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Severe Weather

Volume 124: debated on Thursday 17 December 1987

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To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he plans any special arrangements to assist financially those local authorities which may face severe weather conditions in their areas during the winter months; and if he will make a statement.

Local authorities are expected to make provision in their budgets for dealing with severe winter weather conditions, on the basis of previous experience. In the event of an emergency, arrangements already exist—the Bellwin scheme — to provide special financial assistance if the Government consider that authorities would otherwise incur an undue financial burden in providing relief and carrying out immediate works to safeguard life or property or prevent suffering or severe inconvenience to affected communities. These arrangements have been brought into effect in relation to damage caused by the storm which hit the south and east of England on 16 October.