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Tonight's headlines: The Caerphilly Council members
who awarded themselves hefty pay rises.
Now it's revealed the three year dispute has cost almost ?3 million.
It means the cost to every household here in Caerphilly is more than ?30
Riot police out in Newport last year.
There was significantly more anti-social behaviour per person
The call for more support for children when family breakdowns
We took a long time to recognise what we now see as child abuse and
this is a severe form of child emotional abuse.
We're on the buses to find out how daily journeys could change
with the proposed Metro for North East Wales.
And the D-Day landings of World War Two.
Three veterans from South Wales are awarded France's highest honour.
Four years ago, Caerphilly Council suspended three senior staff members
after an investigation claimed they'd given themselves pay rises,
a move the Wales Audit Office called unlawful.
Tonight, it's emerged the cost of suspending them on full pay
and legal fees is set to rise to nearly ?2.8 million.
Here's our political editor Nick Servini.
It's the longest running pay dispute of its kind in Welsh local
government at the moment and tonight the course is heading towards the 3
million mark. This story began four years ago when the council's three
most senior officers, the Chief Executive Anthony O'Sullivan, his
deputy Nigel Barnett and the head of legal services Daniel Perkins, had
large pay rises approved in a meeting that was not open to the
public. The assistant auditor general for Wales Anthony Barrett
decided to investigate and didn't like what he saw. In March 2013 he
published a report saying they were inadequacies in the wake Caerphilly
council worked out chief officer pay and said it had acted unlawfully.
The officers were suspended and charged by police with misconduct in
public office. Eventually the case arrived at Bristol Crown Court but
not for long. After a two-year investigation a judge dismissed the
case saying there wasn't enough evidence for a jury to find the men
guilty. The Leader of the Opposition grew but the council says this story
has become a doorstep issue. For council taxpayers across the county
borough. It has been never-ending and unfortunately there is no end in
sight. This could go on until after the election. It is ridiculous that
you can get into this situation with costs escalating out of control. One
Labour councillor claimed that while it's been a long-running party
problem lied Camry cannot wash its hand of the affair either. The
deputy leader of Plaid Cymru was on the committee which met in 2012 and
he knew about it. If he had said something sooner we could have dealt
with it in September 20 12. But you know Labour run this council and
Labour will have to face up to most of the responsibility. And Labour
apologised to the public in December 20 12. Then it took steps to reduce
the amount of pay that was awarded at the time. Caerphilly councillor
has now begun its own investigation into the offices and says it was
important to note that a portion of the costs were incurred during the
police investigation which lasted for two years. During this time the
council was advised it was unable to undertake its own proceedings and
therefore the timescales have extended beyond the original
anticipation. And so the saga surrounding the top three council
officials in Caerphilly continues with no immediate end in sight and
council elections around the corner. Nick, many people will be surprised
at just how long That's right. We are heading into
council election season which means we have 22 separate apples and
separate dynamics going on right across Wales. But there is nothing
quite like this going on anywhere else. To have the three most senior
officials now on paid leave for that period of time and a variety of
enquiries with the bill getting up to ?3 million. Traditionally
internal disciplinary matters particularly in relation to
officials does not really have much traction with the public, but when
it's costing the equivalent of ?32 for every household it's the kind of
thing that gets talked about a lot. That is the problem for the Labour
administration running this council. Plaid Cymru was to run this and it
will be a top target authority for Plaid Cymru and the election. When
Plaid Cymru meets just down the road for their spring conference tomorrow
they will be looking to take advantage of it. But in truth no one
really comes out particularly well from this and the remarkable thing
about it is that it is still not coming to an end. For everyone I
have spoken to, no one is expecting it to come to an end soon.
There was significantly more anti-social behaviour
per person in Gwent last year than the rest of Wales.
That's according to a report by the police watchdog.
Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary also found
Dyfed Powys Police needs to improve when it comes to keeping people
But how effective are they at protecting us from crime?
Fires started in a busy Newport street.
