Y Cyfarfod Llawn

Plenary

08/05/2024

Yn y fersiwn ddwyieithog, mae’r golofn chwith yn cynnwys yr iaith a lefarwyd yn y cyfarfod. Mae’r golofn dde yn cynnwys cyfieithiad o’r areithiau hynny.

In the bilingual version, the left-hand column includes the language used during the meeting. The right-hand column includes a translation of those speeches.

Cyfarfu'r Senedd yn y Siambr a thrwy gynhadledd fideo am 13:30 gyda'r Llywydd (Elin Jones) yn y Gadair. 

The Senedd met in the Chamber and by video-conference at 13:30 with the Llywydd (Elin Jones) in the Chair.

1. Cwestiynau i Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet dros Lywodraeth Leol, Tai a Chynllunio
1. Questions to the Cabinet Secretary for Housing, Local Government and Planning

Croeso, bawb, i'r Cyfarfod Llawn, a chyn inni gychwyn, fe wnaf i groesawu plant ysgol Aberaeron i'r oriel gyhoeddus heddiw. Felly, croeso i chi, blant ysgol Aberaeron. A'r eitem gyntaf fydd y cwestiynau i Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet dros Lywodraeth Leol, Tai a Chynllunio, ac mae'r cwestiwn gyntaf gan Peredur Owen Griffiths.

Welcome to this afternoon's Plenary meeting, and before we begin, I will welcome the children of ysgol Aberaeron to the public gallery today. So, a warm welcome to you. And the first item will be questions to the Cabinet Secretary for Housing, Local Government and Planning, and the first question is from Peredur Owen Griffiths.

Diogelwch Tomenni Glo
Coal Tip Safety

1. Beth yw cynllun y Llywodraeth ar gyfer gwneud tomenni glo categori C a D yn ddiogel yn Nwyrain De Cymru? OQ61055

1. What is the Government's plan for making category C and D coal tips safe in South Wales East? OQ61055

Member
Julie James 13:30:30
Cabinet Secretary for Housing, Local Government and Planning

Thank you. The Welsh Government has made a significant investment in the safety of coal tips, introducing a regular inspection and monitoring regime and by making £44.4 million available for maintenance since 2022. We will modernise our legislation through the new disused tips Bill, due to be introduced to the Senedd in the autumn.

Diolch. Mae Llywodraeth Cymru wedi buddsoddi'n sylweddol yn niogelwch tomenni glo, gan gyflwyno trefn arolygu a monitro reolaidd a thrwy ddarparu £44.4 miliwn ar gyfer gwaith cynnal a chadw ers 2022. Byddwn yn moderneiddio ein deddfwriaeth drwy’r Bil tomenni nas defnyddir newydd, sydd i’w gyflwyno i'r Senedd yn yr hydref.

Diolch yn fawr am yr ateb yna.

Thank you very much for that response.

Coal tip safety is a massive issue in my region due to the heavy industrial heritage. It’s regrettable that the Westminster Government, both under Tory and Labour control, never made these areas safe for our communities when they had the chance. There is a proposal to extract coal from some of the tips at the former Bedwas colliery and to remediate them in the process. However, the category D tip that is closest to people’s homes—literally just outside the back garden of a long row of homes—is not being touched. This tip is apparently in private ownership. Cabinet Secretary, do you agree with me that land ownership should not be the primary concern when it comes to guaranteeing the safety of the people we represent? How is the Government working to overcome legal barriers for the sake of our former coal mining communities, and how is the Government assuring itself that any remedial work carried out in our communities is driven by safety and not profit?

Mae diogelwch tomenni glo yn broblem enfawr yn fy rhanbarth i oherwydd treftadaeth y diwydiannau trwm. Mae’n destun gofid na wnaeth Llywodraeth San Steffan, o dan reolaeth y Torïaid a Llafur, erioed mo'r ardaloedd hyn yn ddiogel i’n cymunedau pan gawsant gyfle i wneud hynny. Mae cynnig wedi'i wneud i gloddio am lo mewn rhai o'r tomenni yn hen lofa Bedwas a'u hadfer yn y broses. Fodd bynnag, nid yw'r domen categori D sydd agosaf at gartrefi pobl—yn llythrennol y tu allan i erddi cefn rhes hir o gartrefi—yn cael ei chyffwrdd. Mae'n debyg fod y domen hon mewn perchnogaeth breifat. Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, a ydych chi'n cytuno â mi nad perchnogaeth ar dir a ddylai fod y prif bryder o ran gwarantu diogelwch y bobl rydym yn eu cynrychioli? Sut mae’r Llywodraeth yn gweithio i oresgyn rhwystrau cyfreithiol er lles ein hen gymunedau glofaol, a sut mae’r Llywodraeth yn sicrhau mai diogelwch ac nid elw sy’n llywio unrhyw waith adfer a wneir yn ein cymunedau?

Yes, thank you very much. So, there’s a complex set of things to discuss there. So, the categorisation of the tips is done through the inspection regime. I can absolutely assure you categorically that it doesn’t make any difference who owns that tip. One of the things that the Bill that will be introduced to the Senedd this autumn and which I hope will pass—we’ll obviously go through the process and we’ll have some robust discussions, I’m sure—one of the things that that Bill is proposing to do is set up a supervisory authority for disused tips, not just coal tips, but all mineral tips—there are quite a few diverse tips in Wales—and that will be blind to the ownership of those tips. It will be a regime for disused tips.

There is a different regime for ongoing mining. One of the big things that we’ll have to do when we introduce the Bill is to make sure that the regimes marry up so that nobody—forgive the vague pun—slips through the cracks of them, and that the Mines and Quarries Act 1954, which governs the current mining operations, dovetails nicely with the disused operation. And at what point people swap between one or the other will be one of the things that the Bill deals with. So, we are very keen to make sure that it is ownership-blind and so on.

In terms of remediation, we have a very long way to go in terms of a remediation programme. Some tips, of course, have been remediated in Wales, but not many. We have had robust discussions with the UK Government about their contribution. We’ve asked them for £20 million to contribute to the inspection and maintenance regime at this point and to contribute to a study on what we would need to do in the future, and, unfortunately, they’ve refused to do that. I think it’s clearly a moral obligation by the UK Government to assist the devolved Government in Wales to help our people come to terms with their industrial heritage. There’s a rich cultural heritage of course, but it has a large number of other issues. And it’s about 40 per cent of the previous mining industry for the UK, whereas we’re 5 per cent of the population and 5 per cent of the budget. It seems to me there’s a clear moral imperative that the UK Government should assist us to come to terms with that heritage.

Ie, diolch yn fawr iawn. Felly, mae set gymhleth o bethau i’w trafod yma. Felly, caiff y gwaith o gategoreiddio tomenni ei wneud drwy'r drefn arolygu. Gallaf roi sicrwydd llwyr i chi nad yw’n gwneud unrhyw wahaniaeth pwy sy’n berchen ar y domen honno. Un o’r pethau y bydd y Bil a fydd yn cael ei gyflwyno i’r Senedd yr hydref hwn ac yn cael ei basio, gobeithio—byddwn yn mynd drwy'r broses a byddwn yn cael trafodaethau trylwyr, rwy'n siŵr—un o'r pethau y mae'r Bil hwnnw'n cynnig eu gwneud yw sefydlu awdurdod goruchwylio ar gyfer tomenni nas defnyddir, nid tomenni glo yn unig, ond pob tomen fwynau—mae cryn dipyn o domenni gwahanol yng Nghymru—ac fe fydd yn ddall i berchnogaeth ar y tomenni hynny. Bydd yn drefn ar gyfer tomenni nas defnyddir.

Mae trefn wahanol ar gyfer mwyngloddio parhaus. Un o'r pethau mawr y bydd yn rhaid i ni eu gwneud pan fyddwn yn cyflwyno'r Bil yw sicrhau bod y cyfundrefnau'n gyson fel nad oes unrhyw un—maddeuwch y mwyseirio gwan—yn llithro drwy'r bylchau rhyngddynt, a bod y Ddeddf Mwyngloddiau a Chwareli 1954, sy'n rheoli'r gweithrediadau mwyngloddio presennol, yn cydblethu'n dda â'r gwaith ar domenni nas defnyddir. A bydd y cwestiwn ynghylch ar ba bwynt y bydd pobl yn cyfnewid rhwng y naill neu'r llall yn un o'r pethau y bydd y Bil yn ymdrin â nhw. Felly, rydym yn awyddus iawn i sicrhau y bydd yn ddall i berchnogaeth ac ati.

O ran adfer, mae gennym ffordd bell iawn i fynd o ran rhaglen adfer. Mae rhai tomenni, wrth gwrs, wedi cael eu hadfer yng Nghymru, ond dim llawer. Rydym wedi cael trafodaethau cadarn gyda Llywodraeth y DU ynglŷn â'u cyfraniad. Rydym wedi gofyn iddynt gyfrannu £20 miliwn at y drefn arolygu a chynnal a chadw ar hyn o bryd ac i gyfrannu at astudiaeth o’r hyn y byddai angen i ni ei wneud yn y dyfodol, ac yn anffodus, maent wedi gwrthod gwneud hynny. Credaf ei bod yn amlwg yn rhwymedigaeth foesol ar Lywodraeth y DU i gynorthwyo’r Llywodraeth ddatganoledig yng Nghymru i helpu ein pobl i ddod i delerau â’u treftadaeth ddiwydiannol. Mae gennym dreftadaeth ddiwylliannol gyfoethog wrth gwrs, ond mae nifer fawr o faterion eraill ynghlwm wrth hyn. Ac mae oddeutu 40 y cant o’r diwydiant mwyngloddio blaenorol yn y DU, ond rydym yn 5 y cant o’r boblogaeth, ac rydym yn cael 5 y cant o’r gyllideb. Ymddengys i mi fod rheidrwydd moesol clir y dylai Llywodraeth y DU ein cynorthwyo i ddod i delerau â’r dreftadaeth honno.

Cabinet Secretary, I represent a lot of people who live near coal tips and, quite frankly, many of the communities do actually live in constant worry and fear. Ultimately, the Welsh Government is responsible for coal tip safety and has received, as you mentioned previously, millions of pounds to tackle this issue from the UK Conservative Government. And I feel that we need to see this Government going forward with legislation urgently to establish a new body that would then deliver remediation work of disused tips, opencast mines and other post-industrial sites. The Welsh Conservatives are ready to work with a new Government on this important piece of work and it did become apparent that just over £44 million has been made available for coal tip maintenance by the Welsh Government from 2022 to 2025, yet, as far as I'm aware, no plans have been announced for funding post 2025. I appreciate how you just responded to the Member for South Wales East, Peredur Owen Griffiths, but I just wanted to know, Cabinet Secretary, what happens when 2025 arrives and the funding ceases. Will a fresh package of measures be brought forward by this Welsh Government? Thank you.

Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, rwy'n cynrychioli llawer o bobl sy'n byw ger tomenni glo, ac a dweud y gwir, mae llawer o'r cymunedau'n byw mewn ofn a phryder parhaus. Yn y pen draw, Llywodraeth Cymru sy’n gyfrifol am ddiogelwch tomenni glo, ac mae wedi cael miliynau o bunnoedd, fel y dywedoch chi, gan Lywodraeth Geidwadol y DU i fynd i’r afael â’r mater hwn. Ac rwy’n teimlo bod angen inni weld y Llywodraeth hon yn bwrw ymlaen â deddfwriaeth ar fyrder i sefydlu corff newydd a fyddai wedyn yn cyflawni gwaith adfer ar domenni nas defnyddir, mwyngloddiau brig a safleoedd ôl-ddiwydiannol eraill. Mae’r Ceidwadwyr Cymreig yn barod i weithio gyda Llywodraeth newydd ar y gwaith pwysig hwn, a daeth yn amlwg fod ychydig dros £44 miliwn wedi’i ddarparu ar gyfer cynnal a chadw tomenni glo gan Lywodraeth Cymru rhwng 2022 a 2025, ond eto, hyd y gwn i, nid oes unrhyw gynlluniau wedi’u cyhoeddi ar gyfer cyllid ar ôl 2025. Rwy’n derbyn eich bod newydd ymateb i’r Aelod dros Ddwyrain De Cymru, Peredur Owen Griffiths, ond hoffwn wybod, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, beth sy’n digwydd pan fydd 2025 yn cyrraedd a’r cyllid yn dod i ben. A fydd pecyn newydd o fesurau'n cael ei gyflwyno gan Lywodraeth Cymru? Diolch.

Well, I think that's just a fundamental misunderstanding of how the Government does its budgets, frankly. We will be bringing forward the legislation in the autumn, as I have just said. The UK Government has not seen fit to contribute in any way to that, which is an outrage, in my view. I don't think that the communities that you represent, Natasha Asghar, should be feeling worry about the situation. We are the first country in the UK, the first Government in the UK, to have published the A, B and R category tip locations—we did that back in March. We'd already published the C and D tips. That's more information than anyone else would have anywhere else in the UK. Those tips are under an inspection and maintenance regime. They're not under remediation, because that would cost hundreds of millions of pounds, and, as I just explained in answering Peredur, we absolutely need the UK Government to step up to its moral obligation. There is no conceivable way that a Government for 5 per cent of the population of the UK should be dealing with 40 per cent of the industrial heritage.

Wel, credaf eich bod yn dangos camddealltwriaeth sylfaenol o sut mae’r Llywodraeth yn pennu ei chyllidebau, a dweud y gwir. Byddwn yn cyflwyno’r ddeddfwriaeth yn yr hydref, fel rwyf newydd ei ddweud. Nid yw Llywodraeth y DU yn bwriadu cyfrannu at hynny mewn unrhyw ffordd, sy’n warthus, yn fy marn i. Ni chredaf y dylai’r cymunedau rydych yn eu cynrychioli, Natasha Asghar, fod yn pryderu am y sefyllfa. Ni yw’r wlad gyntaf yn y DU, y Llywodraeth gyntaf yn y DU, i gyhoeddi lleoliadau tomenni categori A, B a R—gwnaethom hynny yn ôl ym mis Mawrth. Roeddem eisoes wedi cyhoeddi'r tomenni C a D. Mae hynny'n fwy o wybodaeth nag a fyddai gan unrhyw un arall yn unrhyw le arall yn y DU. Mae'r tomenni hynny o dan drefn archwilio a chynnal a chadw. Nid ydynt yn cael eu hadfer, gan y byddai hynny'n costio cannoedd o filiynau o bunnoedd, ac fel yr esboniais wrth ateb Peredur, mae gwir angen i Lywodraeth y DU gyflawni ei rhwymedigaeth foesol. Nid oes unrhyw ffordd ddichonadwy y dylai Llywodraeth ar gyfer 5 y cant o boblogaeth y DU fod yn ymdrin â 40 y cant o’r dreftadaeth ddiwydiannol.

13:35

I think that we should make an effort to reassure people in Bedwas that category D does not necessarily mean immediate risk, and that the tip is subject, because it's category D, to a very rigorous monthly inspection regime. That's all I'll say about Bedwas because I know that the Minister might have, in future, a mediating role in the planning process. But I'll ask more generally: we have to say that the opportunities for remediation come along rarely, and, when they do, we need to approach them, even if they come from the private sector, with an open mind, providing, and would she agree this is the case, they have to be subject to the same rigorous planning process as a public sector application would equally be?

Credaf y dylem wneud ymdrech i roi sicrwydd i bobl ym Medwas nad yw categori D o reidrwydd yn golygu risg uniongyrchol, a bod y domen yn destun, gan ei bod yn gategori D, trefn arolygu fisol drylwyr iawn. Dyna'r cyfan rwyf am ei ddweud ynglŷn â Bedwas, gan y gwn y gallai fod gan y Gweinidog, yn y dyfodol, rôl gyfryngu yn y broses gynllunio. Ond gofynnaf yn fwy cyffredinol: mae’n rhaid inni ddweud mai anaml y bydd cyfleoedd i adfer yn codi, a phan fyddant yn codi, mae angen i ni eu hystyried gyda meddwl agored, hyd yn oed os ydynt yn dod o’r sector preifat, ar yr amod, a tybed a fyddai'n cytuno, eu bod yn destun yr un broses gynllunio drwyadl ag y byddai cais gan y sector cyhoeddus?

Yes, absolutely. The planning system is blind to whether the application is from a public or private sector individual. I'm not going to comment on any individual planning application, but, in general, the planning system is blind to that, and we would of course expect any planning application that came forward to conform to all of the health and safety and longevity regimes that we expect, and also to conform with all of the policies of Government, as outlined in 'Future Wales' and 'Planning Policy Wales'. That is the same hurdle for everyone who brings forward a solution of that sort. We're also prepared to work with anyone who has a potential solution, but they would of course have to meet all of the requirements of the regime.

Byddwn, yn sicr. Mae'r system gynllunio yn ddall i p'un a yw'r cais gan unigolyn o'r sector cyhoeddus neu breifat. Nid wyf am wneud sylw ar unrhyw gais cynllunio unigol, ond yn gyffredinol, mae'r system gynllunio yn ddall i hynny, a byddem wrth gwrs yn disgwyl i unrhyw gais cynllunio a gyflwynir gydymffurfio â’r holl gyfundrefnau iechyd a diogelwch a hirhoedledd yr ydym yn eu disgwyl, a hefyd i gydymffurfio â holl bolisïau’r Llywodraeth, fel yr amlinellir yn 'Cymru’r Dyfodol' a 'Polisi Cynllunio Cymru'. Dyna'r un rhwystr i bawb sy’n cyflwyno ateb o’r fath. Rydym hefyd yn barod i weithio gydag unrhyw un sydd ag ateb posibl, ond wrth gwrs, byddai'n rhaid iddynt fodloni holl ofynion y gyfundrefn.

Can I congratulate the Cabinet Secretary on the very careful and detailed work she undertook in order to be able to release to residents of South Wales East the location of those category C and D coal tips? Can she confirm that the Secretary of State for Wales reneged on a commitment to be a joint signatory of the letter than informed local residents of the location of those tips? When does she expect to be in a position to publish the location of tips in categories A and B? And what is her assessment of the chances that the Secretary of State for Wales can be brought to discharge his responsibilities on that occasion?

A gaf i longyfarch Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet ar y gwaith gofalus a manwl iawn a wnaeth er mwyn gallu rhoi gwybod i drigolion Dwyrain De Cymru am leoliad y tomenni glo categori C a D hynny? A all gadarnhau bod Ysgrifennydd Gwladol Cymru wedi torri ei ymrwymiad i fod yn un o gyd-lofnodwyr y llythyr i roi gwybod i'r trigolion lleol am leoliad y tomenni hynny? Pryd mae'n disgwyl bod mewn sefyllfa i gyhoeddi lleoliad y tomenni yng nghategorïau A a B? A beth yw ei hasesiad o'r posibilrwydd y gellir sicrhau bod Ysgrifennydd Gwladol Cymru yn cyflawni ei gyfrifoldebau ar yr adeg honno?

Thank you very much, Mark Drakeford, for that. We worked very hard together on what was a very complex set of proposals. It was very important indeed, as I'm sure you remember, to be absolutely accurate in releasing that information. We went through a long process of verification of that, the accuracy of that information, because we wanted very much to ensure that communities got the right information and they had the right understanding of what that information meant, and what they should do about it, and I think that that process went very well in the end. The Secretary of State, very sadly, would not sign that letter. I have had a meeting with him subsequently. Most of the meeting was taken up with his understanding of how that happened and my understanding, which were entirely different. I had a string of e-mails with which I was able to evidence my understanding of how that happened. We have actually just released, just in March, the A, B and R category tip locations. That was done by the Welsh Government; it wasn't done in conjunction.

Diolch yn fawr, Mark Drakeford. Buom yn gweithio'n galed iawn gyda'n gilydd ar gyfres gymhleth iawn o gynigion. Roedd yn bwysig iawn inni fod yn gwbl fanwl gywir wrth ryddhau'r wybodaeth honno, fel y cofiwch rwy’n siŵr. Fe aethom drwy broses hir o wirio cywirdeb y wybodaeth honno, gan ein bod yn awyddus iawn i sicrhau bod cymunedau’n cael y wybodaeth gywir a bod ganddynt y ddealltwriaeth gywir o ystyr y wybodaeth honno, a’r hyn y dylent ei wneud yn ei chylch, a chredaf fod y broses honno wedi mynd yn dda iawn yn y pen draw. Yn anffodus, nid oedd yr Ysgrifennydd Gwladol yn fodlon llofnodi’r llythyr hwnnw. Rwyf wedi cael cyfarfod ag ef ers hynny. Roedd y rhan fwyaf o'r cyfarfod yn ymwneud â'i ddealltwriaeth ef o sut y digwyddodd hynny a fy nealltwriaeth innau, a oedd yn hollol wahanol. Roedd gennyf gyfres o e-byst y bu modd i mi eu defnyddio fel tystiolaeth o fy nealltwriaeth i o sut y digwyddodd hynny. Mewn gwirionedd, rydym newydd gyhoeddi lleoliadau'r tomenni categori A, B a R ym mis Mawrth. Gwnaed hynny gan Lywodraeth Cymru; ni chafodd ei wneud ar y cyd.

Adeiladu Tai
House Building

2. A wnaiff yr Ysgrifennydd Cabinet ddatganiad am adeiladu tai yng Nghanolbarth a Gorllewin Cymru? OQ61051

2. Will the Cabinet Secretary make a statement on house building in Mid and West Wales? OQ61051

Diolch, Cefin. We are committed to increasing housing supply, ensuring people have homes that meet their needs now and in the future. Our programme for government commits to delivering 20,000 additional homes for rent in the social sector. Support for market housing is also an important part of our housing toolkit.

Diolch, Cefin. Rydym wedi ymrwymo i gynyddu’r cyflenwad tai, gan sicrhau bod gan bobl gartrefi sy’n diwallu eu hanghenion nawr ac yn y dyfodol. Mae ein rhaglen lywodraethu yn ymrwymo i ddarparu 20,000 o gartrefi ychwanegol i’w rhentu yn y sector cymdeithasol. Mae cymorth ar gyfer tai'r farchnad agored hefyd yn rhan bwysig o'n pecyn cymorth tai.

Diolch yn fawr iawn. Mae'n ddiddorol eich bod chi'n sôn am adeiladu tai, achos dwi'n siŵr eich bod chi'n ymwybodol iawn fod nifer o ddatblygiadau tai yn nalgylchoedd afonydd megis Cleddau, Wysg, Teifi a Thywi wedi eu rhoi ar stop o ganlyniad i'r rheoliadau ffosffadau. Rŷn ni, wrth gwrs, i gyd yn cefnogi'r angen am afonydd glân, dilygredd, ond mae'n amlwg bod y rheoliadau hyn, a'r amwyster o'u hamgylch nhw, yn cael effaith fawr ar allu awdurdodau lleol, a Llywodraeth Cymru mewn gwirionedd, i wireddu nifer o gynlluniau pwysig, fel adeiladu tai fforddiadwy—roeddech chi'n sôn amdanyn nhw—a chynlluniau datblygu economaidd. Rwy'n ymwybodol bod nifer o gyfarfodydd wedi bod rhwng y Llywodraeth a rhanddeiliaid megis Cyfoeth Naturiol Cymru dros y blynyddoedd diwethaf i drafod y ffordd ymlaen, ond mae'r moratoriwm presennol yn parhau i fod yn rhwystredigaeth i gymaint o wahanol bobl. A gaf i ofyn, felly, am ddiweddariad ar y cynnydd sydd yn cael ei wneud ynglŷn â'r mater yma, er mwyn sicrhau cydbwysedd rhwng ein cyfrifoldebau amgylcheddol ni a'n huchelgais i ddatblygu yn yr ardaloedd hyn? A phryd gallwn ni ddisgwyl i'r moratoriwm ddod i ben?

Thank you very much. It's interesting that you mention house building, because I'm sure that you will be well aware that there are a number of housing developments in river catchment areas, such as Cleddau, Usk, Teifi and Towy that have been put on hold as a result of the phosphates regulations. We all, of course, support the need for clean, unpolluted rivers, but it's clear that these regulations, and the ambiguity surrounding them, are having a major impact on the ability of local authorities, and the Welsh Government, in truth, to deliver a number of important schemes, such as building affordable homes, which you've just mentioned, and economic development schemes. I'm aware that a number of meetings have been held between the Welsh Government and stakeholders such as Natural Resources Wales over the past few years to discuss the way forward, but the current moratorium continues to be a source of frustration for many different people. Could I, therefore, ask for an update on the progress being made on this issue, in order to ensure a balance between our environmental responsibilities and our ambition to develop in these areas? And when can we expect the moratorium to come to an end?

13:40

Thank you very much for that. That is, indeed, a very complex situation. In fact, we've been able to work right down to individual site level right across Wales, to understand the impact on each site of the phosphate levels in the surrounding area, and where the sewage from the new build housing might go, how it would be treated and so on, and what effect that would have on phosphate levels in the various rivers that we have in Wales. In some sites in Wales, we've been able to release the sites because we've come up with solutions that have enabled us to do so, but that's not the case everywhere. The previous First Minister put in place a summit process, as it's called, where we bring together all of the stakeholders who are people who contribute to phosphates in our society. It's very odd in Wales, because phosphates are actually pretty rare in most places in the world, but here we have an abundance. So, one of the things we'd very much like to do is figure out a way to turn it into a product rather than waste. So, that's part of what we're doing. 

But the previous First Minister was very clear with each sector that what they had to do was look to how they could put their own—forgive the pun—house in order, and not be pointing across the room and saying, 'Well, it's all to do with' whichever other stakeholder was in the room. That has been a very successful process. We have an action plan that we're taking forward. It has allowed us to already release some of the housing sites, not all of them. We continue to work with the better river management boards, and the river nutrient management boards, in a process that allows us to understand what the nutrient levels in each of the rivers are, what the precise problem in that river is. And it's a huge range. For most of the rivers, agricultural run-off is one of the worst problems. It's not the case everywhere, though. We have recently announced—. When I was in my previous role, I announced an end to the source-to-sea review of the Teifi, for example. The highest polluter level there is combined sewage outflows and water quality, but that's not the case everywhere, and it has necessitated a granular approach right down to a site-level basis.

So, I've asked my colleague Jack Sargeant to do a piece of work for me in the Government on land supply, to bring together a group of stakeholders across Wales, to build on the work that's already happening. We're currently in the process of exchanging information about how that might work, because we, as part of the co-operation agreement as well—. And I've worked with my colleague, Siân Gwenllian, on this on a number of occasions, on how to increase the housing supply, and the supply of land on which you can build housing has been part of that. We're also working with each of the planning authorities across Wales on their local development plans, asking them to renew their local housing management assessment—local housing market assessment, to get my acronyms right—and we have good coverage right across Wales of LDPs, which is very helpful, and we can then interrogate where the housing sites are allocated and what the issue on each site is, so that we can bring forward the housing in good order, and make sure that we build the homes that we need.

We do rely on the private sector to deliver some social homes, but we also build quite a few via our registered social landlords and our stock-holding councils. And it's very important to understand how the planning system is working alongside the phosphate and environmental quality system, because, as you rightly said, what we want is a balance. We don't want to build the houses at the expense of our environment; we want to make sure that we live in harmony with our environment and build the houses that we so badly need.

Diolch yn fawr iawn am hynny. Mae honno’n sefyllfa gymhleth iawn yn wir. Mewn gwirionedd, rydym wedi gallu gweithio hyd at lefel safleoedd unigol ledled Cymru i ddeall effaith lefelau ffosffad ar bob safle yn yr ardal gyfagos, ac i ble y gallai'r carthion o'r tai newydd sy'n cael eu hadeiladu fynd, sut y byddent yn cael eu trin ac yn y blaen, a pha effaith y byddai hynny’n ei chael ar lefelau ffosffad yn y gwahanol afonydd sydd gennym yng Nghymru. Mewn rhai safleoedd yng Nghymru, rydym wedi gallu rhyddhau'r safleoedd gan ein bod wedi dod o hyd i atebion sydd wedi ein galluogi i wneud hynny, ond nid yw hynny'n wir ym mhobman. Rhoddodd y cyn-Brif Weinidog broses uwchgynhadledd ar waith, fel y’i gelwir, lle down ynghyd â’r holl randdeiliaid sy’n bobl sy’n cyfrannu at ffosffadau yn ein cymdeithas. Mae'n rhyfedd iawn yng Nghymru, gan fod ffosffadau mewn gwirionedd yn eithaf prin yn y rhan fwyaf o leoedd yn y byd, ond yma, mae gennym lefelau uchel iawn. Felly, un o'r pethau yr hoffem yn fawr iawn eu gwneud yw darganfod ffordd i'w droi'n gynnyrch yn hytrach na gwastraff. Felly, mae hynny'n rhan o'r hyn a wnawn.

Ond dywedodd y cyn-Brif Weinidog yn glir iawn wrth bob sector mai’r hyn roedd yn rhaid iddynt ei wneud oedd edrych ar sut y gallent roi trefn ar eu tai eu hunain—maddeuwch y mwyseirio—a pheidio â phwyntio ar draws yr ystafell a dweud, 'Wel, mae hyn yn ymwneud â' pha randdeiliad bynnag arall a oedd yn yr ystafell. Mae honno wedi bod yn broses lwyddiannus iawn. Mae gennym gynllun gweithredu yr ydym yn bwrw ymlaen ag ef. Mae wedi caniatáu inni ryddhau rhai o’r safleoedd tai eisoes, nid pob un ohonynt. Rydym yn parhau i weithio gyda’r byrddau rheoli gwella ansawdd afonydd, a’r byrddau rheoli maethynnau afonydd, mewn proses sy’n caniatáu inni ddeall beth yw’r lefelau maethynnau ym mhob un o’r afonydd, beth yw’r union broblem yn yr afon honno. Ac mae'n ystod enfawr. Ar gyfer y rhan fwyaf o'r afonydd, dŵr ffo amaethyddol yw un o'r problemau gwaethaf. Nid yw hynny'n wir ym mhobman, serch hynny. Rydym wedi cyhoeddi yn ddiweddar—. Pan oeddwn yn fy rôl flaenorol, cyhoeddais ddiwedd ar yr adolygiad o'r tarddiad i'r môr o afon Teifi, er enghraifft. Y lefel llygredd uchaf yno yw gorlifoedd carthffosiaeth gyfun ac ansawdd dŵr, ond nid yw hynny’n wir ym mhobman, ac mae wedi golygu bod angen dull gweithredu manwl ar gyfer pob safle.

Felly, rwyf wedi gofyn i fy nghyd-Aelod Jack Sargeant wneud gwaith i mi yn y Llywodraeth ar gyflenwad tir, i ddod ynghyd â grŵp o randdeiliaid ledled Cymru, i adeiladu ar y gwaith sydd eisoes yn mynd rhagddo. Rydym yn y broses o gyfnewid gwybodaeth ynglŷn â sut y gallai hynny weithio, gan ein bod, fel rhan o'r cytundeb cydweithio hefyd—. Ac rwyf wedi gweithio gyda fy nghyd-Aelod Siân Gwenllian ar hyn sawl gwaith, ar sut i gynyddu’r cyflenwad tai, ac mae’r cyflenwad o dir y gallwch adeiladu tai arno wedi bod yn rhan o hynny. Rydym hefyd yn gweithio gyda phob un o'r awdurdodau cynllunio ledled Cymru ar eu cynlluniau datblygu lleol, gan ofyn iddynt adnewyddu eu hasesiadau o'r farchnad dai leol, ac mae gennym CDLlau ar gyfer pob rhan o Gymru, sy'n ddefnyddiol iawn, a gallwn gwestiynu felly ble mae'r safleoedd tai wedi'u dyrannu a beth yw'r broblem ar bob safle, fel y gallwn ddarparu'r tai mewn da bryd, a sicrhau ein bod yn adeiladu'r cartrefi sydd eu hangen arnom.

Rydym yn dibynnu ar y sector preifat i ddarparu rhai cartrefi cymdeithasol, ond rydym hefyd yn adeiladu cryn dipyn ohonynt drwy ein landlordiaid cymdeithasol cofrestredig a'n cynghorau sy’n dal stoc dai. Ac mae'n bwysig iawn deall sut mae'r system gynllunio yn gweithio ochr yn ochr â'r system ansawdd amgylcheddol a ffosffadau, oherwydd, fel y dywedoch chi'n gwbl briodol, yr hyn rydym yn dymuno'i weld yw cydbwysedd. Nid ydym am adeiladu'r tai ar draul ein hamgylchedd; rydym am sicrhau ein bod yn byw mewn cytgord â’n hamgylchedd ac yn adeiladu’r tai y mae eu hangen arnom yn daer.

Cabinet Secretary, I've been speaking to the industry and house builders recently, and one of the issues they highlight in terms of why we cannot build houses is the lack of available skills across Wales to actually get those homes developed. I know this doesn't sit within your portfolio directly, but it is a cross-Government issue, about getting more bricklayers, plumbers, carpenters into those trades so that we can build homes. So, I'd be interested to know, Cabinet Secretary, what work you are doing across Government to make sure that we have that workforce available in the future, so we can build the homes in Wales that people want and need.

Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, rwyf wedi bod yn siarad â’r diwydiant ac adeiladwyr tai yn ddiweddar, ac un o’r problemau y maent yn eu nodi o ran pam na allwn adeiladu tai yw’r diffyg sgiliau sydd ar gael ledled Cymru i ddatblygu’r cartrefi hynny. Gwn nad yw hyn yn rhan uniongyrchol o'ch portffolio, ond mae'n fater trawslywodraethol sy'n ymwneud â chael mwy o osodwyr brics, plymwyr, seiri yn y crefftau hynny fel y gallwn adeiladu cartrefi. Felly, hoffwn wybod, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, pa waith rydych chi'n ei wneud ar draws y Llywodraeth i sicrhau bod y gweithlu hwnnw ar gael i ni yn y dyfodol, fel y gallwn adeiladu'r cartrefi y mae pobl Cymru eu heisiau a'u hangen.

13:45

Yes, a very good question, and it's something we've been working on for quite some time. My colleague, Joyce Watson, has been working for a very long time in the construction sector, trying to make sure that we take advantage of a very diverse population, particularly getting more women into construction. So, that's something she's been championing for quite some time.

