Pre Budget Consultation
The Committee held a pre-budget consultation, running from Wednesday 20 July to Wednesday 21 September, asking stakeholders for their opinions on the impact of the previous budget and expectations of the upcoming draft budget. The call for evidence also identified the nine key areas the Committee wished to focus on during scrutiny. These areas included sustainability of public services, preventative spending, the Welsh language and preparation to leave the EU.
The Chair of the Committee produced a video calling for evidence through Dialogue, an online conversation site, which could be used to inform all Committees in their scrutiny of the draft budget.
The Committee held its first ever external stakeholder event, on the Draft Budget, on 17 November 2016 in Theatr Soar, Merthyr Tydfil. This included representatives from a number of organisations across Wales.
All Members attended the stakeholder event, holding discussions for an hour before feeding back to the group about the key points raised at their table. This was held just before the final scrutiny session with the Cabinet Secretary for Finance and Local Government, meaning Members were fully informed going into the session and able to utilise points that had been made.
Draft Budget Debate
The Draft Budget debate was held on 6 December 2016. This consisted of opening remarks from the Cabinet Secretary for Finance and Local Government, a contribution from the Chair of the Finance Committee and then a debate between Members. The Cabinet Secretary then closed the debate responding to points made by Members. One amendment was tabled to the motion but it was not agreed. The motion was agreed - 27 Members voted in favour, 15 Members voted against and 10 Members abstained.
Finally, the Welsh Government must present the annual budget motion to the Assembly. The motion cannot be amended, so Assembly Members are limited to voting to support or oppose the final budget (or abstain from voting). This motion is scheduled for debate on 10 January 2017.