Aberdeenshire Council Flood Bulletin 3

Aberdeenshire Council has issued the following bulletin with information, contacts, support and advice for those affected by the flooding in Garioch. Also at the bottom of the bulletin we’ve added and offer of help from Garioch Community Kitchen.

Garioch Flood Bulletin

Issue 3 25th February 2016

1. GrantsUpdate
Scottish Government Grant Fund (update)
Aberdeenshire Council continue to process applications for the flood grants and the vast majority of the £1500 flood grant applications have been processed. The £3000 additional business support grants are now also being progressed.

There are still in the region of 60/70 domestic applications across Aberdeenshire to be considered, however, initial contact has been made with these customers. It is expected the majority of the outstanding cases will be completed by the end of February.

The total number of grants now paid in Aberdeenshire are as follows:

£1500 (Domestic household) – 683 £1500 (Business) – 98
£3000 (Business) – 28

The council encourages any affected residents who have not yet claimed to do so. To claim use this link https://online.aberdeenshire.gov.uk/flooding-grant-scheme/.
Foundation Scotland – Flood Recovery Fund - grants up to £1000 are available

Financial support is available to:
  • Individuals or families who are suffering financial hardship as a result of the recent flooding.
  • Voluntary and community groups who are providing immediate relief to people, will be providing longer term community rebuilding projects or have experienced significant structural and or flood damage. This assistance is entirely separate to the schemes announced by the Scottish Government.

Further information on the Foundation Scotland Flood Recovery Appeal can be found on their website https://www.foundationscotland.org.uk/flood-recovery-appeal/apply-for-funding/ or contact the Grants Team on 0141 341 4960 or email grants@foundationscotland.org.uk

Inverurie Round Table
If you want to request financial assistance from the Round Table either contact them through the Round Table Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/InverurieRT/ or by emailing inveruriert@hotmail.co.uk

Foundation Scotland have doubled the amount available for North East flood victims through grants. Individuals affected by flooding at the end of December and early January can now get up to £1,000 to help restore their homes.

Groups or charities that are supporting victims can also receive up to £5,000.

2. Drop-inSessions
Inverurie and Garioch Flood Support Group and Scottish Flood Forum

The Inverurie and Garioch Flood Support Group (previously located at the Legion) and Scottish Flood Forum have set up drop in sessions as detailed below:

  • Monday 29th Feb - INVERURIE COMMUNITY CENTRE from 7pm – 9pm (Inverurie and Garioch Flood Support Group)
  • Tuesday 1st March - INVERURIE COMMUNITY CENTRE from 10am – 2pm (Inverurie and Garioch Flood Support Group)
  • Thursday 3rd March – PORT ELPHINSTONE COMMUNITY HOUSE from 1pm – 4pm (Flood Support Group and Scottish Flood Forum)
  • Thursday 3rd March – KEMNAY VILLAGE HALL 5.30pm – 8pm (Scottish Flood Forum)
  • Monday 7th March - INVERURIE COMMUNITY CENTRE from 7pm – 9pm (Inverurie and Garioch Flood Support Group)
  • Tuesday 8th March - INVERURIE COMMUNITY CENTRE from 10am – 2pm (Inverurie and Garioch Flood Support Group)
  • Thursday 10th March – PORT ELPHINSTONE COMMUNITY HOUSE from 1pm – 4pm (Inverurie and Garioch Flood Support Group and Scottish Flood Forum)
  • Thursday 10th March – KEMNAY VILLAGE HALL 5.30pm – 8pm (Scottish Flood Forum)

These sessions are for everyone affected by the flooding throughout Garioch. The sessions which are being held at Inverurie Community Centre will have refreshments available.

Within Tuesday sessions, a representative will be on hand from Alex Salmond MP constituency office between 11am and 1pm.

Within Thursday sessions, Paul Hendy from Scottish Flood Forum will provide a drop in surgery for all Flooding and Insurance queries. This is an opportunity for residents from anywhere in Garioch who were affected by flooding to get expert advice and support regarding insurance claims, drying out properties, property repairs and any other questions related to flooding and its impacts. Paul can also be contacted by phone 07747702299 (if he is unable to answer send a text with your number and he will call you back) or email paul@scottishfloodforum.org

If you wish to contact the Inverurie and Garioch Flood Support Group, please email gariochflood2016@gmail.com or send a private message through the Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/Inveruriefloodsupport/

3. GariochFloodRecoveryPlan
The Garioch Flood Recovery Plan has been developed and will be considered by the Garioch Area Committee at its meeting on 15th March 2016.

Within this plan three priorities for flood protection improvements for each of the three main settlements affected by flooding have been included. All identified Aberdeenshire projects will be prioritised and an action plan will be drawn up in due course.

