Borders secures funding to fix flood damage

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Finance secretary John Swinney has announced that £4 million of funding to help with the flood damage in Scotland is to be passed on to local authorities, including the Scottish Borders Council.

In his budget statement, John Swinney MSP said that the £4m would be passed on to Scottish Borders, Dumfries and Galloway and Perth and Kinross councils.

Last week, the Chancellor of the Exchequer announced that around £40 million of support will be released through the new Community Recovery Scheme.

This will mean Scotland would receive £4 million in extra money.

Local MSP John Lamont welcomed the news and said he expects Scottish Borders Council to receive its fair share of this extra funding.

He has also challenged the SNP to match separate commitments made by the UK Government on council tax and business rates relief.

John Lamont MSP said: “I’m pleased that the extra money from the UK Government will now be distributed to councils in Scotland, but am disappointed it has taken the Scottish Government a week to confirm this.

“Given the extent of the damage caused in the Borders, I’d expect Scottish Borders Council to receive the majority of this extra money, which will make a huge difference to homes and businesses affected by the flooding in Hawick and Newcastleton.

“As well as the announcement, the UK Government’s policy of offering council tax and business rates relief to those affected by the flooding should be repeated north of the border.

“There are many other steps the Scottish Government should be taking including the acceleration of the flood prevention scheme, but so far their response has been found wanting.”