Question from: County Councillor Jon Williams Subject: Office accommodation for other agencies currently based in the Welsh Government building in Llandrindod Wells
With the sad news that the driving test centre will be leaving Llandrindod and the huge knock on effects it will have to residents and businesses, not only from town but a large area of the county that are within easy traveling distance. Could the relevant portfolio holder please tell me:-
When discussions were entered into with the Welsh Government about a move of their staff to rented space in County Hall, what actions or discussions did Powys County Council take to engage and encourage the other agencies that are based at the Welsh Government building to also move into County Hall or other Powys County Council space which is available in the town, thus reducing the loss of a vital services from Llandrindod?
Response by the Portfolio Holder:
The Corporate Property team has worked continually with Welsh Government [WG] and its partner organisations to aid the closure of the WG building on Spa Road. The Property Manager for WG contacted the property team from the very onset of these negotiations and provided contact details to all its partners about entering discussion with PCC to facilitate the provision of accommodation to those services being displaced as part of their closure programme.
To date, National Resource Wales, DEFRA and Career Service Wales are in discussion with PCC in regard the provision of accommodation within our building portfolio in both Llandrindod and Builth Wells. COVID 19 has delayed matters but it is hoped that these leases can be concluded soon.
Correspondence took place with the Driving and Vehicle Standards Agency estates team in August 2019 in respect of providing a test centre at County Hall. An office and parking facilities were offered for consideration at this time and a site visit was undertaken. Unfortunately, the offer of accommodation was not taken forward by the agency at this time. PCC retains the capacity to provide such accommodation should the DVSA look to revise their decision.