FEARS have been raised that Powys County Council’s (PCC) work on the Mid-Wales Growth Deal could have a negative effect on key services.

Questions were asked at PCC’s full council meeting on Thursday, October 10, on whether the £200 million mentioned in the Corporate Improvement Plan document, should be removed .

While many in Powys and Cerdigion are delighted that the Mid-Wales Growth Deal has been boosted by a £55 million injection of funding, spread over 15 years, many are disappointed.

At the PCC full council meeting on Thursday, October 10, Cllr Jackie Charlton (Liberal Democrat – Llangattock) asked for more clarity.

Cllr Charton pointed out that in the actual Corporate Improvement Plan document PCC were using the figure £200 million for the growth deal.

Cllr Charlton, said: “How does this match up with the £55 million we received this week?

“You could be raising people’s expectations if you leave the £200 million in there (the CIC report).

“I think it needs to be clarified – this is supposed to be matched by the private sector, Powys has a very small private sector, small to medium sized industries. I’m not sure how it’s going to match up.”

Council leader, Cllr Rosemarie Harris (Independent – Llangynidr), answered: “We have certainly spoken about £200 million and as far as I’m concerned we’re still talking about it.

“I was interviewed about the £55 million announcement and I said that this is just the start of the funding.

“If it were to remain at £55 million, we would hope for the same from the Welsh Government and match funding would take it up to £200 million.

“Our private sector are very much up for working with us on this.

“There will be other pots of funding that we will be able to access in the future.

“There are some very good offers being discussed in the background that are coming from the private sector.”

Cllr Harris continued: “I’m comfortable that we will get the funding and the secretary of state (UK Government Welsh Secretary Alun Cairns MP), said you can accept this as a down payment.

“So we are hopeful there will be more money, I’m very positive.”

Cllr Charlton added: “What worries me, is that much of of that sounds like infrastructure funding which is central government, what I’m fearful is that local government have statutory duties.

“We struggle every single year to have money for social care, education and highways and I’m fearful that those areas will lose out.”