§ Mr. Moate
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will specify the number of occasions and circumstances since 1970 in which central Government have offered increased financial support to local authorities as a consequence of flooding, snow or other adverse conditions; what was the actual cost of the support; and if he will list his powers to provide support of this nature.
§ Dr. Boyson
Since 1970 special financial assistance has been given to local authorities as a consequence of flooding, snow or other adverse weather conditions on three occasions: during the winters of 1977–78, 1978–79 and 1981–82. In 1977–78 the need for payments arose mainly from storms, flooding and snow, in 1978–79 from prolonged snow and frost, and in 1981–82 from storms, flooding and snow.
Payments were made in response to claims by local authorities in the following years:
Financial year Amount £ million 1977–78 1.18 1978–79 7.35 1979–80 4.57 1980–81 3.02 1981–82 0.38 1982–83 11.19 1983–84 1.61 1984–85 0.06 TOTAL 29.36
The Secretary of State has made such payments on the authority of the Appropriation Act.