of our senior crew members sprung a great act at being a diabetic having a hypo, and being suitably angry and aggressive.”

Roger Couch, New Quay RNLI’s Lifeboat Operations Manager, added: “It was great for our lifeboat crew members to work with the lifeguards as it builds a deeper understanding of each other’s roles and encourages teamwork between us. This is of great benefit when dealing with real life casualty care situations.”

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Coastguard rescues dog stuck on cliffs

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LAST TUESDAY (Aug 27), New Quay RNLI’s inshore D-class lifeboat, Audrey LJ, was tasked by Milford Haven Coastguard to assist the Coastguard with a dog stuck on the cliffs near New Quay.

The volunteer crew launched the inshore lifeboat at 1.50pm with four crew members on board and made their way south down the coast.

Brett Stones, New Quay RNLI’s helm said: “We located the dog on the cliffs by Castell Bach, near Cwmtydu. We stood by while the Coastguard team caught the animal. The dog was unharmed and safe with the Coastguard so we were stood down.

“However, while returning to station we were then tasked to a small vessel with engine failure. We towed the stricken boat with three people on board back to New Quay. We rehoused the inshore lifeboat and it was ready for service by 2.40pm.”

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New maintenance Lorries cut carbon emissions

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The Ground Maintenance Team has purchased three new lorries to support ground maintenance services in Ceredigion.

The new lorries will move Ceredigion County Council’s Ground Maintenance Service’s equipment to and from the grounds that they look after. The lorries will also take cut grass away for composting. This provides the most efficient way of maintaining the areas that the team is responsible for.

Councillor Dafydd Edwards is the Cabinet member responsible for Highways and Environmental Services together with Housing. He said: “The new vehicles replace ones which had provided excellent service for almost 20 years. They are fitted with Euro 6 engines which are considerably more efficient and better for the environment.”

The Grounds Maintenance Team is also incrementally introducing electric-powered mowers, blowers, hedge cutters and strimmers into its fleet. This equipment is better for the environment, is easier to use and causes less noise and vibration.

The new lorries support Ceredigion County Council’s commitment to be a net-zero carbon council by 2030.

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