I've had this portfolio for quite some time, even though I've got a slightly different mix of portfolios, and we've worked right across the Welsh Government on the skills issue. We've also worked with the developers, to make sure that the model of employment that they have attracts people. And I'm pleased to say that some of the major housebuilders have really changed their model of employment recently. So, one of the things we saw, when I first started in the portfolio—it was about six-and-a-half years ago—is we saw quite a lot of self-employed people. So, you'd have apprentices who had no job to go to, there was no career route for them and so on. So, I've worked hard with the major housebuilders to understand the issue, and, actually, to make them see that they're actually creating their own problem to some extent. I can't say all of them have done this, but many of them have gone to a direct employment model, and that has really helped.

The last thing that has really helped is the growth of modern methods of construction, which is a way of producing housing in factories. And that means that a much more widely diverse workforce can do that, because it's at ground level, it's indoors and so on, and it's only with the last piece, when it goes up on site, that you're out in all weathers and so on. We've been able to diversify the workforce. The cross-party group has done a lot of work on this as well, and that has worked across Wales. But really what we need to do is make sure that our youngsters have an industry that they want to go into, that has the right kind of remuneration and career path for them. It's no good enjoining people that what they should do is go into very poor self-employment with inadequate career opportunities. So, it is about the way we work with the industry, as well as the skills sector in Wales. 

Ie, cwestiwn da iawn, ac mae’n rhywbeth rydym wedi bod yn gweithio arno ers peth amser. Mae fy nghyd-Aelod, Joyce Watson, wedi bod yn gweithio ers amser maith yn y sector adeiladu, yn ceisio sicrhau ein bod yn manteisio ar boblogaeth amrywiol iawn, yn enwedig annog mwy o fenywod i faes adeiladu. Felly, rhywbeth y mae wedi bod yn ei hyrwyddo ers peth amser.

Rwyf wedi bod yn gyfrifol am y portffolio hwn ers peth amser, er bod gennyf gymysgedd ychydig yn wahanol o bortffolios, ac rydym wedi gweithio ar draws Llywodraeth Cymru ar fater sgiliau. Rydym hefyd wedi gweithio gyda'r datblygwyr i sicrhau bod y model cyflogaeth sydd ganddynt yn denu pobl. Ac rwy'n falch o ddweud bod rhai o'r prif adeiladwyr tai wedi newid eu model cyflogaeth yn ddiweddar. Felly, un o'r pethau a welsom, pan ddechreuais yn y portffolio gyntaf—oddeutu chwe blynedd a hanner yn ôl—oedd cryn dipyn o bobl hunangyflogedig. Felly, byddai gennych brentisiaid heb unrhyw swyddi i fynd iddynt, dim llwybrau gyrfa ar eu cyfer ac ati. Felly, rwyf wedi gweithio'n galed gyda'r prif adeiladwyr tai i ddeall y broblem, ac i wneud iddynt weld eu bod yn creu eu problem eu hunain i ryw raddau. Ni allaf ddweud bod pob un ohonynt wedi gwneud hyn, ond mae llawer ohonynt wedi newid i fodel cyflogaeth uniongyrchol, ac mae hynny wedi helpu'n fawr.

Y peth olaf sydd wedi helpu'n fawr yw twf dulliau adeiladu modern, sy’n ffordd o gynhyrchu tai mewn ffatrïoedd. A golyga hynny y gall gweithlu llawer mwy amrywiol wneud hynny, gan ei fod ar lefel y ddaear, mae o dan do ac ati, a dim ond gyda'r darn olaf, pan fydd yr adeilad yn cael ei godi ar y safle, y byddwch chi allan ym mhob tywydd ac yn y blaen. Rydym wedi gallu sicrhau amrywiaeth yn y gweithlu. Mae’r grŵp trawsbleidiol wedi gwneud llawer o waith ar hyn hefyd, ac mae hynny wedi gweithio ledled Cymru. Ond yr hyn y mae gwir angen i ni ei wneud yw sicrhau bod gan ein pobl ifanc ddiwydiant y maent am fynd iddo, sydd â chyflogau a llwybr gyrfa addas ar eu cyfer. Nid oes diben ceisio darbwyllo pobl mai'r hyn y dylent ei wneud yw mynd i hunangyflogaeth wael iawn gyda chyfleoedd gyrfa annigonol. Felly, mae'n ymwneud â’r ffordd y gweithiwn gyda’r diwydiant, yn ogystal â’r sector sgiliau yng Nghymru.

Good afternoon, Cabinet Secretary. It's good to hear about the group that's going to be led by Jack Sargeant. Hopefully, that would include people from all parts of Wales and cross-party, because I think there is a lot of concern around the use of land and how we can develop that. So, I look forward to more details on that. I do thank Cefin for raising the issue.

One issue I wanted to focus in on was homelessness—they're all interconnected—and particularly rural homelessness, which can sometimes be an invisible issue, one that isn't really included, and manifests itself, given the challenges in our rural areas. Within Powys, for example, 59 out of every 10,000 households were unintentionally homeless last year, which is a rise of 49 per cent on the previous year. And they are all interconnected with the lack of affordable housing. Just touching base on the homelessness White Paper as well, it doesn't mention rural homelessness at all; it just really explores the issues around homelessness. But it is a very unique issue. So, I just wondered what consideration you'd given to address the specific challenges of rural homelessness, as part of your broad homelessness strategy. Diolch yn fawr iawn. 

Prynhawn da, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet. Mae’n dda clywed am y grŵp sy’n mynd i gael ei arwain gan Jack Sargeant. Bydd yn cynnwys pobl o bob rhan o Gymru ac yn drawsbleidiol, gobeithio, gan y credaf fod llawer o bryder ynghylch y defnydd o dir a sut y gallwn ddatblygu hynny. Felly, edrychaf ymlaen at ragor o fanylion am hynny. Diolch i Cefin am godi’r mater.

Un mater roeddwn am ganolbwyntio arno oedd digartrefedd—maent oll yn gysylltiedig—ac yn enwedig digartrefedd gwledig, a all fod yn fater anweledig weithiau, un nad yw fel arfer yn cael ei gynnwys, ac sy'n dod yn fwy amlwg, o ystyried yr heriau yn ein hardaloedd gwledig. Ym Mhowys, er enghraifft, roedd 59 o bob 10,000 o aelwydydd yn ddigartref yn anfwriadol y llynedd, sy’n gynnydd o 49 y cant ar y flwyddyn flaenorol. Ac mae pob un ohonynt yn gysylltiedig â diffyg tai fforddiadwy. Gan gyfeirio at y Papur Gwyn ar ddigartrefedd hefyd, nid yw’n sôn o gwbl am ddigartrefedd gwledig, dim ond archwilio'r materion sy'n ymwneud â digartrefedd. Ond mae'n fater unigryw iawn. Felly, tybed pa ystyriaeth a roddwyd gennych i fynd i'r afael â heriau penodol digartrefedd gwledig, fel rhan o'ch strategaeth ddigartrefedd gyffredinol. Diolch yn fawr iawn.

Yes, thank you. And you're right, of course, different communities throw up different challenges in terms of finding a secure, safe home for everyone, and it is very important to find the right home. It's not just about four walls and a roof. That's why I was very pleased to be able to increase the housing support grant, because a lot of the work that the housing support workers do is actually keeping people in their homes in the first place. The new homelessness legislation we will introduce is very much looking at how we can make sure that people stay in sustainable housing and don't fall out for various reasons, including the recent cost-of-living crisis, which has caused—. It drives family break-up and other things that cause homelessness.

We also have real issues in some parts of Wales around unsustainable communities and unsustainable mixes of second homes, holiday homes, whatever. And what we all want to see is a sustainable community with a good mix of tenures right across it. We want the tourists to come, but they want to come to a vibrant village where the shop and pub are open. That only happens if you have sustainable local communities in them. So, we're running a number of pilots on that.

We have people called rural housing enablers working on that project and others. We sponsor those in the various authorities across Wales with rurality, which is most of them, actually, and we look specifically at issues around things that drive some rural homelessness or insecure housing in rural areas, which are two sides of the same coin. We're also looking very hard at how we can bring more empty homes back into use. I'm pushing very hard our local authorities to sign up to Leasing Scheme Wales. We do have some local authorities, and Powys is one of them, I'm afraid, who've signed up and not actually done any, so we'd quite like to—. I will be visiting them all and making sure I understand what the issues there are, because it's very important that we avail ourselves of every tool, so that we can get the housing that we need.

But, in the end, you're right, it's about supply, isn't it? It's about finding the land, so making sure the local development plans have the right housing allocations, that that land is available, that it's developable, that we are able to do that in a way that doesn't destroy our environment at the same time, and that we get those houses up. So, I'm working very hard with the local authorities across Wales to understand what the barriers are. The piece of work that Jack will be doing is about land supply and what those barriers are for us, and we will be working right down to site level in the local authorities to understand what is the issue on this site: it's earmarked for—I don't know; name a number—30 houses, where are they, what's happening? You do have to get down to that level of granularity. 

And then the last thing I would mention is that we are looking very hard to bring premises above shops, for example, back into use. I saw an excellent example of that in Newport where the regeneration of the town centre that's been done through the part of my portfolio that has town-centre regeneration in it has brought all of the properties above shops into use. And of course that in itself brings footfall to the shops, and so you get a much more vibrant town centre or city centre off the back of that. There are many places in rural Wales where that kind of development would really help a small town have that kind of footfall. So, there are a number of levers that we're using to do just that.

Ie, diolch. Ac rydych chi'n llygad eich lle, wrth gwrs, mae cymunedau gwahanol yn wynebu heriau gwahanol o ran dod o hyd i gartref saff a diogel i bawb, ac mae'n bwysig iawn dod o hyd i'r cartref iawn. Mae'n ymwneud â mwy na phedair wal a tho yn unig. Dyna pam fy mod yn falch iawn o allu cynyddu’r grant cymorth tai, gan fod llawer o’r gwaith y mae’r gweithwyr cymorth tai yn ei wneud yn ymwneud â chadw pobl yn eu cartrefi yn y lle cyntaf. Mae’r ddeddfwriaeth ddigartrefedd newydd y byddwn yn ei chyflwyno yn edrych i raddau helaeth ar sut y gallwn sicrhau bod pobl yn aros mewn tai cynaliadwy ac nad ydynt yn eu colli am wahanol resymau, gan gynnwys yr argyfwng costau byw diweddar, sydd wedi achosi—. Mae'n peri i deuluoedd chwalu a phethau eraill sy'n achosi digartrefedd.

Hefyd, mae gennym broblemau gwirioneddol mewn rhai rhannau o Gymru yn ymwneud â chymunedau anghynaliadwy a chymysgedd anghynaliadwy o ail gartrefi, tai haf, beth bynnag. A'r hyn y mae pob un ohonom yn dymuno'i weld yw cymuned gynaliadwy gyda chymysgedd da o ddeiliadaethau. Rydym am i’r twristiaid ddod, ond maent yn dymuno dod i bentref bywiog lle mae’r siop a’r dafarn ar agor. Dim ond os oes gennych gymunedau lleol cynaliadwy y bydd hynny’n digwydd. Felly, rydym yn cyflawni nifer o gynlluniau peilot ar hynny.

Mae gennym bobl a elwir yn swyddogion galluogi tai gwledig yn gweithio ar y prosiect hwnnw ac eraill. Rydym yn eu noddi yn y gwahanol awdurdodau ledled Cymru lle mae ardaloedd gwledig, sef y rhan fwyaf ohonynt mewn gwirionedd, ac rydym yn edrych yn benodol ar faterion yn ymwneud â phethau sy’n achosi digartrefedd gwledig neu ansicrwydd tai mewn ardaloedd gwledig, sy'n ddwy ochr i'r un geiniog. Rydym hefyd yn edrych yn agos iawn ar sut y gallwn ddod â mwy o gartrefi gwag yn ôl i ddefnydd. Rwy'n pwyso'n galed iawn ar ein hawdurdodau lleol i ymuno â Chynllun Lesio Cymru. Mae gennym rai awdurdodau lleol, ac mae Powys yn un ohonynt, mae arnaf ofn, sydd wedi ymrwymo i'r cynllun a heb wneud dim, felly hoffem—. Byddaf yn ymweld â phob un ohonynt ac yn sicrhau fy mod yn deall beth yw'r problemau, gan ei bod yn bwysig iawn ein bod yn manteisio ar bob arf, fel y gallwn gael y tai sydd eu hangen arnom.

Ond yn y pen draw, rydych yn llygad eich lle, mae hyn yn ymwneud â chyflenwad, onid yw? Mae'n ymwneud â dod o hyd i'r tir, felly sicrhau bod gan y cynlluniau datblygu lleol ddyraniadau tai cywir, fod y tir hwnnw ar gael, y gellir ei ddatblygu, y gallwn wneud hynny mewn ffordd nad yw'n dinistrio ein hamgylchedd ar yr un pryd, a'n bod yn codi'r tai hynny. Felly, rwy’n gweithio’n galed iawn gyda’r awdurdodau lleol ledled Cymru i ddeall beth yw’r rhwystrau. Mae'r gwaith y bydd Jack yn ei wneud yn ymwneud â chyflenwad tir a beth yw'r rhwystrau i ni, a byddwn yn gweithio hyd at lefel safle yn yr awdurdodau lleol i ddeall beth yw'r broblem ar y safle hwn: mae wedi'i glustnodi ar gyfer—nid wyf yn gwybod; rhowch rif—30 o dai, ble maent, beth sy'n digwydd? Mae'n rhaid ichi weithio ar y lefel honno o fanylder.

Ac yna'r peth olaf yr hoffwn ei grybwyll yw ein bod yn edrych yn agos iawn ar ddod ag adeiladau uwchben siopau, er enghraifft, yn ôl i ddefnydd. Gwelais enghraifft wych o hynny yng Nghasnewydd, lle mae'r gwaith o adfywio canol y dref a wnaed drwy’r rhan o fy mhortffolio sy'n cynnwys adfywio canol trefi wedi dod â’r holl eiddo uwchben siopau yn ôl i ddefnydd. Ac wrth gwrs, mae hynny ynddo'i hun yn dod ag ymwelwyr i'r siopau, ac felly, mae canol y dref neu'r ddinas yn llawer mwy bywiog yn sgil hynny. Mae llawer o leoedd yng nghefn gwlad Cymru lle byddai’r math hwnnw o ddatblygiad yn helpu tref fechan i gael mwy o ymwelwyr. Felly, rydym yn defnyddio nifer o ysgogiadau i wneud hynny.

13:50
Cwestiynau Heb Rybudd gan Lefarwyr y Pleidiau
Questions Without Notice from Party Spokespeople

Cwestiynau nawr gan lefarwyr y pleidiau. Llefarydd y Ceidwadwyr, Mark Isherwood.

Questions now from the party spokespeople. The Conservatives' spokesperson, Mark Isherwood.

Diolch, Llywydd. The Renting Homes (Wales) Act 2016 was the biggest change to Wales's private rented sector in decades. The explanatory memorandum for the Welsh Government's subsequent Renting Homes (Amendment) (Wales) Bill stated that:

The private rented sector...plays an important part in meeting the housing needs of the people of Wales'

and that

'the Welsh Government wishes to ensure there is the right balance of support and regulation'

in the private rented sector. In this context, the 'Renting Homes (Wales) Act 2016 evaluation: Phase 1 report' was published last week. There were 676 responses to the survey of landlords and managing agents, of which 539 were fully completed, and 479 cited a negative impact to the changes for landlords. One question respondents to the evaluation were asked was:

'What negative impacts will the changes under the Act have on you as a landlord/managing agent?'

Forty-four per cent of all the respondents who cited a negative impact to the survey said the Act was forcing landlords to sell and leave the sector. 

As I stated during the legislative process of the Renting Homes (Amendment) (Wales) Bill, this is what ARLA Propertymark, the professional regulatory body for letting agents, and the National Residential Landlords Association both warned would happen. So, given your words in 2020 that you wish to strike the right balance of support and regulation, what action, if any, will you now take to reopen the legislation to ensure the Act stops driving good landlords from the private rented sector?

Diolch, Lywydd. Deddf Rhentu Cartrefi (Cymru) 2016 oedd y newid mwyaf i sector rhentu preifat Cymru ers degawdau. Roedd y memorandwm esboniadol ar gyfer Bil Rhentu Cartrefi (Diwygio) (Cymru) dilynol Llywodraeth Cymru yn nodi:

'Mae'r sector rhentu preifat yn chwarae rôl bwysig wrth ddiwallu anghenion pobl Cymru o ran tai.'

a bod

'Llywodraeth Cymru am sicrhau'r cydbwysedd iawn o gefnogaeth a rheoleiddio'

yn y sector rhentu preifat. Yn y cyd-destun hwn, cyhoeddwyd 'Gwerthusiad o Ddeddf Rhentu Cartrefi (Cymru) 2016: adroddiad Cam 1' yr wythnos diwethaf. Cafwyd 676 o ymatebion i’r arolwg o landlordiaid ac asiantau rheoli, gyda 539 ohonynt wedi'u cwblhau'n llawn, a 479 ohonynt yn nodi effaith negyddol ar y newidiadau i landlordiaid. Un cwestiwn a ofynnwyd i ymatebwyr i’r gwerthusiad oedd:

'Pa effeithiau negyddol fydd y newidiadau o dan y Ddeddf yn eu cael arnoch fel landlord/asiant rheoli?'

Dywedodd 44 y cant o’r holl ymatebwyr a nododd effaith negyddol i’r arolwg fod y Ddeddf yn gorfodi landlordiaid i werthu a gadael y sector.

Fel y dywedais yn ystod proses ddeddfwriaethol Bil Rhentu Cartrefi (Diwygio) (Cymru), dyma y rhybuddiodd ARLA Propertymark, y corff rheoleiddio proffesiynol ar gyfer asiantaethau gosod tai, a Chymdeithas Genedlaethol y Landlordiaid Preswyl y byddai’n digwydd. Felly, o ystyried eich geiriau yn 2020 eich bod yn dymuno sicrhau’r cydbwysedd cywir o gymorth a rheoleiddio, pa gamau, os o gwbl, y byddwch yn eu cymryd nawr i ailagor y ddeddfwriaeth i sicrhau bod y Ddeddf yn rhoi’r gorau i yrru landlordiaid da o’r sector rhentu preifat?

Thank you for that, Mark. It's very interesting, the evaluation report, and we'll be looking at it very carefully, of course. But it's very interesting that it's not borne out by the statistics we're getting through Rent Smart Wales, and we need to get underneath those statistics. So, what appears—. We have a large number of landlords leaving the sector, but we have a very large number of registrations as well. There doesn't seem to be a net loss. It would seem to be the case—and it's anecdotal, I'm afraid, until we get to the bottom of the statistics—that some landlords are indeed selling, but they're being bought by other landlords. So, it's an interesting thing and we're trying to get to the bottom of the statistics. We keep a register of the number of landlords and the number of properties available for rent, and there isn't much change in that. So, I've been speaking with the officials around how we can get underneath those statistics. We don't want to drive out good landlords from Wales. The purpose of the Act is to drive out bad landlords from Wales and to make sure that the houses that people rent are fit for human habitation. I don't think that's too high a hurdle to ask. I do think your house should be fit for human habitation. By that, we mean that it has electrical certificates, it has carbon monoxide monitors, it has decent water, it has no mould, it has all of the things you and I would both expect in a home that was fit for human habitation. I don't think good landlords have a problem with reaching that standard. It also gives tenants protection from eviction in certain circumstances, and I'm very pleased to say that it gives them security of tenure for a much longer time period than any other nation in the UK. So, I think it's done its job. It's early days. We took a long time to implement it, and the implementation is only just rolling out, but I'm afraid we still don't quite understand the statistics, but they aren't showing a net loss of landlords or rented properties in Wales. 

Diolch am hynny, Mark. Mae'n ddiddorol iawn, yr adroddiad gwerthuso, a byddwn yn edrych arno'n ofalus iawn, wrth gwrs. Ond mae'n ddiddorol iawn nad yw'n cael ei gadarnhau gan yr ystadegau a gawn drwy Rhentu Doeth Cymru, ac mae angen inni ddadansoddi'r ystadegau hynny. Felly, yr hyn sy'n ymddangos—. Mae gennym nifer fawr o landlordiaid yn gadael y sector, ond mae gennym nifer fawr iawn o gofrestriadau hefyd. Nid yw'n ymddangos bod gennym golled net. Ymddengys—ac mae'n anecdotaidd, mae arnaf ofn, hyd nes y byddwn yn dadansoddi'r holl ystadegau—fod rhai landlordiaid yn gwerthu, ond mae'r eiddo'n cael eu prynu gan landlordiaid eraill. Felly, mae'n ddiddorol, ac rydym yn ceisio dadansoddi'r ystadegau. Rydym yn cadw cofrestr o nifer y landlordiaid a nifer yr eiddo sydd ar gael i'w rhentu, ac nid oes llawer o newid yn hynny. Felly, rwyf wedi bod yn siarad â'r swyddogion ynghylch sut y gallwn ddadansoddi'r ystadegau hynny. Nid ydym am yrru landlordiaid da o Gymru. Diben y Ddeddf yw gyrru landlordiaid drwg o Gymru a sicrhau bod y tai y mae pobl yn eu rhentu yn addas i bobl fyw ynddynt. Ni chredaf fod hynny'n ormod i'w ofyn. Credaf y dylai eich tŷ fod yn addas i bobl fyw ynddo. Yr hyn a olygwn wrth hynny yw bod ganddo dystysgrifau trydanol, mae ganddo fonitorau carbon monocsid, mae ganddo ddŵr addas, nid oes llwydni ynddo, mae ganddo'r holl bethau y byddech chi a minnau'n eu disgwyl mewn cartref sy'n addas i bobl fyw ynddo. Ni chredaf fod gan landlordiaid da broblem gyda chyrraedd y safon honno. Mae hefyd yn diogelu tenantiaid rhag cael eu troi allan mewn rhai amgylchiadau, ac rwy'n falch iawn o ddweud ei fod yn rhoi diogelwch deiliadaeth iddynt am gyfnod llawer hwy nag unrhyw wlad arall yn y DU. Felly, credaf ei fod wedi gwneud ei waith. Mae'n ddyddiau cynnar. Fe gymerodd amser maith i ni ei roi ar waith, a dim ond megis dechrau y mae'r gwaith o'i gyflwyno, ond mae arnaf ofn nad ydym yn deall yr ystadegau'n iawn o hyd, ond nid ydynt yn dangos colled net o landlordiaid nac eiddo i'w rentu yng Nghymru.

13:55

Well, I'm newly returned to this role, but will be engaging with the sector to get to the granular detail over what's really going on. And of course, you're quite right, housing must be fit to live in, and that was the point that I made throughout all the relevant pieces of legislation as to where the focus should lie. But, staying with the private rented sector, the Welsh Government's consultation on fair rents and the right to adequate housing closed last September. Between January 2015 and June 2022, private rental prices in Wales rose 8 per cent, compared with 12.6 per cent across the rest of the UK. Despite this, it's understood the Welsh Government is still considering the introduction of rent controls. Research evidence shows that rent control policies can lead to reduced market supply and a range of other housing and labour market problems. Since the introduction of rent controls in Scotland two years ago, average rents on new tenancies have increased by nearly 14 per cent in the last year alone, as rents on existing tenancies have been frozen and then capped. There has also been a reduction of nearly 20 per cent in the availability of private rented properties in Scotland over the last year. A recent YouGov poll—

Wel, rwyf ond newydd ddychwelyd i'r rôl hon, ond byddaf yn ymgysylltu â'r sector i gael mwy o fanylder ynghylch yr hyn sy'n digwydd mewn gwirionedd. Ac wrth gwrs, rydych yn llygad eich lle, mae'n rhaid i dai fod yn addas i fyw ynddynt, a dyna'r pwynt a wneuthum drwy gydol yr holl waith ar y ddeddfwriaeth berthnasol ynghylch lle dylai'r ffocws fod. Ond gan aros gyda’r sector rhentu preifat, daeth ymgynghoriad Llywodraeth Cymru ar renti teg a’r hawl i dai digonol i ben ym mis Medi. Rhwng mis Ionawr 2015 a mis Mehefin 2022, cododd prisiau rhentu preifat yng Nghymru 8 y cant, o gymharu â 12.6 y cant ar draws gweddill y DU. Er gwaethaf hyn, deellir fod Llywodraeth Cymru yn dal i ystyried cyflwyno mesurau rheoli rhenti. Dengys tystiolaeth ymchwil y gall polisïau rheoli rhenti arwain at lai o gyflenwad yn y farchnad ac ystod o broblemau eraill gyda thai a'r farchnad lafur. Ers cyflwyno mesurau rheoli rhenti yn yr Alban ddwy flynedd yn ôl, mae rhenti cyfartalog ar denantiaethau newydd wedi cynyddu bron i 14 y cant yn y flwyddyn ddiwethaf yn unig, wrth i renti ar denantiaethau presennol gael eu rhewi ac yna eu capio. Bu gostyngiad hefyd o bron i 20 y cant yn argaeledd eiddo rhent preifat yn yr Alban dros y flwyddyn ddiwethaf. Nododd arolwg barn diweddar gan YouGov—

I'm going to remind you, Mark Isherwood, of the time you're taking to ask your questions. You're on one minute 20 seconds now, and I allowed more than one and a half minutes for your first question. So, if you can be as concise as possible in your questioning, that would help. And that's for you and all Members as well. Thank you.

Rwyf am eich atgoffa, Mark Isherwood, o’r amser rydych chi'n ei gymryd i ofyn eich cwestiynau. Rydych ar un funud 20 eiliad ar hyn o bryd, ac fe wneuthum ganiatáu dros un funud a hanner ar gyfer eich cwestiwn cyntaf. Felly, os gallwch fod mor gryno â phosibl gyda'ch cwestiynau, byddai hynny o gymorth. Ac mae hynny'n wir i chi a phob Aelod arall hefyd. Diolch.

Okay. Well, so rather than dealing just with the symptoms, what, if any, policies does the Welsh Government have to actually increase rental housing supply, the shortage of which is the reason why rental prices have increased, or the primary reason?

Iawn. Wel, yn hytrach nag ymdrin â’r symptomau’n unig felly, pa bolisïau, os o gwbl, sydd gan Lywodraeth Cymru i gynyddu’r cyflenwad o dai rhent, gan mai prinder tai rhent yw’r rheswm, neu’r prif reswm, pam fod prisiau rhenti wedi cynyddu?

Yes, so actually the paper that we put out was a Green Paper, so it wasn't a consultation paper, it was a call for evidence. We got that evidence in. We're now working on the production of a White Paper, which is due this July as part of our co-operation agreement. That's well under way. We're hoping to put that White Paper out before the end of the summer term this year. That will consult on a wide range of issues, including the right to adequate housing and proposals for rent, or fair rents. There will be a range of options in there, and I'll be looking forward to seeing what the responses are. 

What is quite clear is that prices in the rental sector have gone up exponentially. I think it's fair for the Conservatives to understand that that is partly driven by the rising mortgage rates that people face, driven by, I'm afraid, the Conservatives' complete lack of control over the economy of the United Kingdom. We've seen quite a lot of landlords driven out by increased mortgage costs, not by anything else, and, actually, as I said to you, we're trying to get underneath the statistics for what's happening there. I suspect there is consolidation going on in the market, which is not good, because we normally in Wales have a large number of landlords who have one other house. So, it'll be interesting to see whether that happens. But the truth is that we have a large number of people paying an enormous part of their income on their rent, unable to save for anything more permanent and not able, really, to start living their lives. And we need to do something about that. What we're going to do is consult widely about what the best way of doing that is. Of course we'll be taking examples from elsewhere in the world, including Scotland, but lots of other places, into account, and I'll be very pleased to put that White Paper out and see where we get on a Wales solution to what is an increasing problem for rentals. 

Iawn, felly, mewn gwirionedd, Papur Gwyrdd oedd y papur a gyflwynwyd gennym, felly nid oedd yn bapur ymgynghori, roedd yn alwad am dystiolaeth. Cawsom y dystiolaeth honno. Rydym bellach yn gweithio ar gynhyrchu Papur Gwyn, sydd i'w gyhoeddi ym mis Gorffennaf fel rhan o'n cytundeb cydweithio. Mae'r gwaith hwnnw wedi hen ddechrau. Rydym yn gobeithio cyhoeddi'r Papur Gwyn hwnnw cyn diwedd tymor yr haf eleni. Bydd hwnnw’n ymgynghori ar ystod eang o faterion, gan gynnwys yr hawl i dai digonol a chynigion ar gyfer rhent, neu renti teg. Bydd amrywiaeth o opsiynau yno, ac edrychaf ymlaen at weld beth yw'r ymatebion.

Yr hyn sy'n eithaf clir yw bod prisiau yn y sector rhentu wedi codi'n esbonyddol. Credaf ei bod yn deg i’r Ceidwadwyr ddeall bod hynny wedi ei achosi’n rhannol gan y cyfraddau morgeisi cynyddol y mae pobl yn eu hwynebu, sydd wedi’u hachosi, mae arnaf ofn, gan ddiffyg rheolaeth y Ceidwadwyr dros economi’r Deyrnas Unedig. Rydym wedi gweld cryn dipyn o landlordiaid yn cael eu gyrru allan gan gostau morgeisi uwch, nid gan unrhyw beth arall, ac mewn gwirionedd, fel y dywedais wrthych, rydym yn ceisio dadansoddi'r ystadegau ar gyfer yr hyn sy'n digwydd yn y cyswllt hwnnw. Rwy’n amau ​​​​bod rhywfaint o gydgrynhoi'n digwydd yn y farchnad, nad yw’n beth da, oherwydd fel arfer, mae gennym nifer fawr o landlordiaid yng Nghymru sydd ag un tŷ arall. Felly, bydd yn ddiddorol gweld a fydd hynny'n digwydd. Ond y gwir amdani yw bod gennym nifer fawr o bobl yn gwario cyfran enfawr o’u hincwm ar eu rhent, yn methu cynilo ar gyfer unrhyw beth mwy parhaol ac yn methu dechrau byw eu bywydau mewn gwirionedd. Ac mae angen inni wneud rhywbeth am hynny. Rydym yn mynd i ymgynghori'n eang ynghylch beth yw'r ffordd orau o wneud hynny. Wrth gwrs, byddwn yn ystyried enghreifftiau o fannau eraill yn y byd, gan gynnwys yr Alban, ond llawer o leoedd eraill, a byddaf yn falch iawn o gyhoeddi'r Papur Gwyn hwnnw a gweld lle rydym yn cyrraedd o ran sicrhau ateb yng Nghymru i broblem gynyddol mewn perthynas ag eiddo rhent.

Thank you. Well, of course, the global cost-of-living crisis is identified by global bodies, and only a very insular person would suggest that it's somehow a unique UK problem. But another area where Welsh Government housing policies are expected to have a negative impact is their provision for local planning authorities to make local amendments to the planning system through an article 4 direction, allowing them to consider whether planning permission is required to change from one class to another and to control the number of additional second homes and short-term lets in an area. What consideration have you therefore given to the assessment made by Lichfields planning and development consultancy, referred to me by a permanent resident in Gwynedd, which stated that,

'Whilst we recognise the intentions behind the proposals, we question the extent to which Article 4 Directions, such as the one proposed in Gwynedd, would be effective in improving affordability of housing for local people or retaining Welsh speakers. Whilst there are localised pressures in some areas, a focus on tourists and second homes is somewhat a deflection of the wider need to deliver more housing, both market and affordable, across Wales'?

Diolch. Wel, wrth gwrs, mae cyrff byd-eang yn cydnabod yr argyfwng costau byw byd-eang, a dim ond unigolyn ynysig iawn a fyddai’n awgrymu ei bod rywsut yn broblem unigryw i’r DU. Ond maes arall lle disgwylir i bolisïau tai Llywodraeth Cymru gael effaith negyddol yw eu darpariaeth i awdurdodau cynllunio lleol wneud diwygiadau lleol i’r system gynllunio drwy gyfarwyddyd erthygl 4, gan ganiatáu iddynt ystyried a oes angen caniatâd cynllunio i newid o un dosbarth i'r llall ac i reoli nifer yr ail gartrefi ychwanegol a llety gosod tymor byr mewn ardal. Pa ystyriaeth a roddwyd gennych felly i’r asesiad a wnaed gan ymgynghoriaeth cynllunio a datblygu Lichfields, y tynnwyd fy sylw ato gan breswylydd parhaol yng Ngwynedd, a nododd,

'Er ein bod yn cydnabod y bwriadau y tu ôl i'r cynigion, rydym yn cwestiynu i ba raddau y byddai Cyfarwyddiadau Erthygl 4, fel yr un a gynigir yng Ngwynedd, yn effeithiol o ran gwella fforddiadwyedd tai i bobl leol neu gadw siaradwyr Cymraeg. Er bod pwysau lleol mewn rhai ardaloedd, mae ffocws ar dwristiaid ac ail gartrefi yn tynnu sylw oddi ar yr angen ehangach i ddarparu mwy o dai'r farchnad agored a thai fforddiadwy ledled Cymru'?

14:00

I didn’t quite catch the end of that, I’m afraid, as there are noises off, but I think I got the gist of it. So, what we’re looking at there, Mark, is a way of ensuring that there is a supply of local housing, so that people who need to live and work in the local area can access that housing. And as I said earlier, what we’re not trying to do is drive out everyone with a second home or who wants to come on holiday, but those people want to come to sustainable communities where local people can live and work, and where the local shop and the local pub can stay vibrant because they don’t face long periods when nobody is there. There are areas in Wales, and one of them is in my own constituency, where whole streets don’t have anyone living on them as an actual permanent resident; whole villages in some parts of Wales, and that is not sustainable. We have to find some method to make sure that we have mixed sustained communities in Wales, where everyone is welcome and where local people can live and work. And you can’t run a tourist business unless you have local people to live and work in it. So, we have to find measures to do it. Unfortunately, the housing market in Britain doesn’t work like that, so what we’re doing is working with colleague councils across Wales to try and find mechanisms to interfere in that market, because that market is having the effect of driving local people out of the villages they grew up in.

