|(Via BBC Newyddion, please google translate for story in English)|
Part two of Carmarthenshire council's AGM has been put back a week from the 25th May until the 1st June. With a two week adjournment, the next leg will determine who will strike lucky and get the various chairs and executive board posts. There doesn't seem to be an explanation for the delay so I assume that there are problems and I suspect it is the 'Independent Group' who have yet to be satisfied with what's on offer.
By the time the next ordinary meeting of the council meets, on June 13th, it will have been over three months since the last one held at the beginning of March. Agreed there has been an election, and time must be allowed for training of new councillors in the art of Carmarthenshire democracy but the consequence for the residents of carmarthenshire is that we are fed more spin than usual (if that's possible).
The council website has informed us that Costa coffee may be opening a shop in the new Llanelli Eastgate development and the Llanelli Star has a whole front page devoted to the 'long awatied for' report into how many millions the Parc Y Scarlet's stadium is pumping into Llanelli, £117m by 2015 apparently. The figures should be treated with extreme caution as this report was commissioned by the club and the council (I feel it was probably a brainwave of the latter) in a public relations move to deflect criticism over the council's financial commitment to the venture, given the club's recent audit report which questioned the future financial viability of the Scarlets;
"These conditions...[£2m in debt]...indicate the existence of a material uncertainty which may cast significant doubt about the company's ability to continue as a going concern"
The article, oddly, says it was the club who commissioned the report, yet an earlier article states it was both the club and Carmarthenshire council. No one wants to see the club in difficulties and of course we wish the team success - but that is beside the point, it is the use of public money which is under question and how much more will be needed in the future, particularly as severe cuts to children's services etc begin to bite. This is not about a minority group 'harming the club or the council' as the Chief Executive of the Council states but genuine concern over a local government 'folly' - if you are in any doubt, Cneifiwr has recently analysed the figures for us.
The stadium was completed four years ago and has failed to bring in such promised wealth to Llanelli so far. It can be accessed fairly directly from the M4 and if visitors can negotiate the dreadful road layout and actually find somewhere to park they are unlikely to linger long after the event; if they do decide to do a bit of shopping before heading home they are not going to venture into Llanelli itself but shop in the various multi national retailers surrounding the stadium (courtesy again of the council management), those retailers will then conveniently take their money straight back over the Severn Bridge probably before the visitors get there themselves.
The report appears to be nothing more than an expensive PR project prompted by the Council to silence critics; the Club itself has plenty of support and doesn't need to justify it's existence.