THE Plaid Cymru Group on Carmarthenshire County Council unanimously resolved to present two motions of no confidence in the authority’s leadership following a two-hour meeting last night.
The first is a motion of no confidence in Chief Executive, Mark James.
The second is a motion of no confidence in three members of the Council’s Executive Board – Leader, Kevin Madge, former Leader Meryl Gravell and Deputy Leader, Pam Palmer.
These three current members of the Executive Board were on the Board when it made decisions which have been branded unlawful by the Wales Audit Office.
Plaid are also calling for an immediate emergency meeting of the full council – ahead of both the budget-decision meeting scheduled for February 19 and the special meeting scheduled to consider the auditor's report on February 27 – and for Mr James to be suspended pending a full investigation.
He said that Plaid Cymru members took no joy in bringing forward the motions but the "highly-damaging" Wales Audit Office reports were serious enough to warrant such actions.
“The serious and damaging findings of the Wales Audit Office reports required swift action," he said. "It is not the job of councillors or the council’s leadership to challenge and undermine the integrity of the independent Audit Office – these reports should be accepted and their recommendations implemented.
“The group I lead is increasingly concerned by the attitude of the council leadership and called an urgent meeting of the council to discuss the reports’ findings.
“After an informed meeting, we have regrettably decided to present two motions of no confidence in both the Chief Executive and three members of the Executive Board.
"My members take no joy in bringing forward these motions, but the highly-damaging report findings are serious enough to warrant this action.
“We believe an extraordinary meeting of the council should be called immediately, and in advance of the budget-decision meeting scheduled for February 19. We have signed a request to the Council Chair and will be presenting that official request to him.
“In the meantime, and now considering the involvement of the police, I call on the Council Leader, Kevin Madge, to suspend the Chief Executive in order for a thorough investigation to take place into the findings of the Wales Audit Office reports.”