THIS WEEK Mr. Ceirian Jones, Rhiwonnen Farm, Abermeurig, Lampeter appeared before the Magistrates Court at Aberystwyth charged with obstructing Animal Health Officers, an animal welfare offence and animal by-products related offences.
He pleaded guilty to three charges of failing to dispose of a total of 31 sheep carcasses found in varying states of decay, located in different locations on the farm property between February 12-23, 2018.
Mr. Jones also pleaded guilty to obstructing Animal Health Officers in the execution of their duties on February 12, 2018, when carcasses were removed before they could be examined by Officers. A further charge under the Animal Welfare Act 2006 for failing to ensure the needs of an animal were met was also admitted.
The Magistrates fined Mr Jones £150 for each of five offences admitted and ordered him to pay the full legal costs of Ceredigion County Council.
Councillor Gareth Lloyd, Ceredigion County Council’s Cabinet Member with responsibility for Finance and Public Protection services said that he was grateful to the Council’s Animal Health Officers and solicitors who acted diligently and professionally in bringing this case to court.
He said: “Gathering and presenting the evidence to enable a successful prosecution is never an easy task and it is to their credit that the law has been applied and upheld. I would also wish to thank members of the public and the wider farming community who report such incidents, as well as staff from partner organisations that assist our staff when required.
“I am deeply disappointed that the high animal welfare standards that are practiced by the vast majority of Ceredigion farmers are not always followed by a very small number of individuals.”
Council tax reduction supports people on low incomes
A COUNCIL Tax Reduction Scheme is in place to help people who are on a low income. The council administers the scheme on behalf of the Welsh Government for people who are liable to pay Council Tax and who live in Ceredigion. With the recent decision to raise Council Tax by 7%, residents on low incomes are being urged to find out if they are entitled to some help towards paying their Council Tax.
People can be eligible for the reduction if they are on a low income, working or unemployed, cannot work because of illness, retired or are caring for someone. The amount of the reduction depends on a person’s circumstances and how much Council Tax they need to pay.
Councillor Gareth Lloyd is the Cabinet member responsible for Financial Services. He said, “We made the difficult decision to raise Council Tax by 7% to reduce the amount of cuts we have to make to council services. The reality is that the council is getting less money from the Welsh Government at a time when costs and demand for services are rising.”
“We want to urge anyone who is on a low income to consider if they are eligible for Council Tax Reduction. Tax increases can add pressure onto people’s budgets, and although this increase is vital to keep quality services in Ceredigion, we want to make sure that anyone who is eligible for help gets it.”
For more information on eligibility and how to claim council tax reduction, email email@example.com or call 01970 633 252.
7% council tax increase to protect education funding
THE COUNCIL TAX in Ceredigion for 2019-2020 will increase by 7%. The increase was agreed by councillors to reduce the impact of cuts to the Council’s budget and, in particular, to protect education spending. The decision was made in a Council meeting on 21 February 2019.
2% of the 7% increase will be used to protect education spending. Schools budgets have been under severe stress after years of needing to make savings. Costs have increased yet again following the agreement of new teachers’ salary increases together with increased pension contributions. This extra 2% uplift will enable school budgets to be kept flat.
The council tax rate increase is set by three key components, the County Council’s tax, the precept of Town and Community Councils and the Police precept. Increases set by the Police and Town and Community Councils result in a combined increase of 7.56%.
Councillor Ellen ap Leader of the Council, said, “We had no option but to ask Council to increase Council Tax by 7% in order to reduce the impact of the cuts we have had to make across council budgets. A successful Ceredigion in the future needs well-funded and well run schools. We want to invest in the future of our children and our county.”
“The reality is that the council is getting less money from the Welsh Government at a time when costs and demand for services are rising. The uplift of teachers’ salaries and pensions has not been fully funded by Welsh Government to date. If council tax had not increased, we would have to make deeper cuts.”
In 2018-2019, the average Council Tax Band D property was £1,226.48. The increase means that the same property will pay £1,312.33 in 2019-2020. The council’s budget has been cut by £39m or 25% in the last seven years. The Council will still need to save another £6m in the coming financial year.
Information management policies updated to improve security
THREE key information management policies have been updated by Ceredigion County Council. The policies were updated because of new laws and the need make sure that they are effective in a changing technological environment.
The updated policies were approved by the council’s Cabinet in a meeting on 19 February 2019.
The three policies that have been reviewed are:
· Data Protection/GDPR Policy
· Information Security Policy
· Information and Records Management Policy
The Deputy Leader of Ceredigion County Council and Cabinet member responsible for Governance, Councillor Ray Quant MBE said, “The council needs to keep information and data to carry out the many service we provide. Because of this we have to make sure we’re up to date on data and information protections laws. This decision means that we have approved the hard work done to update the policies and make sure that they are fit for use.”
The policies are essential to manage digital and paper records of the council.
Popular This Week
News1 week ago
‘Horrendous suffering’ at local farm where 58 cows were found dead
News2 weeks ago
Police searching for two men who assaulted officer
News2 weeks ago
Cardigan: Armed police and helicopter in search of fugitive following assault on police
News2 weeks ago
CCTV appeal: Do you recognise this woman?
News5 days ago
Synod Inn Update: Second Man Charged
News2 weeks ago
Ceredigion: Manhunt continues for assault on police suspect
News1 week ago
24-year-old arrested by Sussex Police following Synod Inn assault
News6 days ago
Barclays closure set to leave Aberaeron as a ‘no bank town’