Secretary of State hits back over 'storm betrayal' claims
4:50pm Tuesday 11th February 2014 in News
SECRETARY of State for Wales David Jones has refuted the recent claim by an Assembly Member that he had 'betrayed' storm-hit Pembrokeshire.
The accusation was made by Mid and West Wales AM Simon Thomas.
After visiting Tenby Golf Club, to see damage caused by the recent storms, he tabled a written question to the Welsh Government over discussions about storm damage.
Mr Thomas said that Mr Jones had claimed that the Treasury was unlikely to release extra money for flood-hit areas, and he doubted that EU funds would be available. He argued that it was up to the Welsh Government to help with the clear-up.
The AM alleged that the Secretary's attitude was 'a betrayal of the people in west Wales hit by the recent storms' and added: "He should be standing up for the people of Wales and putting Wales first by making the case for extra help for those affected by the storms."
In a statement this week, Mr Jones replied: "“The primary responsibility for dealing with incidents like the recent flooding lies with the local authority: In Wales this means it ultimately comes under the Welsh Government’s remit.
"I am hugely sympathetic of the difficulties being faced by residents in West and North Wales. I do want to be clear, however, that we, in the UK Government are ready to consider any request for assistance made by the Welsh Government.
“The damage is still being assessed and officials in my department are in regular contact with officials in the Welsh Government. I must make it absolutely clear, however, there have been no official requests for additional assistance from Welsh Government ministers, nor have we received any request to access the EU Solidarity Fund.”