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This Week in the Assembly...

newsdirect wales' 60 second guide to what's going on in Cardiff Bay this week.

This week starts with the now almost customary evidence session on the draft Wales Bill. This week, the Constitutional & Legislative Affairs Committee will hear from Secretary of State for Wales (Stephen Crabb). Expect him to stress that he is working with all interested parties and that the Bill might not be perfect but it is necessary to advance devolution in Wales. 

Moving on to Tuesday morning and Public Accounts Committee are taking evidence on the Governance of NHS Boards in Wales while the Petitions Committee quiz the Minister for Education & Skills (Huw Lewis) on asbestos in schools. Over the past couple of years, the Petitions Committee has spent a great deal of time sending letters back and forth on obscure subjects but this session will be of more interest than most. 

Tuesday afternoon is a run of FMQs and Ministerial Statements. Minister for Public Services (Leighton Andrews) will introduce the second of his two Bills aimed at reforming local government in Wales. Still no definitive vision for what that reform looks like but plenty of regulations for achieving it are now under way. 

Wednesday morning sees the Finance Committee take evidence on Finance Wales; the Enterprise & Business Committee will hear from the Chief Scientific Advisor while Communities, Equality and Local Government will hear from Director-General of the BBC, Lord Hall of Birkenhead. Expect him to be challenged by AMs over the lack of representation of contemporary Welsh life across the BBC. 

Wednesday afternoon kicks of with questions to the Minister for Economy, Science & Transport (Edwina Hart). Her question sheet is very transport heavy this week. Fair chance the M4 will come up once or 8 times. Later, the Tories have a debate on environmental crime; Plaid on the economy of north Wales and the Lib Dems on climate change. Darren Millar (Clwyd West)(Con) has a short debate on celebrating Wales' Pentecostal history. 

Also on Weds, the small matter of the Comprehensive Spending Review at Westminster. Welsh Government Ministers have already warned that Wales' budget could be affected by cuts to unprotected departments in England. It won't be pretty. 

The Children, Young People & Education take evidence from Huw Lewis on the Additional Learning Needs & Education Tribunal (Wales) Bill and the Environment & Sustainability consider Stage 2 amendments to the Environment (Wales) Bill, both on Thursday. 

Need more coverage of any of these discussions? newsdirect wales offers bespoke, live political monitoring. Call us on 029 2009 0693 for more details.
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