4. Infrastructure
Aberdeenshire wide – drains and gullies
Work continues on drain and gully clearing throughout Aberdeenshire. This task will take a considerable time due to the huge impact of Storm Frank. Agency staff and external contractors have been brought in to help with this task and Aberdeenshire Council are in the process of recruiting further staff.

Port Elphinstone
Work began on repairing the existing bund around Davidson Fields on 24th February, this is expected to be completed in the next few days.
The bank behind Canal View has been assessed and work required will be prioritised as part of the wider recovery plan.

Options are being considered to address the identified gap in the bund. A decision on a way forward will be decided in the next few weeks.

5. AboutFloodRe–alifelineforpeoplelivinginFloodRiskproperties.
Recent large scale flood events highlight the impact of severe flooding, including the effect on those who struggle to find affordable home insurance estimated to be about 300,000 properties across the UK.

Since 2000, flood insurance has been widely available to households at high risk of flooding due to a series of voluntary agreements between the Government and members of the Association of British Insurers (ABI).

These agreements did not cover the affordability of the home insurance provided, however, and so the insurance companies and the Government have been working together to develop a different way of dealing with flood insurance. They decided on a 'flood re-insurance' scheme - known as Flood Re - to help support households at highest flood risk. An important part of the Flood Re scheme will be to offer help to people to increase their understanding of their level of flood risk and explaining how, where possible, they can take action to reduce that risk.

Flood Re will be in place for 25 years and is designed to:
  • Enable flood cover to be affordable for those households at highest risk of flooding
  • Increase availability and choice of insurers for customers
  • Allow time for the Government, local authorities, insurers and communities to become better prepared for flooding
  • Create a 'level playing field' for new entrants and existing insurers in the UK home insurance market.

Flood Re will make no difference to the way customers themselves buy their home insurance. All claims will continue to be handled by the insurance companies themselves, and insurers will continue to set the premiums they charge to their customers, taking into account the Flood Re premium and other important factors (such as the risks of fire, theft, subsidence and other costs).

As a result of the Flood Re scheme, there should be greater choice of home insurance policies for customers at risk of flooding and those policies should be more affordable.
Those people, who pay higher premiums as a result of their home having flooded, could expect their home insurance to become more affordable. This is due to a combination of insurers being able to pass the flood risk to Flood Re, and the policyholder now being able to shop around in a more competitive market that may have been closed to them.
Flood Re will not set prices for home insurance, but will give insurers the opportunity of passing to them the flood risk element of a home insurance policy (buildings and contents) at a premium that will be capped, depending on the Council Tax band of the property. It will be up to an insurer to decide if they wish to pass the flood risk element of the cover to Flood Re.

Flood Re is designed to provide support to those homeowners who without it are most likely to face problems in obtaining affordable flood insurance.

Homes built after 1 January 2009 will not be covered (as applied under the old Flood Insurance Statement of Principles) - this is to avoid incentivising unwise building in known high flood risk areas.

Commercial properties, including commercial leasehold properties, will not be included. The individual nature and assessment of business and commercial property risks means that available and affordable flood insurance is less of an issue than for homes. While some individual firms may experience problems in accessing flood insurance, these can usually be resolved by using (as most do) an insurance broker. Flood Re will establish clear rules for ‘borderline’ cases such as ‘Bed and Breakfast’ properties.

If you live in a commercial leasehold property and you take out contents insurance (buildings cover is usually through the landlord) then the flood risk element can be covered by Flood Re.

Leasehold blocks with three residential units or less will be eligible for Flood Re providing the freeholder responsible for purchasing the buildings insurance lives in the block and the building meets the other required eligibility criteria.

Flood Re will launch in April 2016.

6. FloodProtectionProducts
Aberdeenshire Council retains a stock of a small selection of flood protection products and will sell them to the public at cost price. The prices reflect the discounts available to the Council through bulk purchasing and are likely to be less than can be obtained by purchasing direct from suppliers.

For more information see: http://www.aberdeenshire.gov.uk/environment/flooding/flood-protection- products/

7. OtherUsefulInformation
Garioch Area Office email: Garioch@aberdeenshire.gov.uk telephone: 01467 628200 Housing assistance: 03456 081203 (24hrs)

Council tax: 03456 081201

Benefits: 03456 081200

Social Care line: 03456 081206 (24 hours)

Roads: 03456 081205

Waste line: 03456 081207

Environmental Health Line: 03457 081207 (24 hours) Magpie Inverurie: 01467 268087

Police: 101 or 999

SEPA Flood line 0345 988 1188
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