Possible legislation to clarify flooding proposals

Following strong representations from several MPs including John Redwood about continuing confusion between national and local agencies over responsibility for surface water flooding, Sir Michael Pitt (Chairman of the Flood Review) has suggested he will be recommending legislation to clarify responsibilities in his final report. Speaking today at a meeting in Westminster alongside Baroness Young of the Environment Agency, Sir Michael suggested the purpose of such legislation would be to map out the statutory obligations of all the relevant authorities, including water boards, Local Authorities and private landowners. Baroness Young fully supported the need for legislation as part of the national framework of flood protection and response they are currently developing.

In several areas of the Wokingham constituency, confusion over responsibility for infrastructure maintenance has yet to be clarified. Speaking today, John Redwood said: “Nine months after the floods we still are witnessing arguments from the top down over who is to blame and who should carry out the remedial works. I am urging the government to clarify these matters as quickly as possible, and to give the Environment Agency the means and the requirement to tackle the outstanding problems promptly.”