The leader of York City Council, James Alexander has called for government funding to fix the recent flood damages.
It comes after North Yorkshire County Council are to be hit with a £3 million flood bill because of the flood damages to roads and bridges. However York City Council has stated that it has not yet calculated the total cost of the damage.
Alexander however has reassured residents and businesses about the aftermath of the flooding and said he is currently busy trying to secure funding.
He said “ I’ve been speaking to the chief executive about releasing funding. I am also trying to co-operate the government with MP Hugh Bayley. I’ve already spoken to Nick Bowles, the government repairing infrastructure about trying to do something “.
Speaking on the flooding impact, he added “A team of multi-agency people were involved with the Environment Agency who co-ordinates a series of procedures as the water levels rose. I was not affected by the floods personally but I went down to the control room during the floods whilst my deputy was on Leeman Road “.
However The Labour leader believes the state of flood defenses are the biggest concern for the city. He said “Flood defenses should have already been planned for. However the government have reduced funding for flood defenses This council has put £1.4 million in May 2011 so it’s frustrating because I don’t think they are adequately resourced.
“People can muck in and see each other and they did very quickly. I don’t know why insurance has gone up. Maybe it is because fraud or profit insurance companies could be the reasons. This was a bad one but the chances of this happening are about every 20-25 years “.
A spokesperson from the Association of British Insurers said “We are doing a lot of work and availability has been addressed. We are doing a lot of work with the Government to reach a new agreement.
“The affordability is in our interest and we know technology has to develop to help insurers. No other country has a free market like we do in the UK in terms of flood risks “.
It is becoming old news but it is still an episode that shocked Yorkshire. The question is what can we do in the aftermath from a disaster?
The question is what new evidence can we learn from? The Guardian Research Institute recently released has spoken of the increased climate change which of course has led to more floods occuring.
In February, The Press reported a fresh deal between the Government and Insurers stalling. As Alexander said, the government seems to want to let the agency do its own thing.
A document published by the Annex C Summary of Recommendations as long ago as 2005 has the Flood Scrutiny Board recommending that Silver Command be better publicized to citizens about their role. The meeting took place five years after the great floods of 2000.
Alexander said that the role of Silver Command is posted through Twitter and through sections of the press. Should there be a more simple process however? A quick search on Google for ‘Silver Command’ doesn’t advertise the services of their role in the floods. A brief point of the role of the operation and a number to call could be a more simplistic step for citizens to get in touch in the immediate impact of flooding.
The next aim is for the council to have public meetings to bring businesses together and to discuss the damages. Urgency is required and something needs to be done now otherwise it will be quickly forgotten about.
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