§ Mr. Stephen
To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will provide financial assistance under the Bellwin scheme to assist local authorities in west Sussex with the costs of dealing with the flooding which occurred in January.
§ Mr. Baldry
Yes. My right hon. Friend is satisfied that financial relief under the Bellwin scheme would be justified in this case. A scheme of assistance will therefore be established under section 155 of the Local Government and Housing Act 1989. The Department will pay grant to those authorities in west Sussex which have incurred an undue financial burden as a result of flooding which took place between December 1993 and January 1994. Grant will cover 85 per cent. of eligible costs which are above a threshold.