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Council will take on flooding role

PUBLISHED: 16:15 26 June 2008 | UPDATED: 11:18 03 July 2010

A GOVERNMENT Bill which aims to improve the way surface water flooding is dealt with has been welcomed by Great Yarmouth Borough Council.

While the proposed floods and water bill is still in the very early stages anything that can help streamline ways surface water flooding is dealt with will be welcomed by the council, according to its head of planning Peter Warner.

A GOVERNMENT Bill which aims to improve the way surface water flooding is dealt with has been welcomed by Great Yarmouth Borough Council.

While the proposed floods and water bill is still in the very early stages anything that can help streamline ways surface water flooding is dealt with will be welcomed by the council, according to its head of planning Peter Warner.

The proposed Bill, which will not go out for consultation until early next year, will see local authorities take on full responsibility for surface water flooding, with the Environment Agency taking on a new strategic overview role for all forms of flood risk management throughout the country.

The agency is currently responsible for flood risk management from rivers and coastal flooding but the Bill aims to include surface water flooding in that role.

In September 2006, parts of Yarmouth were hit badly by surface water flooding - particularly Southtown and the Northgate Street area - when 100mm of rain fell in just six hours flooding thousands of homes and businesses.

Environment minister Phil Woolas said: “Local authorities have a vital role to play, and under the agency's overview they will be supported to take the lead on the ground.

“We are prepared if necessary to back this up by providing authorities with the powers to ensure that organisations and landowners responsible fulfil their obligations; for example maintaining drains.”

Defra, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, aims to consult on the bill in the spring of 2009.

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