In the House of Commons today (21st January) Louise Haigh joined calls from the Leader of Sheffield City Council Julie Dore for the Government to increase spending on flood defences.
In 2007, Sheffield suffered devastating floods and remains extremely vulnerable to flooding. The city will need 5 major projects totalling around £43m from now until 2021 to not only protect the city but also prime land available for developing businesses and building homes to enable job creation and growth.
The Government have so far only committed to spend £23m, leaving a £20m shortfall in the funding needed to protect the city. Louise Haigh MP today joined calls from Julie Dore and colleagues across Sheffield for the Government to increase funding in order to protect Sheffield:
"Since the devastating 2007 floods which hit Sheffield, the Environment Agency and the Council have only been able to implement limited measures to protect the City from flooding. Urgent upgrades are needed to essential flood and drainage infrastructure."
"DEFRA have so far made available £23m but in order for Sheffield to be properly protected we will need a extra £20m to ensure that existing home and businesses are protected and land for prime development. Sheffield has been named as one of the centres of the Northern powerhouse but if some of the land where new businesses and homes will be built is at risk of flooding this will deter investment in our city.
"That's why the Government need to make further funding available or amend the rules to the existing grant-in-aid to open up swathes of land for development in Sheffield which will help grow the region."
You can watch my question in the House of Commons on flooding here.