Gloucestershire County Council’s Cabinet this morning pledged up to an extra £50k for immediate support to people affected by flooding in recent days.
The new fund will be administered by Gloucestershire Community Foundation, which already works with the county council. The money will be given to victims who have suffered hardship due to flooding or future winter problems.
The proposal was added to an agenda item on the council’s medium term financial strategy this morning by council leader, Cllr Mark Hawthorne, and unanimously supported by the Cabinet.
This follows a recent pledge to allocate just over £1m (£1.086m) of the councils’ current £1.99 million underspend to the six district councils for flood alleviation works in their areas.
Gloucestershire County Council has spent around £20m on flood alleviation works since 2007.
Cllr Mark Hawthorne, leader of Gloucestershire County Council, said: “Much of what we’ve seen over the last few days could have been a lot worse had we not invested since 2007.
“Unfortunately around 50 properties in the county have flooded in the last few days, but the Environment Agency estimate this could have been 500 properties without the investment in flood alleviation.
“Gloucestershire County Council wants to continue taking a lead in protecting people’s homes from flooding. That’s why I am proposing an extra recommendation to commit up to £50,000 to help people in the community respond to issues relating to flooding in their properties.
“This is reinforcing our ongoing commitment to flood alleviation and supporting flood victims since 2007.”
Gloucestershire Community Foundation's (GCF) first priority is to swiftly get financial help to people whose homes have been flooded over the last couple of weeks.
These are called emergency relief grants and will take the form of a flat-rate payment of £250 to help with the most immediate needs.
As the impact and need becomes clearer in the coming days and weeks, and as more funds become available to GCF, they will launch further rounds of grants.
In some cases these may be additional grants to the most vulnerable households that have been flooded – and those in receipt of an emergency relief grant
Gloucestershire Community Foundation is particularly keen to hear from local charities and community organisations/ facilities that are either helping people affected by the flooding or have themselves been damaged by floods.
Residents who many be eligible for support can apply for the grant from Gloucestershire Communities Fund and details on how to apply will be announced in the next few days.