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Kirsty Williams: Assembly Government needs to pay its bills to keep training providers in the black.

June 30, 2009 11:48 AM

Kirsty Williams: Assembly Government needs to pay its bills to keep training providers in the black. Research by the Welsh Liberal Democrats has revealed that the Welsh Assembly Government is failing on its promise to pay all bills on time. The Welsh Liberal Democrats have learnt that providers of vital training for unemployed people are not receiving payments from the Assembly Government for up to two months after they have finished delivering the costly courses. Kirsty Williams said: "We've spoken to a training provider who are close to folding because they are not getting paid for the course they have already provided, until at least a month after the course has finished. No business can survive with creditors sitting on invoices for 30 days before even looking at them - and that's exactly what the Assembly Government is doing under the React scheme. With so many people unemployed training providers are flooded with trainees but are being given no money up front to pay for training, equipment and business overheads. This is a disgrace - the very companies working to tackle the impact of recession are in danger of going to the wall because Labour and Plaid are mismanaging the departments responsible for paying the bills." The Liberal Democrats have learnt that invoices from training providers favoured by Careers Wales are not looked at for 30 days after being received. Invoices submitted to the WAG for large amounts have also been returned for minor spelling mistakes, rather than dealt with and amended. Kirsty Williams continued: "The message this attitude to payment sends out is terrible and it's not just training providers who are being affected. We've learned that young people representing the Assembly government on their Dynamo Role Models scheme for young entrepreneurs are also subject to this unacceptable 30 day billing rule. This means a young entrepreneur, who gives a training session or delivers a series of speeches on behalf of the WAG, will not get paid for up to two months after that work has been done. Unsurprisingly, this has left a bad taste in the mouth for some of Wales' best young entrepreneurs."