Ni chlywais ddiwedd hynny, mae arnaf ofn, gan fod yna sŵn cefndirol, ond rwy'n meddwl fy mod wedi cael yr ystyr. Felly, yr hyn rydym yn edrych arno yno, Mark, yw ffordd o sicrhau bod cyflenwad o dai lleol, fel bod pobl sydd angen byw a gweithio yn yr ardal leol yn gallu cael y tai hynny. Ac fel y dywedais yn gynharach, nid ydym yn ceisio gyrru pawb sydd ag ail gartref allan neu sydd am ddod ar wyliau, ond mae'r bobl hynny eisiau dod i gymunedau cynaliadwy lle gall pobl leol fyw a gweithio, a lle gall y siop leol a'r dafarn leol aros yn fywiog am nad ydynt yn wynebu cyfnodau hir pan nad oes neb yno. Mae ardaloedd yng Nghymru, ac mae un ohonynt yn fy etholaeth fy hun, lle nad oes gan strydoedd cyfan unrhyw un yn byw arnynt fel preswylydd parhaol; pentrefi cyfan mewn rhai rhannau o Gymru, ac nid yw hynny'n gynaliadwy. Mae'n rhaid inni ddod o hyd i ryw ddull o sicrhau bod gennym gymunedau cynaliadwy cymysg yng Nghymru, lle mae croeso i bawb a lle gall pobl leol fyw a gweithio. Ac ni allwch redeg busnes twristiaeth oni bai bod gennych bobl leol i fyw a gweithio ynddo. Felly, mae'n rhaid inni ddod o hyd i fesurau i wneud hynny. Yn anffodus, nid yw'r farchnad dai ym Mhrydain yn gweithio yn y ffordd honno, felly rydym yn gweithio gyda chynghorau cydweithredol ledled Cymru i geisio dod o hyd i fecanweithiau i ymyrryd yn y farchnad honno, oherwydd effaith y farchnad honno yw gyrru pobl leol allan o'r pentrefi y cawsant eu magu ynddynt.

Llefarydd Plaid Cymru, Mabon ap Gwynfor.

Plaid Cymru spokesperson, Mabon ap Gwynfor.

Diolch yn fawr iawn, Llywydd. The Welsh Government’s rent and service charge standard for social housing is in its final year and the Welsh Government has not made an announcement as yet about the next standard. The Cabinet Secretary will be aware that social landlords’ income primarily comes from rents and this is subject to the Welsh Government’s rent and service charge standard, which limits rent increases. For 2024-25, the Welsh Government has set the maximum rent increase at 6.7 per cent, having set it at 6.5 per cent previously. The five-year standard is due to end in 2025 and the Welsh Government has not yet made that announcement about its successor. So, simply put: when can we expect the next standard to be announced?

Diolch yn fawr iawn, Lywydd. Mae safon rhent a thâl gwasanaeth Llywodraeth Cymru ar gyfer tai cymdeithasol yn ei blwyddyn olaf ac nid yw Llywodraeth Cymru wedi gwneud cyhoeddiad hyd yma am y safon nesaf. Bydd Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet yn ymwybodol fod incwm landlordiaid cymdeithasol yn dod o renti yn bennaf ac mae hyn yn ddarostyngedig i safon rhent a thâl gwasanaeth Llywodraeth Cymru, sy'n cyfyngu ar gynnydd mewn rhenti. Ar gyfer 2024-25, mae Llywodraeth Cymru wedi gosod uchafswm y cynnydd rhent ar 6.7 y cant, ar ôl ei osod ar 6.5 y cant yn flaenorol. Mae disgwyl i'r safon pum mlynedd ddod i ben yn 2025 ac nid yw Llywodraeth Cymru wedi gwneud cyhoeddiad am ei holynydd eto. Felly, yn syml: pryd y gallwn ni ddisgwyl i'r safon nesaf gael ei chyhoeddi?

Thank you for the question. We’re currently doing quite a lot of work with the whole sector on how we will come to a standard, or indeed whether we’ll come to a standard; not everywhere in the UK has that kind of standard. It’s served us well in the past, actually, that standard. It’s a horrible decision to have to make, because you are trying to balance, on the one hand, the income of the social landlord to build the new social homes we so badly need, and they use that income in order to borrow the money to build those homes—I know you know how the market works—and, on the other hand, we have a significant number of people who pay that rent themselves, so they’re not on benefits or a subsection of their income is benefits, and we have to make sure that they aren’t driven into homelessness by an unaffordable rent rise. So, it’s a difficult balance to arrive at.

I undertake an extensive set of consultations with tenants’ organisations and with social landlords across Wales every year, even when the rent standard is in place, to just make sure it’s fit for purpose. It served us well when inflation was negligible, obviously, but as soon as you get volatility in that market, then you have to look again at the standards. So, we’ll be working very hard with our sector landlords to understand their views on that, what that standard might look like, whether there is an envelope that we could set to give them surety, because that’s what they want and they want to be able to budget over the longer term, but is also flexible enough for us to make sure that current tenants get the services they want and aren’t sacrificed in order to get new tenants into decent social homes. So, it’s a balance, isn’t it, all of that? So, we’re working very hard on that. I don’t have a timescale for that at the moment; we will certainly announce it in good time for the standard to end, but that piece of work is very much ongoing.

Diolch am y cwestiwn. Ar hyn o bryd rydym yn gwneud cryn dipyn o waith gyda'r sector cyfan ar sut y byddwn yn cael safon, neu'n wir a fyddwn yn cael safon; nid oes safon o'r fath gan bob man yn y DU. Mae'r safon wedi bod yn ddefnyddiol iawn i ni yn y gorffennol. Mae'n benderfyniad erchyll i orfod ei wneud, oherwydd eich bod yn ceisio cydbwyso, ar y naill law, incwm y landlord cymdeithasol i adeiladu'r cartrefi cymdeithasol newydd y mae cymaint o'u hangen arnom, ac maent yn defnyddio'r incwm hwnnw er mwyn benthyg yr arian i adeiladu'r cartrefi hynny—rwy'n gwybod eich bod chi'n gwybod sut mae'r farchnad yn gweithio—ac ar y llaw arall, mae gennym nifer sylweddol o bobl sy'n talu'r rhent hwnnw eu hunain, felly nid ydynt ar fudd-daliadau neu mae israniad o'u hincwm yn fudd-daliadau, ac mae'n rhaid inni sicrhau nad ydynt yn cael eu gwneud yn ddigartref oherwydd codiad rhent anfforddiadwy. Felly, mae'n gydbwysedd anodd i'w daro.

Rwy'n cynnal cyfres eang o ymgynghoriadau gyda sefydliadau tenantiaid a chyda landlordiaid cymdeithasol ledled Cymru bob blwyddyn, hyd yn oed pan fydd y safon rhent yn weithredol, er mwyn sicrhau ei fod yn addas i'r diben. Roedd o fudd i ni pan oedd chwyddiant yn isel iawn wrth gwrs, ond cyn gynted ag y cewch chi anwadalrwydd yn y farchnad honno, mae'n rhaid ichi edrych eto ar y safonau. Felly, byddwn yn gweithio'n galed iawn gyda landlordiaid ein sector i ddeall eu barn ar hynny, sut beth fyddai'r safon honno, a oes amlen y gallem ei gosod i roi sicrwydd iddynt, oherwydd dyna maent ei eisiau ac maent am allu cyllidebu dros y tymor hwy, ond ei fod yn ddigon hyblyg hefyd inni sicrhau bod tenantiaid presennol yn cael y gwasanaethau y maent eu heisiau ac nad ydynt yn cael eu haberthu er mwyn cael tenantiaid newydd i mewn i gartrefi cymdeithasol gweddus. Felly, mae'r cyfan yn fater o daro cydbwysedd, onid yw? Felly, rydym yn gweithio'n galed iawn ar hynny. Nid oes gennyf amserlen ar gyfer hynny ar hyn o bryd; byddwn yn sicr yn ei chyhoeddi mewn da bryd i'r safon ddod i ben, ond mae'n waith sy'n bendant ar y gweill.

Thank you for that response, Cabinet Secretary. You’ll know that around 230,000 properties across Wales are registered as social housing and the latest evidence from the Tenant Participation Advisory Service Cymru suggests that 22 per cent of tenants felt their rent was unaffordable last year. This figure was higher for tenants aged between 45 and 54. Rent increases aren’t the only source of worry for struggling tenants. As you'll know, Cabinet Secretary, when social landlords maintain communal areas or undertake additional services, such as maintaining communal gardens, they may charge a separate service charge in addition to rent. It's come to my attention that service charges are increasing for many tenants across Wales to varying degrees, with many failing to obtain clear answers as to why these increases are happening. With 13 per cent of Welsh people struggling to afford essentials and almost a third going without heating, the effect of service charge increases will be detrimental and, to many, seem unjustified. So, what assessment has the Cabinet Secretary made of increased service charges for local tenants across Wales?

Diolch am yr ateb hwnnw, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet. Fe fyddwch yn gwybod bod tua 230,000 eiddo ledled Cymru wedi'u cofrestru fel tai cymdeithasol ac mae'r dystiolaeth ddiweddaraf gan Wasanaeth Ymgynghorol Cyfranogiad Tenantiaid Cymru yn awgrymu bod 22 y cant o denantiaid yn teimlo nad oedd eu rhent yn fforddiadwy y llynedd. Roedd y ffigur hwn yn uwch ar gyfer tenantiaid rhwng 45 a 54 oed. Nid cynnydd rhent yw'r unig ffynhonnell o bryder i denantiaid sy'n ei chael hi'n anodd. Fel y gwyddoch, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, pan fydd gan landlordiaid cymdeithasol fannau cymunedol neu'n cyflawni gwasanaethau ychwanegol, megis cynnal gerddi cymunedol, gallant godi tâl gwasanaeth ar wahân yn ogystal â rhent. Daeth i fy sylw fod taliadau gwasanaeth yn cynyddu i lawer o denantiaid ledled Cymru i raddau amrywiol, gyda llawer yn methu cael atebion clir ynglŷn â pam mae'r cynnydd hwn yn digwydd. Gyda 13 y cant o Gymry'n ei chael hi'n anodd fforddio hanfodion a bron i draean yn mynd heb wresogi, bydd effaith cynnydd mewn taliadau gwasanaeth yn niweidiol ac i lawer, mae'n ymddangos nad oes cyfiawnhad drostynt. Felly, pa asesiad y mae Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet wedi'i wneud o gynnydd mewn taliadau gwasanaeth i denantiaid lleol ledled Cymru?

14:05

Service charges are very much part of the discussion that we have about affordability. 'What is included in your rent, what is additional to your rent?' is one of the conversations we have. As part of the agreement on rent with our social landlords in Wales, we also negotiate a number of things, so no eviction into homelessness is one of them, working with any tenant that's in financial hardship in order to understand the nature of that financial hardship and make sure that we have all of the right support in place is another. So, we are very keen to make sure that we understand what the affordability envelope for all of our tenants is, and the registered social landlords and the stock-holding councils are under an obligation to do so. They have signed up to that as part of the rental agreement that we make every year. So, it's a pact, if you like, between us. It's worked so far. Individual tenants, of course, should take that up through the complaints process with the RSLs, and I do speak to the regulators, as well, about how we measure that.

One of the other pieces of work we are currently undertaking, and it's been ongoing for a little while, is what the regulatory assessment should say about rent affordability and complaints processes as part of its overall assessment. Again, that's a very complex piece, because the regulatory assessment also contributes to the borrowing ability of the registered social landlords, so all of these things are balanced out. But it's part of the process that we want, because we don't want a regulatory assessment that says that a registered social landlord or a stock-holding authority is very good when all of its tenants are complaining vociferously about a particular point. So, it is, again, a balance. We are working on that as well; it is part of the affordability envelope.

We also, for the record, work on things like broadband schemes. My colleague Lesley Griffiths is looking at a broadband scheme for social tenants to make sure that it's affordable and can be procured over a wider set of people than individuals, for example. There are utility agreements and so on that we can work on, because affordability is about more than just the rent, as you rightly say.

Mae taliadau gwasanaeth yn rhan fawr o'r drafodaeth a gawn am fforddiadwyedd. 'Beth sy'n cael ei gynnwys yn eich rhent, beth sy'n ychwanegol at eich rhent?' yw un o'r sgyrsiau a gawn. Fel rhan o'r cytundeb ar rent gyda'n landlordiaid cymdeithasol yng Nghymru, rydym hefyd yn negodi nifer o bethau, felly dim troi allan i ddigartrefedd yw un ohonynt, a gweithio gydag unrhyw denant sydd mewn caledi ariannol er mwyn deall natur y caledi ariannol hwnnw a sicrhau bod gennym yr holl gefnogaeth gywir ar waith yw un arall. Felly, rydym yn awyddus iawn i sicrhau ein bod yn deall beth yw'r amlen fforddiadwyedd i'n holl denantiaid, ac mae'r landlordiaid cymdeithasol cofrestredig a'r cynghorau sy'n dal stoc dai o dan rwymedigaeth i wneud hynny. Maent wedi ymrwymo i hynny fel rhan o'r cytundeb rhentu a wnawn bob blwyddyn. Felly, mae'n gytundeb rhyngom, os mynnwch. Mae wedi gweithio hyd yn hyn. Dylai tenantiaid unigol, wrth gwrs, fynd ar drywydd hynny drwy'r broses gwynion gyda'r landlordiaid cymdeithasol cofrestredig, ac rwy'n siarad â'r rheoleiddwyr hefyd, ynglŷn â sut i fesur hynny.

Gwaith arall sydd gennym ar y gweill ar hyn o bryd, ac mae wedi bod yn mynd rhagddo ers ychydig amser, yw'r hyn y dylai'r asesiad rheoleiddiol ei ddweud am fforddiadwyedd rhent a phrosesau cwynion fel rhan o'i asesiad cyffredinol. Unwaith eto, mae hwnnw'n waith cymhleth iawn, oherwydd mae'r asesiad rheoleiddiol hefyd yn cyfrannu at allu benthyca'r landlordiaid cymdeithasol cofrestredig, felly mae'r holl bethau hyn yn gytbwys. Ond mae'n rhan o'r broses yr ydym ei heisiau, oherwydd nid ydym am gael asesiad rheoleiddiol sy'n dweud bod landlord cymdeithasol cofrestredig neu awdurdod sy'n dal stoc dai yn dda iawn pan fydd ei holl denantiaid yn cwyno'n groch am bwynt penodol. Felly, unwaith eto, mae'n gydbwysedd. Rydym yn gweithio ar hynny hefyd; mae'n rhan o'r amlen fforddiadwyedd.

Hefyd, os caf nodi, rydym yn gweithio ar bethau fel cynlluniau band eang. Mae fy nghyd-Aelod, Lesley Griffiths, yn edrych ar gynllun band eang i denantiaid cymdeithasol i sicrhau ei fod yn fforddiadwy ac y gellir ei gaffael dros set ehangach o bobl nag unigolion, er enghraifft. Ceir cytundebau cyfleustodau ac yn y blaen y gallwn weithio arnynt, oherwydd mae fforddiadwyedd yn ymwneud â mwy na dim ond y rhent, fel rydych chi'n dweud yn gywir ddigon.

Mesur Diogelwch Tân Domestig (Cymru) 2011
The Domestic Fire Safety (Wales) Measure 2011

Apologies, my computer's not working. There we are.

Mae'n ddrwg gennyf, nid yw fy nghyfrifiadur yn gweithio. Dyma ni.

3. Pa asesiad y mae’r Ysgrifennydd Cabinet wedi'i wneud o effeithiolrwydd Mesur Diogelwch Tân Domestig (Cymru) 2011? OQ61050

3. What assessment has the Cabinet Secretary made of the effectiveness of the Domestic Fire Safety (Wales) Measure 2011? OQ61050

Thank you for the question. The Domestic Fire Safety (Wales) Measure 2011 has been implemented through the Building Regulations 2010. Data on the effectiveness of the legislation is not collected for building regulations purposes, but the fire and rescue services in Wales record the numbers of sprinklers installed in buildings where fire incidents have occurred.

Diolch am y cwestiwn. Mae Mesur Diogelwch Tân Domestig (Cymru) 2011 wedi cael ei weithredu drwy Reoliadau Adeiladu 2010. Nid yw data ar effeithiolrwydd y ddeddfwriaeth yn cael ei gasglu at ddibenion rheoliadau adeiladu, ond mae'r gwasanaethau tân ac achub yng Nghymru yn cofnodi nifer y systemau chwistrellu a osodwyd mewn adeiladau lle mae tân wedi digwydd.

Diolch, Cabinet Secretary. I'm asking my question today based on the experience of constituents who had a fire sprinkler system installed in a new-build house that was recognised as faulty within two years of them moving in, and it was only through the service of the sprinkler system that they were able to confirm that it wasn't functional. The developer agreed to cover the cost of the rectification works as my constituents notified them of this within the two-year warranty period. The two-year warranty period is a problem, though, because if they'd been just a month out, it might have been a different story. The original contractors who fitted the sprinkler system were not registered with a FIRAS certification when they installed it, we understand, and approval by building control at the local authority relied entirely on self-certification, which, in this instance, obviously wasn't worth the paper it was written on.

Therefore, can I ask if the Cabinet Secretary would consider—and I don't expect her to say 'yes' today—a strengthened all-Wales third party certification system that would help to reduce the risk of situations like this? Also, is she considering the issue of warranties and the two-year warranty that was so difficult in these circumstances?

Diolch, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet. Rwy'n gofyn fy nghwestiwn heddiw yn seiliedig ar brofiad etholwyr a oedd â system chwistrellu tân wedi'i gosod mewn tŷ newydd, system y cydnabuwyd ei bod yn ddiffygiol o fewn dwy flynedd wedi iddynt symud i mewn, a dim ond wrth roi gwasanaeth i'r system chwistrellu y gallwyd cadarnhau nad oedd yn gweithio. Cytunodd y datblygwr i dalu cost y gwaith cywiro gan fod fy etholwyr wedi rhoi gwybod iddynt am hyn o fewn cyfnod y warant o ddwy flynedd. Mae cyfnod y warant o ddwy flynedd yn broblem, serch hynny, oherwydd pe baent gwta fis allan ohoni, gallai fod wedi bod yn stori wahanol. Nid oedd y contractwyr gwreiddiol a osododd y system chwistrellu wedi'u cofrestru ag ardystiad FIRAS pan wnaethant ei gosod, yn ôl yr hyn a ddeallwn, ac roedd cymeradwyaeth drwy reolaeth adeiladu yn yr awdurdod lleol yn dibynnu'n llwyr ar hunanardystio, nad oedd, yn yr achos hwn, yn werth y papur y cafodd ei ysgrifennu arno, yn amlwg.

Felly, a gaf i ofyn a fyddai Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet yn ystyried—ac nid wyf yn disgwyl iddi ddweud y gwnaiff hynny heddiw—system ardystio trydydd parti cryfach ar gyfer Cymru a fyddai'n helpu i leihau'r risg o sefyllfaoedd fel hyn? Hefyd, a yw hi'n ystyried mater gwarantau a'r warant ddwy flynedd a oedd mor anodd yn yr amgylchiadau hyn?

Thank you, Hefin. That's a set of complicated things to look at there. In relation to third party certification, the building regulations are functional requirements and there may be a number of ways of proving compliance with them. Third party certification is one of the ways of showing compliance. The 'Approved Document B Fire Safety' statutory guidance encourages the use of third party certification schemes to ensure that the sprinkler system is put in in an effective way. The building control body can take enforcement action if they haven't been properly installed. But in your constituent's case, they've bought a house where they wouldn't have been the contracting party. Wales is looking to join the new homes ombudsman scheme, which would extend the warranties for new-build houses. I do think it's quite extraordinary to have bought a house and be told that it's only fit for use for two years. I think most of us would expect a new-build house to last a bit longer than two years. So, the new homes ombudsman is looking at a warranty scheme of five years. I personally think that five years is quite a short time for a new home as well, but it's an improvement on the two years.

In the meantime, I think your constituents probably would have to have recourse to civil action in order to do something about their particular circumstance and take it up with the developer. I'm sure you've tried those routes. If you want to write to me and tell me who the developer is, I have regular meetings with the developers, so I'm more than happy to see if I can take it up with them, as well. But it does seem extraordinary to me that, if you buy a new house, you can't rely on it being still in good working order after two years.

Diolch, Hefin. Mae hon yn set o bethau cymhleth i edrych arnynt. O ran ardystio trydydd parti, mae'r rheoliadau adeiladu yn ofynion gweithredol ac efallai y bydd nifer o ffyrdd o brofi cydymffurfiaeth. Ardystio trydydd parti yw un o'r ffyrdd o ddangos cydymffurfiaeth. Mae canllawiau statudol 'Dogfen Gymeradwy B Diogelwch Tân' yn annog defnyddio cynlluniau ardystio trydydd parti i sicrhau bod y system chwistrellu yn cael ei gosod mewn ffordd effeithiol. Gall y corff rheoli adeiladu gymryd camau gorfodi os nad ydynt wedi'u gosod yn iawn. Ond yn achos eich etholwr, maent wedi prynu tŷ lle na fyddent yn barti contractio. Mae Cymru'n gobeithio ymuno â'r cynllun ombwdsmon cartrefi newydd, a fyddai'n ymestyn y gwarantau ar gyfer tai a adeiladir o'r newydd. Rwy'n credu bod prynu tŷ a chael gwybod nad yw ond yn addas i'w ddefnyddio am ddwy flynedd yn gwbl rhyfeddol. Rwy'n credu y byddai'r rhan fwyaf ohonom yn disgwyl i adeilad newydd bara ychydig hwy na dwy flynedd. Felly, mae'r ombwdsmon cartrefi newydd yn edrych ar gynllun gwarant pum mlynedd. Yn bersonol, rwy'n credu bod pum mlynedd hefyd yn amser eithaf byr i gartref newydd, ond mae'n well na dwy flynedd.

Yn y cyfamser, rwy'n credu y byddai'n rhaid i'ch etholwyr droi at gamau sifil yn ôl pob tebyg er mwyn gwneud rhywbeth am eu hamgylchiadau penodol a mynd ar ei drywydd gyda'r datblygwr. Rwy'n siŵr eich bod wedi rhoi cynnig ar y llwybrau hynny. Os ydych chi eisiau ysgrifennu ataf a dweud wrthyf pwy yw'r datblygwr, rwy'n cael cyfarfodydd rheolaidd gyda'r datblygwyr, felly rwy'n fwy na pharod i weld a allaf fynd ar ei drywydd gyda nhw hefyd. Ond mae'n ymddangos yn rhyfeddol i mi, os ydych chi'n prynu tŷ newydd, na allwch ddibynnu arno i fod mewn cyflwr da ar ôl dwy flynedd.

14:10
Cartrefi Gwag
Empty Homes

4. A wnaiff yr Ysgrifennydd Cabinet roi diweddariad am yr hyn y mae Llywodraeth Cymru yn ei wneud i helpu i sicrhau bod cartrefi gwag yng Nghanolbarth a Gorllewin Cymru yn cael eu defnyddio eto? OQ61061

4. Will the Cabinet Secretary provide an update on what the Welsh Government is doing to help bring empty homes in Mid and West Wales back into use? OQ61061

Thank you, Joyce. The Welsh Government has a number of interventions and funding streams to reduce the number of empty homes in Wales. These include our empty homes grant scheme, which aims to bring up to 2,000 long-term empty properties back into use, and that has a budget of £25 million for 2024-25.

Diolch, Joyce. Mae gan Lywodraeth Cymru nifer o ymyriadau a ffrydiau ariannu i leihau nifer y cartrefi gwag yng Nghymru. Mae'r rhain yn cynnwys ein cynllun grant cartrefi gwag, sy'n anelu at ddod â hyd at 2,000 eiddo gwag yn hirdymor yn ôl i ddefnydd, ac sydd â chyllideb o £25 miliwn ar gyfer 2024-25.

I thank you for that answer. There are 22,000 empty homes in Wales and, as you say, the Welsh Government has a scheme to bring back those empty homes, through grants, into use. I understand that the fund is accessible for owner-occupiers, registered social landlords, local authorities and community housing groups to apply for. So, Cabinet Secretary, are you able to give an update on how many grants have been allocated and how many homes have been brought back into use since that scheme was launched just over 12 months ago?

Diolch am yr ateb hwnnw. Mae 22,000 o gartrefi gwag yng Nghymru ac fel y dywedwch, mae gan Lywodraeth Cymru gynllun i ddod â'r cartrefi gwag hynny yn ôl i ddefnydd drwy grantiau. Deallaf fod y gronfa yn hygyrch i berchen-feddianwyr, landlordiaid cymdeithasol cofrestredig, awdurdodau lleol a grwpiau tai cymunedol wneud cais amdani. Felly, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, a wnewch chi roi'r wybodaeth ddiweddaraf am faint o grantiau sydd wedi'u dyrannu a faint o gartrefi sydd wedi dod yn ôl i ddefnydd ers lansio'r cynllun ychydig dros 12 mis yn ôl?

Yes, thank you very much, Joyce. There have been 660 valid applications for the scheme to date, with 246 approvals so far, and that was at the beginning of May. So, it's going very well indeed. Forty five properties have been completed with all category 1 hazards removed and brought back into use as homes, and the work to bring back a number of other homes is in progress. The grants are up to £25,000 for individual home owners and, as you rightly said, owner-occupiers, registered social landlords, local authorities and community housing groups are all able to access the grant. The property must have been registered as empty with the local authority for a minimum of 12 months prior to the commencement of the works, so we are looking at long-term empty homes here. And once the works have been completed, the successful applicant must live in the property as their main or only residence for a minimum of five years, or the grant is repayable, because the whole point is to bring the home back into beneficial use. I should say at this point that it's also eligible for Leasing Scheme Wales, so if you wanted to give the property, at that point, to the local registered social landlord, that's another route to making sure that it's occupied over a long term.

We absolutely must do more to bring these empty properties into use, and so the other thing I would just like to say is that we have worked with 850 local councillors, planning officials and building control officials right across Wales on compulsory purchase, and how to bring compulsory purchase to bear on empty properties throughout Wales. Vikki Howells highlighted one, in a presentation she did in the Senedd a little while ago, in her community. We are encouraging local authorities to bring compulsory purchase on properties that are derelict, because, actually, not only could they be homes, but they also have a real detrimental effect on the area. My colleague Lee Waters and I visited one in Rhondda Cynon Taf, where a house on the corner of two streets had been empty for some considerable period of time, a young family were moving in, they were delighted, but actually, all the residents of the two streets were also delighted because they no longer had a blighted property. So, they have a huge number of benefits, not just as homes, but in terms of rejuvenating and renewing the whole area.

Diolch, Joyce. Daeth 660 o geisiadau dilys i law ar gyfer y cynllun hyd yma, gyda 246 wedi eu cymeradwyo hyd yn hyn, a hynny ar ddechrau mis Mai. Felly, mae'n mynd yn dda dros ben. Mae 45 eiddo wedi'u cwblhau gyda phob perygl categori 1 wedi'u dileu er mwyn eu hailddefnyddio fel cartrefi, ac mae'r gwaith o ddod â nifer o gartrefi eraill yn ôl i ddefnydd ar y gweill. Mae'r grantiau hyd at £25,000 ar gyfer perchnogion tai unigol ac fel y dywedoch chi'n gywir, gall perchen-feddianwyr, landlordiaid cymdeithasol cofrestredig, awdurdodau lleol a grwpiau tai cymunedol gael mynediad at y grant. Mae'n rhaid i'r eiddo fod wedi ei gofrestru fel eiddo gwag gyda'r awdurdod lleol am o leiaf 12 mis cyn i'r gwaith ddechrau, felly rydym yn edrych ar gartrefi gwag hirdymor yma. A phan fydd y gwaith wedi'i gwblhau, rhaid i'r ymgeisydd llwyddiannus fyw yn yr eiddo fel eu prif breswylfa neu eu hunig breswylfa am o leiaf bum mlynedd, neu mae'r grant yn ad-daladwy, oherwydd yr holl bwynt yw dod â chartref yn ôl i ddefnydd buddiol. Dylwn ddweud ar y pwynt hwn ei fod hefyd yn gymwys ar gyfer Cynllun Lesio Cymru, felly os oeddech chi am roi'r eiddo, ar y pwynt hwnnw, i'r landlord cymdeithasol cofrestredig lleol, mae hwnnw'n llwybr arall tuag at sicrhau ei fod yn cael ei feddiannu dros gyfnod hir.

Mae'n rhaid inni wneud mwy i ddod â'r eiddo gwag hwn yn ôl i ddefnydd, ac felly y peth arall yr hoffwn ei ddweud yw ein bod wedi gweithio gydag 850 o gynghorwyr lleol, swyddogion cynllunio a swyddogion rheoli adeiladu ledled Cymru ar bryniant gorfodol, a sut i brynu eiddo gwag drwy drefniant gorfodol ledled Cymru. Nododd Vikki Howells un, mewn cyflwyniad a wnaeth yn y Senedd ychydig yn ôl, yn ei chymuned hi. Rydym yn annog awdurdodau lleol i brynu eiddo sy'n dirywio drwy drefniant gorfodol, oherwydd nid yn unig y gallent fod yn gartrefi, ond maent hefyd yn cael effaith wirioneddol andwyol ar yr ardal. Ymwelodd fy nghyd-Aelod Lee Waters a minnau ag un yn Rhondda Cynon Taf, lle roedd tŷ ar gornel dwy stryd wedi bod yn wag ers cryn dipyn o amser, roedd teulu ifanc yn symud i mewn, roeddent wrth eu boddau, ond mewn gwirionedd, roedd holl drigolion y ddwy stryd hefyd wrth eu boddau oherwydd nid oedd ganddynt eiddo a oedd yn falltod ar y gymuned mwyach. Felly, mae ganddynt nifer o fanteision, nid yn unig fel cartrefi, ond o ran adfywio ac adnewyddu'r ardal gyfan.

Stoc Dai a Effeithiwyd gan RAAC
Housing Stock Affected by RAAC

5. Pa asesiad y mae Llywodraeth Cymru wedi'i wneud o faint o stoc dai yng Nghymru y mae RAAC yn effeithio arnynt? OQ61041

5. What assessment has the Welsh Government made of the amount of housing stock in Wales affected by RAAC? OQ61041

Thank you for that question. The survey work undertaken to date indicates that the presence of reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete, or RAAC, in social housing stock in Wales is limited. It is important that all of the necessary survey work is completed so that tenants can be provided with assurance on the safety of their homes.

Diolch am y cwestiwn. Mae'r gwaith arolygu a wnaed hyd yma yn dangos bod presenoldeb concrit awyredig awtoclafiedig cyfnerth, neu RAAC, yn y stoc tai cymdeithasol yng Nghymru yn gyfyngedig. Mae'n bwysig fod yr holl waith arolygu angenrheidiol yn cael ei gwblhau fel y gellir rhoi sicrwydd i denantiaid ynglŷn â diogelwch eu cartrefi.

14:15

Thank you for your answer, Cabinet Secretary, and for your ongoing correspondence with me regarding the 77 homes on the Gower estate in Hirwaun in which RAAC has been found. As you know, 60 of these are owned by the social housing provider Trivallis, but 17 are in private ownership, having been purchased under the right-to-buy scheme. These home owners, who are mainly elderly and all low-income households, are facing significant stress. I held an advice surgery for them last week, and I'm keen to do all I can to bring parties together to support them.

The cost of remedial work is estimated to be between £70,000 and £100,000 per property, which is between 100 per cent and 125 per cent of the value of each home. Even meeting the cost of the structural surveys is a challenge for many, let alone the works themselves, with no financial assistance forthcoming from their insurance providers or any other party. So, Cabinet Secretary, will you commit to continuing to carefully monitor this situation, particularly once the results of Trivallis's structural surveys are known and costs become clearer, and to working with me to bring all parties, including the Welsh Government, together to do all we can to support these home owners? 

Diolch am eich ateb, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, ac am eich gohebiaeth barhaus â mi ynglŷn â'r 77 o gartrefi ar ystad Gower yn Hirwaun lle daethpwyd o hyd i RAAC. Fel y gwyddoch, mae 60 o'r rhain yn eiddo i'r darparwr tai cymdeithasol Trivallis, ond mae 17 mewn perchnogaeth breifat, ar ôl cael eu prynu o dan y cynllun hawl i brynu. Mae'r perchnogion tai hyn, pobl oedrannus yn bennaf ac aelwydydd incwm isel bob un, yn wynebu straen sylweddol. Cynhaliais gymhorthfa gynghori ar eu cyfer yr wythnos diwethaf, ac rwy'n awyddus i wneud popeth yn fy ngallu i ddod â phartïon ynghyd i'w cefnogi.

Amcangyfrifir bod cost gwaith adfer rhwng £70,000 a £100,000 yr eiddo, sydd rhwng 100 y cant a 125 y cant o werth pob cartref. Mae hyd yn oed talu cost yr arolygon strwythurol yn her i lawer, heb sôn am y gwaith ei hun, heb unrhyw gymorth ariannol ar gael gan eu darparwyr yswiriant nac unrhyw barti arall. Felly, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, a wnewch chi ymrwymo i barhau i fonitro'r sefyllfa hon yn ofalus, yn enwedig pan fydd canlyniadau arolygon strwythurol Trivallis yn hysbys a'r costau'n dod yn gliriach, ac i weithio gyda mi i ddod â phob parti, gan gynnwys Llywodraeth Cymru, ynghyd i wneud popeth yn ein gallu i gefnogi'r perchnogion tai hyn? 

Thank you very much, Vikki, for that. This is, clearly, a very difficult and distressing time for all of the residents affected on the Gower estate, and we can only imagine what they must be going through as a result of that. You do want to feel that your home is a safe place for you to stay, and this must have been a terrible shock. The feedback from your surgery has highlighted the issues, as you said, affecting private home owners in particular on the estate.

It is a complex matter. The construction of the homes predates devolution by some considerable period, and we are asking the UK Government to consider what it intends to do to support not only Welsh home owners but home owners affected across the UK. As far as we know, we don't have that many in Wales, but across the UK there are quite a few. So, once the survey work has been completed there, we can assess the overall situation, but we are calling for a four-nations approach across the UK now to what is an increasingly obvious problem that much predates devolution and will require some substantial funding to put right.

