Environment & Wellbeing and Prosperity Cabinet Members – Minutes – 15 November 2019 (Joint) (Urgt)

1 NOVEMBER 2019 FLOODING: FINANCIAL SUPPORT – The Director: Governance and Partnerships submitted an urgent report seeking approval to establish a package of financial support to households and businesses impacted by the flooding caused by severe weather on Thursday 7 November and 14 November 2019. The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) had announced funding to support the recovery efforts of local councils where households and businesses had been affected. The decision was urgent in order to facilitate recovery immediately.

A significant amount of rainfall fell across North Lincolnshire on Thursday 7 November and overnight and again on 14 November 2019 which had resulted in instances of flooding across North Lincolnshire. The Council had taken extensive action to support communities in recovering from localised flooding. Indeed, despite similar levels of rainfall, the proactive nature of investment and planning over the last 10 years had resulted in far fewer properties being affected than in 2007.

The Council had previously responded proactively in response to disruption caused by flooding and made available a package of financial assistance to impacted households through grant funding and council tax discounts. The MHCLG subsequently put in place a Flood Recovery Framework for local authorities which set out a core package of business and community recovery support to serve as a framework for flood recovery funding when needed.

Ministers announced on 12 November 2019 that community recovery funding would be made available to local Councils, equivalent to £500 per household. Additionally business recovery grants of up to £2,500 per eligible business would be available under the framework. Whilst the detail had not yet been released, it was hoped that the scale of the local impact would be sufficient for the Council to receive the funding to pass on to impacted properties. In previous cases of severe weather events, the Government had required authorities with minimal numbers of qualifying properties in their area to manage recovery independently.

It was proposed that the Council took action to support impacted properties regardless of the availability of Government funding based upon the Flood Recovery Framework. The following schemes of financial assistance were proposed to be made available to impacted properties. These schemes were detailed in the report and listed at appendices 1, 2 and 3.

Resolved – That the creation of financial support schemes set out in the report and detailed in the appendices be approved.