David Cameron announces grants to protect houses against floods
Homeowners whose properties have been swamped will be eligible for grants of up to £5,000 to protect their houses against future floods, David Cameron announced Wednesday afternoon.
Companies hit by the storms will be able to defer business rates, as well as other tax payments including VAT, while £10m is being set aside to help farmers clean up their land once the waters have receded.
Almost 6,000 properties have suffered flood damage since the start of the storms in December, potentially leaving the taxpayer with a bill of close to £30 million. That could increase sharply with floodwaters predicted to rise in coming days in the Thames and the Severn.
At Prime Minister’s Questions, Mr Cameron repeated his promise that “money is no object in this relief effort”.
He told MPs: “I want communities who are suffering and people who see water lapping at their doors to know that when it comes to the military, when it comes to sandbags, when it comes to restoring broken flood defences, all of those things, money is no object”.
He also urged the emergency services gold commanders co-ordinating the response to flooding not to "think twice" before calling on military assistance.
Ed Miliband, the Labour leader, said some people in flooded communities thought the armed forces were sent in too late, and asked the Prime Minister whether help in the coming days would be provided “in time rather than after the event”.
He also challenged Mr Cameron to put planned job losses at the Environment Agency on hold.
- 2 Friends 20th anniversary: Alison Jackson photographs reunited cast
- 3 Friends 20th anniversary: The highs and lows of the cast's careers since 2004
- 5 Free U2 album: How the most generous giveaway in music history turned into a PR disaster
Scottish independence: Despite defeat history may still point to Alex Salmond as the victor
Scottish independence referendum: Frankie Boyle reacts to nation's 'No' vote - 'To be fair, I've always hated Scotland'
Iranian blogger found guilty of insulting Prophet Mohammad on Facebook sentenced to death
Scottish referendum: Police struggle to control Unionist rally in Glasgow's George Square
Glasgow 'riots': 'Dishonest' social media users accused of fuelling panic with pictures from London riots
Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained by Los Angeles police after being mistaken for a prostitute
Scottish independence referendum: A nation divided against itself
Scottish referendum results: Cross-party consensus collapses amid Tory-Labour spat on the 'English question'
Scottish independence: David Cameron is becoming the 'George Bush of Britain'
Russia freezes Ukraine into submission: Kiev admits country doesn't have enough fuel for winter
Scottish independence: The Queen breaks silence on referendum debate – as think tank warns of £14bn black hole if Scotland votes Yes
£75 - £90 per day + negotiable: Randstad Education Group: Are you a cover supe...
£30000 - £35000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager (CIM, B2B, MS Offi...
£22000 - £25000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A highly successful organisation wit...
£1 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: Job Purpose To work closely with the he...