Witney News - Flooding issues to be discussed by EU

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Flooding issues to be discussed by EU

A senior officer from West Oxfordshire District Council is, this week, addressing a European Parliamentary committee about the affects of last summer's flooding.

Cath James, West Oxfordshire District Council's Strategic Director for Environment, led the Council's emergency response to the July flooding and the on-going recovery. She will talk about how the floods have affected individuals, communities, farmers and businesses in both West Oxfordshire and other parts of the UK. She will also explain how damage to the infrastructure has resulted in some major repair work to highways, bridges and sewers.

Cllr Barry Norton, Leader of West Oxfordshire District Council said, “Few will forget the unprecedented weather and ensuing flooding last summer. It has placed a huge strain, not only on those directly affected, but also on public services. The strain is still being felt today, seven months after the event. We are pleased that Cath James from our council has been invited to address the European Parliament and I know that she will do an excellent job, not only representing West Oxfordshire, but also the rest of the UK, explaining the misery, the damage and costs to people's lives as a result of the widespread flooding endured by so many.”

Parmit Dhanda, MP for Gloucester has also been invited to give his perspective from a constituency point of view.

Their address is part of the British government's application to the European Commission for support from the European Union Solidarity Fund (EUSF) to help recovery.

The invitation to Cath James came from James Elles, Euro MP for the South East region, who serves on the European Parliament's budgets committee, which is where the EUSF funding application is being discussed.

This is the first application made by the UK to the EUSF and a provisional assessment of damage caused by the June and July 2007 floods was submitted on 20 August 2007. A detailed application has now been made including a description of which areas in the UK were affected, the economic and social repercussions of the disaster and the total amount of direct damage caused.

Posted : 25/02/2008 17:05:31

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