Minister labels bus services “vital” as Council cuts subsidy | Gweinidog yn labelu gwasanaethau bws yn “hanfodol” gyda cymhorthdal yn cael ei dorri gan Gyngor

A Welsh Government Minister has labelled bus services as “absolutely vital” after a council’s Cabinet chose to cut its support for local bus services.

Ken Skates, Welsh Government’s Transport Minister, was responding to South Wales West AM Suzy Davies when he told her that “bus services for many people in this country are absolutely vital.”

He went on to urge councils to “be very careful when they consider what services to remove.”

Mr Skates was speaking in the Assembly after Mrs Davies, the Welsh Conservative AM for South Wales West which includes Bridgend and Porthcawl, raised the decision by Bridgend County Borough Council’s cabinet to cut all remaining subsidies for local bus services.

Mrs Davies said “Back in 2016 the Minister urged councils to make every effort to protect the funding for bus services.

“Welsh Government offered support to all bus companies in Wales through both Business Wales and Finance Wales, so I asked the Minister whether bus operators, and the council, actually knew about this offer for help.  I also asked whether companies took it up the offer and whether they were encouraged by the BCBC to get that help.

The Transport Minister told Mrs Davies that Welsh Government held “a series of bus summits and local authorities from across Wales have been invited and encouraged to attend.”

However he stopped short of saying whether anyone from Bridgend County Borough Council made use of this help.

The Transport Minister did however go on to announce an additional £2.5 million for a review of bus networks in Wales and that Transport for Wales “has been commissioned to lead on this work and will look to target areas in south west Wales.”

Mrs Davies commented “following BCBC’s Cabinet deciding to cut bus subsidies, despite the decision being called in for further consideration by unhappy councillors, I hope this announcement from Welsh Government of extra money is not too late.

“It was not clear from the Minister whether Bridgend will benefit from any of this money to help review local bus networks.

“I have therefore written to the Economy and Transport Minister asking him to confirm which areas in South Wales West will get some of this £2.5 million and, if Bridgend is included, how much the council will be getting to help improve the bus network.”

 

Mae Gweinidog Llywodraeth Cymru wedi labelu bod gwasanaethau bws yn “gwbl hanfodol” ar ôl i Gabinet cyngor ddewis torri ei gefnogaeth i wasanaethau bws lleol.

Roedd Ken Skates, Gweinidog Trafnidiaeth Llywodraeth Cymru, yn ymateb i Suzy Davies AC Gorllewin De Cymru pan ddywedodd wrthi fod “gwasanaethau bws i lawer o bobl yn y wlad hon yn gwbl hanfodol.”

Aeth ymlaen i annog cynghorau i “fod yn ofalus iawn wrth ystyried pa wasanaethau i'w tynnu.”

Roedd Mr Skates yn siarad yn y Cynulliad ar ôl i Mrs Davies, AC Ceidwadwyr Cymreig Gorllewin De Cymru sy'n cynnwys Pen-y-bont ar Ogwr a Phorthcawl, godi'r penderfyniad gan gabinet Cyngor Bwrdeistref Sirol Pen-y-bont ar Ogwr i dorri'r holl gymorthdaliadau sy'n weddill ar gyfer gwasanaethau bws lleol.

Dywedodd Mrs Davies “Yn ôl yn 2016 anogodd y Gweinidog y cynghorau i wneud pob ymdrech i ddiogelu'r arian ar gyfer gwasanaethau bws.

“Cynigiodd Llywodraeth Cymru gefnogaeth i bob cwmni bws yng Nghymru drwy Busnes Cymru a Chyllid Cymru, felly gofynnais i'r Gweinidog a oedd gweithredwyr bysiau, a'r cyngor, yn gwybod am y cynnig hwn am help. Gofynnais hefyd a oedd cwmnïau'n codi'r cynnig ac a oedd CBS Pen-y-bont ar Ogwr yn eu hannog i gael y cymorth hwnnw.

Dywedodd y Gweinidog Trafnidiaeth wrth Mrs Davies fod Llywodraeth Cymru wedi cynnal “gwahoddiad ac anogaeth i gyfres o uwchgynadleddau bws ac awdurdodau lleol ledled Cymru.”

Fodd bynnag, fe stopiodd yn fyr â dweud a oedd unrhyw un o Gyngor Bwrdeistref Sirol Pen-y-bont ar Ogwr yn defnyddio'r cymorth hwn.

Fodd bynnag, aeth y Gweinidog Trafnidiaeth ymlaen i gyhoeddi £2.5 miliwn ychwanegol ar gyfer adolygiad o rwydweithiau bysiau yng Nghymru a bod Transport for Wales “wedi'i gomisiynu i arwain ar y gwaith hwn a bydd yn ceisio targedu ardaloedd yn ne-orllewin Cymru.”

Dywedodd Mrs Davies “ar ôl i Gabinet Cyngor Bwrdeistref Sirol Pen-y-bont ar Ogwr benderfynu torri cymorthdaliadau bysiau, er i'r penderfyniad gael ei alw i mewn i'w ystyried ymhellach gan gynghorwyr anhapus, rwy'n gobeithio nad yw'r cyhoeddiad hwn gan Lywodraeth Cymru o arian ychwanegol yn rhy hwyr.

“Nid oedd yn glir gan y Gweinidog a fydd Pen-y-bont ar Ogwr yn elwa o unrhyw un o'r arian hwn i helpu i adolygu rhwydweithiau bysiau lleol.

“Felly rwyf wedi ysgrifennu at y Gweinidog dros yr Economi a Thrafnidiaeth yn gofyn iddo gadarnhau pa ardaloedd yng Ngorllewin De Cymru fydd yn cael rhywfaint o'r £2.5 miliwn hwn ac, os caiff Pen-y-bont ar Ogwr ei gynnwys, faint fydd y cyngor yn ei gael i helpu i wella'r rhwydwaith bysiau.”