Diolch am hynny, Vikki. Yn amlwg, mae hwn yn gyfnod anodd a thrallodus iawn i'r holl drigolion yr effeithir arnynt ar ystad Gower, a gallwn ond dychmygu'r hyn y maent yn ei wynebu o ganlyniad i hynny. Rydych chi eisiau teimlo bod eich cartref yn lle diogel i chi aros, ac mae'n rhaid bod hon wedi bod yn sioc ofnadwy. Mae'r adborth o'ch cymhorthfa wedi tynnu sylw at y problemau, fel y dywedoch chi, sy'n effeithio ar berchnogion cartrefi preifat yn enwedig ar yr ystad.

Mae'n fater cymhleth. Mae'r gwaith o adeiladu'r cartrefi yn mynd yn ôl gryn dipyn cyn datganoli, ac rydym yn gofyn i Lywodraeth y DU ystyried yr hyn y mae'n bwriadu ei wneud i gefnogi perchnogion tai Cymru a pherchnogion tai yr effeithiwyd arnynt ledled y DU. Hyd y gwyddom, nid oes gennym gymaint â hynny yng Nghymru, ond ar draws y DU mae cryn dipyn ohonynt. Felly, pan fydd y gwaith arolygu wedi'i gwblhau, gallwn asesu'r sefyllfa gyffredinol, ond rydym yn galw am ddull pedair gwlad ledled y DU nawr o ymdrin â phroblem gynyddol amlwg sy'n mynd yn ôl i'r cyfnod cyn datganoli a bydd angen cyllid sylweddol i'w unioni.

Tenantiaid ag Anifeiliaid Anwes
Tenants with Pets

6. Sut y mae Llywodraeth Cymru yn bwriadu mynd i'r afael â rhagfarn yn erbyn tenantiaid ag anifeiliaid anwes yn y sector rhentu preifat? OQ61056

6. How does the Welsh Government intend to address the issue of prejudice against tenants with pets in the private rental sector? OQ61056

Thank you, Carolyn. Under the Renting Homes (Wales) Act 2016, landlords and contract holders can agree additional terms covering the keeping of pets. Any pet clause should allow a contract holder to ask for permission to keep a pet, and the landlord is not allowed to unreasonably refuse the request.

Diolch, Carolyn. O dan Ddeddf Rhentu Cartrefi (Cymru) 2016, gall landlordiaid a deiliaid contractau gytuno ar delerau ychwanegol sy'n ymwneud â chadw anifeiliaid anwes. Dylai unrhyw gymal anifeiliaid anwes ganiatáu i ddeiliad contract ofyn am ganiatâd i gadw anifail anwes, ac ni chaniateir i'r landlord wrthod y cais yn afresymol.

Thank you for the answer, Cabinet Secretary. Half of households have pets, yet just 7 per cent of rentals are advertised as pet friendly, and it's had significant consequences. In a four-month period, the Dogs Trust had 118 people in Wales inquire about handing over their dogs due to a change in accommodation or rental agreement. The emotional distress this causes for dogs and their owners is huge, but it's also totally unnecessary. Evidence gathered by the Local Government and Housing Committee found that pet owners, in fact, make excellent tenants, as they are more likely to stay in a rental for an extended period of time, and the vast majority of landlords find no pet-related damage to their property whatsoever. So, is the Cabinet Secretary willing to work with the organisations that gave evidence to the committee, such as RSPCA Cymru, Dogs Trust and Cats Protection, to ensure that the right legislation is in place to support current and prospective pet owners?

Diolch am yr ateb, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet. Mae gan hanner yr holl aelwydydd anifeiliaid anwes, ond dim ond 7 y cant o eiddo rhent a hysbysebir fel rhai sy'n croesawu anifeiliaid anwes, ac mae i hynny ganlyniadau sylweddol. Mewn cyfnod o bedwar mis, fe wnaeth 118 o bobl yng Nghymru holi i'r Dogs Trust ynglŷn ag ildio perchnogaeth ar eu cŵn yn sgil newid llety neu newid i gytundeb rhentu. Mae'r gofid emosiynol y mae hyn yn ei achosi i gŵn a'u perchnogion yn enfawr, ond mae hefyd yn gwbl ddiangen. Canfu tystiolaeth a gasglwyd gan y Pwyllgor Llywodraeth Leol a Thai fod perchnogion anifeiliaid anwes yn gwneud tenantiaid rhagorol mewn gwirionedd, am eu bod yn fwy tebygol o aros mewn eiddo rhent am gyfnod estynedig o amser, ac nid yw'r mwyafrif helaeth o landlordiaid yn canfod unrhyw ddifrod i'w heiddo sy'n gysylltiedig ag anifeiliaid anwes. Felly, a yw Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet yn fodlon gweithio gyda'r sefydliadau a roddodd dystiolaeth i'r pwyllgor, megis RSPCA Cymru, Dogs Trust a Cats Protection, i sicrhau bod y ddeddfwriaeth gywir ar waith i gefnogi perchnogion anifeiliaid anwes presennol a darpar berchnogion anifeiliaid anwes?

We're aware of the pet insurance clauses, for example, in the UK Government's Renters (Reform) Bill for England, so we will be considering whether there's something we can do there. I will just reiterate to you that a landlord cannot unreasonably withhold a request to keep a pet. I won't repeat the story I gave in the committee, but it was meant to illustrate that whilst we can all understand that being separated from your beloved dog or cat can be difficult, not all pet owners keep appropriate pets in appropriate circumstances. Jack Sargeant did tell me that I had rendered him speechless with that, so I perhaps won't repeat it here, Llywydd, in case I render everyone speechless. But suffice to say, during the time I worked in a local authority, I found a large number of premises where very unsuitable pets were being kept. So, it is about not separating people from their beloved pet, but also making sure that we don't have a spate of very unsuitable pets, and about the balance.

I absolutely, as a dog and cat owner myself, understand that people don't want to be separated from their pets, that it's hugely traumatic to do so, and that the vast majority of pet owners are responsible and just want somewhere to live in quiet enjoyment with their pet. We do repeatedly make the point via Rent Smart Wales that landlords cannot unreasonably withhold consent to keep a pet, but I am very happy to explore other ways of making sure that the right pet in the right place can be a right for the tenant.

Rydym yn ymwybodol o'r cymalau yswiriant anifeiliaid anwes, er enghraifft, ym Mil Rhentwyr (Diwygio) Llywodraeth y DU ar gyfer Lloegr, felly byddwn yn ystyried a oes rhywbeth y gallwn ei wneud yno. Fe wnaf ailadrodd i chi na all landlord wrthod cais yn afresymol i gadw anifail anwes. Ni wnaf ailadrodd y stori a roddais yn y pwyllgor, ond roedd i fod i ddangos er y gallwn i gyd ddeall y gall cael eich gwahanu oddi wrth eich annwyl gi neu gath fod yn anodd, nid yw pob perchennog anifail anwes yn cadw anifeiliaid anwes priodol mewn amgylchiadau priodol. Dywedodd Jack Sargeant wrthyf ei fod wedi'i daro'n fud gan hynny, felly efallai na wnaf ei ailadrodd yma, Lywydd, rhag i mi daro pawb yn fud. Ond digon yw dweud, yn ystod yr amser y bûm yn gweithio mewn awdurdod lleol, imi ddod o hyd i nifer fawr o leoedd lle roedd anifeiliaid anwes anaddas iawn yn cael eu cadw. Felly, mae'n ymwneud â pheidio â gwahanu pobl oddi wrth eu hannwyl anifeiliaid anwes, a sicrhau hefyd nad oes gennym lu o anifeiliaid anwes hynod anaddas, a sicrhau cydbwysedd.

Fel perchennog ci a chath fy hun, rwy'n deall nad yw pobl eisiau cael eu gwahanu oddi wrth eu hanifeiliaid anwes, fod hynny'n hynod drawmatig, a bod y mwyafrif helaeth o berchnogion anifeiliaid anwes yn gyfrifol a dim ond eisiau rhywle i fyw'n dawel gyda'u hanifail anwes. Rydym yn gwneud y pwynt dro ar ôl tro drwy Rhentu Doeth Cymru na all landlordiaid atal cydsyniad yn afresymol i gadw anifail anwes, ond rwy'n hapus iawn i archwilio ffyrdd eraill o sicrhau bod yr anifail anwes cywir yn y lle cywir yn gallu bod yn hawl i'r tenant.

14:20
Parc Cenedlaethol Newydd
A New National Park

7. A wnaiff yr Ysgrifennydd Cabinet roi diweddariad am gynigion i greu parc cenedlaethol newydd yng ngogledd-ddwyrain Cymru? OQ61067

7. Will the Cabinet Secretary provide an update on proposals to create a new national park in north-east Wales? OQ61067

Diolch, Llyr. The designation of a national park in north-east Wales is a programme for government commitment. We have asked NRW to undertake a programme, including detailed assessment, engagement and consultation. This will inform a final decision, expected in 2025. Additional funding is being allocated to NRW for the designation programme.

Diolch, Llyr. Mae dynodiad parc cenedlaethol yng ngogledd-ddwyrain Cymru yn ymrwymiad yn y rhaglen lywodraethu. Rydym wedi gofyn i CNC gyflawni rhaglen, gan gynnwys asesiad manwl, ymgysylltiad ac ymgynghoriad. Bydd hyn yn llywio penderfyniad terfynol a ddisgwylir yn 2025. Mae cyllid ychwanegol yn cael ei ddyrannu i CNC ar gyfer y rhaglen ddynodi.

Could you tell us whether the designation programme includes the wider considerations around the impact, potentially, of a designation, not just the merits of designating in itself? Because I'm aware that there are potential impacts on affordability of housing in that area for local residents who may be affected inadvertently by the designation. I'm also very aware of the need to invest in appropriate infrastructure, because, as welcome as additional visitors would be, we need to avoid a situation where we replicate some of the challenges that we've seen in Eryri, where there have been parking problems, blocked roads and a lack of sufficient public facilities. So, what assurances can you give us that, as part of the work of preparing towards potentially a new national park in north-east Wales, all of these factors are being considered, beyond just the designation itself?

A allwch chi ddweud wrthym a yw'r rhaglen ddynodi yn cynnwys ystyriaethau ehangach ynghylch effaith dynodiad, o bosibl, ac nid rhinweddau dynodiad yn unig? Oherwydd rwy'n ymwybodol fod yna effeithiau posibl ar fforddiadwyedd tai yn yr ardal honno i drigolion lleol a allai gael eu heffeithio'n anfwriadol gan y dynodiad. Rwyf hefyd yn ymwybodol iawn o'r angen i fuddsoddi mewn seilwaith priodol, oherwydd, er cymaint y byddai'r croeso i ymwelwyr ychwanegol, mae angen inni osgoi sefyllfa lle rydym yn efelychu rhai o'r heriau a welsom yn Eryri, lle cafwyd problemau parcio, ffyrdd wedi'u rhwystro a diffyg cyfleusterau cyhoeddus digonol. Felly, fel rhan o'r gwaith o baratoi ar gyfer y posibilrwydd o barc cenedlaethol newydd yng ngogledd-ddwyrain Cymru, pa sicrwydd y gallwch ei roi i ni fod yr holl ffactorau hyn yn cael eu hystyried, y tu hwnt i'r dynodiad ei hun yn unig?

Absolutely. Part of the designation process is to go through all of the pros and all of the cons, understand what those pros and cons are and take full account of the pros and cons, to see what can be done to overcome any cons, to see what can be done to enhance the pros, and to come to a conclusion that suits the inhabitants of the area. We don't have national parks where nobody lives; we have national parks where people live, work and carry out their ordinary activities.

We have been working with the national parks for some considerable time now to make sure that they are able to enhance and protect the landscapes that they're in. They aren't just there to be a single-purpose planning authority. And so you're absolutely right that we need to go through a process that takes into careful account all of the issues that are around a designation, and they include the pros, which I think people think are obvious, but are perhaps not so obvious. So, it is about enhancing, protecting and recognising very beautiful landscapes across Wales—important landscapes for wildlife and so on—but it is also about making sure that those landscapes are then not subject to overtourism, for example.

I'm very familiar with Pen y Fan in Bannau Brycheiniog and the signs up saying, 'Other mountains are available; please consider going to another mountain'. It's important to do that, isn't it? In Eryri—I was there very recently—I was being told about the number of walkers who consider themselves to be guardians of the environment but think it's fine to drop their banana peel on the road, because they think it's biodegradable. The fact that it's full of things that shouldn't be found in that environment is one of the things that they've been working very hard on, so that people who actually care about the environment understand what happens in that environment as a result of their interaction with it.

I was very sad to see the statistics that show that, on most of the major routes up yr Wyddfa, there's a contamination every 2 ft with some kind of substance that shouldn't be there. So, helping the national parks help their visitors to understand the impact of tourism, and what they can do to enhance that environment and not take away from it, is important. But if we don't designate that landscape, then it doesn't stop that happening; it means that we haven't got the infrastructure in place to assist it to happen. It's both a pro and a con. I just want to use that as an illustration, because what we have to do is look at the complete picture, we have to understand the strength of feeling on both sides—and there is strength of feeling on both sides—we have to work with all of our other authorities in that area, but, in the end, what we're all trying to do is enhance the beauty and the biodiversity of our country in the best way that we can.

Yn sicr. Rhan o'r broses ddynodi yw mynd drwy'r holl fanteision a'r holl anfanteision, deall beth yw'r manteision a'r anfanteision hynny ac ystyried y manteision a'r anfanteision yn llawn, i weld beth y gellir ei wneud i oresgyn unrhyw anfanteision, i weld beth y gellir ei wneud i wella'r manteision, a dod i gasgliad sy'n gweddu i drigolion yr ardal. Nid oes gennym barciau cenedlaethol lle nad oes neb yn byw; mae gennym barciau cenedlaethol lle mae pobl yn byw, yn gweithio ac yn cyflawni eu gweithgareddau arferol.

Rydym wedi bod yn gweithio gyda'r parciau cenedlaethol ers cryn dipyn o amser bellach i sicrhau eu bod yn gallu gwella a gwarchod y tirweddau y maent ynddynt. Nid ydynt yno i fod yn awdurdod cynllunio un pwrpas yn unig. Ac felly rydych chi'n hollol iawn fod angen inni fynd drwy broses sy'n ystyried yr holl faterion sy'n ymwneud â dynodiad yn ofalus, ac maent yn cynnwys y manteision, y mae pobl yn credu eu bod yn amlwg, ond efallai nad ydynt mor amlwg â hynny. Felly, mae'n ymwneud â gwella, diogelu a chydnabod tirweddau hardd iawn ledled Cymru—tirweddau pwysig i fywyd gwyllt ac yn y blaen—ond mae hefyd yn ymwneud â sicrhau nad yw'r tirweddau hynny wedyn yn destun gordwristiaeth, er enghraifft.

Rwy'n gyfarwydd iawn â Phen y Fan ym Mannau Brycheiniog a'r arwyddion sy'n dweud, 'Mae mynyddoedd eraill ar gael; ystyriwch fynd at fynydd arall'. Mae'n bwysig gwneud hynny, onid yw? Yn Eryri—roeddwn yno'n ddiweddar iawn—cefais wybod am y cerddwyr niferus sy'n ystyried eu hunain yn warcheidwaid yr amgylchedd ond sy'n meddwl ei bod hi'n iawn i ollwng eu croen banana ar y ffordd, oherwydd eu bod yn meddwl ei fod yn fioddiraddadwy. Mae'r ffaith ei fod yn llawn o bethau na ddylid eu canfod yn yr amgylchedd hwnnw yn un o'r pethau y maent wedi bod yn gweithio'n galed iawn arno, fel bod pobl sy'n poeni am yr amgylchedd yn deall beth sy'n digwydd yn yr amgylchedd hwnnw o ganlyniad i'w cysylltiad ag ef.

Roeddwn yn drist iawn o weld yr ystadegau sy'n dangos, ar y rhan fwyaf o'r prif lwybrau i fyny'r Wyddfa, fod pob 2 droedfedd wedi'i halogi â rhyw fath o sylwedd na ddylai fod yno. Felly, mae helpu'r parciau cenedlaethol i helpu eu hymwelwyr i ddeall effaith twristiaeth, a'r hyn y gallant ei wneud i wella'r amgylchedd hwnnw a pheidio â thynnu oddi arno, yn bwysig. Ond os nad ydym yn dynodi'r dirwedd honno, nid yw'n atal hynny rhag digwydd; mae'n golygu nad oes gennym y seilwaith ar waith i'w helpu i ddigwydd. Mae'n fantais ac yn anfantais. Rwyf eisiau defnyddio hynny fel eglureb, oherwydd yr hyn sy'n rhaid inni ei wneud yw edrych ar y darlun cyflawn, mae'n rhaid inni ddeall cryfder y teimlad ar y ddwy ochr—ac mae yna deimladau cryfion ar y ddwy ochr—mae'n rhaid inni weithio gyda'n holl awdurdodau eraill yn y maes, ond yn y pen draw, yr hyn y mae pawb ohonom yn ceisio ei wneud yw gwella harddwch a bioamrywiaeth ein gwlad yn y ffordd orau sy'n bosibl.

Y cwestiwn olaf yw cwestiwn 8, Janet Finch-Saunders.

Finally, question 8, Janet Finch-Saunders.

Rhentu Doeth Cymru
Rent Smart Wales

8. A wnaiff yr Ysgrifennydd Cabinet ddatganiad am berfformiad Rhentu Doeth Cymru? OQ61064

8. Will the Cabinet Secretary make a statement on the performance of Rent Smart Wales? OQ61064

Thank you, Janet. I recently commissioned a full external evaluation of Rent Smart Wales's performance. That evaluation is under way and it's due to report later this year.

Diolch, Janet. Yn ddiweddar, comisiynais werthusiad allanol llawn o berfformiad Rhentu Doeth Cymru. Mae'r gwerthusiad hwnnw ar y gweill ac mae disgwyl iddo adrodd yn ddiweddarach eleni.

14:25

Thank you. As you know, Minister, according to a written question I put to you recently, we can now state that this is costing the taxpayer a staggering £49,850. This is a huge amount of money to be spending on a service that, in my eyes, and indeed others in the housing sector, is not fulfilling its duties as well as it could. I am concerned, and I’ll declare an interest, as per my registered published interests in terms of property. Other people have raised with me that there’s not enough done to ensure that private sector landlords who fail to register with Rent Smart Wales are identified. This is not a good look for the thousands of respectable landlords who are conforming with the Renting Homes (Wales) Act. During evidence taken in the climate change committee, it was suggested that, in order to identify private landlords as regards the retrofitting of homes, Rent Smart Wales could widen its brief to provide the data needed to include the private rented sector for retrofitting. Could you please provide some information here today, Cabinet Secretary, on the scope of the review you’re undertaking and what lessons you’ve taken forward as regards the evidence coming forward from our climate change committee? Rent Smart Wales could actually be doing far more positive things, rather than be overbearing on private sector landlords, who then leave the sector, as Mark Isherwood quite accurately stated. Diolch.

Diolch. Fel y gwyddoch, Weinidog, yn ôl cwestiwn ysgrifenedig a ofynnais i chi yn ddiweddar, gallwn ddweud nawr fod hyn yn costio swm anhygoel o £49,850 i'r trethdalwr. Mae hwn yn swm enfawr o arian i'w wario ar wasanaeth nad yw, yn fy marn i, ac eraill yn y sector tai, yn cyflawni ei ddyletswyddau cystal ag y gallai. Rwy'n bryderus, ac rwyf am ddatgan buddiant, yn unol â fy muddiannau cyhoeddedig cofrestredig ynghylch eiddo. Mae pobl eraill wedi nodi wrthyf nad oes digon wedi'i wneud i sicrhau bod landlordiaid sector preifat sy'n methu cofrestru gyda Rhentu Doeth Cymru yn cael eu nodi. Nid yw hyn yn adlewyrchu'n dda ar y miloedd o landlordiaid parchus sy'n cydymffurfio â Deddf Rhentu Cartrefi (Cymru). Yn ystod y dystiolaeth a gymerwyd yn y pwyllgor newid hinsawdd, er mwyn nodi landlordiaid preifat ar gyfer ôl-osod cartrefi, awgrymwyd y gallai Rhentu Doeth Cymru ehangu ei frîff i ddarparu'r data sydd ei angen i gynnwys y sector rhentu preifat ar gyfer ôl-osod. A allech chi roi rhywfaint o wybodaeth yma heddiw, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, am gwmpas yr adolygiad rydych chi'n ei gynnal a pha wersi a ddatblygwyd gennych o ran y dystiolaeth a ddaw gan ein pwyllgor newid hinsawdd? Gallai Rhentu Doeth Cymru fod yn gwneud pethau llawer mwy cadarnhaol mewn gwirionedd, yn hytrach na bod yn or-ddibynnol ar landlordiaid sector preifat, sydd wedyn yn gadael y sector, fel y dywedodd Mark Isherwood yn gywir ddigon. Diolch.

Thank you for that, Janet. Landlords, agents and tenants, as well as their representative bodies, will soon be invited to engage with the evaluation. It is an evaluation of the current working of Rent Smart Wales. It isn’t a consultation about widening the role, just to be clear. I really would like everyone to get involved. We really do want to know what’s working with Rent Smart Wales and what isn’t working, and how we can put that right.

Rent Smart Wales are within their statutory time frames for processing licence applications. The average wait at the moment is a week and a half for the licence. The Rent Smart Wales contact centre is currently running at a 96 per cent answer rate with callers waiting on average under a minute to be answered. Rent Smart Wales are currently issuing an average of 36 fixed penalty notices every month. The most common reason for that is where landlords are found not to have registered or be licensed or both. To date, there have been 263 successful criminal prosecutions of landlords and agents who have breached the requirements of Part 1 of the Housing (Wales) Act 2014, and there have been no unsuccessful prosecutions.

As I said to Mark Isherwood, the statistics are really interesting. We are looking to get underneath them. I hear the anecdotal evidence, too, but it's not borne out in the statistics. What we aren’t able to see from those statistics just yet is, where a landlord sells, whether they’re selling on to another landlord, because we have as many new registrations as we have deregistrations, and the number of properties is not declining, either. But in all honesty, I don’t know quite what that’s showing us. It certainly isn’t showing us a decline, so we’ll be looking to get underneath that. But I don’t think the record of Rent Smart Wales is a failure. I think it’s actually doing very well indeed.

Diolch, Janet. Cyn bo hir, fe wahoddir landlordiaid, asiantau a thenantiaid, yn ogystal â'u cyrff cynrychioliadol, i gymryd rhan yn y gwerthusiad. Mae'n werthusiad o waith presennol Rhentu Doeth Cymru. Nid ymgynghoriad ar ehangu'r rôl ydyw, i fod yn glir. Hoffwn yn fawr i bawb gymryd rhan. Rydym eisiau gwybod beth sy'n gweithio gyda Rhentu Doeth Cymru a'r hyn nad yw'n gweithio, a sut y gallwn unioni hynny.

Mae Rhentu Doeth Cymru o fewn eu fframiau amser statudol ar gyfer prosesu ceisiadau am drwydded. Yr amser aros ar gyfartaledd ar hyn o bryd yw wythnos a hanner am y drwydded. Ar hyn o bryd mae canolfan gyswllt Rhentu Doeth Cymru yn rhedeg ar gyfradd ateb o 96 y cant gyda galwyr yn aros o dan funud ar gyfartaledd i gael eu hateb. Ar hyn o bryd mae Rhentu Doeth Cymru yn cyhoeddi 36 o hysbysiadau cosb benodedig bob mis. Y rheswm mwyaf cyffredin am hynny yw lle canfyddir nad yw landlordiaid wedi eu cofrestru neu eu trwyddedu neu'r ddau. Hyd yn hyn, cafwyd 263 o erlyniadau troseddol llwyddiannus yn erbyn landlordiaid ac asiantau sydd wedi torri gofynion Rhan 1 o Ddeddf Tai (Cymru) 2014, ac ni chafwyd unrhyw erlyniadau aflwyddiannus.

Fel y dywedais wrth Mark Isherwood, mae'r ystadegau'n ddiddorol iawn. Rydym yn ceisio eu dadansoddi. Rwy'n clywed y dystiolaeth anecdotaidd hefyd, ond nid yw wedi ei ategu gan yr ystadegau. Yr hyn na allwn ei weld o'r ystadegau hynny eto, lle mae landlord yn gwerthu, yw a ydynt yn gwerthu ymlaen i landlord arall, oherwydd mae gennym lawn cymaint o gofrestriadau newydd ag o ddatgofrestriadau, ac nid yw nifer yr eiddo'n gostwng, ychwaith. Ond a bod yn onest, nid wyf yn gwybod yn iawn beth mae hynny'n ei ddangos i ni. Yn sicr, nid yw'n dangos dirywiad i ni, felly byddwn yn ceisio dadansoddi hynny. Ond nid wyf yn meddwl bod cyflawniad Rhentu Doeth Cymru yn fethiant. Rwy'n credu ei fod yn gwneud yn dda iawn mewn gwirionedd.

Diolch i'r Ysgrifennydd Cabinet.

I thank the Cabinet Secretary.

2. Cwestiynau i Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet dros Addysg
2. Questions to the Cabinet Secretary for Education

Yr eitem nesaf yw cwestiynau i Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet dros Addysg. Mae'r cwestiwn cyntaf gan Delyth Jewell.

The next item is questions to the Cabinet Secretary for Education. The first question is from Delyth Jewell.

Mesur Teithio gan Ddysgwyr (Cymru) 2008
The Learner Travel (Wales) Measure 2008

1. Pa drafodaethau y mae’r Ysgrifennydd Cabinet wedi eu cynnal ag Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet dros Ogledd Cymru a Thrafnidiaeth ynglyn â Mesur Teithio gan Ddysgwr (Cymru) 2008? OQ61057

1. What discussions has the Cabinet Secretary had with the Cabinet Secretary for North Wales and Transport regarding the Learner Travel (Wales) Measure 2008? OQ61057

Diolch, Delyth. The Cabinet Secretary for North Wales and Transport and I are currently in discussions regarding his plans for learner travel in Wales.

Diolch, Delyth. Ar hyn o bryd mae Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet dros Ogledd Cymru a Thrafnidiaeth a minnau mewn trafodaethau ynghylch ei gynlluniau ar gyfer teithio gan ddysgwyr yng Nghymru.

Diolch yn fawr iawn am hynna. Mae gennym ni sefyllfa eithriadol o niweidiol ar hyn o bryd. Oherwydd toriadau cyllidebau, mae ansicrwydd mewn sawl awdurdod lleol ynglŷn â dyfodol cludiant ysgol. Mae’n golygu y bydd rhai plant nawr yn methu â fforddio cyrraedd yr ysgol. Fel dwi wedi codi yn barod gydag Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet dros drafnidiaeth, bydd effaith arbennig o wael ar ysgolion cyfrwng Cymraeg. Mewn ardaloedd fel y Cymoedd, mae’n cymryd naid i rieni ddanfon eu plant at ysgol Gymraeg. Mae gwneud i ffwrdd â chludiant rhad ac am ddim yn ychwanegu her newydd yn y ffordd, a rhwystr, achos mae catchment areas ysgolion Cymraeg yn y llefydd hyn yn tueddu i fod lot yn fwy, a bydd yn amhosibl i nifer o rieni yrru eu plant i’r ysgol. Dwi'n gwybod eich bod chi’n deall pa mor bwysig yw hi ein bod ni’n gadael i rieni gael y dewis i ddanfon eu plant i ysgol Gymraeg, felly rwy’n croesawu’r ffaith eich bod chi’n cynnal trafodaethau, yn sicr. Pa waith fyddwch chi’n ei wneud gyda’r Ysgrifennydd Cabinet dros drafnidiaeth i flaenoriaethu hyn a gwneud yn siŵr bod pob plentyn yn medru cyrraedd yr ysgol, a bod y niferoedd sy’n dysgu’r Gymraeg ddim chwaith yn dioddef fel canlyniad i'r toriadau? Diolch.

Thank you very much for that. We are facing an extremely damaging situation at the moment. Due to budget cuts, there is uncertainty in many local authorities regarding the future of school transport. It means that some children will now be unable to afford to get to school. As I’ve already raised with the Cabinet Secretary for transport, there will be a particularly detrimental impact on Welsh-medium schools in areas such as the Valleys. It takes a great leap for non-Welsh-speaking parents to send their children to Welsh language schools. Doing away with free transport adds a new barrier, because the catchment areas of Welsh language schools in these places tend to be much larger, and it will be impossible for many parents to drive their children to school. I know you understand how important it is that we let parents have the choice of sending their children to a Welsh language school, so I welcome the fact that you’re having discussions. But what work will you undertake with the Cabinet Secretary for transport to prioritise this and to make sure that all children are able to get to school, and that the numbers learning Welsh don't suffer either as a result of these cuts? Thank you.

14:30

Thank you very much, Delyth. Obviously, I recognise the challenges that lots of families are facing at the moment during the cost-of-living crisis. You’ll be aware that all local authorities have to provide free transport according to the Learner Travel (Wales) Measure 2008. You’ll also be aware that this is a complex area and that a review of the Measure was published in 2022 and a further analysis and evaluation exercise were undertaken last year. The former Deputy Minister for Climate Change issued a statement and published a recommendations report in March this year and that outlined a modest, practical pathway to improve learner travel provision in Wales.

Although the report does not recommend any changes to the current legislation, it does recommend a comprehensive update to the statutory guidance to amplify the legislation that has been introduced over the past 10 years, to ensure that all delivery partners are aware of their obligations across a range of policy areas, including additional learning needs, Welsh language, as well as active travel.

I have discussed this with the Cabinet Secretary and one of the things I’m very heartened by is that there’s going to be a stronger focus on the views of children and young people. There’s been consultation with children and young people. We are strengthening the role of children and young people in the work that we’re doing with Transport for Wales. And I think it is really important that we hear their voices as we refine this policy and ensure that it is implemented consistently across Wales in the interest of all learners.

Diolch yn fawr iawn, Delyth. Yn amlwg, rwy'n cydnabod yr heriau y mae llawer o deuluoedd yn eu hwynebu ar hyn o bryd yn ystod yr argyfwng costau byw. Fe fyddwch yn ymwybodol fod yn rhaid i bob awdurdod lleol ddarparu cludiant am ddim yn unol â Mesur Teithio gan Ddysgwyr (Cymru) 2008. Fe fyddwch yn ymwybodol hefyd fod hwn yn faes cymhleth a bod adolygiad o'r Mesur wedi'i gyhoeddi yn 2022 a bod ymarfer dadansoddi a gwerthuso pellach wedi'i gynnal y llynedd. Cyhoeddodd y cyn Ddirprwy Weinidog Newid Hinsawdd ddatganiad a chyhoeddodd adroddiad argymhellion ym mis Mawrth eleni ac roedd hwnnw'n amlinellu llwybr cymedrol, ymarferol i wella'r ddarpariaeth teithio gan ddysgwyr yng Nghymru.

Er nad yw'r adroddiad yn argymell unrhyw newidiadau i'r ddeddfwriaeth bresennol, mae'n argymell diweddariad cynhwysfawr i'r canllawiau statudol i ymhelaethu ar y ddeddfwriaeth a gyflwynwyd dros y 10 mlynedd diwethaf, er mwyn sicrhau bod yr holl bartneriaid cyflenwi yn ymwybodol o'u rhwymedigaethau ar draws ystod o feysydd polisi, gan gynnwys anghenion dysgu ychwanegol, y Gymraeg, yn ogystal â theithio llesol.

Rwyf wedi trafod hyn gydag Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet ac un o'r pethau sydd wedi codi fy nghalon yw y bydd ffocws mwy cadarn ar farn plant a phobl ifanc. Cafwyd ymgynghoriad gyda phlant a phobl ifanc. Rydym yn cryfhau rôl plant a phobl ifanc yn y gwaith a wnawn gyda Trafnidiaeth Cymru. Ac rwy'n credu ei bod yn bwysig iawn ein bod yn clywed eu lleisiau wrth inni fireinio'r polisi hwn a sicrhau ei fod yn cael ei weithredu'n gyson ledled Cymru er budd pob dysgwr.

Cabinet Secretary, I very much agree with the points that Delyth made in her question, but my question is similar but different. Currently, learners are entitled to free school transport to their nearest Welsh-medium school, but they're not entitled to receive free school transport to their nearest English-medium school, if a Welsh-medium school is in closer proximity to them. So, this does bring a real equality issue here and a discrimination against parents who, for whatever reason, may want to see their children learn through the language of English.

Now, I did raise this with your predecessor earlier this year. I got quite a good answer, to be fair. The Minister said at the time that it won't be possible in the short term to amend the legislation that underpins learner travel, but there will be opportunities to update the statutory guidance over the course of the next year. And he went on to say that he hopes that this change in statutory guidance will be able to address some of the kind of issues that I raise. So, I wonder, Cabinet Secretary, if you can give some indication of when you're going to be looking at this statutory guidance and when we'll be able to see the change that's needed in order to address the issues that I've raised with your predecessor and now again today with yourself.

Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, rwy'n cytuno'n fawr â'r pwyntiau a wnaeth Delyth yn ei chwestiwn, ond mae fy nghwestiwn innau'n debyg ond yn wahanol. Ar hyn o bryd, mae gan ddysgwyr hawl i gludiant ysgol am ddim i'w hysgol cyfrwng Cymraeg agosaf, ond nid oes ganddynt hawl i gael cludiant ysgol am ddim i'w hysgol cyfrwng Saesneg agosaf, os oes ysgol cyfrwng Cymraeg yn agosach atynt. Felly, mae mater  cydraddoldeb go iawn yn codi yma a gwahaniaethu yn erbyn rhieni sydd, am ba reswm bynnag, am weld eu plant yn dysgu trwy gyfrwng y Saesneg.

Fe wneuthum godi hyn gyda'ch rhagflaenydd yn gynharach eleni. Cefais ateb da, i fod yn deg. Dywedodd y Gweinidog ar y pryd na fydd modd diwygio'r ddeddfwriaeth sy'n sail i deithio gan ddysgwyr yn y tymor byr, ond bydd cyfleoedd i ddiweddaru'r canllawiau statudol yn ystod y flwyddyn nesaf. Ac aeth ymlaen i ddweud ei fod yn gobeithio y bydd y newid hwn yn y canllawiau statudol yn gallu mynd i'r afael â rhai o'r mathau o faterion yr wyf yn eu codi. Felly, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, a allwch roi rhyw syniad pryd y byddwch yn edrych ar y canllawiau statudol hyn a phryd y byddwn yn gallu gweld y newid sydd ei angen er mwyn mynd i'r afael â'r materion yr wyf wedi'u codi gyda'ch rhagflaenydd a nawr eto heddiw gyda chi.

