COUNCILS in Wales will be “at the front of the queue” to receive more funding as a result of an extra £486 million for Wales in the UK Government autumn budget, Carwyn Jones has promised.

Last month it was announced funding for local authorities in Wales would fall by 0.3 per cent in the next financial year - with Gwent councils facing cuts of up to £1.3 million.

But, following the announcement in the autumn budget, Monmouth AM Nick Ramsay - who has repeatedly appealed for the way funding is allocated to councils in Wales to be reviewed - has called for local authorities to benefit from the extra cash.

Monmouthshire County Council is one of five local authorities in Wales set to see its budget fall by the maximum possible one per cent.

Speaking during First Minister's Questions earlier this week, Conservative AM Mr Ramsay said: "It's not just this side of the chamber that has concerns about local government funding - the Welsh Local Government Association have also spoken about the way that local services are being threatened, and that the system is creaking under some of the funding problems they've had.

"Welsh Government is set to receive a significant uplift from the UK Government as a result of the recent UK Government budget.

"Can you reassure local authorities in Wales that they will at least receive a fair share of this new cake which is coming as a result of that UK Government budget, so that local authorities can at least be a little reassured in the short to medium term that local services can be protected?"

Mr Jones replied: "Local authorities are at the front of the queue.

"We are looking to see what kind of further financial package might be made available to local authorities, and that is something we will be considering over the course of the next week or two.

"We do understand of course the fact that austerity has imposed such a squeeze on local authority finances, and I believe that when we state to the Assembly how we plan to deal with the not-anything-like-as-much amount as was announced by the chancellor, but nevertheless some consequential that we have received in Wales, that the package that we have for local government will be fair given the circumstances we've found ourselves in."

When the £486 million was announced last month, the Welsh Government's finance minister Mark Drakeford claimed a large portion of it was comprised of funding which had already been announced.