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Flood Control: Finance

Volume 473: debated on Friday 14 March 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how much of his Department's flood protection budget will be spent on administration in 2007-08. (185615)

The definition of administration is subjective and open to interpretation.

The estimate of direct administrative spend on flood risk management in DEFRA is some £2 million. This covers direct pay, expenses and training for DEFRA Flood and Coastal Erosion Risk Management staff and consultancy.

Environment Agency flood risk management activities carry a share of administrative costs in relation to the overall £1 billion budget. Using the definition agreed with the National Audit Office for its report on building and maintaining river and coastal flood defences in England, the Environment Agency estimates its costs in support of flood risk management activities in 2007-08 to be:

Activity

£ million

Policy and Process Development

7.4

Corporate Information Systems Development and Support

7.8

Regional: Management, Finance, Legal, Estates, Human Resources, Facilities and Business Services, Accommodation, Strategy and Corporate Affairs and Customer Services

35.4

National: Environmental Assessment Service, Payments and Payroll, Science, Library and Information, Audit, Recruitment, Procurement, Transport, Financial/HR System and Support Centre and Customer Contact Centre

7.7

Central Directorates: Chief Executive's Office including Board, Corporate Affairs, Operations, Finance, Property Team, HR and Legal

6.7

Total

65.0

The Environment Agency continues to drive its efficiency programme to develop better ways of working to reduce costs and deliver more for the environment. Environment Agency efficiency targets over the spending review period are £25 million per annum, of which some £15 million will be flood risk management.