Thank you very much, Russell, I wasn’t aware of that situation in your constituency, so it’s very helpful to know that. I think I’m in the same place as my predecessor, really. Obviously, we want to make sure that the legislation is working for children and young people and their families wherever they are in Wales. The review of the statutory guidance is being taken forward by my colleague Ken Skates. I will impress upon him how important it is that that work is progressed as a matter of urgency.

I think the issues that I’ve raised with Delyth around the need to hear the voices of children and young people will help with the kind of conversation that you’ve raised today. I’ve had particular issues in my own constituency with transport to faith schools, so I do think there is a lot of scope for improvement by working proactively with local authorities to ensure that we spread good practice and provide better consistency. There is already some discretion within the guidance that local authorities have. So, I think it’s about trying to work with them, notwithstanding the financial climate, to try and bring them all up to the level of the best.

Diolch yn fawr iawn, Russell, nid oeddwn yn ymwybodol o'r sefyllfa honno yn eich etholaeth, felly mae'n ddefnyddiol iawn gwybod hynny. Rwy'n credu fy mod yn yr un lle â fy rhagflaenydd, mewn gwirionedd. Yn amlwg, rydym am sicrhau bod y ddeddfwriaeth yn gweithio i blant a phobl ifanc a'u teuluoedd ble bynnag y maent yng Nghymru. Mae'r adolygiad o'r canllawiau statudol yn cael ei gynnal gan fy nghyd-Aelod, Ken Skates. Byddaf yn gwneud yn siŵr ei fod yn gwybod pa mor bwysig yw hi fod y gwaith hwnnw'n cael ei wneud ar frys.

Rwy'n credu y bydd y materion a godais gyda Delyth ynghylch yr angen i glywed lleisiau plant a phobl ifanc yn helpu gyda'r math o sgwrs a grybwyllwyd gennych heddiw. Rwyf wedi cael problemau penodol yn fy etholaeth fy hun gyda chludiant i ysgolion ffydd, felly rwy'n credu bod llawer o gyfle i wella drwy weithio'n rhagweithiol gydag awdurdodau lleol i sicrhau ein bod yn lledaenu arferion da ac yn darparu gwell cysondeb. Mae rhywfaint o ddisgresiwn eisoes o fewn y canllawiau sydd gan awdurdodau lleol. Felly, rwy'n credu bod hyn yn ymwneud â cheisio gweithio gyda nhw, er gwaethaf yr hinsawdd ariannol, i geisio eu codi i gyd i lefel y goreuon.

Dysgu yn yr Awyr Agored
Outdoor Learning

2. Beth mae Llywodraeth Cymru yn ei wneud i hyrwyddo manteision dysgu yn yr awyr agored? OQ61037

2. What is the Welsh Government doing to promote the benefits of outdoor learning? OQ61037

The benefits of outdoor learning are promoted through the Curriculum for Wales. We know it is a key enabler for children to explore, practise and enhance their skills whilst supporting their social, emotional, spiritual and physical development.

Mae manteision dysgu yn yr awyr agored yn cael eu hyrwyddo drwy'r Cwricwlwm i Gymru. Rydym yn gwybod ei fod yn alluogwr allweddol i blant archwilio, ymarfer a gwella eu sgiliau gan gefnogi eu datblygiad cymdeithasol, emosiynol, ysbrydol a chorfforol ar yr un pryd.

14:35

Cabinet Secretary, I recently had the pleasure of welcoming my colleague Sam Rowlands to Pembrokeshire. Together, we visited two businesses that provide residential stays for schools and colleges, to discuss his Residential Outdoor Education (Wales) Bill, which, unfortunately, the Welsh Government did not support. Now, we visited Dale Fort field centre, in the south of my constituency, and Farms for City Children, which is based just outside St Davids. Both of these providers have first-class facilities and can offer so many positive experiences to schools and colleges. And so, Cabinet Secretary, in light of the residential outdoor education Bill no longer going forward, can you tell us what the Welsh Government will now be doing to foster relationships between schools and businesses like these so that as many children and young people as possible can benefit from the experiences that these providers actually offer?

Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, cefais y pleser o groesawu fy nghyd-Aelod Sam Rowlands i sir Benfro yn ddiweddar. Gyda'n gilydd, fe wnaethom ymweld â dau fusnes sy'n darparu arosiadau preswyl i ysgolion a cholegau, i drafod ei Fil Addysg Awyr Agored Breswyl (Cymru), na wnaeth Llywodraeth Cymru ei gefnogi, yn anffodus. Nawr, fe wnaethom ymweld â chanolfan maes Caer Dale, yn ne fy etholaeth, a Ffermydd i Blant y Ddinas, sydd wedi'i leoli ychydig y tu allan i Dyddewi. Mae gan y ddau ddarparwr hyn gyfleusterau o'r radd flaenaf a gallant gynnig cymaint o brofiadau cadarnhaol i ysgolion a cholegau. Ac felly, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, gan na fydd y Bil addysg awyr agored breswyl yn mynd yn ei flaen mwyach, a allwch ddweud wrthym beth y bydd Llywodraeth Cymru yn ei wneud nawr i feithrin cysylltiadau rhwng ysgolion a busnesau fel y rhain fel y gall cymaint o blant a phobl ifanc â phosibl elwa o'r profiadau y mae'r darparwyr hyn yn eu cynnig?

Thank you very much, Paul. Can I just assure you that we do indeed recognise the unique value of outdoor learning and the benefit it brings for children and young people, including supporting the development of healthy and active lifestyles, developing problem-solving skills, and understanding and respecting nature and the environment in which they live? Outdoor learning is already recognised within the Curriculum for Wales as a key feature of successful pedagogy, and that can be whether it's within an educational setting, the wider community, a forest, beach or mountain—they all offer authentic experiences.

Obviously, I recognise that the Government didn't support Sam Rowlands's Bill, but I am very grateful to Sam for the work that he did on the Bill and the profile that he has given to this issue. You'll be aware, I'm sure, from the debate, that we had our reasons for not supporting the Bill; they were partly legal, curricular and financial. But I did have constructive discussions with Sam, who put forward a range of alternative options for taking forward this work, and I've asked officials to look at all those options, and will be having, hopefully, further discussions with Sam. I assure you that outdoor learning is already fully embedded in our curriculum, but we don't see this as a one-off thing for a week in the summer or whenever. This is something we want children and young people to be benefiting from all the time.

Diolch yn fawr iawn, Paul. A gaf i eich sicrhau ein bod yn cydnabod gwerth unigryw dysgu yn yr awyr agored a'r budd y mae'n ei gynnig i blant a phobl ifanc, gan gynnwys cefnogi datblygiad ffyrdd iach ac egnïol o fyw, datblygu sgiliau datrys problemau, a deall a pharchu natur a'r amgylchedd y maent yn byw ynddo? Mae dysgu yn yr awyr agored eisoes yn cael ei gydnabod o fewn y Cwricwlwm i Gymru fel nodwedd allweddol o addysgeg lwyddiannus, boed hynny o fewn lleoliad addysg, y gymuned ehangach, coedwig, traeth neu fynydd—maent oll yn cynnig profiadau dilys.

Yn amlwg, rwy'n cydnabod na wnaeth y Llywodraeth gefnogi Bil Sam Rowlands, ond rwy'n ddiolchgar iawn i Sam am y gwaith a wnaeth ar y Bil a'r proffil y mae wedi'i roi i'r mater hwn. Fe fyddwch yn ymwybodol, rwy'n siŵr, o'r ddadl, fod gennym ein rhesymau dros beidio â chefnogi'r Bil; roeddent yn rhannol gyfreithiol, yn gwricwlaidd ac yn ariannol. Ond cefais drafodaethau adeiladol gyda Sam, a gyflwynodd amrywiaeth o opsiynau amgen ar gyfer bwrw ymlaen â'r gwaith hwn, ac rwyf wedi gofyn i swyddogion edrych ar yr holl opsiynau hynny, a byddaf yn cael trafodaethau pellach gyda Sam, gobeithio. Rwy'n eich sicrhau bod dysgu yn yr awyr agored eisoes wedi'i ymgorffori'n llawn yn ein cwricwlwm, ond nid ydym yn gweld hyn fel rhywbeth untro am wythnos yn yr haf neu pryd bynnag. Mae'n rhywbeth yr ydym am i blant a phobl ifanc elwa ohono drwy'r amser.

Cwestiynau Heb Rybudd gan Lefarwyr y Pleidiau
Questions Without Notice from Party Spokespeople

Cwestiynau nawr gan lefarwyr y pleidiau. Llefarydd y Ceidwadwyr, Tom Giffard.

Questions now from the party spokespeople. The Conservative spokesperson, Tom Giffard.

Diolch yn fawr iawn, Llywydd. It's the issue that won't go away—the First Minister's iMessages. Let's remind ourselves of what he said:

'I'm deleting the messages in this group. They can be captured in an FOI and I think we are all in the right place on the choice being made.'

Now, it's widely reported that the choice that was being made at the time was around the decision around exam grades, predicted grades and algorithms at the time. It appears that this relates to a Labour group meeting, or a meeting of Labour Members of the Senedd, to bring them up to speed, if you like, with what the Government was proposing to do. So, can you confirm that that was the nature of that meeting, and were you in it?

Diolch yn fawr iawn, Lywydd. Dyma fater na fydd yn diflannu—iMessages y Prif Weinidog. Gadewch inni atgoffa ein hunain o'r hyn a ddywedodd:

'Rwy'n dileu'r negeseuon yn y grŵp hwn. Gellir eu dal mewn cais rhyddid gwybodaeth ac rwy'n credu ein bod i gyd yn y lle iawn ar y dewis sy'n cael ei wneud.'

Nawr, adroddir yn eang mai'r dewis a oedd yn cael ei wneud ar y pryd oedd y penderfyniad ynghylch graddau arholiadau, graddau rhagfynegol ac algorithmau ar y pryd. Mae'n ymddangos bod hyn yn ymwneud â chyfarfod grŵp Llafur, neu gyfarfod Aelodau Llafur y Senedd, i'w diweddaru, os mynnwch, ar yr hyn yr oedd y Llywodraeth yn bwriadu ei wneud. Felly, a allwch gadarnhau mai dyna oedd natur y cyfarfod hwnnw, ac a oeddech chi ynddo?

Thank you for that question. I am really concerned about the way a message, which was basically a chat after a group meeting, has been blown up into the thing that it has been blown up into. I do actually remember the group meeting. I was Chair of the Children, Young People and Education Committee at the time. And I can tell you that there were no decisions made at that meeting. The meeting was there to give Labour Members, including myself, the opportunity to discuss what had happened the week before, which had been a very challenging week for children and young people, and the Government, to give us the opportunity to air what was happening in our constituencies. And to the best of my recollection, there were absolutely no decisions made in that meeting. It was simply a method of updating the Labour group on the actions that were being taken to support young people through this period. And indeed, you'll recall that the Cabinet Secretary for education at that time, who I hold in the highest regard, was Kirsty Williams, who wasn't even in the Labour group.

Diolch am y cwestiwn hwnnw. Rwy'n bryderus iawn am y ffordd y mae neges, a oedd yn y bôn yn sgwrs ar ôl cyfarfod grŵp, wedi cael cymaint o sylw. Rwy'n cofio'r cyfarfod grŵp mewn gwirionedd. Roeddwn yn Gadeirydd y Pwyllgor Plant, Pobl Ifanc ac Addysg ar y pryd. A gallaf ddweud wrthych na wnaed unrhyw benderfyniadau yn y cyfarfod hwnnw. Roedd y cyfarfod yno i roi cyfle i Aelodau Llafur, gan fy nghynnwys i, drafod yr hyn a ddigwyddodd yr wythnos flaenorol, a oedd wedi bod yn wythnos heriol iawn i blant a phobl ifanc, a'r Llywodraeth, i roi cyfle inni leisio'r hyn oedd yn digwydd yn ein hetholaethau. Ac yn ôl yr hyn a gofiaf, ni wnaed unrhyw benderfyniadau o gwbl yn y cyfarfod hwnnw. Dull ydoedd o ddiweddaru'r grŵp Llafur ar y camau a oedd yn cael eu cymryd i gefnogi pobl ifanc drwy'r cyfnod hwn. Ac yn wir, fe gofiwch mai Kirsty Williams, y mae gennyf barch mawr tuag ati, oedd Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet dros addysg ar y pryd, ac nid oedd hi yn y grŵp Llafur hyd yn oed.

Thank you very much for that response. Obviously, it does raise a number of questions. I think you mentioned it being 'blown up', but, obviously, the First Minister yesterday denied the messages were to do with pandemic handling, but they seem now to be a reflection on what happened in that meeting, and that may be as relevant to the work of the COVID inquiry as the decision-making processes themselves.

Now, it does raise a wider question, and I'm reassured by your answer to the previous question, that you said that no decisions were made in that meeting, but such a meeting was not available to Members of other groups in the Senedd at that point. I've checked with our group—there was no invitation around that period, in August 2020, for Conservative Members to have that briefing, if you like, from the Welsh Government in terms of education policy handling at that moment in time; it was just available to Labour Members. And it does raise a wider question about how much influence and information was available to Labour MSs before decisions were made public. As Chair of the children and young people's committee at the time, can you speak to the nature of the education decisions that you were aware of before they were being made public? 

Diolch yn fawr am yr ateb hwnnw. Wrth gwrs, mae'n codi nifer o gwestiynau. Rwy'n credu ichi ddweud ei fod wedi cael 'cymaint o sylw', ond yn amlwg, fe wadodd y Prif Weinidog ddoe fod y negeseuon yn ymwneud ag ymdrin â'r pandemig, ond ymddengys eu bod bellach yn adlewyrchiad o'r hyn a ddigwyddodd yn y cyfarfod hwnnw, a gallai hynny fod yr un mor berthnasol i waith yr ymchwiliad COVID â'r prosesau gwneud penderfyniadau eu hunain.

Nawr, mae'n codi cwestiwn ehangach, ac rwyf wedi cael sicrwydd gan eich ateb i'r cwestiwn blaenorol, eich bod wedi dweud na wnaed unrhyw benderfyniadau yn y cyfarfod hwnnw, ond nid oedd cyfarfod o'r fath ar gael i Aelodau o grwpiau eraill yn y Senedd ar y pwynt hwnnw. Rwyf wedi gwirio gyda'n grŵp—ni chafwyd gwahoddiad yn ystod y cyfnod hwnnw, ym mis Awst 2020, i Aelodau Ceidwadol gael y briff hwnnw, os mynnwch, gan Lywodraeth Cymru ar y dull o drin polisi addysg ar yr adeg honno; roedd ar gael i Aelodau Llafur yn unig. Ac mae'n codi cwestiwn ehangach ynglŷn â faint o ddylanwad a gwybodaeth oedd ar gael i Aelodau Llafur o'r Senedd cyn i benderfyniadau gael eu cyhoeddi. Fel Cadeirydd y pwyllgor plant a phobl ifanc ar y pryd, a allwch chi sôn am natur y penderfyniadau addysg yr oeddech yn ymwybodol ohonynt cyn iddynt gael eu cyhoeddi? 

14:40

Well, I think this is a bit desperate, I've got to say that, Tom. And I am a little bit disappointed, really, that you haven't used your questions for something that is more directly related to education. This was four years ago. I was a backbencher and a Chair of the committee throughout the height of the pandemic, and I can tell you that the Government worked really collaboratively with all parties. There were regular meetings with the health committee, which was all-party. There were regular meetings with the Children, Young People and Education Committee. I understand that there was a core group of party leaders that was kept up to date with what was going on, and any group could have asked a Government Minister for a briefing or a discussion about anything that was happening at any time. In fact, I think the Government was open and inclusive to a fault, really. You couldn't see a bigger contrast with what was going on in the UK Government. 

The meeting that you've referred to—there were no decisions taken. It was simply to allow Labour Members to talk about what was happening in their constituencies, which is entirely an acceptable thing to do. The decisions were already taken before. As committee Chair, I was invited to briefings with Qualifications Wales, who set out the mechanism that would be put in place to deal with the exam results. So, a lot of this planning was put in place long before that time. This group meeting was purely an opportunity for Labour Members to raise our concerns, which, as someone who's been a backbencher for a long time, we do like to do from time to time.  

Wel, rwy'n credu eich bod yn crafu gwaelod y gasgen, mae'n rhaid imi ddweud hynny, Tom. Ac rwyf ychydig yn siomedig, mewn gwirionedd, nad ydych wedi defnyddio eich cwestiynau ar gyfer rhywbeth sy'n ymwneud yn fwy uniongyrchol ag addysg. Roedd hyn bedair blynedd yn ôl. Roeddwn yn aelod o'r meinciau cefn ac yn Gadeirydd y pwyllgor pan oedd y pandemig ar ei anterth, a gallaf ddweud wrthych fod y Llywodraeth wedi gweithio ar y cyd â phob plaid. Roedd cyfarfodydd rheolaidd gyda'r pwyllgor iechyd, a oedd yn cynnwys pob plaid. Cafwyd cyfarfodydd rheolaidd gyda'r Pwyllgor Plant, Pobl Ifanc ac Addysg. Rwy'n deall bod grŵp craidd o arweinwyr pleidiau yn cael y wybodaeth ddiweddaraf am yr hyn oedd yn digwydd, a gallai unrhyw grŵp fod wedi gofyn i Weinidog y Llywodraeth am friff neu drafodaeth am unrhyw beth oedd yn digwydd ar unrhyw adeg. Mewn gwirionedd, rwy'n credu bod y Llywodraeth yn hynod agored a chynhwysol. Roedd cyferbyniad enfawr rhwng hynny a'r hyn oedd yn digwydd yn Llywodraeth y DU. 

O ran y cyfarfod y cyfeirioch chi ato—ni wnaed unrhyw benderfyniadau. Yn syml, roedd yn caniatáu i Aelodau Llafur siarad am yr hyn oedd yn digwydd yn eu hetholaethau, sy'n beth cwbl dderbyniol i'w wneud. Roedd y penderfyniadau eisoes wedi'u gwneud cyn hynny. Fel Cadeirydd pwyllgor, cefais wahoddiad i sesiynau briffio gyda Cymwysterau Cymru, a oedd yn nodi'r mecanwaith a fyddai'n cael ei roi ar waith i ymdrin â chanlyniadau arholiadau. Felly, rhoddwyd llawer o'r cynllunio hwn ar waith ymhell cyn yr amser hwnnw. Y cyfan oedd y cyfarfod grŵp hwn oedd cyfle i Aelodau Llafur fynegi ein pryderon, sydd, fel rhywun sydd wedi bod yn aelod o'r meinciau cefn ers amser maith, yn rhywbeth rydym yn hoffi ei wneud o bryd i'w gilydd.  

You said that the Labour Government had been open and inclusive to a fault; I don't think many people will think that about the First Minister with the couple of weeks he's had in office. Now, it raises a series of questions, and you raised one with me—why am I raising this today? And I think it is incredibly important we're raising this today, because, obviously, we're still dealing with the impact. Obviously, our schools today are still dealing with the impact of the decisions that were made during the pandemic. And the purpose of the COVID inquiry, and the review of the decisions made, is because it will inform future work, including the work that you're doing today, should we ever be in that situation again, about the decisions that were made, and how they were made at the time. That's the relevance, Cabinet Secretary, of this line of questioning.

Now, it doesn't appear that the First Minister has been sufficiently forthcoming with the evidence that he's provided to the UK COVID inquiry. So, there is a module, in full, to come, on education and how that was handled during the pandemic. Will you commit to a review within your department, as a new Minister, of all the information that was stored about pandemic handling to do with education, and whether everything that could have been submitted to the COVID inquiry has been submitted? Will you commission that new review into that work now? 

Fe ddywedoch chi fod y Llywodraeth Lafur wedi bod yn hynod agored a chynhwysol; nid wyf yn credu y bydd llawer o bobl yn meddwl hynny am y Prif Weinidog gyda'r ychydig wythnosau y mae wedi bod yn y swydd. Nawr, mae'n codi cyfres o gwestiynau, ac fe wnaethoch chi ofyn un i mi—pam fy mod yn codi hyn heddiw? Ac rwy'n credu ei bod yn hynod bwysig ein bod yn codi hyn heddiw, oherwydd, yn amlwg, rydym yn dal i ymdrin â'r effaith. Yn amlwg, mae ein hysgolion heddiw yn dal i ymdrin ag effaith y penderfyniadau a wnaed yn ystod y pandemig. A phwrpas yr ymchwiliad COVID, a'r adolygiad o'r penderfyniadau a wnaed, yw y bydd yn llywio gwaith yn y dyfodol, gan gynnwys y gwaith rydych chi'n ei wneud heddiw, pe baem yn y sefyllfa honno eto, am y penderfyniadau a wnaed, a sut y cawsant eu gwneud ar y pryd. Dyna pam y mae'r cwestiynau hyn yn berthnasol, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet.

Nawr, nid yw'n ymddangos bod y Prif Weinidog wedi bod yn ddigon agored gyda'r dystiolaeth y mae wedi'i darparu i ymchwiliad COVID y DU. Felly, mae modiwl llawn i ddod ar addysg a sut y cafodd hynny ei drin yn ystod y pandemig. A wnewch chi ymrwymo i adolygiad o fewn eich adran, fel Gweinidog newydd, o'r holl wybodaeth a gafodd ei storio am y ffordd yr ymdriniwyd â'r pandemig mewn perthynas ag addysg, ac a yw popeth y gellid bod wedi'i gyflwyno i'r ymchwiliad COVID wedi'i gyflwyno? A wnewch chi gomisiynu adolygiad newydd i'r gwaith hwnnw nawr? 

Thank you for that final question, and can I say that I do believe the First Minister has given all the information he was required to to the COVID inquiry? He's made absolutely clear he's very willing to continue answering questions from the COVID inquiry. I think the education module that will be coming down the track is a very important module. It's really important that we have that focus on how the pandemic impacted on children and young people. I wasn't a Minister at the time, but, as far as I can see, there wouldn't be a need for an extensive review because all sorts of detailed information will have to be provided. I know colleagues who've had suitcases of information that they've submitted to the inquiry, so I'm confident. The former First Minister was also very clear—we were going to be open-book about everything. I am very confident that the inquiry will have all the information they need, and, certainly, as Cabinet Secretary, I would want to make sure that if there's anything I can do to assist that, I will. 

Diolch am y cwestiwn olaf hwnnw, ac a gaf i ddweud fy mod yn credu bod y Prif Weinidog wedi rhoi'r holl wybodaeth yr oedd gofyn iddo ei rhoi i'r ymchwiliad COVID? Mae wedi dweud yn hollol glir ei fod yn barod iawn i barhau i ateb cwestiynau gan yr ymchwiliad COVID. Rwy'n credu bod y modiwl addysg sydd ar y ffordd yn fodiwl pwysig iawn. Mae'n bwysig iawn ein bod yn canolbwyntio ar sut yr effeithiodd y pandemig ar blant a phobl ifanc. Nid oeddwn yn Weinidog ar y pryd, ond hyd y gwelaf, ni fyddai angen adolygiad helaeth oherwydd bydd yn rhaid darparu pob math o wybodaeth fanwl. Rwy'n adnabod cydweithwyr sydd wedi cyflwyno llond cesys o wybodaeth i'r ymchwiliad, felly rwy'n hyderus. Roedd y cyn Brif Weinidog hefyd yn glir iawn—roeddem am fod yn agored am bopeth. Rwy'n hyderus iawn y bydd gan yr ymchwiliad yr holl wybodaeth sydd ei hangen arnynt, ac yn sicr, fel Ysgrifennydd Cabinet, hoffwn wneud yn siŵr, os oes unrhyw beth y gallaf ei wneud i gynorthwyo hynny, y byddaf yn ei wneud. 

14:45

Llefarydd Plaid Cymru, Heledd Fychan. 

The Plaid Cymru spokesperson, Heledd Fychan. 

Diolch, Llywydd. Ysgrifennydd Cabinet, hoffwn ofyn ichi heddiw ynglŷn â hyfforddi, recriwtio a chadw athrawon. Mae’r niferoedd sydd yn dysgu yn dal yn llawer is na'r hyn sydd ei angen arnom i wireddu holl amcanion y Llywodraeth o ran addysg. Yn 2021-22, cafodd 2,292 o swyddi dysgu eu hysbysebu, tra gadawodd 1,175 o athrawon y proffesiwn—cymysgedd o adael am broffesiwn arall ac ymddeol. Ond mi oedd 325 ohonyn nhw gyda llai na phum mlynedd o brofiad. Mae hyn yn arbennig o heriol mewn ysgolion cyfrwng Cymraeg, ac rydyn ni'n gyson yn methu â chyrraedd targedau 'Cymraeg 2050' y Llywodraeth o ran y niferoedd sydd angen eu recriwtio heddiw, heb sôn am y dyfodol. Mater arall, wrth gwrs, sydd yn peri pryder yw diogelwch staff yn ein hysgolion. Sut ydych chi am sicrhau ein bod ni'n mynd i’r afael â'r bwlch yn y gweithlu, a sicrhau bod dysgu yn swydd ddeniadol? 

Thank you, Llywydd. Cabinet Secretary, I would like to ask you today about teacher training, recruitment and retention. The numbers going into teaching are still far below than what we need to achieve all of the Government’s education objectives. In 2021-22, 2,292 teaching posts were advertised, while 1,175 teachers left the profession—a combination of leaving to go to another profession and retirement. Indeed, 325 of them had fewer than five years' experience. This is especially challenging in Welsh-medium schools, and we are consistently failing to reach the Government’s 'Cymraeg 2050' targets in terms of the numbers that we need to recruit today, never mind in the future. Another issue, of course, that is a source of concern is the safety of staff at our schools. How are you going to ensure that we're going to tackle the workforce gap and ensure that teaching is an attractive career? 

Diolch, Heledd. Can I just, first of all, take the opportunity to place on record my heartfelt thanks to everyone working in our schools? I recognise we are asking a lot of schools at the moment. They're implementing major reforms at the same time as recovering from a global pandemic, and the well-being of our school staff is as important to me as the well-being of our children and young people. And we discussed in the committee this morning some of the measures that we've put in place to support well-being for our school staff, such as, for example, the funding for education support. We have extended our school counselling to some teachers, in recognition of the vicarious trauma some of them are dealing with, and it is a priority for me to make sure that teaching is as attractive a profession as it possibly can be. And I think it is an exciting time to come and be a teacher in Wales, with our new curriculum. It's taking teaching and learning to a new level, and that's also really important for well-being. 

You'll be aware that we also have taken other steps, through initial teacher education, to make teaching an attractive profession. So, we have particular incentives in place, in particular subjects, including Welsh language. We have an incentive in place for minority ethnic teachers and also in STEM subjects. So, we are working hard to make teaching an attractive profession. That's not to undervalue, in any way, the challenges that the profession is facing. And I've been very clear—I spoke at the NAHT conference on Saturday—to say that it's been a priority for me and will go on being a priority to listen to school staff as to what they're experiencing on the ground. And I see it being my role to do everything we can, as a Government, to support them in what is a much more challenging job than it was when, say, I was in school, or even when you were in school.

Diolch, Heledd. Yn gyntaf oll, a gaf i achub ar y cyfle i gofnodi fy niolch diffuant i bawb sy'n gweithio yn ein hysgolion? Rwy'n cydnabod ein bod yn gofyn llawer gan ysgolion ar hyn o bryd. Maent yn gweithredu diwygiadau mawr ar yr un pryd ag adfer ar ôl pandemig byd-eang, ac mae lles staff ein hysgolion yr un mor bwysig i mi â lles ein plant a'n pobl ifanc. Ac fe wnaethom drafod yn y pwyllgor y bore yma rai o'r mesurau yr ydym wedi'u rhoi ar waith i gefnogi lles staff ein hysgolion, megis, er enghraifft, y cyllid ar gyfer cymorth addysg. Rydym wedi ymestyn ein cwnsela mewn ysgolion i gynnwys rhai athrawon, i gydnabod y trawma dros eraill y mae rhai ohonynt yn ymdopi ag ef, a fy mlaenoriaeth yw sicrhau bod addysgu yn broffesiwn mor ddeniadol ag y gall fod. Ac rwy'n credu ei bod yn gyfnod cyffrous i fod yn athro yng Nghymru, gyda'n cwricwlwm newydd. Mae'n mynd ag addysgu a dysgu i lefel newydd, ac mae hynny hefyd yn bwysig iawn i les. 

Fe fyddwch yn ymwybodol ein bod hefyd wedi cymryd camau eraill, drwy addysg gychwynnol i athrawon, i wneud addysgu yn broffesiwn deniadol. Felly, mae gennym gymhellion arbennig ar waith, yn enwedig mewn pynciau penodol, gan gynnwys y Gymraeg. Mae gennym gymhelliad ar waith i athrawon ethnig leiafrifol a hefyd mewn pynciau STEM. Felly, rydym yn gweithio'n galed i wneud addysgu'n broffesiwn deniadol. Nid yw hynny'n tanbrisio, mewn unrhyw ffordd, yr heriau y mae'r proffesiwn yn eu hwynebu. Ac rwyf wedi bod yn glir iawn—siaradais yng nghynhadledd Cymdeithas Genedlaethol y Prifathrawon ddydd Sadwrn—i ddweud ei bod wedi bod yn flaenoriaeth i mi ac y bydd yn parhau i fod yn flaenoriaeth i wrando ar staff ysgolion ynghylch yr hyn y  maent yn ei brofi ar lawr gwlad. Ac rwy'n ystyried mai fy rôl yw gwneud popeth a allwn, fel Llywodraeth, i'w cefnogi mewn swydd lawer mwy heriol nag oedd hi pan oeddwn i yn yr ysgol, er enghraifft, neu hyd yn oed pan oeddech chi yn yr ysgol.

Diolch, Ysgrifennydd Cabinet, ond, yn amlwg, mi wnaeth arolwg y llynedd gan NASUWT Cymru ddangos bod 75 y cant o athrawon yn ystyried gadael y proffesiwn. Dwi'n gwybod bod y cynlluniau yma gan y Llywodraeth, ond dydyn nhw'n golygu dim ar bapur os nad ydyn nhw'n trosglwyddo i gael athrawon yn ein dosbarthiadau ac athrawon yn aros yn y swyddi hyn. Ar 3 Mai, fe wnaeth penaethiaid ym Mlaenau Gwent ysgrifennu llythyr ar y cyd am y sefyllfa ariannol enbyd y mae ysgolion yn ei hwynebu, lle nad oes dim byd arall ar ôl i’w dorri. Amlygwyd ganddyn nhw mai canlyniad hyn fydd cynnydd ym maint dosbarthiadau, ac, felly, bydd cynnydd yn y llwyth gwaith i athrawon,  gostyngiadau staffio, effaith ar hyfforddiant athrawon ac anawsterau o ran cadw a recriwtio athrawon. A gaf i ofyn, felly, Ysgrifennydd Cabinet, ydych chi'n cydnabod ei bod hi’n sefyllfa dyngedfennol a bregus o ran y sector pwysig hwn, a pha dri pheth fyddwch chi'n eu blaenoriaethu i wella pethau?

Thank you, Cabinet Secretary, but, obviously, a NASUWT Cymru survey last year showed that 75 per cent of teachers were considering leaving the profession. I know that the Government has these plans, but they don't mean anything on paper if they don't transfer into action in terms of having teachers in our classrooms and teachers remaining in those roles. On 3 May, headteachers in Blaenau Gwent jointly wrote a letter about the dire financial situation that schools are facing, where there is nothing left to cut. They emphasised that the outcome of this will be increasing class sizes, and, therefore, an increase in teachers’ workload, staffing reductions, an impact on teacher training and difficulties in terms of teacher recruitment and retention. Could I ask you, therefore, Cabinet Secretary, do you acknowledge that there is a critical and vulnerable situation facing this important sector, and what three things will you prioritise to improve it?

Thank you, Heledd, for those further questions. You packed a lot in there, really, for one question, but I'll do my best. In terms of behaviour and the concerns that schools have about the climate that they're operating in, those are really important issues. As I've said before, I don't think you can divorce behaviour, attendance, et cetera, from the mental health challenges schools are facing. I see our reforms in education as built on a foundation of good mental health and well-being. We are working on a behaviour toolkit. I have specifically asked officials to make sure that that toolkit is psychologically and trauma informed, because I think that's very important. We've also undertaken research, which will be published in the summer, to give us more information about what's happening on the ground in terms of behaviour, because we don't have the data nationally on that. I think you've got to understand a problem before you can really tackle it.

In terms of the funding that you have referred to, obviously, this is a really challenging time for public funding. Our budget is worth £700 million less than at the time of the last funding settlement. We've had to make really difficult decisions as a Government. But, despite the pressures, we still managed to protect the uplift that we gave to local authorities through the RSG to give to schools. That comes on top of the consolidated increase of 7.9 per cent last year. We've also prioritised funding that goes directly to schools. The new local authority education grant provides the same amount of funding against similar grants provided last year, and a 3.2 per cent rise against the 2024-25 indicative budget for those same grants.

I do recognise it's a really challenging situation. I'm not going to try and pretend that it's not. That's why I want to keep talking to schools and school leaders about the situation. We're also doing work around the Luke Sibieta funding review. We're waiting for some of that work to be completed around the funding formula that local authorities use. As you know, there are long-standing issues around transparency, but I'm really committed to doing that work and doing it in social partnership with the profession. We are going to have—. You know, austerity is hitting us big time in Wales due to the decisions of the UK Government, and the way that we're going to be able to get through that is by working together in partnership.