The police watchdog says there was more antisocial behaviour
per person in Gwent in the twelve months to March last year
I meet residents groups and we encourage them to report areas of
crime. I am not too worried about the figures. We want to reduce them
of course and we will accept ways of doing it but it is a partnership
matter. With this report we're
able to produce a simple Its officers sometimes don't
have the skills to deal And crucially the force needs
to improve its investigations. I accept the report and understand
we do have areas for improvement but I am motivated to try and respond to
the report and look for areas we can improve and hopefully get to a
position where Dyfed-Powys Police has more positive reports in the
future. North Wales Police needs to get
better at protecting There are also more organised crime
groups per person in its area than anywhere else
in Wales, influenced Gwent Police is said
to have a limited understanding And South Wales Police did well
in all of four key categories. Although, it could improve the way
cases are handed over. This policing expert says
forces are trying to adapt What they have flagged up is a need
for an increase in the number of detectives rather than uniformed
police officers. When you're talking about child protection, these are
complex and difficult cases to tackle. We have seen a decline in
the number of detectives in the preservice over the last 15 years.
The North Wales Police and Crime Commissioner says he's
encouraged by this report, but says there's always
Three of the forces were found to be good overall at keeping people safe.
South Wales being the best, Dyfed Powys requiring
Overall it paints a good picture of policing in Wales,
A tribunal has heard allegations that Cardiff councillor
and Assembly Member Neil McEvoy made "a threat" against
The Adjudication Panel for Wales is considering whether the Plaid Cymru
AM for South Wales Central has breached
New standards for teachers in Wales have been unveiled
Kirsty Williams says the current standards are outdated and no
They set out who can be a teacher or headteacher and what is expected
The break-up of many relationships can be painful for children
but what happens when one parent deliberately turns a child
Research suggest thousands of children across Wales
are experiencing what's been called Parental Alienation.
It's prompted calls for front-line staff here to be given training
to help identify cases and for the impact it can
When parents go their separate ways it's often the children left in the
middle who suffer the most. And the threat of parental alienation say
experts is a real one. This is when the behaviour of one parent turns
the child against the other. It affects fathers and mothers equally.
But it can also put children at risk of serious emotional harm. Stephen
is from south Wales, we have hidden his identity to protect his child,
for almost a year he has been locked in a to battle with his ex-partner
or the contact time with his daughter. Stephen says his
daughter's mother has tried to alienate him. It's heartbreaking. I
think of my daughter every day. We weren't one of those stayed in the
house people we did everything together. When it comes to the
birthdays and things she says she can still the days because she has
not seen a father. Stephen says false allegations have been made
against him. This has meant weeks going without seeing his daughter.
It totally turns your life upside down. I ended up suicidal. I am a
father and like all the other parents out there fighting to see
their children. One expert has told this programme she believes front
line staff should be better informed about the part of parental
alienation. I think it should be a requirement that the issues of the
rental alienation and this complex dynamic which occurs is taught to
front line stamp -- staff. This is a severe form of child emotional
abuse. It needs to be recognised along with other types of child
abuse. In some countries governments legislate against those who choose
to alienate a parent. In Mexico parents were guilty of such
behaviour are sent to prison. But there are those who don't recognise
parental alienation as a form of abuse. In the UK some judges are
starting to do so but there is no formal legislation. There are also
concerns and legal professionals about the time it can take to
complete a report if one parent makes an allegation against the
other. If the allegations are unfounded but appear that remains
hostile to contact it can be months before a child sees the other parent
again. Often I find that cases take over six months to reach the final
stage where hearing will resolve the matter. Of course in that period if
there has been no contact whatsoever between a child and parent it is
absolutely atrocious for the child to re-establish that relationship.
Speaking on behalf of the family Court support service in Wales the
Welsh Government says it recognises the impact parental separation can
have on children and is developing information and advice services
appearance. As calls grow for legal recognition of parental alienation
for now Stephen like other parents vow not to give up their fight.
Still to come: A BBC poll shows television news is still the first
place most of us turn to to find out what's going on in the world.
