Latest flood relief welcomed by city MP

Ripon floods. Picture: Rodney Towers
Ripon floods. Picture: Rodney Towers
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Government measures taken to support households hit by recent sever flooding have been welcomed by Ripon MP Julian Smith.

The latest figures show that more than 16,000 residential and business properties were affected by Storms Desmond and Eva.

And the Government has activated the Bellwin Fund to provide emergency support for the immediate response costs faced by local authorities which covers 100 per cent of the qualifying costs above the qualifying threshold of 0.2 per cent of the council’s calculated annual revenue budget.

In addition, the Communities and Business Recovery Scheme was set up to help householders, communities, and businesses recover from the impacts of the storms, including increasing resilience of domestic and commercial properties.

So far, initial payments of nearly £48 million have gone to councils. Already the Government has made payments of £23,510 to Craven District Council and £66,611 to Harrogate Borough Council.

Julian Smith MP said: “I was pleased by the swift response by the Government to ensure funding is in place for those affected.

“Schemes such as the Communities and Businesses Recovery Scheme will make a real difference in ensuring that property level resilience is increased through grants of up to £5,000 to householders and businesses.

“Also, crucially, the Government is making funds available to allow local authorities to provide 100 per cent council tax discounts and business rate relief for a minimum of three months and during the period when houses and businesses remain empty.”

The Government will also be matching funding up to £2 million in donations for charity appeals raising funds for Storm Desmond and a further £2 million for Storm Eva.

Mr Smith added: “It is essential that areas affected do not suffer long term economic repercussions as a result of these storms.

“I was, therefore, pleased by the Prime Minister’s announcement that a £1 million campaign will be launched to promote tourism in the North of England in areas that were affected by the storms.

“We have world-leading attractions, historic sites, and stunning countryside that deserves to be showcased to the rest of the world. The campaign will be launched this week ahead of half-term and Easter.”

* Is this enough aid? What do you think? Email your views to news@ripongazette.co.uk