Diolch am y cwestiynau pellach hynny, Heledd. Rydych wedi cynnwys llawer yno i un cwestiwn, ond fe wnaf fy ngorau. O ran ymddygiad a'r pryderon sydd gan ysgolion am yr hinsawdd y maent yn gweithredu ynddo, mae'r rheini'n faterion pwysig iawn. Fel y dywedais o'r blaen, nid wyf yn credu y gallwch wahanu ymddygiad, presenoldeb, ac ati, o'r heriau iechyd meddwl y mae ysgolion yn eu hwynebu. Rwy'n gweld ein diwygiadau yn y byd addysg fel rhai sydd wedi'u hadeiladu ar sylfaen o iechyd meddwl a lles meddyliol da. Rydym yn gweithio ar becyn cymorth ymddygiad. Rwyf wedi gofyn yn benodol i swyddogion sicrhau bod y pecyn cymorth hwnnw'n cael ei lywio'n seicolegol a chan drawma, oherwydd credaf fod hynny'n bwysig iawn. Rydym hefyd wedi cyflawni ymchwil, a fydd yn cael ei gyhoeddi yn yr haf, i roi mwy o wybodaeth i ni am yr hyn sy'n digwydd ar lawr gwlad o ran ymddygiad, oherwydd nid oes gennym y data'n genedlaethol ar hynny. Rwy'n credu bod yn rhaid ichi ddeall problem cyn y gallwch fynd i'r afael â hi.

O ran y cyllid y cyfeirioch chi ato, yn amlwg, mae hwn yn gyfnod heriol iawn ar gyllid cyhoeddus. Mae ein cyllideb yn werth £700 miliwn yn llai nag ar adeg y setliad cyllido diwethaf. Bu'n rhaid inni wneud penderfyniadau anodd tu hwnt fel Llywodraeth. Ond er gwaetha'r pwysau, fe wnaethom lwyddo i ddiogelu'r codiad a roesom i awdurdodau lleol drwy'r grant cynnal refeniw i'w roi i ysgolion. Daw hynny ar ben y cynnydd wedi'i gydgrynhoi o 7.9 y cant y llynedd. Rydym hefyd wedi blaenoriaethu cyllid sy'n mynd yn uniongyrchol i ysgolion. Mae'r grant addysg newydd i awdurdodau lleol yn darparu'r un swm o arian yn erbyn grantiau tebyg a ddarparwyd y llynedd, a chynnydd o 3.2 y cant yn erbyn cyllideb ddangosol 2024-25 ar gyfer yr un grantiau hynny.

Rwy'n cydnabod ei bod yn sefyllfa anodd iawn. Nid wyf am geisio esgus nad ydyw. Dyna pam fy mod am barhau i siarad ag ysgolion ac arweinwyr ysgolion am y sefyllfa. Rydym hefyd yn gwneud gwaith ar adolygiad o gyllid Luke Sibieta. Rydym yn disgwyl i rywfaint o'r gwaith hwnnw gael ei gwblhau mewn perthynas â'r fformiwla gyllido y mae awdurdodau lleol yn ei defnyddio. Fel y gwyddoch, mae yna faterion hirsefydlog yn ymwneud â thryloywder, ond rwy'n wirioneddol ymrwymedig i wneud y gwaith hwnnw a'i wneud mewn partneriaeth gymdeithasol â'r proffesiwn. Rydym yn mynd i gael—. Wyddoch chi, mae cyni yn ein taro'n galed yng Nghymru oherwydd penderfyniadau Llywodraeth y DU, a'r ffordd y gallwn ddod drwy hynny yw drwy weithio gyda'n gilydd mewn partneriaeth.

14:50
Absenoldebau Dysgwyr
Learner Absences

3. Pa gamau mae'r Ysgrifennydd Cabinet yn eu cymryd i sicrhau bod absenoldebau dysgwyr mewn ysgolion yn lleihau? OQ61052

3. What steps is the Cabinet Secretary taking to ensure a decrease in the number of learner absences in schools? OQ61052

Diolch. We continue to work with the national attendance taskforce to identify actions we can take to improve attendance. Areas of focus include the role of youth workers, peer-to-peer learning and networking, communication and engagement, and data analysis.

Diolch. Rydym yn parhau i weithio gyda'r tasglu presenoldeb cenedlaethol i nodi camau y gallwn eu cymryd i wella presenoldeb. Mae'r meysydd ffocws yn cynnwys rôl gweithwyr ieuenctid, dysgu rhwng cyfoedion a rhwydweithio, cyfathrebu ac ymgysylltu, a dadansoddi data.

Thank you, Cabinet Secretary. You'll be well aware that the cost-of-living crisis has impacted on attendance in schools. We've heard countless times in this Chamber and, I'm sure, from our constituents about children not being able to afford to get to school. My colleague Delyth Jewell mentioned it in terms of the Learner Travel (Wales) Measure 2008. Can I ask what urgent steps are you taking to ensure that no child misses a day of school because they can't afford the cost of going on a bus? Surely, in 2024, and we've been discussing this for a number of years, the learner travel Measure changes aren't being implemented. Some councils are rolling back on the measures that are in place, such as in RCT council, to go with the statutory rather than go above and beyond as they were. This is really serious in many of our communities. So, how can we ensure that children can access school and that cost isn't a barrier?

Diolch yn fawr, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet. Fe fyddwch yn ymwybodol iawn fod yr argyfwng costau byw wedi effeithio ar bresenoldeb mewn ysgolion. Rydym wedi clywed sawl gwaith yn y Siambr a chan ein hetholwyr, rwy'n siŵr, am blant nad ydynt yn gallu fforddio cyrraedd yr ysgol. Soniodd fy nghyd-Aelod Delyth Jewell am hyn mewn perthynas â Mesur Teithio gan Ddysgwyr (Cymru) 2008. A gaf i ofyn pa gamau brys rydych chi'n eu cymryd i sicrhau nad oes unrhyw blentyn yn colli diwrnod ysgol am nad yw'n gallu fforddio'r gost o fynd ar fws? Yn 2024, ac rydym wedi bod yn trafod hyn ers nifer o flynyddoedd, nid yw'r newidiadau i'r Mesur Teithio gan Ddysgwyr yn cael eu gweithredu. Mae rhai cynghorau'n cyfyngu ar y mesurau sydd ar waith, fel yng nghyngor Rhondda Cynon Taf, i fynd gyda'r statudol yn hytrach na mynd y tu hwnt i hynny fel o'r blaen. Mae hyn yn ddifrifol iawn mewn llawer o'n cymunedau. Felly, sut y gallwn ni sicrhau bod plant yn gallu cael mynd i'r ysgol ac nad yw cost yn rhwystr?

As you rightly highlight, there are multiple reasons why children don't attend school, and one of them is linked to poverty. We know that attendance rates are poorer, much poorer, for children who are on free school meals. I think, as a Government, we have prioritised doing everything that we can to mitigate the cost-of-living crisis that we're all going through at the moment. I don't need to tell you that we've been working with Plaid Cymru on the co-operation agreement commitment on free school meals. That's a huge amount of investment. We're doing really well on that. There are only, I think, three authorities left to go, and we'll be completing that by September, so that universal primary free school meals will have been rolled out everywhere. That is putting money direct in the pockets of families. We also have our school essentials grant, which helps families with essential equipment and things so that children can attend school. We're also looking at everything we can do to mitigate the impact of poverty on attainment once children and young people are in school. You're well aware that we don't have all the levers, but we are working hard across the Government to mitigate the impact of poverty on families and children and young people.

Fel y nodwch, yn gywir ddigon, mae sawl rheswm pam nad yw plant yn mynychu'r ysgol, ac mae un ohonynt yn gysylltiedig â thlodi. Gwyddom fod cyfraddau presenoldeb yn waeth, yn llawer gwaeth, i blant sydd ar brydau ysgol am ddim. Rwy'n credu, fel Llywodraeth, ein bod wedi rhoi'r flaenoriaethu i wneud popeth yn ein gallu i liniaru'r argyfwng costau byw y mae pawb ohonom yn ei brofi ar hyn o bryd. Nid oes angen imi ddweud wrthych ein bod wedi bod yn gweithio gyda Phlaid Cymru ar ymrwymiad y cytundeb cydweithio i brydau ysgol am ddim. Mae hwnnw'n fuddsoddiad enfawr. Rydym yn gwneud yn dda iawn ar hynny. Dim ond tri awdurdod sydd ar ôl i fynd, rwy'n credu, a byddwn yn cwblhau hynny erbyn mis Medi, felly bydd prydau ysgol am ddim wedi'i gyflwyno i holl blant ysgolion cynradd ym mhobman. Mae hynny'n rhoi arian ym mhocedi teuluoedd yn uniongyrchol. Mae gennym hefyd ein grant hanfodion ysgol, sy'n helpu teuluoedd gydag offer a phethau hanfodol fel y gall plant fynychu'r ysgol. Rydym hefyd yn edrych ar bopeth y gallwn ei wneud i liniaru effaith tlodi ar gyrhaeddiad pan fydd plant a phobl ifanc yn yr ysgol. Rydych yn ymwybodol iawn nad oes gennym yr holl ysgogiadau, ond rydym yn gweithio'n galed ar draws y Llywodraeth i liniaru effaith tlodi ar deuluoedd a phlant a phobl ifanc.

14:55

The Welsh Government's solution, 'Belonging, Engaging, Participating', has caused some teachers a little distress. The emphasis of the document is very much on engagement, which has led to the Welsh Government making teachers feel they're to blame, giving an unfair impression that the problem is at the school, wrongly indicating that schools should provide more engaging, enjoyable learning. Now, I'm sure you will agree with me that it's not necessarily the teachers and schools that are at fault. In my own constituency of Aberconwy, a number of parents come to see me, where their children have learning difficulties, but they're waiting considerable amounts of times for statements to come through. Also, I know that we had problems in our pupil referral units. There are people waiting now to be able to attend pupil referral units. Now, the Education (Wales) Act 2014 places a duty on parents to ensure their children's regular attendance at school, and I notice that, since 2013, the education penalty notice has been £60, which increases to £120 if unpaid after 28 days. How are you reviewing whether that's the right amount? How do you put that kind of value on children not attending school when it's essential that they do? How are you engaging more with schools and their teachers, and, indeed, maybe carrying out a survey of families to ensure that we actually don't have the level of school absences that we have? Thank you.

Mae ateb Llywodraeth Cymru, 'Perthyn, Ymgysylltu a Chyfranogi', wedi achosi ychydig o ofid i rai athrawon. Mae pwyslais y ddogfen ar ymgysylltu, sydd wedi golygu bod Llywodraeth Cymru wedi gwneud i athrawon deimlo mai nhw sydd ar fai, gan roi argraff annheg fod y broblem yn yr ysgol, a nodi'n anghywir y dylai ysgolion ddarparu dysgu mwy diddorol a difyr. Nawr, rwy'n siŵr y byddwch yn cytuno â mi nad yr athrawon a'r ysgolion sydd ar fai o reidrwydd. Yn fy etholaeth i yn Aberconwy, mae nifer o rieni'n dod i fy ngweld, lle mae gan eu plant anawsterau dysgu, ond maent yn aros cryn dipyn o amser i ddatganiadau ddod trwodd. Hefyd, rwy'n gwybod ein bod wedi cael problemau yn ein hunedau cyfeirio disgyblion. Mae yna bobl yn aros nawr i allu mynychu unedau cyfeirio disgyblion. Nawr, mae Deddf Addysg (Cymru) 2014 yn gosod dyletswydd ar rieni i sicrhau presenoldeb rheolaidd eu plant yn yr ysgol, ac rwy'n sylwi, ers 2013, bod yr hysbysiad cosb addysg wedi bod yn £60, sy'n cynyddu i £120 os nad yw'n cael ei dalu ar ôl 28 diwrnod. Sut ydych chi'n ystyried ai dyna'r swm cywir? Sut ydych chi'n rhoi'r math hwnnw o werth ar blant nad ydynt yn mynychu'r ysgol pan fo'n hanfodol eu bod yn gwneud hynny? Sut ydych chi'n ymgysylltu mwy ag ysgolion a'u hathrawon, ac yn wir, yn cynnal arolwg o deuluoedd efallai  i sicrhau nad oes gennym y lefel o absenoldebau ysgol sydd gennym? Diolch.

Thank you, Janet. Your contribution there also highlighted how complex the issues are around attendance. So, you referred to things like additional learning needs. There are lots of reasons why children aren't attending school, and it is absolutely vital that we tackle those. I'm going to be chairing my first meeting of the national attendance ministerial group on Monday, and I'm really looking forward to that. 

In relation to the guidance, I certainly don't think there's any intention to blame teachers. We recognise that it is a very challenging time to be working in schools. I think the guidance is designed to support teachers to make schools as welcoming and as connected a place that they can be. We recognise as well the challenges on ALN and the links with health, and we're going to be discussing that later this afternoon, so I won't dwell on that. 

In terms of penalty notices, we've been very clear they should only be used as a last resort, and we have also invested £6.5 million in additional family engagement officers, who are creating partnerships, offering bespoke support for children to maintain good attendance. In addition to that, we've invested £2.5 million extra in the education welfare service this year, and that's on top of the normal funding that we provide for the education welfare service.

So, we are working very, very hard in this space. Our community-focused schools programme also helps because that connects schools better with the community, and it's about addressing all those complex areas. The national taskforce will, I think, give that a good direction.

Diolch yn fawr, Janet. Roedd eich cyfraniad hefyd yn tynnu sylw at ba mor gymhleth yw'r materion sy'n ymwneud â phresenoldeb. Felly, roeddech yn cyfeirio at bethau fel anghenion dysgu ychwanegol. Mae llawer o resymau pam nad yw plant yn mynychu'r ysgol, ac mae'n gwbl hanfodol ein bod yn mynd i'r afael â'r rheini. Rwy'n mynd i gadeirio fy nghyfarfod cyntaf o'r grŵp gweinidogol cenedlaethol ar bresenoldeb ddydd Llun, ac rwy'n edrych ymlaen yn fawr at hynny. 

O ran y canllawiau, yn sicr nid wyf yn credu bod unrhyw fwriad i feio athrawon. Rydym yn cydnabod ei bod yn gyfnod heriol iawn i weithio mewn ysgolion. Rwy'n credu bod y canllawiau wedi'u cynllunio i gefnogi athrawon i wneud ysgolion mor groesawgar a chysylltiedig ag y gallant fod. Rydym hefyd yn cydnabod yr heriau gydag anghenion dysgu ychwanegol a'r cysylltiadau ag iechyd, ac rydym yn mynd i fod yn trafod hynny yn ddiweddarach y prynhawn yma, felly nid wyf am oedi gyda hynny.

O ran hysbysiadau cosb, rydym wedi bod yn glir iawn mai dim ond fel dewis olaf y dylid eu defnyddio, ac rydym hefyd wedi buddsoddi £6.5 miliwn mewn swyddogion ymgysylltu â theuluoedd ychwanegol, sy'n creu partneriaethau, gan gynnig cymorth pwrpasol i blant gynnal lefelau presenoldeb da. Yn ogystal â hynny, rydym wedi buddsoddi £2.5 miliwn ychwanegol yn y gwasanaeth lles addysg eleni, ac mae hynny ar ben y cyllid arferol a ddarparwn ar gyfer y gwasanaeth lles addysg.

Felly, rydym yn gweithio'n galed iawn ar hyn. Mae ein rhaglen ysgolion bro hefyd yn helpu oherwydd mae hynny'n cysylltu ysgolion yn well â'r gymuned, ac mae'n ymwneud â mynd i'r afael â'r holl feysydd cymhleth hynny. Rwy'n credu y bydd y tasglu cenedlaethol yn darparu cyfeiriad da i hynny.

Cabinet Secretary, behaviour across schools in the Rhondda has become one of my biggest concerns. Residents and teachers contact my office almost daily regarding peer-on-peer and peer-on-teacher bullying and attacks. Parents and guardians are deciding to not send their children to school. Teachers are on the receiving end of verbal abuse and, in some instances, physical attacks, with one teacher falling to the ground after being pushed by a student. Parents have contacted my office following verbal abuse, racist abuse and physical attacks. Off the back of the truly horrific event at Ysgol Dyffryn Aman last month, I'm concerned for the welfare of teachers and pupils. I'm also concerned about the level of time it's taking teachers to deal with these issues, which is time away from the classroom, and I'm concerned that our young people are missing valuable education at school because they're opting to stay home. Cabinet Secretary, what assessment has the Welsh Government made of the change in pupil behaviour following COVID, and how is the Welsh Government supporting teachers and pupils following their fellow pupils' unacceptable behaviour?

Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, mae ymddygiad ar draws ysgolion yn y Rhondda wedi dod yn un o fy mhryderon mwyaf. Mae preswylwyr ac athrawon yn cysylltu â fy swyddfa bron bob dydd ynglŷn â bwlio ac ymosodiadau disgyblion ar gyfoedion ac ar athrawon. Mae rhieni a gofalwyr yn penderfynu peidio ag anfon eu plant i'r ysgol. Mae athrawon yn dioddef cam-drin geiriol ac mewn rhai achosion, ymosodiadau corfforol, gydag un athro yn cwympo i'r llawr ar ôl cael ei wthio gan fyfyriwr. Mae rhieni wedi cysylltu â fy swyddfa yn dilyn cam-drin geiriol, cam-drin hiliol ac ymosodiadau corfforol. Yn dilyn y digwyddiad gwirioneddol erchyll yn Ysgol Dyffryn Aman fis diwethaf, rwy'n pryderu am les athrawon a disgyblion. Rwy'n pryderu hefyd am yr amser y mae'n ei gymryd i athrawon ymdrin â'r materion hyn, sy'n amser i ffwrdd o'r ystafell ddosbarth, ac rwy'n pryderu bod ein pobl ifanc yn colli addysg werthfawr yn yr ysgol am eu bod yn dewis aros gartref. Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, pa asesiad y mae Llywodraeth Cymru wedi'i wneud o'r newid yn ymddygiad disgyblion yn dilyn COVID, a sut mae Llywodraeth Cymru yn cefnogi athrawon a disgyblion yn dilyn ymddygiad annerbyniol eu cyd-ddisgyblion?

15:00

Thank you very much, Buffy, and I think you're right to highlight that we have seen a change in behaviour since COVID. We're seeing a lot of societal problems coming into school, we're seeing children and young people with much more complex needs, children and young people who are struggling to self-regulate their emotions, and those are big challenges for schools. As I said in response to Heledd Fychan, we are undertaking a detailed piece of work to look at the behaviour issues across schools in Wales, so that we've got the data to know exactly what's happening. We're developing the behavioural toolkit as well to help schools with managing these difficult situations.

But, for me, this is also fundamentally linked to the work that we're doing around mental health and well-being. If schools are welcoming places with a whole-school approach, with strong relationships, a strong sense of belonging, then I think that does really help with children and young people's well-being and help with their behaviour. And, as I said in response to another question, we have also prioritised support for teachers' well-being as well through Education Support. I'm meeting all the trade unions individually, and this will be very high on their agenda, to have those discussions about what the workforce is experiencing.

Diolch yn fawr iawn, Buffy, a chredaf eich bod yn iawn i dynnu sylw at y ffaith ein bod wedi gweld newid mewn ymddygiad ers COVID. Rydym yn gweld llawer o broblemau cymdeithasol mewn ysgolion, rydym yn gweld plant a phobl ifanc ag anghenion llawer mwy cymhleth, plant a phobl ifanc sy'n ei chael hi'n anodd hunanreoli eu hemosiynau, ac mae'r rheini'n heriau mawr i ysgolion. Fel y dywedais mewn ymateb i Heledd Fychan, rydym yn gwneud gwaith manwl i edrych ar broblemau ymddygiad ar draws ysgolion yng Nghymru, fel bod gennym y data i wybod beth yn union sy'n digwydd. Rydym hefyd yn datblygu'r pecyn cymorth ymddygiadol i helpu ysgolion i ymdrin â'r sefyllfaoedd anodd hyn.

Ond i mi, mae cysylltiad annatod rhwng hyn a'r gwaith a wnawn ar iechyd meddwl a llesiant meddyliol. Os yw ysgolion yn lleoedd croesawgar sy'n defnyddio dull ysgol gyfan, sydd â pherthnasoedd cryf, ymdeimlad cryf o berthyn, yna credaf fod hynny'n help mawr gyda llesiant plant a phobl ifanc ac yn helpu gyda'u hymddygiad. Ac fel y dywedais mewn ymateb i gwestiwn arall, rydym hefyd wedi blaenoriaethu cymorth ar gyfer llesiant athrawon drwy Education Support. Rwy’n cyfarfod â’r holl undebau llafur yn unigol, a bydd hyn yn uchel iawn ar eu hagenda, a chael y trafodaethau hynny ynglŷn â'r hyn y mae’r gweithlu’n ei wynebu.

Hyfforddi Seicolecwyr Addysg
Training Educational Psychologists

4. Pa gynlluniau sydd ar waith gan Lywodraeth Cymru i hyfforddi seicolegwyr addysg yn Arfon? OQ61065

4. What plans does the Welsh Government have in place to train educational psychologists in Arfon? OQ61065

Educational psychologists play an important role in schools in north Wales. We are investing £2.6 million to train and retain new educational psychologists. We are in discussion today with Gwynedd local authority to listen to their proposal to train educational psychologists at Bangor University.

Mae seicolegwyr addysg yn chwarae rhan bwysig mewn ysgolion yng ngogledd Cymru. Rydym yn buddsoddi £2.6 miliwn i hyfforddi a chadw seicolegwyr addysg newydd. Rydym yn cynnal trafodaethau heddiw ag awdurdod lleol Gwynedd i wrando ar eu cynnig i hyfforddi seicolegwyr addysg ym Mhrifysgol Bangor.

Diolch yn fawr. Ddiwedd y llynedd, dim ond dau seicolegydd addysg oedd yng Ngwynedd a Môn, yn gwasanaethu ar raddfa un i bob 13,000 o blant. Mae hynny'n faich gwaith anferthol ac yn golygu nad ydy rhai o blant mwyaf bregus yr ardal yn cael y gefnogaeth maen nhw'n ei haeddu. Un i bob 4,000 ydy'r raddfa i fod. Ac wrth drafod y mater efo'r Prif Weinidog yr wythnos diwethaf, mi wnaeth o roi yr argraff bendant ei fod o'n deall y pwynt fod angen hyfforddiant yn y gogledd, ac fe ddywedodd o fod yna drafodaethau'n digwydd efo partneriaid ym Mangor—a dwi'n falch o glywed gennych chi fod y trafodaethau yna wedi dechrau y prynhawn yma. Felly, lle mae'r trafodaethau yna'n mynd i fynd? Un peth ydy trafod. Fydd yna gwrs doethuriaeth ar gael ym Mhrifysgol Bangor o'r diwedd? Pryd y gwelwn ni y cwrs yna'n cychwyn? Faint o lefydd fydd ar gael? Byddai'n braf rŵan dechrau cael ychydig o'r manylion yn sgil datganiad positif y Prif Weinidog wythnos diwethaf.

Thank you very much. At the end of last year, there were only two educational psychologists in Gwynedd and Môn, operating at a rate of one to every 13,000 children. That's an incredible workload, which means that some of the most vulnerable children in the area aren't getting the support that they need. One to 4,000 is the recommended rate. And in discussing the issue with the First Minister last week, he gave the impression that he understood the point that there was a need for more training in north Wales, and he said that there were discussions happening with partners in Bangor—and I'm pleased to hear from you that those discussions have started this afternoon. So, where are those discussions going to go? It's one thing to have discussions. Will there be a doctorate course available in Bangor at last? When will we see that course starting? How many places will be available? It'd be nice now just to have some of the details in the wake of the positive statement made by the First Minister last week.

Thank you very much, Siân, and can I say I think this is a really important issue? From my previous job, I think psychologists play an incredibly important role. I'm really pleased that we've invested over £2.6 million between 2022 and 2024-25, to train new educational psychologists, but I recognise those places are in Cardiff—10 more educational psychologists—and we've put measures in place to make sure that at least one of them is a Welsh speaker and able to practise in Welsh when they graduate. I understand that we've done really well with that, with several of the participants being over that threshold. I do recognise the challenges that there are in north Wales with not having a course. Obviously, people are attracted to work over the border; there are bursaries available to keep them over the border, once they've gone over the border. So, I do think this is a really important piece of work. As I said, there's a meeting today. I haven't had a chance to have an update on it, but I have asked for an update on the meeting that's taking place today. I'm meeting with the Association of Educational Psychologists shortly. I've agreed to speak at their conference, and I am really keen—I know there'll be difficult issues to be worked through—to make sure that we can get a better supply of the workforce through to north Wales. It is a challenging area, but I'm really committed to looking at this; it'll be a priority for me.

Diolch yn fawr, Siân, ac a gaf i ddweud fy mod yn credu bod hwn yn fater pwysig iawn? O'm swydd flaenorol, credaf fod seicolegwyr yn chwarae rhan hynod bwysig. Rwy’n falch iawn ein bod wedi buddsoddi dros £2.6 miliwn rhwng 2022 a 2024-25, i hyfforddi seicolegwyr addysg newydd, ond rwy’n cydnabod bod y lleoedd hynny yng Nghaerdydd—10 yn rhagor o seicolegwyr addysg—ac rydym wedi rhoi mesurau ar waith i sicrhau bod o leiaf un ohonynt yn siaradwr Cymraeg ac yn gallu ymarfer yn Gymraeg ar ôl graddio. Rwy'n deall ein bod wedi gwneud yn dda iawn gyda hynny, gyda nifer o'r cyfranogwyr dros y trothwy hwnnw. Rwy'n cydnabod yr heriau sy'n wynebu'r gogledd am nad oes cwrs yno. Yn amlwg, mae pobl yn cael eu denu i weithio dros y ffin; mae bwrsariaethau ar gael i'w cadw dros y ffin, pan fyddant wedi mynd dros y ffin. Felly, credaf fod hwn yn waith pwysig iawn. Fel y dywedais, mae cyfarfod yn cael ei gynnal heddiw. Nid wyf wedi cael cyfle i gael y wybodaeth ddiweddaraf amdano, ond rwyf wedi gofyn am y wybodaeth ddiweddaraf am y cyfarfod sy'n cael ei gynnal heddiw. Byddaf yn cyfarfod â Chymdeithas y Seicolegwyr Addysg cyn bo hir. Rwyf wedi cytuno i siarad yn eu cynhadledd, ac rwy'n awyddus iawn—gwn y bydd yna faterion anodd eu datrys—i sicrhau y gallwn gael cyflenwad gwell o'r gweithlu drwodd i ogledd Cymru. Mae’n faes heriol, ond rwyf wedi ymrwymo’n llwyr i edrych ar hyn; fe fydd yn flaenoriaeth i mi.

Addysg Cyfrwng Cymraeg
Welsh-medium Education

5. Sut y mae Llywodraeth Cymru yn sicrhau y gall pob disgybl yng Nghymru gael mynediad at addysg cyfrwng Cymraeg? OQ61068

5. How is the Welsh Government ensuring all pupils in Wales can access Welsh-medium education? OQ61068

15:05

Diolch, Llyr. All local authorities implement Welsh in education strategic plans to increase provision of and access to Welsh-medium education within their area. I look forward to receiving their annual review reports at the end of July.

Diolch, Llyr. Mae gan bob awdurdod lleol gynlluniau strategol Cymraeg mewn addysg ar waith i gynyddu’r ddarpariaeth o addysg cyfrwng Cymraeg a mynediad ati yn eu hardal. Edrychaf ymlaen at gael eu hadroddiadau adolygu blynyddol ddiwedd mis Gorffennaf.

Wel, dwi'n edrych ymlaen hefyd i'w gweld nhw pan fyddan nhw ar gael, ond dwi'n dod nôl at y cwestiwn sylfaenol yma rŷn ni wedi'i glywed yn barod gan nifer o Aelodau ar draws y Siambr sef, wrth gwrs, y problemau o safbwynt trafnidiaeth i gael mynediad yn enwedig i ddarpariaeth chweched dosbarth cyfrwng Cymraeg. Mae yna etholwyr yn cysylltu â fi sy'n dweud nawr fod disgwyl iddyn nhw dalu am drafnidiaeth gyhoeddus—trafnidiaeth gyhoeddus sydd ddim yn bodoli, yn aml iawn, yn rhai o'r cymunedau gwledig sydd ganddom ni—ond maen nhw'n gorfod talu i gael mynediad at chweched dosbarth cyfrwng Cymraeg. Mae hynny, i bob pwrpas, yn dreth ar addysg Gymraeg. Nawr, a allwch chi ddweud a ydych chi'n teimlo bod hynny'n dderbyniol ai peidio? Gwnaethoch chi sôn bod yna waith yn digwydd ar greu arweiniad statudol rhyngddoch chi a'r Ysgrifennydd trafnidiaeth. A allwch chi gadarnhau erbyn pryd rŷch chi'n disgwyl y bydd hwnnw wedi'i gwblhau ac yn weithredol? A hefyd, a allwch chi ymrwymo heddiw, drwy hynny, nad tincro gyda'r sefyllfa y byddwch chi'n ei wneud, nad jest trio lleddfu ychydig ar y sefyllfa, ond y byddwch chi'n mynd ati nawr i ddatrys y broblem yma unwaith ac am byth?

Well, I'm also looking forward to seeing them when they are available, but I return to this fundamental question that we've already heard reference to from a number of Members across the Chamber, namely the problems in terms of transport to access particularly sixth-form provision through the medium of Welsh. Constituents are contacting me who say now that they're expected to pay for public transport—public transport that very often doesn't exist in some of our rural communities—but they now have to pay to access a Welsh-medium sixth form. That, to all intents and purposes, is a tax on Welsh-medium education. So, can you tell me whether you feel that's acceptable or not? You mentioned that there is work ongoing on having statutory guidance between yourself and the Minister for transport. Can you confirm by when you expect that to have been completed and to be operational? Also, can you commit today through that that you won't be tinkering around the edges, that you won't be trying just to mitigate the situation, but you will now try and really resolve this problem once and for all?

Thanks very much, Llyr. Of course, I want all young people to be able to access the education of their choice in the language of their choice, and I do recognise the challenges with the Measure, as has the previous Deputy Minister and the current Minister, and we are having those discussions. As I said earlier, the recommendations report outlined a modest, practical pathway to improve learner travel provision in Wales, which includes an update of the guidance. I'm pleased that the 2023 review team worked closely with the Welsh Language Commissioner's office and Rhieni dros Addysg Gymraeg to understand the complexities associated with learners accessing Welsh-medium schools, and we have been really grateful for their willingness to work in partnership with us on this. So, the planned update will amplify the legislation that has been put in place since the current guidance document was written—legislation to support and promote the Welsh language, including the Welsh language standards and the WESP regulations. 

In terms of timescales, obviously this work is being led by the Cabinet Secretary for transport, but I will ask him to provide you with an update on that so that we can set out some timescales and recognise the pressing nature of the concerns that you've raised.

Diolch yn fawr, Llyr. Wrth gwrs, rwyf am i bob unigolyn ifanc allu cael mynediad at yr addysg o’u dewis yn yr iaith o'u dewis, ac rwy’n cydnabod yr heriau gyda’r Mesur, fel y gwnaeth y Dirprwy Weinidog blaenorol a’r Gweinidog presennol, ac rydym yn cael y trafodaethau hynny. Fel y dywedais yn gynharach, roedd yr adroddiad argymhellion yn amlinellu llwybr cymedrol, ymarferol i wella’r ddarpariaeth teithio gan ddysgwyr yng Nghymru, sy’n cynnwys diweddariad o’r canllawiau. Rwy’n falch fod tîm adolygiad 2023 wedi gweithio’n agos gyda swyddfa Comisiynydd y Gymraeg a Rhieni dros Addysg Gymraeg i ddeall y cymhlethdodau sy’n gysylltiedig â mynediad dysgwyr at ysgolion cyfrwng Cymraeg, ac rydym wedi bod yn ddiolchgar iawn am eu parodrwydd i weithio mewn partneriaeth â ni ar hyn. Felly, bydd y diweddariad arfaethedig yn ymhelaethu ar y ddeddfwriaeth sydd wedi’i rhoi ar waith ers i’r ddogfen ganllawiau bresennol gael ei hysgrifennu—deddfwriaeth i gefnogi a hyrwyddo’r Gymraeg, gan gynnwys rheoliadau safonau’r Gymraeg a rheoliadau’r Cynllun Strategol Cymraeg mewn Addysg.

O ran amserlenni, yn amlwg, mae’r gwaith hwn yn cael ei arwain gan Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet dros drafnidiaeth, ond byddaf yn gofyn iddo roi’r wybodaeth ddiweddaraf i chi am hynny fel y gallwn nodi amserlenni a chydnabod pwysigrwydd y pryderon a godwyd gennych.

Buddsoddiad Cyfalaf mewn Ysgolion
Capital Investment in Schools

6. A wnaiff yr Ysgrifennydd Cabinet roi'r wybodaeth ddiweddaraf am fuddsoddiad cyfalaf mewn ysgolion yng ngogledd Cymru? OQ61042

6. Will the Cabinet Secretary provide an update on capital investment in schools in north Wales? OQ61042

The north Wales region has seen £430 million invested in its schools and colleges infrastructure through the sustainable communities for learning programme and associated capital funding grants. The new nine-year education capital investment plans for the programme are currently under review and will see further investment across the region.

Mae £430 miliwn wedi'i fuddsoddi yn seilwaith ysgolion a cholegau rhanbarth gogledd Cymru drwy raglen cymunedau dysgu cynaliadwy a grantiau cyllid cyfalaf cysylltiedig. Mae’r cynlluniau buddsoddiad cyfalaf addysg naw mlynedd newydd ar gyfer y rhaglen yn cael eu hadolygu ar hyn o bryd, a byddant yn sicrhau buddsoddiad pellach ar draws y rhanbarth.

Thank you for your response, Cabinet Secretary. I certainly welcome the investment over previous years, but I do have some concerns about the transparency around some of the decision making on the prioritisation of some of those projects and programmes at the moment. I'd like to give one brief example of a school I'm a governor at, St Brigid's School—and that's my declaration of interest, as publicised already—in particular, that school is a high-performing school in Wales, one of the best in terms of results, and it's been promised investment for years and years and years, and, indeed, the latest inspection report from Estyn, published last week, showed that the buildings, especially the mobile classrooms, are in a poor state of repair, the school is oversubscribed, with many pupils on waiting lists for admission, and currently the classrooms are too small and restrict the school's capacity to increase pupil numbers. So, there's a restriction on its ability to develop in the future as a school. But the local authority seem to be dragging their feet in terms of investments on the school site. So, I wonder if you'd be willing, Cabinet Secretary, to look at that particular case in terms of the investment, but certainly to look at the transparency around decision making for the programme of sustainable communities for learning to ensure that the right schools are getting the right investment when it's needed.