One of three World War veterans from South Wales given France's
highest honour for their role in the D-Day landings.
?50 million has been committed by the Welsh Government
for the development of a Metro transport network
They say it is vital to grow the economy and sustain links
Earlier, our reporter Roger Pinney met the economy secretary Ken Skates
in Rhyl and decided to test the existing system by travelling
there from his home by public transport.
Waiting for the 9.05 and at the bus stop some more regular
They are awkward times though, aren't they?
Yes, the times don't suit employment.
And there already one of the problems of using
They are not frequent, they don't always get
you where you want when you need to be there.
And so to the second leg of my journey by rail
from Colwyn Bay along the coast to Rhyl.
This is the mainline linking with regular stops
in North Wales to the north-west of England and London.
And in Rhyl you step off the train straight into a newly
The location of the bus station just outside the train
What would encourage you to use the trains?
If you went to Chester for example, would you drive?
Arriva, which operates the rail station, has just
The idea is to make links between rail and bus
There is even a touch-screen journey planner.
They call this rather grandly the Rhyl Interchange.
It will be a key hub in the even more grandly named
And that conjours up all sorts of images doesn't it.
Think Metro and you probably think of the tube or at
But that isn't what's planned for north-east Wales.
Rather, better integration between existing trains
Long-term, an electrified railway with improved cross-border links
But isn't calling it a Metro simply windowdressing?
This will receive a considerable amount of investment.
I have already stated that ?50 billion is going to be used
for the first phase of development of the North East Wales Metro.
It is a major long-term scheme which will unlock the potential
of the economy and meet the expectations of people who wish
to use public transport but at the moment find there are too
If the problem is to be solved both in terms of collectivity
into the Northern Powerhouse, as it's called, and also HS2
when it comes to Crewe, that's the kind of benefit
The expenditure is therefore very unlikely to be worth it.
In both directions the best part of 50,000 people make
the cross-border journey everyday, mostly by car.
Whatever you call it, the challenge for public transport
Delivering change will cost more than the ?50
Now as you are watching this programme you are probably
interested in what's happening across the country and a BBC poll
shows television news is still the first place most of us
TV is also considered to be the most trustworthy source for stories.
But it's facing growing competition online.
Our arts and media correspondent Huw Thomas has been
The poll for BBC Wales found 33% of us look at websites
Television is the most popular source of news,
with watching news programmes like this one.
But compared to last year it's down 7%.
The declining appeal of newspapers is shown with those picking up
a paper down 1% since last year and symptomatic of the
But finding news sources we can trust means we're still relying
on traditional media, rather than the web.
An overwhelming 44% of people said television news was the source
they trusted the most to tell them the truth about the news.
By contrast, just 19% of us trust websites and social media.
It's the first time the poll has asked people about trust
but the experts say it's an important consideration
With the rise of social media everybody's News publisher so
everybody shares information but not necessarily that verification
processes on the part of that any more so it's really important that
you will understand and education is a big part of it. Just because
something is said doesn't mean it's true.
We've never had so much choice about where we get our news.
But it's forcing us to think even harder
about where to look, and who to trust.
People living in Chirk near Wrexham are considering legal action
against a wood panel manufacturer, which they blame for chronic dust
The company, Kronospan, says it's committed to reducing
the impact of its activities on the environment and local people.
Suzanne Newell thinks she spends more time cleaning
She lives in Chirk, less than a mile from the wood panel
It's been a massive part of the village since 1972
and employs 600 people, but many residents say they're fed
up of a fine layer of wood dust landing on every surface
It's frustrating that you can't always have your windows open. You
clean your windows and you have dust. Everywhere gets test but not
like we have it. 71 families have sought
legal advice to see Those who have been affected are
being urged to attend drop in sessions but by a firm of
solicitors. If enough people get in contact legal action will be
launched which could force the company to act.
Residents know how important the company is to Chirk but want
to express their frustration at being shrouded
I have come to make a stand because it's about time something was done.
