19 December 2000

Alison Halford:

What actions are to be taken to co-ordinate policy in North Wales to ensure the success of the "Communities First" proposals.(OAQ8595)

The First Minister:

The Assembly’s proposals for implementing Communities First are set out in the consultation paper launched on 6 December by the Minister for Finance, Local Government and Communities. One of the issues raised in the paper is how areas are to be selected for inclusion in the programme. We are seeking views on how this can be undertaken and how we can ensure that we target the communities in most need throughout the whole of Wales, including north Wales. Once the programme is set up and local action plans have been agreed, we and the community partnerships will be monitoring the programme and measuring progress. We will be ensuring that the Communities First programme links closely with other major programmes, including those from Europe so that our primary objectives are achieved. The Assembly has the overview of all these programmes and will be able to co-ordinate them effectively, regardless of whether a community is based in north, south or mid Wales.

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