Diolch am eich ymateb, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet. Rwy’n sicr yn croesawu’r buddsoddiad dros flynyddoedd blaenorol, ond mae gennyf rai pryderon ynghylch tryloywder rhai o’r penderfyniadau sy'n cael eu gwneud ar hyn o bryd ar flaenoriaethu rhai o’r prosiectau a’r rhaglenni hynny. Hoffwn roi un enghraifft fer o ysgol lle rwy’n llywodraethwr, Ysgol Santes Ffraid—a dyna fy natganiad o fuddiant, fel y cyhoeddwyd eisoes—yn benodol, mae’r ysgol honno’n ysgol sy’n perfformio’n dda yng Nghymru, yn un o'r goreuon o ran canlyniadau, ac mae buddsoddiad wedi'i addo iddi ers blynyddoedd lawer, ac yn wir, roedd adroddiad arolwg diweddaraf Estyn, a gyhoeddwyd yr wythnos diwethaf, yn dangos bod yr adeiladau, yn enwedig yr ystafelloedd dosbarth symudol, mewn cyflwr gwael, fod yr ysgol yn orlawn, gyda llawer o ddisgyblion ar restrau aros ar gyfer mynediad, ac ar hyn o bryd, fod yr ystafelloedd dosbarth yn rhy fach ac yn cyfyngu ar gapasiti'r ysgol i gynyddu niferoedd disgyblion. Felly, mae cyfyngiad ar ei gallu i ddatblygu yn y dyfodol fel ysgol. Ond ymddengys bod yr awdurdod lleol yn llusgo'u traed o ran buddsoddiadau ar safle'r ysgol. Felly, tybed a fyddech yn fodlon edrych ar yr achos penodol hwnnw o ran y buddsoddiad, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, ond yn sicr, edrych ar y tryloywder ynghylch y broses o wneud penderfyniadau ar gyfer rhaglen cymunedau dysgu cynaliadwy i sicrhau bod yr ysgolion iawn yn cael y buddsoddiad iawn pan fo'i angen.

Thank you, Sam. I think you mentioned this school to me before and I suggested that maybe it would be a good idea for you to write to me about it. Obviously, decisions on individual schools have a process to be gone through, and local authorities prioritise them, and they work with our capital team in the Welsh Government. I'm sure you also recognise the scale of investment. We have invested a phenomenal sum of money in supporting our school buildings in recent years. In terms of the transparency, I'm not aware of any particular issues around the transparency of these arrangements, but, if you would like to write to me about that, I will certainly pick it up with officials.

Diolch, Sam. Credaf ichi sôn wrthyf am yr ysgol hon o'r blaen, ac awgrymais efallai y byddai'n syniad da pe baech yn ysgrifennu ataf yn ei chylch. Yn amlwg, mae gan benderfyniadau ar ysgolion unigol broses i fynd drwyddi, ac mae awdurdodau lleol yn eu blaenoriaethu, ac maent yn gweithio gyda’n tîm cyfalaf yn Llywodraeth Cymru. Rwy’n siŵr eich bod hefyd yn cydnabod maint y buddsoddiad. Rydym wedi buddsoddi swm aruthrol o arian i gefnogi ein hadeiladau ysgol yn y blynyddoedd diwethaf. O ran tryloywder, nid wyf yn ymwybodol o unrhyw faterion penodol yn ymwneud â thryloywder y trefniadau hyn, ond os hoffech ysgrifennu ataf ynglŷn â hynny, byddaf yn sicr o godi'r mater gyda fy swyddogion.

15:10
Sgiliau Bywyd Hanfodol
Essential Life Skills

7. Beth y mae Llywodraeth Cymru yn ei wneud i sicrhau bod plant yn dysgu sgiliau bywyd hanfodol? OQ61059

7. What is the Welsh Government doing to ensure children are taught essential life skills? OQ61059

The Curriculum for Wales has been designed by teachers and experts to ensure all learners gain the knowledge, skills and experiences they need for life in the twenty-first century. That includes the vital skills of literacy, numeracy and digital competence, as well as wider skills like critical thinking and financial literacy.

Mae’r Cwricwlwm i Gymru wedi’i gynllunio gan athrawon ac arbenigwyr i sicrhau bod pob dysgwr yn cael y wybodaeth, y sgiliau a’r profiadau sydd eu hangen arnynt ar gyfer bywyd yn yr unfed ganrif ar hugain. Mae hynny’n cynnwys sgiliau hanfodol llythrennedd, rhifedd a chymhwysedd digidol, yn ogystal â sgiliau mwy cyffredinol fel meddwl yn feirniadol a llythrennedd ariannol.

Thank you so much for your answer, Cabinet Secretary. Now, teaching children essential life skills, I completely agree with you, is essential when it comes to setting youngsters up for the future. Road safety, as far as I'm concerned, is one of those vital skills and, in my view, should be instilled in children from a very young age. Now, I'm sure I'm going to show my age now, but, when I was growing up, we had Super Safe with SuperTed on a Saturday morning, which was illustrated outside Cardiff castle, an educational cartoon to promote road safety. Now, clearly, this worked because, decades later, I can still remember everything else about that cartoon. I know some local authorities have dedicated road safety teams who go into schools and deliver road safety presentations, but figures released when the UK Government launched its THINK! campaign revealed that 67 per cent of children get fewer than two hours of road safety education in their whole time whilst at school. Given the Government has a big focus on active travel and wants to see people walking more, I firmly believe it's imperative that children are taught about road safety from a younger age. So, Cabinet Secretary, can you please outline what action the Welsh Government is going to be taking to achieve just that?

Diolch yn fawr iawn am eich ateb, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet. Nawr, rwy'n cytuno'n llwyr â chi fod dysgu sgiliau bywyd hanfodol i blant yn hollbwysig er mwyn paratoi pobl ifanc ar gyfer y dyfodol. Mae diogelwch ar y ffyrdd yn un o'r sgiliau hanfodol hynny yn fy marn i, a dylid ei feithrin mewn plant o oedran ifanc iawn. Nawr, rwy'n siŵr y byddaf yn dangos fy oed nawr, ond pan oeddwn yn iau, roeddem yn gwylio Super Safe with SuperTed ar fore Sadwrn, cartŵn addysgol i hyrwyddo diogelwch ar y ffyrdd, a oedd yn cael ei ddarlunio ger castell Caerdydd. Nawr, yn amlwg, fe weithiodd hyn oherwydd, ddegawdau yn ddiweddarach, gallaf gofio popeth arall am y cartŵn hwnnw o hyd. Gwn fod gan rai awdurdodau lleol dimau diogelwch ar y ffyrdd penodol sy'n mynd i ysgolion ac yn rhoi cyflwyniadau ar ddiogelwch ar y ffyrdd, ond datgelodd ffigurau a gyhoeddwyd pan lansiodd Llywodraeth y DU ei hymgyrch PWYLLWCH! fod 67 y cant o blant yn cael llai na dwy awr o addysg diogelwch ar y ffyrdd yn ystod eu holl amser yn yr ysgol. O ystyried ffocws y Llywodraeth ar deithio llesol a’i bod am weld pobl yn gwneud mwy o gerdded, credaf yn gryf ei bod yn hollbwysig fod plant yn cael eu haddysgu am ddiogelwch ar y ffyrdd o oedran iau. Felly, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, a allwch amlinellu pa gamau y bydd Llywodraeth Cymru yn eu cymryd i gyflawni hynny?

Thank you, Natasha. Just to assure you that safe active travel is a priority for this Government, and we've put a range of policies in place, as you're aware, to support that. I'm also aware that different local authorities have different programmes on place. I know that Rhondda Cynon Taf has an independent travel training programme for young people. But, if it's okay, I will write to you about the detail of what different local authorities are doing. But, clearly, there is an important piece of work there that we are doing to join up our active travel commitments with our education commitments in schools.

Diolch, Natasha. Gallaf roi sicrwydd i chi fod teithio llesol diogel yn flaenoriaeth i'r Llywodraeth hon, ac rydym wedi rhoi ystod o bolisïau ar waith, fel y gwyddoch, i gefnogi hynny. Rwyf hefyd yn ymwybodol fod gan wahanol awdurdodau lleol raglenni gwahanol ar waith. Gwn fod gan Rondda Cynon Taf raglen hyfforddiant teithio'n annibynnol ar gyfer pobl ifanc. Ond os caf, fe ysgrifennaf atoch gyda manylion yr hyn y mae gwahanol awdurdodau lleol yn ei wneud. Ond yn amlwg, mae yno waith pwysig yr ydym yn ei wneud i gydgysylltu ein hymrwymiadau teithio llesol â'n hymrwymiadau addysg mewn ysgolion.

Cwestiwn 8, yn olaf—Altaf Hussain.

Question 8, finally—Altaf Hussain.

Diogelu mewn Ysgolion
Safeguarding in Schools

8. Pa gamau y mae Llywodraeth Cymru yn eu cymryd i wella diogelu mewn ysgolion? OQ61058

8. What action is the Welsh Government taking to improve safeguarding in schools? OQ61058

Everyone has the right to access a safe learning environment, and all education settings in Wales have a legal duty to ensure that children and young people are safeguarded. The Welsh Government's 'Keeping learners safe' statutory guidance supports education settings in ensuring they have effective safeguarding systems in place.

Mae gan bawb hawl i gael mynediad at amgylchedd dysgu diogel, ac mae gan bob lleoliad addysg yng Nghymru ddyletswydd gyfreithiol i sicrhau bod plant a phobl ifanc yn cael eu diogelu. Mae canllawiau statudol 'Cadw dysgwyr yn ddiogel' Llywodraeth Cymru yn cefnogi lleoliadau addysg i sicrhau bod ganddynt systemau diogelu effeithiol ar waith.

Thank you, Cabinet Secretary. The trial of Neil Foden has highlighted some shocking gaps in safeguarding. While I accept that the Cabinet Secretary cannot and should not comment on an ongoing court case, the trial has raised wider issues. It has emerged that concerns about the—

Diolch, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet. Mae achos llys Neil Foden wedi amlygu rhai bylchau brawychus ym maes diogelu. Er fy mod yn derbyn na all ac na ddylai Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet wneud sylw ar achos llys cyfredol, mae’r achos wedi tynnu sylw at faterion ehangach. Mae wedi dod yn amlwg fod pryderon ynglŷn ag—

I do need to draw your attention, Altaf Hussain; this is an ongoing trial, and I would urge you to be very careful as to what you are going to say.

Mae angen imi dynnu eich sylw, Altaf Hussain; mae hwn yn achos cyfredol, a hoffwn yn eich annog i fod yn ofalus iawn o ran yr hyn y byddwch yn ei ddweud.

Yes, I'm not talking about it. I'm just saying in general. You can hear my question.

Ie, nid wyf yn siarad amdano. Rwy'n siarad yn gyffredinol. Gallwch glywed fy nghwestiwn.

It has emerged that concerns about the inappropriate behaviour of this headteacher towards female pupils—

Mae wedi dod yn amlwg fod pryderon ynglŷn ag ymddygiad amhriodol y pennaeth hwn tuag at ddisgyblion benywaidd—

I think I am going to need to advise you very strongly to rethink your question.

Rwy'n credu y bydd angen imi eich cynghori’n gryf iawn i ailystyried eich cwestiwn.

Okay. Cabinet Secretary, are you satisfied that adequate safeguards exist to prevent such behaviours? And what action will you take following the outcome of this case and the imprisonment of a Cardiff teacher for similar offences to ensure that we have robust processes in place to protect pupils in our classrooms?

Iawn. Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, a ydych chi'n fodlon fod mesurau diogelu digonol ar waith i atal ymddygiad o’r fath? A pha gamau y byddwch yn eu cymryd yn dilyn canlyniad yr achos hwn a charcharu athro o Gaerdydd am droseddau tebyg i sicrhau bod gennym brosesau cadarn ar waith i ddiogelu disgyblion yn ein hystafelloedd dosbarth?

Thank you, Altaf. All schools have statutory duties to operate in a way that takes into account the need to safeguard and promote well-being. And in complying with their statutory duties, local authorities and governing bodies need to ensure reasonable measures are taken to minimise risks of harm to children's well-being. They also need to ensure appropriate actions are taken to address concerns about the well-being of a child or children, working to agreed local policies and procedures in full partnership with other local agencies.

Diolch, Altaf. Mae gan bob ysgol ddyletswyddau statudol i weithredu mewn ffordd sy’n ystyried yr angen i ddiogelu a hyrwyddo llesiant. Ac wrth gydymffurfio â'u dyletswyddau statudol, mae angen i awdurdodau lleol a chyrff llywodraethu sicrhau bod mesurau rhesymol yn cael eu rhoi ar waith i leihau'r risg o niwed i lesiant plant. Mae angen iddynt hefyd sicrhau bod camau priodol yn cael eu cymryd i fynd i'r afael â phryderon am lesiant plentyn neu blant, gan weithio'n unol â pholisïau a gweithdrefnau lleol y cytunwyd arnynt mewn partneriaeth lawn ag asiantaethau lleol eraill.

15:15

Diolch i'r Ysgrifennydd Cabinet.

I thank the Cabinet Secretary.

3. Dadl: Cyfnod 4 Bil Senedd Cymru (Aelodau ac Etholiadau)
3. Debate: Stage 4 of the Senedd Cymru (Members and Elections) Bill

Yr eitem nesaf, felly, fydd y ddadl ar Gyfnod 4 Bil Senedd Cymru (Aelodau ac Etholiadau). Dwi'n galw ar y Cwnsler Cyffredinol i wneud y cynnig yma. Mick Antoniw.

The next item is the debate on Stage 4 of the Senedd Cymru (Members and Elections) Bill. I call on the Counsel General to move the motion. Mick Antoniw.

Cynnig NDM8576 Mick Antoniw

Cynnig bod y Senedd yn unol â Rheol Sefydlog 26.47:

Yn cymeradwyo Bil Senedd Cymru (Aelodau ac Etholiadau).

Motion NDM8576 Mick Antoniw

To propose that the Senedd in accordance with Standing Order 26.47:

Approves the Senedd Cymru (Members and Elections) Bill.

Cynigiwyd y cynnig.

Motion moved.

Diolch, Llywydd. I move the motion.

Diolch, Lywydd. Rwy'n gwneud y cynnig.

Braint yw gallu gwneud y cynnig ar y Bil pwysig yma. Heddiw, rŷn ni'n creu hanes. Dau ddeg pum mlynedd yn ôl, ar 6 Mai 1999, roedd pobl Cymru wedi ethol Cynulliad Cenedlaethol cyntaf Cymru. Bryd hynny, doedd dim pwerau deddfu go iawn. Doedd dim rhaniad rhwng y Cynulliad a Llywodraeth Cymru. Dros y chwarter canrif diwethaf, mae ein democratiaeth wedi tyfu, wedi datblygu ac wedi aeddfedu.

It's a privilege to move the motion on this important Bill. Today, we are making history. Twenty-five years ago, on 6 May 1999, the people of Wales elected the first National Assembly for Wales. At that time, there were no real legislative powers. There was no separation between the Assembly and the Welsh Government. Over the past 25 years, our democracy has grown, developed and matured.

Devolution is about the decentralisation of power. It is about bringing decision making closer to the people of Wales. It is about empowerment: empowerment of people and communities in those decisions that affect the lives of every single person in Wales. Yet, while the responsibilities of the Senedd have grown, its capacity has not. It has remained the smallest of all the devolved legislatures in the UK. The Scottish Parliament has 129 Members and the Northern Ireland Assembly has 90 Members. The Bill before us changes that. It is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to invest in our democracy, by creating a modern Senedd that represents and reflects twenty-first century Wales; a more effective Senedd, with greater ability and capacity to hold the Welsh Government to account; a more representative Senedd to better serve the people of Wales. I urge all Members to seize this opportunity to strengthen the very foundations of our parliamentary democracy, to refresh, improve and modernise the legislature, to make it fit for the many challenges we face as a nation.

This Bill contains a bold package of reforms, a significant improvement on our current electoral system, removing the disproportionality inherent in first-past-the-post. It will ensure that every vote counts. It will provide the electoral framework for greater diversity and fairer representation. It will be simpler. Voters will only have one ballot as opposed to two under the current system. It will create greater transparency and accountability of candidates to the manifesto on which they were elected. It will enable better and more specialist scrutiny of policy, Government and delivery. It will strengthen democracy.

As well as addressing the capacity of the Senedd and addressing its electoral system, the Bill also provides, for the very first time, for the creation of new Senedd constituencies. It repurposes the renamed Democracy and Boundary Commission Cymru with the functions necessary to undertake reviews of Senedd constituency boundaries on an ongoing basis. It provides more frequent opportunities for democratic renewal through a return to four-year elections. It requires candidates and Members of the Senedd to be resident in Wales, and it provides a mechanism to review the changes after the 2026 election, and to consider the practical and legislative implications of job sharing for Members and offices related to the Senedd.

I spoke at Stage 1 about the importance of scrutiny and how laws are best forged in the fires of parliamentary scrutiny, and I think we've seen that in the course of this Bill's own legislative passage. We have had some robust exchanges, but we have also had deliberations to improve and clarify this progressive package of measures. We have seen a consensus develop on associated issues, such as increasing the accountability of Members. We've seen cross-party support for the Standards of Conduct Committee taking evidence to identify an effective and proportionate recall machinery that works for Wales and for our electoral system. And I'm happy to reiterate now this Government's commitment to maintain the momentum that has been generated and to engage with and support the committee in its work.

I'd therefore like to express my thanks to all Members and committees for their constructive consideration and scrutiny of this Bill. Your contributions have ensured that this Bill is in the best position it can be, and I'm very grateful to you for that. I'm also very grateful to all the stakeholders, experts and members of the public who have contributed their views and expertise during the Bill's legislative scrutiny. I'd also like to thank the officials, including both those of the Welsh Government and of the Reform Bill Committee, for their support to myself and to Members throughout the Bill's legislative journey.

And finally, I'd like to thank the members of and the contributors to the various commissions and panels over the years, whose work has led us to this moment. This is a Bill whose genesis was in the deliberations of the Special Purpose Committee on Senedd Reform. That committee, in turn, was indebted to the work of its predecessors, including the Committee on Senedd Electoral Reform and the expert panel on electoral reform. Without their body of work, the proposals before us today would not have been possible. As our devolution journey marks its 25-year milestone, I believe that this package of reforms will create a Senedd fit for purpose in the next 25 years and beyond. Diolch, Llywydd. 

Mae datganoli'n ymwneud â datganoli pŵer. Mae'n ymwneud â dod â'r broses o wneud penderfyniadau yn nes at bobl Cymru. Mae'n ymwneud â grymuso: grymuso pobl a chymunedau yn y penderfyniadau sy’n effeithio ar fywydau pob unigolyn yng Nghymru. Ac eto, er bod cyfrifoldebau’r Senedd wedi cynyddu, nid yw ei chapasiti wedi cynyddu. Dyma'r lleiaf o holl ddeddfwrfeydd datganoledig y DU o hyd. Mae gan Senedd yr Alban 129 o Aelodau ac mae gan Gynulliad Gogledd Iwerddon 90 o Aelodau. Mae’r Bil ger ein bron yn newid hynny. Mae’n gyfle unwaith mewn cenhedlaeth i fuddsoddi yn ein democratiaeth, drwy greu Senedd fodern sy’n cynrychioli ac yn adlewyrchu Cymru’r unfed ganrif ar hugain; Senedd fwy effeithiol, gyda mwy o allu a chapasiti i ddwyn Llywodraeth Cymru i gyfrif; Senedd fwy cynrychioliadol i wasanaethu pobl Cymru'n well. Rwy'n annog yr holl Aelodau i achub ar y cyfle hwn i gryfhau sylfeini ein democratiaeth seneddol, i adnewyddu, gwella a moderneiddio’r ddeddfwrfa, i’w gwneud yn addas ar gyfer yr heriau niferus sy’n ein hwynebu fel cenedl.

Mae’r Bil hwn yn cynnwys pecyn beiddgar o ddiwygiadau, gwelliant sylweddol ar ein system etholiadol bresennol, gan ddileu’r anghyfranoldeb sy’n gynhenid yn system y cyntaf i'r felin. Bydd yn sicrhau bod pob pleidlais yn cyfrif. Bydd yn darparu'r fframwaith etholiadol ar gyfer mwy o amrywiaeth a chynrychiolaeth decach. Bydd yn symlach. Dim ond un bleidlais a fydd gan bleidleiswyr o gymharu â dwy o dan y system bresennol. Bydd yn creu mwy o dryloywder ac atebolrwydd ymhlith ymgeiswyr i'r maniffesto y cawsant eu hethol arno. Bydd yn galluogi craffu gwell a mwy arbenigol ar bolisi, Llywodraeth a chyflawniad. Bydd yn cryfhau democratiaeth.

Yn ogystal ag ymdrin â chapasiti’r Senedd a mynd i’r afael â’i system etholiadol, mae’r Bil hefyd yn darparu, am y tro cyntaf erioed, ar gyfer creu etholaethau Senedd newydd. Mae’n rhoi pwrpas newydd i Gomisiwn Democratiaeth a Ffiniau Cymru, o dan ei enw newydd, gan ddarparu’r swyddogaethau angenrheidiol iddo gynnal adolygiadau o ffiniau etholaethau’r Senedd yn barhaus. Mae'n darparu cyfleoedd mwy aml ar gyfer adnewyddiad democrataidd drwy ddychwelyd at etholiadau pedair blynedd. Mae’n ei gwneud yn ofynnol i ymgeiswyr ac Aelodau’r Senedd breswylio yng Nghymru, ac mae’n darparu mecanwaith i adolygu’r newidiadau ar ôl etholiad 2026, ac i ystyried goblygiadau ymarferol a deddfwriaethol rhannu swyddi i Aelodau a swyddi sy'n gysylltiedig â’r Senedd.

Soniais yng Nghyfnod 1 am bwysigrwydd craffu a’r ffaith mai'r ffordd orau o greu deddfau yw drwy graffu seneddol, a chredaf ein bod wedi gweld hynny yn ystod taith ddeddfwriaethol y Bil hwn. Rydym wedi cael trafodaethau grymus, ond rydym hefyd wedi cael trafodaethau i wella'r pecyn blaengar hwn o fesurau a'i wneud yn fwy eglur. Rydym wedi gweld consensws yn datblygu ar faterion cysylltiedig, megis cynyddu atebolrwydd Aelodau. Rydym wedi gweld cefnogaeth drawsbleidiol i’r syniad o'r Pwyllgor Safonau Ymddygiad yn cymryd tystiolaeth i nodi peirianwaith adalw effeithiol a chyfrannol sy’n gweithio i Gymru ac i’n system etholiadol. Ac rwy’n fwy na pharod i ailadrodd ymrwymiad y Llywodraeth hon nawr i gynnal y momentwm a gynhyrchwyd ac i ymgysylltu â’r pwyllgor a’i gefnogi yn ei waith.

Hoffwn ddiolch, felly, i’r holl Aelodau a’r pwyllgorau am eu hystyriaeth adeiladol a’u gwaith craffu ar y Bil hwn. Mae eich cyfraniadau wedi sicrhau bod y Bil hwn yn y sefyllfa orau y gall fod ynddi, ac rwy’n ddiolchgar iawn i chi am hynny. Rwyf hefyd yn ddiolchgar iawn i'r holl randdeiliaid, arbenigwyr ac aelodau'r cyhoedd sydd wedi cyfrannu eu barn a'u harbenigedd yn ystod craffu deddfwriaethol ar y Bil. Hoffwn ddiolch hefyd i'r swyddogion, gan gynnwys swyddogion Llywodraeth Cymru a'r Pwyllgor Biliau Diwygio, am eu cefnogaeth i mi ac i'r Aelodau drwy gydol taith ddeddfwriaethol y Bil.

Ac yn olaf, hoffwn ddiolch i aelodau a chyfranwyr y gwahanol gomisiynau a phaneli dros y blynyddoedd, y mae eu gwaith wedi ein harwain at y foment hon. Mae hwn yn Fil sydd â'i wreiddiau yn nhrafodaethau’r Pwyllgor Diben Arbennig ar Ddiwygio'r Senedd. Roedd y pwyllgor hwnnw, yn ei dro, yn ddyledus i waith ei ragflaenwyr, gan gynnwys y Pwyllgor ar Ddiwygio Etholiadol y Senedd a’r panel arbenigol ar ddiwygio etholiadol. Heb eu gwaith, ni fyddai’r cynigion ger ein bron heddiw wedi bod yn bosibl. Wrth i’n taith ddatganoli nodi ei charreg filltir 25 mlynedd, rwy'n credu y bydd y pecyn hwn o ddiwygiadau yn creu Senedd sy’n addas at y diben ar gyfer y 25 mlynedd nesaf a thu hwnt. Diolch, Lywydd.

15:20

Well, here we are again. We've reached the final stage of the consideration of this Senedd reform Bill, and we have legislation before us in its final form. And I want to put on record my thanks to the Reform Bill Committee team and to those who gave evidence to that committee during its discussions on this wide-ranging Bill.

As I've said before, and I'll say it again, there are parts of the Bill that my party has welcomed. We welcome a return to four-year terms of this Senedd, so that Members have to go back to seek a fresh mandate from the public, and we certainly do welcome the residency requirements that will be placed upon people, so that they have to live in Wales if they want to stand for election to this Senedd as well. However, it's a great shame that the Bill has changed so little during its passage through the Senedd.

There were many sensible amendments that were tabled at both Stage 2 and Stage 3 by my party and those in other political parties, with sincere intentions of strengthening and improving the Bill. Many were in line with the cross-party recommendations of the Reform Bill Committee. Yet Labour and Plaid Cymru Members, including those who sat on the committee making the recommendations that many of those amendments sought to reflect, voted against them. And so we have before us this afternoon a deeply flawed piece of legislation, which I am afraid will only serve to undermine our democracy.

And it will damage the relationship between the public and their elected representatives in this Welsh Parliament. This Bill still includes the creation of a closed-list electoral system, a system that strips away a fundamental right enjoyed by Welsh voters for generations, by taking away the opportunity for them to choose the individual person they want to represent their area, and giving that right to party elites in charge of electoral candidate lists. It is the biggest power grab from the people of Wales that it has ever suffered in the history of Welsh democracy. 

And then there's the scale of the expansion proposed in this Bill—a staggering 60 per cent—and all of the costs associated with that expansion: almost £20 million each and every year, money that our national health service, our schools and our other public services are crying out for. Money that could be building new hospitals, keeping schools, libraries and public conveniences open, but that money instead will be spent on luxury offices and pay for 36 more politicians, their entourage of staff and the structure here at the Senedd needed to support them. Spending £120 million on more politicians over the review period is a luxury that we can ill afford. 

This Bill sends a clear message to the Welsh public: we would love to keep your libraries open, we would love you to be able to get your operation or your scan or your appointment sooner, we'd love to support your child with their additional learning needs, but they're an unaffordable luxury. Instead, we're spending the money we could be spending on them on creating 36 more politicians in Cardiff Bay. It is shameful, Llywydd, and all of this is being done without any clear public mandate whatsoever, and indeed, in the face of very clear public opposition, as evidenced by the public responses to the Reform Bill Committee during our proceedings.

I sought to address some of the Bill's failings via sensible amendments, amendments to introduce a flexible voting list system to enable greater voter choice and direct accountability of future Members of this Senedd to the public they serve; a system of recall to allow the public to unseat Members of the Senedd who fail to meet the high standards of behaviour expected of them; and the requirement for a referendum to be held prior to the introduction of changes to our voting system and any increase in the number of Senedd Members. But, Llywydd, these reasonable amendments were rejected by Labour and Plaid MSs, Members who ignored their consciences, followed their party whips and betrayed the people they serve.

And so, we Welsh Conservatives will stand today in our united and fundamental opposition to the Bill before us. And this week, Llywydd, as we mark the twenty-fifth anniversary of the establishment of the Senedd and Welsh devolution, I urge Members to reject this legislation: it is a backward step for democracy and accountability in Wales; it will damage public trust, erode the powers of voters, and undermine confidence in this Senedd. Llywydd, it is simple: Wales needs more doctors, dentists, nurses and teachers; it does not need more politicians. So, if you believe in democracy, fellow Members, if you believe in accountability and if you believe in delivering on the priorities of the people of Wales, you will join me and everybody on these Welsh Conservative benches and vote against this Bill.

Wel, dyma ni eto. Rydym wedi cyrraedd cyfnod olaf y broses o ystyried y Bil hwn i ddiwygio’r Senedd, ac mae gennym ddeddfwriaeth o’n blaenau ar ei ffurf derfynol. A hoffwn gofnodi fy niolch i dîm y Pwyllgor Biliau Diwygio ac i'r rheini a roddodd dystiolaeth i'r pwyllgor hwnnw yn ystod ei drafodaethau ar y Bil eang hwn.

Fel rwyf wedi’i ddweud o’r blaen, ac fe’i dywedaf eto, mae rhannau o’r Bil y mae fy mhlaid wedi’u croesawu. Rydym yn croesawu dychwelyd at dymhorau pedair blynedd ar gyfer y Senedd hon, fel bod yn rhaid i Aelodau fynd yn ôl i ofyn am fandad newydd gan y cyhoedd, ac rydym yn sicr yn croesawu’r gofynion preswylio a fydd yn cael eu gosod ar bobl, fel bod yn rhaid iddynt fyw yng Nghymru os ydynt am sefyll i gael eu hethol i'r Senedd hon. Fodd bynnag, mae’n drueni mawr fod y Bil wedi newid cyn lleied yn ystod ei daith drwy’r Senedd.

Roedd llawer o welliannau synhwyrol a gyflwynwyd yng Nghyfnod 2 a Chyfnod 3 gan fy mhlaid i a chan bleidiau gwleidyddol eraill, gyda bwriadau diffuant o gryfhau a gwella’r Bil. Roedd llawer ohonynt yn unol ag argymhellion trawsbleidiol y Pwyllgor Biliau Diwygio. Ac eto, pleidleisiodd Aelodau Llafur a Phlaid Cymru, gan gynnwys y rheini a oedd ar y pwyllgor yn gwneud yr argymhellion yr oedd llawer o’r gwelliannau hynny’n ceisio eu hadlewyrchu, yn eu herbyn. Ac felly, ger ein bron y prynhawn yma, mae gennym ddeddfwriaeth ddiffygiol iawn, sy'n mynd i danseilio ein democratiaeth, mae arnaf ofn.

A bydd yn niweidio'r berthynas rhwng y cyhoedd a'u cynrychiolwyr etholedig yma yn Senedd Cymru. Mae’r Bil hwn yn dal i gynnwys creu system etholiadol rhestr gaeedig, system sy’n dileu hawl sylfaenol y mae pleidleiswyr Cymru wedi'i mwynhau ers cenedlaethau, drwy gael gwared ar y cyfle iddynt ddewis yr unigolyn y maent am iddynt gynrychioli eu hardal, ac ildio'r hawl honno i bwysigion pleidiau sy'n gyfrifol am restrau ymgeiswyr etholiadol. Dyma’r enghraifft waethaf o gipio grym oddi wrth bobl Cymru yn hanes democratiaeth Cymru.

Wedyn, mae maint yr ehangu a gynigir yn y Bil hwn—cynnydd syfrdanol o 60 y cant—a'r holl gostau sy'n gysylltiedig â'r ehangu hwnnw: bron i £20 miliwn bob blwyddyn, arian y mae ein gwasanaeth iechyd gwladol, ein hysgolion a'n gwasanaethau cyhoeddus eraill yn erfyn amdano. Arian a allai fod yn adeiladu ysbytai newydd, yn cadw ysgolion, llyfrgelloedd a chyfleusterau cyhoeddus ar agor, ond yn lle hynny, bydd yr arian hwnnw'n cael ei wario ar swyddfeydd moethus ac yn talu am 36 yn rhagor o wleidyddion, eu gosgordd o staff a’r strwythur sydd ei angen yma yn y Senedd i’w cefnogi. Mae gwario £120 miliwn ar ragor o wleidyddion dros y cyfnod adolygu yn foethusrwydd na allwn ei fforddio.

Mae’r Bil hwn yn anfon neges glir at y cyhoedd yng Nghymru: byddem wrth ein bodd yn cadw eich llyfrgelloedd ar agor, byddem wrth ein bodd pe baech yn gallu cael eich llawdriniaeth neu eich sgan neu eich apwyntiad yn gynt, byddem wrth ein bodd yn cefnogi eich plentyn gyda’u hanghenion dysgu ychwanegol, ond maent yn foethusrwydd anfforddiadwy. Yn hytrach, rydym yn gwario'r arian y gallem fod yn ei wario arnynt ar greu 36 yn rhagor o wleidyddion ym Mae Caerdydd. Mae'n gywilyddus, Lywydd, ac mae hyn oll yn digwydd heb unrhyw fandad cyhoeddus clir o gwbl, ac yn wir, yn wyneb gwrthwynebiad cyhoeddus clir iawn, fel y gwelwyd yn ymatebion y cyhoedd i'r Pwyllgor Biliau Diwygio yn ystod ein trafodion.

Ceisiais fynd i’r afael â rhai o fethiannau’r Bil drwy welliannau synhwyrol, gwelliannau i gyflwyno system restr bleidleisio hyblyg i roi mwy o ddewis i bleidleiswyr ac atebolrwydd uniongyrchol i Aelodau’r Senedd hon yn y dyfodol i’r cyhoedd y maent yn eu gwasanaethu; system adalw i ganiatáu i’r cyhoedd gael gwared ar Aelodau o’r Senedd nad ydynt yn bodloni'r safonau ymddygiad uchel a ddisgwylir ganddynt; a’r gofyniad i gynnal refferendwm cyn cyflwyno newidiadau i’n system bleidleisio ac unrhyw gynnydd yn nifer Aelodau’r Senedd. Ond Lywydd, cafodd y gwelliannau rhesymol hyn eu gwrthod gan Aelodau Llafur a Phlaid Cymru o'r Senedd, Aelodau a anwybyddodd eu cydwybod, a ddilynodd chwip eu plaid a bradychu’r bobl y maent yn eu gwasanaethu.