Every year is the same. We should make a stand.
The lawyers say it may not be necessary to fight
In past cases we have been able to work agree a compromise. If we are
unable to agree steps will be taken by the site operators and we can
apply to the court and ask them to make an injection compelling the
site operator to bring the dust nuisance to an end.
The company says it meets environmental standards
and its emissions are being independently monitored.
It also points to improvement work which is about to get underway.
We are in the process of investing ?150 million to modernise this site.
That is going to bring a number of benefits. Obviously from the local
community's point of view it will reduce our impact on them and the
environment and also of course we will secure the long-term future of
the site. Chirk and Kronospan
are inextricably linked. Villagers are hoping
the relationship will improve once Two cities from Wales are bidding
to become the next UK Swansea joins the list
which includes Perth, as well as St David's
in Pembrokeshire. Some football news and Gareth Bale
has apologised after being sent off last night during Real Madrid's 3-3
draw against Las Palmas. Bale was shown a straight red card
for pushing an opponent. A ban for Bale could be good news
for Wales ahead of their crucial World Cup qualifier against Ireland
later this month. Meanwhile, following an injury,
Aaron Ramsey is taking part in full training ahead of Arsenal's game
against Liverpool on Saturday. Three World War Two veterans
from South Wales have been awarded France's highest honour
in recognition of their role Peter Horn, Raymond Simmons
and John Price were presented with the Legion d'Honneur
at a special ceremony in Cardiff, believed to be the last
of its kind in Wales to commemorate their efforts
during the D-Day Landings. This is it. They are on the beach.
All in all over 150,000 Allied forces would land on the shores of
Normandy on D-Day. Amongst them these three, presented today with
France's highest honour for their efforts on the 6th of June 1944. I
was in the Royal Navy and they were shells going over the top.
Originally from Brighton but now living in Caldicot 95-year-old
Raymond Simmons joined the Navy at 18. Quinta do his bit for King and
country. He certainly did at Normandy. Arguably the pivotal
moment in the Second World War. Did it feel like that at the time? No.
The 91-year-old from Bridgend is now one of 300 in Wales to have been
awarded the Legion d'Honneur. I remember during the night when we
were going over there were aircraft in the air, hundreds of aircraft.
Was it scary? On occasions, yes. When you are in a situation like
that I don't think you have time to think about it. But officials had
been thinking about it for some time. Around a year in the planning
it remains the largest sea invasion in history. We landed at 6:30am in
the morning and the adrenaline was working all the time. I was 23 years
of age. 95 years old by now, Peter Horne from Cwmbran served in the
Army at the time. What is it mean to you to be honoured today?
Marvellous. It brings back so many memories. And today was certainly
another day to remember. Time for the weather forecast now. There was
some lovely sunshine today. It has been a bright and blustery
day for most of us but tomorrow they will be rain at times. It
deteriorates tonight. These fronts will bring further wet and windy
weather at times. Tonight might start drive but some showers and
heavier rain pushing in from the south and west overnight. Southerly
winds. Not quite as cold as last night. Tomorrow, driest in the
north-east and then out bits of rain. Some heavy bursts at times.
That rain more than in north eastwards. Some drier spells in
between but remaining overcast the mother of Wales. Tomorrow night the
rain continues on and off moving northwards but remaining misty and
murky overnight. Not as cold as recent nights. Then we keep this
changeable Atlantic influence into the weekend with friends moving in
from the west bringing and settled weather at times. Heavier rain on
Sunday. A few bright spells early on Saturday and the odd shower. Moving
northwards but dry weather in between. Then Sunday might start
drive in the north-east but likely to see more heavy rain pushing in
from the south-west during the day. Eventually clearing in the
afternoon. After a bright and breezy on today, looking more unsettled
over the next few days. Some try spells over the weekend with rain at
times. Today's picture, snow on the peaks in the Brecon Beacons taken by
Rob Davies. That is Wales today. We will have an
update at 8pm and more after the BBC News at 10pm. From all of us here,
have a good evening.