£300,000 double counted?
We welcome the announcement made on the 12th September that Somerset County Council will commit £300,000 towards dredging the Levels. However you should note that this is not new money.
It is the same £300,000 that the County Council committed to provide back in July. They have simply re-announced it, presumably feeling they needed to do so as this is a new administration.
The total sum committed for dredging our rivers remains exactly the same as it has been since July, £300,000 from the EA, £300,000 from the County Council, £300,000 from the Department of the Environment.
The total needed for dredging the Tone, Parrett and Ivel is of the order of £4m. We recognise that the EA are trying to find cheaper ways of doing the work.
However the fact remains, no new money has been committed from government or local government. The sum raised is not even a quarter of what is needed.