Ac felly, byddwn ni'r Ceidwadwyr Cymreig yn unedig yn ein gwrthwynebiad llwyr i'r Bil ger ein bron. A’r wythnos hon, Lywydd, wrth inni nodi pum mlynedd ar hugain ers sefydlu’r Senedd a datganoli yng Nghymru, rwy’n annog yr Aelodau i wrthod y ddeddfwriaeth hon: mae’n gam yn ôl i ddemocratiaeth ac atebolrwydd yng Nghymru; bydd yn niweidio ymddiriedaeth y cyhoedd, yn erydu pwerau pleidleiswyr, ac yn tanseilio hyder yn y Senedd hon. Lywydd, mae'n syml: mae angen mwy o feddygon, deintyddion, nyrsys ac athrawon ar Gymru; nid oes angen mwy o wleidyddion arni. Felly, os ydych chi'n credu mewn democratiaeth, gyd-Aelodau, os ydych chi'n credu mewn atebolrwydd ac os ydych chi'n credu mewn cyflawni yn unol â blaenoriaethau pobl Cymru, fe fyddwch yn ymuno â mi a phawb ar feinciau'r Ceidwadwyr Cymreig ac yn pleidleisio yn erbyn y Bil hwn.

15:25

Ddoe oedd y diwrnod roeddem ni'n adlewyrchu ar y 25 mlynedd cyntaf o ddatganoli, a heddiw ydy’r diwrnod rydyn ni’n edrych ymlaen, a rhaid cyfaddef dwi’n ei hystyried hi’n anrhydedd bod yn Aelod yma a chael y cyfle i fwrw fy mhleidlais o blaid y diwygiadau hirddisgwyliedig sydd ger ein bron ni heddiw.

Hoffwn ddechrau drwy ddiolch i bawb sydd wedi ein cefnogi ni fel seneddwyr i gyrraedd y cam hanesyddol hwn, yn arbennig pawb sydd wedi cyfrannu i lu o sesiynau tystiolaeth ac ymchwiliadau sydd i gyd wedi dod i’r un un casgliad, sef ei bod hi’n hen bryd i ni gymryd y camau nesaf i gryfhau ein democratiaeth ar gyfer y bennod nesaf yn hanes ein cenedl. Ac am daith ydy hi wedi bod dros y canrifoedd.

Fel ein hatgoffwyd ni ddoe gan Luke Fletcher, ac fel ein hatgoffir ni gan ddisgyblion sy’n ymweld â’r Senedd hon o’n hetholaethau a’n rhanbarthau, mae datganoli a chael penderfyniadau am Gymru wedi eu gwneud yma yng Nghymru yn gyfan gwbl normal i genhedlaeth sydd ddim yn cofio Cymru fel arall. Maen nhw’n gweld bod yna ffordd wahanol o wneud gwleidyddiaeth yn bosib, ac maen nhw’n credu yng ngallu ein cenedl i lywodraethu ei hun a chymryd ei lle haeddiannol ar y llwyfan rhyngwladol. Yn wir, dangosodd y Comisiwn Annibynnol ar Ddyfodol Cyfansoddiadol Cymru fod annibyniaeth i Gymru yn rhywbeth hollol hyfyw, a thrwy greu Senedd sy’n fwy cynrychioliadol o’n cenedl, ac un mwy o faint, mae hynny’n dod yn fwy posib.

Dros yr wythnosau diwethaf yn y Senedd hon, mae pwysigrwydd craffu ar Brif Weinidogion a Llywodraethau wedi dod i’r amlwg. Drwy gymryd y camau rydym, gobeithio, am eu cymryd heddiw, bydd ein gallu i ddwyn Gweinidogion i gyfrif yn cael ei gryfhau a byddwn yn creu system ethol gyfan gwbl gyfrannol.

Ac nid dyma ddiwedd y daith, wrth gwrs. Bydd adolygu yn digwydd yn dilyn yr etholiad nesaf. I fy mhlaid i, byddwn yn parhau i gefnogi ac ymgyrchu am system bleidleisio pleidlais sengl drosglwyddadwy. Byddwn eisiau creu Senedd wirioneddol gyfoes a chynrychioladol. Byddwn eisiau gweld mwy o bwerau yn cael eu datganoli a Chymru’n dod yn wlad annibynnol. Rydym hefyd yn falch ein bod wedi derbyn sicrwydd gan y Llywodraeth y byddan nhw’n cyflwyno Bil ar wahân, cyn diwedd y Senedd hon, i greu mecanwaith adalw priodol. Mi fyddwn ni’n eu dal nhw at hynny, a byddwn yn sicrhau y bydd y mecanweithiau adolygu yn y Bil hwn yn cael eu defnyddio’n gywir.

Felly, oes, mae gwaith yn parhau o’n blaenau i gryfhau ein democratiaeth. Ond mae’r cam rydym yn ei gymryd heddiw yn gam enfawr ymlaen, nid yn unig i’r Senedd hon, ond ein cenedl. Ein tasg ni fel gwleidyddion fydd sicrhau ein bod ni’n defnyddio’r diwygiadau i wireddu’r hyn sy’n bosibl ar ran ein cymunedau, ac ar ran Cymru. Mae’n gyfrifoldeb aruthrol, ond mae’n rhaid i ni ei gymryd.

Yesterday was the day for reflecting on the first 25 years of devolution, and today is the day for looking forward, and I must admit that I consider it an honour to be a Member here and to have the opportunity to cast my vote for these long-awaited reforms that are before us today.

I'm going to start by thanking everyone that has supported us as parliamentarians to reach this historic stage, especially all those who have contributed to a host of evidence sessions and inquiries that have all come to the same conclusion, namely, that it's about time for us to take the next steps to strengthen our democracy for the next chapter of our nation's history. And what a journey it has been over the centuries.

As we were reminded yesterday by Luke Fletcher, and as we are reminded by pupils who visit this Senedd from our constituencies and regions, devolution and decisions being made for Wales here in Wales have been completely normalised for a generation that doesn't remember Wales being any other way. They see that a different way of doing politics as possible, and they believe in our nation's ability to govern itself and take its rightful place on the world stage. Indeed, the Independent Commission on the Constitutional Future of Wales showed that Welsh independence is wholly viable, and by creating a Senedd that's more representative of our nation, and bigger, that possibility only grows.

Over recent weeks in this Senedd, the importance of scrutinising First Ministers and Governments has been very apparent. By taking the steps that we will hopefully take today, our ability to hold Ministers to account will be strengthened, and we will create an electoral system that is fully proportional.

And this isn't the end of the journey, of course. A review will take place following the next election. My party will continue to support and campaign for a single transferable vote electoral system. We will wish to create a truly modern and representative Senedd. We will wish to see more powers devolved, and Wales becoming an independent nation. We're also pleased that we've received assurances from the Government that it will table a separate Bill, before the end of this Senedd, to create an appropriate recall mechanism. We will hold them to that, and we will ensure that the review mechanisms in this Bill will be used properly.

So, yes, there is work still to be done to strengthen our democracy. But the step that we're taking today is a huge step forward, not only for this Senedd, but also for our nation. Our task as politicians will be to ensure that we use these reforms to realise what's possible on behalf of our communities and on behalf of Wales. It is a huge responsibility, but it's an opportunity we must take.

15:30

I support the increase in the size of the Senedd. In Scotland, the Scottish Parliament have 30,000 electors per Member. In Northern Ireland, for the Northern Ireland Assembly, they have 15,000 voters per Member. In Wales, we currently have 40,000 voters per Member. If we increased to 96 Members, we'd have 25,000 electors per Member and that would place Wales approximately midway between Scotland and Northern Ireland in terms of the electorate. Northern Ireland currently has more Members than we have in Wales.

The number of Members in committees is small. I serve on the Finance Committee with three other Members. If two Members cannot get to the meeting, it becomes inquorate. This can be caused by traffic, as the M4 is incredibly difficult at times, coming in from the west—[Interruption.] Andrew R.T. Davies wants us to have a relief road around Port Talbot. I congratulate him. I will support him when he calls for an M4 relief road around Port Talbot, because that would make my life a lot easier. It can also be caused by illness or a family emergency. The Public Accounts and Public Administration Committee would have been inquorate today if I had gone to the toilet. [Laughter.] You cannot run an organisation like that, when Members have to sit there until we have an official break in order to keep the meeting quorate. Other committees have five or six Members. Does anyone think those are adequate numbers?

Rwy'n cefnogi'r cynnydd ym maint y Senedd. Yn yr Alban, mae gan Senedd yr Alban 30,000 o etholwyr i bob Aelod. Yng Ngogledd Iwerddon, ar gyfer Cynulliad Gogledd Iwerddon, mae ganddynt 15,000 o bleidleiswyr i bob Aelod. Yng Nghymru, mae gennym 40,000 o bleidleiswyr i bob Aelod ar hyn o bryd. Pe byddem yn cynyddu i 96 Aelod, byddai gennym 25,000 o etholwyr i bob Aelod a byddai hynny'n gosod Cymru tua hanner ffordd rhwng yr Alban a Gogledd Iwerddon o ran nifer yr etholwyr. Ar hyn o bryd mae gan Ogledd Iwerddon fwy o Aelodau nag sydd gennym ni yng Nghymru.

Mae nifer yr Aelodau mewn pwyllgorau'n fach. Rwy'n gwasanaethu ar y Pwyllgor Cyllid gyda thri Aelod arall. Os na all dau Aelod gyrraedd y cyfarfod, ni cheir cworwm. Gall hyn ddigwydd oherwydd traffig, gan fod yr M4 yn anhygoel o anodd ar adegau, wrth ddod i mewn o'r gorllewin—[Torri ar draws.] Mae Andrew R.T. Davies eisiau inni gael ffordd liniaru o amgylch Port Talbot. Rwy'n ei longyfarch. Byddaf yn ei gefnogi pan fydd yn galw am ffordd liniaru'r M4 o amgylch Port Talbot, oherwydd byddai hynny'n gwneud fy mywyd i'n llawer haws. Gall ddigwydd oherwydd salwch neu argyfwng teuluol. Byddai'r Pwyllgor Cyfrifon Cyhoeddus a Gweinyddiaeth Gyhoeddus wedi methu ffurfio cworwm heddiw pe bawn i wedi mynd i'r tŷ bach. [Chwerthin.] Ni allwch redeg sefydliad yn y ffordd honno, pan fydd yn rhaid i'r Aelodau eistedd yno hyd nes ein bod yn cael egwyl swyddogol er mwyn sicrhau cworwm i'r cyfarfod. Mae gan bwyllgorau eraill bump neu chwe Aelod. A oes unrhyw un yn meddwl bod y rhain yn rhifau digonol?

Will you take an intervention, please?

A wnewch chi dderbyn ymyriad os gwelwch yn dda?

Thank you, Mike; you're a gentleman. Why is it that you are following the whip and not allowing a referendum to the people of Wales on this issue? Is it because you know that people in Wales will reject this?

Diolch yn fawr, Mike; rydych chi'n ŵr bonheddig. Pam eich bod chi'n dilyn y chwip a pheidio â chaniatáu refferendwm i bobl Cymru ar y mater hwn? Ai oherwydd eich bod yn gwybod y bydd pobl yng Nghymru yn gwrthod hyn?

I'm not sure how people in Wales would vote on something like this. I think if the argument was being made about the size of committees, the difficulty of keeping committees quorate, people in Wales may well have thought, 'Well, perhaps we do need some more Members'. If you tell them how we differ from Scotland and Northern Ireland, they would probably think we need more Members. We cannot have Government by referendum. I've been involved in lots of referenda. I've lost more than I've won and I've been very unhappy with referenda, because they bring really complicated questions down to a 'yes' or a 'no', and that is a serious problem. Rishi Sunak could give us a referendum now on his Government—it's called a general election—and everybody on the Labour benches would love to have that.

Choosing a new electoral system is not a politically neutral act. The system chosen has a huge effect on the number of seats won. If Wales in 1999 had used first-past-the-post, Labour would have comfortably won every subsequent election. The introduction of regional Members and the regional system meant that Labour has never had a majority in the Senedd. The votes were the same, but the outcome was different. Two things have been said about the new system. Firstly, that it is proportional; the second that no votes are wasted. Both are provably untrue. It's not a matter of opinion—they're provably untrue. I agree with Rishi Sunak: we need to improve numeracy in this country.

What will happen is that it will be roughly proportional between the three largest parties, but it will make it more difficult for smaller parties to win, and I'm sure that Jane Dodds is going to say something about how it's going to make it more difficult for the Liberal Democrats when she gets up to speak. She'll probably ask for the single transferrable vote, which is a bit like a lottery for seats. Unless each party has multiples of 60 and two thirds of the total vote in each constituency, then votes would be wasted—that's inevitable. You'll have people who will have more votes or less votes than they need to move to the next level. [Interruption.] Lee Waters says 'fewer'. When I see a mathematical formula that says x is fewer than y, I will agree with him, but every time I see a mathematical formula, it says x is less than y. Again, I think that numeracy is a wonderful thing; pity it hasn't got in here. [Interruption.]

Nid wyf yn siŵr sut y byddai pobl yng Nghymru yn pleidleisio ar rywbeth fel hyn. Rwy'n credu pe bai'r ddadl yn cael ei gwneud am faint pwyllgorau, anhawster cadw cworwm pwyllgorau, mae'n ddigon posibl y byddai pobl Cymru wedi meddwl, 'Wel, efallai fod angen mwy o Aelodau arnom'. Os ydych chi'n dweud wrthynt sut rydym ni'n wahanol i'r Alban a Gogledd Iwerddon, mae'n debyg y byddent yn meddwl bod angen mwy o Aelodau arnom. Ni allwn gael Llywodraeth drwy refferendwm. Rwyf wedi bod yn rhan o lawer o refferenda. Rwyf wedi colli mwy nag a enillais ac rwyf wedi bod yn anhapus iawn gyda refferenda, oherwydd maent yn gorfodi ateb 'ie' neu 'na' i gwestiynau cymhleth iawn, ac mae honno'n broblem ddifrifol. Gallai Rishi Sunak roi refferendwm i ni nawr ar ei Lywodraeth—fe'i gelwir yn etholiad cyffredinol—a byddai pawb ar y meinciau Llafur wrth eu bodd gyda hynny.

Nid yw dewis system etholiadol newydd yn weithred wleidyddol niwtral. Mae'r system a ddewisir yn cael effaith enfawr ar nifer y seddi a enillir. Pe bai Cymru ym 1999 wedi defnyddio trefn y cyntaf i'r felin, byddai Llafur wedi ennill pob etholiad dilynol yn gyfforddus. Roedd cyflwyno Aelodau rhanbarthol a'r system ranbarthol yn golygu nad yw Llafur erioed wedi cael mwyafrif yn y Senedd. Roedd y pleidleisiau yr un fath, ond roedd y canlyniad yn wahanol. Mae dau beth wedi cael eu dweud am y system newydd. Yn gyntaf, ei bod yn gyfrannol; yr ail yw nad oes unrhyw bleidleisiau'n cael eu gwastraffu. Gellir profi bod y ddau'n anghywir. Nid mater o farn ydyw—gellir profi nad ydynt yn wir. Rwy'n cytuno â Rishi Sunak: mae angen inni wella rhifedd yn y wlad hon.

Yr hyn fydd yn digwydd yw y bydd yn fras gyfrannol rhwng y tair plaid fwyaf, ond bydd yn ei gwneud hi'n anos i bleidiau llai ennill, ac rwy'n siŵr fod Jane Dodds yn mynd i ddweud rhywbeth ynglŷn â sut mae'n mynd i'w gwneud hi'n anos i'r Democratiaid Rhyddfrydol pan fydd hi'n codi i siarad. Mae'n debyg y bydd hi'n gofyn am y bleidlais sengl drosglwyddadwy, sydd ychydig fel loteri am seddi. Oni bai bod gan bob plaid luosrifau o 60 a dwy ran o dair o gyfanswm y bleidlais ym mhob etholaeth, byddai pleidleisiau'n cael eu gwastraff—mae hynny'n anochel. Bydd gennych bobl a fydd yn cael mwy o bleidleisiau neu lai o bleidleisiau nag sydd ei angen arnynt i symud i'r lefel nesaf. [Torri ar draws.] Mae Lee Waters yn dweud 'fewer' nid 'less'. Pan welaf fformiwla fathemategol sy'n dweud bod x yn 'fewer' na y, byddaf yn cytuno ag ef, ond bob tro y gwelaf fformiwla fathemategol, mae'n dweud bod x yn 'less' na y. Unwaith eto, rwy'n meddwl bod rhifedd yn beth gwych; mae'n drueni nad yw wedi cyrraedd y fan hon. [Torri ar draws.]

I really want to hear Mike Hedges. Every sentence is a gem, Mike. 

Rwy'n awyddus iawn i glywed Mike Hedges. Mae pob brawddeg yn berl, Mike. 

When historians look at this decision in the future, they'll have something to describe as the reverse of gerrymandering, where a political party goes from having a system in which they can win to one in which it's going to be very difficult if not impossible for them to do so. The aim of the system is to produce a hung Senedd, a European-style Parliament. It's not one that I feel particularly comfortable with, but that's the direction we're going in. 

Pan fydd haneswyr yn edrych ar y penderfyniad hwn yn y dyfodol, bydd ganddynt rywbeth i'w ddisgrifio fel y gwrthwyneb i ad-drefnu tueddol neu 'jerimandro', lle mae plaid wleidyddol yn mynd o feddu ar system lle gallant ennill i un lle mae'n mynd i fod yn anodd iawn os nad yn amhosibl iddynt wneud hynny. Nod y system yw cynhyrchu Senedd grog, Senedd Ewropeaidd ei naws. Nid yw'n un y teimlaf yn arbennig o gyfforddus yn ei chylch, ond dyna'r cyfeiriad rydym yn mynd iddo. 

15:35

I'm very pleased to support this vital legislation brought before us today. Firstly, let me thank all of those who've been on the reform Bill committees with me, and also the staff and the clerks. They've done an amazing job in terms of crystallising all of the information and bringing us to this point today. We've all learnt from each other, I hope, and I have certainly learnt from those that I've sat on the committees with—thank you so much. I'm really proud to support this legislation, which I see enhances scrutiny and ensures proper representation for each and every one of Wales's diverse communities. We are moving away from the outdated first-past-the-post system, which is definitely a positive step, bringing a more proportional model to our democracy here in Wales. This is progress we should quite rightly celebrate.

But I can't let an opportunity go by to talk about the voting system. The reform Bill as it stands remains fundamentally flawed. The introduction of closed party lists risks robbing voters of true choice, and there was absolutely no evidence presented to us that this would benefit the electorate in any way. We remain, in the Welsh Liberal Democrats, firm in our conviction that the single transferrable vote is the fairest, most accountable system that Wales deserves. STV would create a genuinely democratic model, where every vote carries equal weight and equal power. So, I will be supporting the legislation today, but I urge this Senedd, and all future Governments, to view it as just the first step on our democratic journey—a journey towards a stronger, fully democratic Parliament for Wales, one built upon the founding principle of giving the people an equal voice and choice over those who represent them. Diolch yn fawr iawn.

Rwy'n falch iawn o gefnogi'r ddeddfwriaeth hanfodol hon a gyflwynwyd ger ein bron heddiw. Yn gyntaf, gadewch imi ddiolch i bawb sydd wedi bod ar bwyllgorau'r Bil diwygio gyda mi, a hefyd i'r staff a'r clercod. Maent wedi gwneud gwaith anhygoel yn crisialu'r holl wybodaeth a dod â ni i'r pwynt hwn heddiw. Rydym i gyd wedi dysgu oddi wrth ein gilydd, gobeithio, ac rwy'n sicr wedi dysgu gan y rhai y bûm yn aelod o bwyllgorau gyda nhw—diolch o galon. Rwy'n falch iawn o gefnogi'r ddeddfwriaeth hon, yr ystyriaf y bydd yn gwella craffu ac yn sicrhau cynrychiolaeth briodol i bob un o gymunedau amrywiol Cymru. Rydym yn symud i ffwrdd o system hen ffasiwn y cyntaf i'r felin, sy'n sicr yn gam cadarnhaol, gan ddod â model mwy cyfrannol i'n democratiaeth yma yng Nghymru. Dyma gynnydd y byddai'n briodol inni ei ddathlu.

Ond ni allaf golli cyfle i siarad am y system bleidleisio. Mae'r Bil diwygio fel y mae yn parhau i fod yn sylfaenol ddiffygiol. Mae cyflwyno rhestrau plaid caeedig yn creu perygl o amddifadu pleidleiswyr o ddewis go iawn, ac ni chyflwynwyd unrhyw dystiolaeth i ni y byddai hyn o fudd i'r etholwyr mewn unrhyw ffordd. Rydym yn parhau i fod, ym mhlaid Democratiaid Rhyddfrydol Cymru, yn gadarn ein hargyhoeddiad mai pleidlais sengl drosglwyddadwy yw'r system fwyaf teg, fwyaf atebol y mae Cymru'n ei haeddu. Byddai pleidlais sengl drosglwyddadwy yn creu model gwirioneddol ddemocrataidd, lle mae pob pleidlais yn gyfartal o ran ei phwysigrwydd a'i phŵer. Felly, byddaf yn cefnogi'r ddeddfwriaeth heddiw, ond rwy'n annog y Senedd hon, a holl Lywodraethau'r dyfodol, i'w weld fel cam cyntaf yn unig ar ein taith ddemocrataidd—taith tuag at Senedd gryfach, gwbl ddemocrataidd i Gymru, un wedi'i hadeiladu ar yr egwyddor sylfaenol o roi llais a dewis cyfartal i'r bobl ynghylch y rhai sy'n eu cynrychioli. Diolch yn fawr iawn.

Mae hi'n addas iawn ein bod ni yma heddiw i bleidleisio dros roi'r gallu i'n Senedd ni weithredu fel Senedd genedlaethol go iawn, bron i 25 mlynedd i'r diwrnod ers yr etholiadau cyntaf i'r Cynulliad Cenedlaethol. Dwi'n ddiolchgar iawn am y gwaith trawsbleidiol sydd wedi mynd tuag at gyflawni'r cam nesaf pwysig yma yn ein taith genedlaethol. Yn y Siambr yma, fel ar draws Cymru, mae yna wahaniaeth barn ar lle rydyn ni'n mynd, yn y pen draw, ar y daith honno, ond mae'r Bil yma yn rhoi i ni y math o Senedd sydd ei hangen beth bynnag ydy'r camau nesaf. I bob un ohonom ni yn y fan hon sydd eisiau sicrhau gwell sgrwtini, gwell dal Llywodraeth i gyfrif, gwell polisi, gwell pwyso a mesur ein penderfyniadau, gwell gwariant cyhoeddus, yna mi fydd gennym ni'r capasiti i wneud hynny'n effeithiol ar ran pobl Cymru. I'r rheini sydd am wthio ymhellach, rydyn ni'n creu'r llwyfan ar gyfer hynny, ac i'r rheini ohonom ni sy'n credu mewn cymryd cyfrifoldeb am ein ffawd ein hunain fel gwlad sydd eisiau gafael yn dynn a meithrin y weledigaeth o Gymru hyderus, ffyniannus, deg ac annibynnol, yna mi allwn ni fod yn falch ein bod ni yma heddiw yn creu Senedd y Gymru annibynnol honno.

It it most appropriate that we are here today to vote to give our Senedd the ability to work as a real, national Parliament, almost exactly 25 years to the day from the first elections to the National Assembly for Wales. I am extremely grateful for the cross-party work that has contributed to delivering this next important step in our national journey. In this Chamber, and across Wales, there are differing views as to where we are going, ultimately, in terms of that journey, but this Bill provides us with the kind of Parliament we will need, whatever the next steps may entail. For each and every one of us here who wants to ensure better scrutiny, holding the Government to account more effectively, better policy, better weighing up of decision making, and better public expenditure, then we will have the capacity to deliver that effectively on behalf of the people of Wales. For those who want to move further, we are providing a platform for that, and for those of us who believe in taking responsibility for our own fate as a nation, who want to take hold and nurture that vision of a confident, prosperous, fair and independent Wales, then we can be proud that we are here today creating a Parliament for that independent Wales.

I said here yesterday that we need to see a step change in devolution as we head into its second quarter century. We need new and targeted solutions to the challenges we face in our economy, on the NHS and in education, to finally get to grips with child poverty, and renew people's faith in and engagement with our Welsh democracy. And we know, as the Independent Commission on the Constitutional Future of Wales so starkly outlined, that the current devolution settlement is simply not sustainable. Further change is inevitable. A bigger, more representative Senedd, a Parliament fit for the twenty-first century, and beyond, gives us a new foundation on which to build a fairer Wales and to prepare for the forms of political and constitutional change we know are coming. And this will be the Parliament that is ready to serve a confident independent Wales, when we're ready to take that step, taking the levers of change into our hands. We've come a long way—

Dywedais yma ddoe fod angen inni weld newid sylweddol mewn datganoli wrth inni fynd i mewn i'w ail chwarter canrif. Mae angen atebion newydd wedi'u targedu i'r heriau sy'n ein hwynebu yn ein heconomi, ar y GIG ac mewn addysg, i drechu tlodi plant o'r diwedd, ac adnewyddu ffydd pobl yn ein democratiaeth Gymreig a'u hymgysylltiad â hi. Ac fel yr amlinellodd y Comisiwn Annibynnol ar Ddyfodol Cyfansoddiadol Cymru mor amlwg, fe wyddom nad yw'r setliad datganoli presennol yn gynaliadwy. Mae newid pellach yn anochel. Mae Senedd fwy a mwy cynrychioliadol, Senedd sy'n addas ar gyfer yr unfed ganrif ar hugain, a thu hwnt, yn rhoi sylfaen newydd inni adeiladu Cymru decach arni ac i baratoi ar gyfer y mathau o newid gwleidyddol a chyfansoddiadol y gwyddom eu bod yn dod. A dyma'r Senedd a fydd yn barod i wasanaethu Cymru annibynnol hyderus, pan fyddwn ni'n barod i gymryd y cam hwnnw, gan gymryd ysgogiadau newid i'n dwylo ni. Rydym wedi teithio'n bell—

15:40

Will you take an intervention?

A wnewch chi dderbyn ymyriad?

Thank you for taking an intervention. I'm a little bit concerned about you putting two things side by side. This legislation we're passing today is about extending, quite rightly, the numbers of people who will be elected to this place; it isn't about moving towards an independent Wales. 

Diolch am dderbyn ymyriad. Rwy'n poeni braidd eich bod yn gosod dau beth ochr yn ochr. Mae'r ddeddfwriaeth rydym yn ei phasio heddiw yn ymwneud ag ymestyn, yn gwbl briodol, nifer y bobl a fydd yn cael eu hethol i'r lle hwn; nid yw'n ymwneud â symud tuag at Gymru annibynnol. 

As I said, in this Chamber, and across Wales, we have different aspirations for our nation, different levels of ambition for our nation. The key thing is that we are giving ourselves as a Parliament the tools to make those changes for ourselves. 

We have come a long way, and by that, I don't just mean from the 1997 referendum, but since 1979. Remember today the lesson that nothing worth having comes easily, and that it's only by building a case that we bring about meaningful change. And some elements of our evolution require immediate attention. This Bill contains a review mechanism, which, make no mistake, we in Plaid Cymru are determined will be used, and used effectively. We have made no secret of our preference too for the single transferrable vote over closed lists, and we will continue to press the case for it. We'll all make sure, hopefully, that a recall mechanism is enacted where any Member of the Senedd is in serious breach of standards of conduct. 

Llywydd, this is for all of the people of Wales, who all of us collectively represent. I was encouraged by the Conservatives yesterday speaking in defence of devolution, and speaking strongly so. Well, we must collectively nurture and protect our new Senedd. Protecting devolution means investing in it, and, yes, demanding a return on that investment in better services, better laws, better public spending and better outcomes. The context, for one example, is the estimated £20 billion that's needed to be spent on upgrading the Palace of Westminster—the Houses of Parliament at Westminster. Those building repairs equate to the cost of strengthening our Welsh Parliament to allow it to better serve the people of Wales for more than 1,000 years. We are taking decisions today to make sure that the people of Wales are no longer democratically short-changed compared with other national parliaments in these islands. 

I'll finish by thanking, once again, everybody who contributed to this historic legislation by noting and celebrating what has been achieved and by looking ahead to the new opportunities it will bring.

Fel y dywedais, yn y Siambr hon, ac ar draws Cymru, mae gennym wahanol ddyheadau ar gyfer ein cenedl, gwahanol lefelau o uchelgais ar gyfer ein cenedl. Y peth allweddol yw ein bod yn rhoi'r arfau i ni ein hunain fel Senedd i wneud y newidiadau hynny drosom ein hunain. 

Rydym wedi dod yn bell, ac wrth hynny, nid wyf yn golygu ers refferendwm 1997, ond ers 1979. Cofiwch heddiw y wers nad oes dim sy'n werth ei gael yn dod yn hawdd, ac mai dim ond drwy adeiladu achos y gwnawn ni sicrhau newid ystyrlon. Ac mae rhai elfennau o'n hesblygiad angen sylw ar unwaith. Mae'r Bil hwn yn cynnwys mecanwaith adolygu yr ydym ni ym Mhlaid Cymru yn benderfynol y caiff ei ddefnyddio, a'i ddefnyddio'n effeithiol. Nid ydym wedi gwneud unrhyw gyfrinach o'r ffaith hefyd ein bod yn ffafrio'r bleidlais sengl drosglwyddadwy dros restrau caeedig, a byddwn yn parhau i ddadlau'r achos drosti. Byddwn i gyd yn sicrhau, gobeithio, fod mecanwaith adalw yn cael ei ddeddfu os yw unrhyw Aelod o'r Senedd yn torri safonau ymddygiad yn ddifrifol. 

Lywydd, mae hyn ar gyfer holl bobl Cymru, y mae pob un ohonom gyda'n gilydd yn eu cynrychioli. Cefais fy nghalonogi gan y Ceidwadwyr ddoe yn siarad o blaid datganoli, ac yn siarad yn gryf felly. Wel, mae'n rhaid inni feithrin a diogelu ein Senedd newydd gyda'n gilydd. Mae diogelu datganoli yn golygu buddsoddi ynddo, a mynnu enillion ar y buddsoddiad mewn gwasanaethau gwell, cyfreithiau gwell, gwariant cyhoeddus gwell a chanlyniadau gwell. Y cyd-destun, os caf roi un enghraifft, yw'r amcangyfrif o £20 biliwn y mae angen ei wario ar uwchraddio Palas San Steffan—Dau Dŷ'r Senedd yn San Steffan. Mae'r atgyweiriadau hynny i'r adeilad yn cyfateb i'r gost o gryfhau ein Senedd i ganiatáu iddi wasanaethu pobl Cymru yn well am fwy na 1,000 o flynyddoedd. Rydym yn gwneud penderfyniadau heddiw i sicrhau nad yw pobl Cymru yn cael cam yn ddemocrataidd mwyach o'i gymharu â seneddau cenedlaethol eraill ar yr ynysoedd hyn. 

Rwyf am orffen drwy ddiolch unwaith eto i bawb a gyfrannodd at y ddeddfwriaeth hanesyddol hon drwy nodi a dathlu'r hyn a gyflawnwyd a thrwy edrych ymlaen at y cyfleoedd newydd a ddaw yn ei sgil.

Y Cwnsler Cyffredinol nawr i ymateb—Mick Antoniw. 

The Counsel General to reply—Mick Antoniw. 

Diolch, Llywydd. Can I firstly say I welcome very much all the comments that have been made by Members today, and the spirit in which they have been made? I also thank Darren for the support in respect of those aspects we've engaged on—the four years, which is a significant constitutional change, and the issue of residency. I'm grateful that we have consensus around that as well. Those were the constructive areas; I think some of the others were perhaps slightly more predictable. Can I thank Darren, though, of course, for the work in respect of the recall? And, of course, that momentum has been put in motion and will work with the Senedd committee. It is the Senedd committee that I would expect to bring forward the legislation, and, of course, the Welsh Government will work with that committee in order to achieve that, because we all recognise that it is an important change. It was not appropriate at the time within this Bill, but it does need very specific focus, and that is under way at the moment. Could I perhaps also ask the Welsh Conservatives to—I understand the points they make about the closed list— embrace the opportunity it presents in respect of diversity? Because in 2026, if you do embrace it, you have the opportunity to increase your gender representation from 19 per cent to at least 50 per cent. That is one of the opportunities it presents. 

Diolch, Lywydd. A gaf i ddweud yn gyntaf fy mod yn croesawu'n fawr yr holl sylwadau a wnaed gan yr Aelodau heddiw, a'r ysbryd y cawsant eu gwneud ynddo? Rwyf hefyd yn diolch i Darren am y gefnogaeth ar yr agweddau y gwnaethom ymgysylltu yn eu cylch—y pedair blynedd, sy'n newid cyfansoddiadol sylweddol, a mater preswyliad. Rwy'n ddiolchgar fod gennym gonsensws ynglŷn â hynny hefyd. Dyna oedd y meysydd adeiladol; rwy'n credu bod rhai o'r lleill ychydig yn fwy rhagweladwy efallai. A gaf i ddiolch i Darren, wrth gwrs, am y gwaith ar adalw? Ac wrth gwrs, mae'r momentwm hwnnw wedi'i roi ar waith a bydd yn gweithio gyda phwyllgor y Senedd. Rwy'n disgwyl mai pwyllgor y Senedd fydd yn cyflwyno'r ddeddfwriaeth, ac wrth gwrs, bydd Llywodraeth Cymru yn gweithio gyda'r pwyllgor hwnnw er mwyn cyflawni hynny, oherwydd rydym i gyd yn cydnabod ei fod yn newid pwysig. Nid oedd yn briodol ar y pryd o fewn y Bil hwn, ond mae angen ffocws penodol iawn arno, ac mae hynny ar y gweill ar hyn o bryd. A gaf i ofyn i'r Ceidwadwyr Cymreig hefyd—rwy'n deall y pwyntiau y maent yn eu gwneud am y rhestr gaeedig—i groesawu'r cyfle y mae'n ei gyflwyno mewn perthynas ag amrywiaeth? Oherwydd yn 2026, os gwnewch chi ei groesawu, mae gennych gyfle i gynyddu eich cynrychiolaeth rhywedd o 19 y cant i o leiaf 50 y cant. Dyna un o'r cyfleoedd y mae'n eu cynnig.