Kirstene Hair - SNP ‘passing the buck’ on coastal erosion

Scottish Environment Minister Roseanna Cunningham is “passing the buck” on coastal erosion problems around Montrose, a Scottish Conservative MP has said today.

The Cabinet Secretary said in a letter to Angus MP Kirstene Hair that it is up to Angus Council to tackle the issue.

However, the local authority faced a budget shortfall of more than £10million for 2017/18, with further cuts from the SNP government expected in the years to come.

Ms Hair has argued that Angus Council will require additional support if it is to properly mitigate the threat of serious flooding due coastal erosion.

The cost of suggested remedial work in the Montrose area is expected to run to several million pounds.

Ms Hair said: “Angus Council simply cannot afford to tackle this problem alone at a time when the SNP government is slashing its budget.

“The local authority is making savings across the board to cope with the current shortfall in funding, and the picture for future years looks very bleak indeed.

“Roseanna Cunningham saw and heard for herself the potential impact that flooding could have during the recent Cabinet visit to Montrose.

“The level of erosion risks not only the historic golf links, but the town of Montrose itself.

“It is not good enough for the Cabinet Secretary to simply pass the buck onto the council at a time of swingeing cuts to local budgets.”