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Cut to flooding and coastal risk management budget deeply worrying – William Powell AM

2012 Mehefin 27 2:41 PM

William Powell, Shadow Minister for Environment and Sustainable Development, has raised concern over the Welsh Government's decision to cut the capital budget available to flood and coastal risk management.

William Powell, Assembly Member for Mid and West Wales, said:

"The recent floods across Mid Wales have once again demonstrated the importance of adequate flood defenses and their ability to save lives and homes. While we all recognize the need for the Welsh Government to reduce its expenditure in the current economic climate it must not do so at the expense of the safety of rural Wales' towns and villages.

Over the past five years the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) has delivered so much for Wales and provided funding for 29 defence schemes. While it is unfortunate that the end of this cycle of funding coincides with Welsh Government cuts, it reaffirms the critical role the European Union plays in Wales and importance of negotiating the best possible deal for Wales in the next cycle.

As Wales moves forward we need to ensure that money is spent wisely and projects are prioritised based on their ability to protect residents and allow sustainable development.

Given the potentially damaging decision by the Welsh Government to cut its flooding and coastal risk management budget, we must establish which, if any, defence plans have been cancelled or postponed as a result. I have today written to the Minister for a response."