Group tasked with planning for Brexit contingency in Essex is handed cash boost

PUBLISHED: 07:45 20 September 2019 | UPDATED: 07:45 20 September 2019

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The group responsible for putting together contingency plans for Essex when the UK leaves the European Union is to get extra cash from the Government.

The Essex Resilience Forum, which is made up of local councils, emergency services, health providers and the voluntary sector, will get a share of £4million from the Government to support the development of Brexit plans.

The funds are part of a £9million boost to local councils, with the other £5million being shared between councils outside of Essex that have major ports or airports.

It has not been confirmed how much the forum will receive but the Government said the money was being shared out between 38 resilience forums across the country.

Deputy chief fire officer Rick Hylton, vice chairman of the Essex Local Resilience Forum, said: "Essex Local Resilience Forum welcomes the Government announcement that local resilience forums across the UK will share £4 million to support public services in their EU Exit preparations.

"We are speaking to Government about what this means for Essex and as a partnership we will consider our approach to this additional funding.

"We are already working together across the county to help prepare for EU exit. Our plans to deal with, and mitigate, identified issues when the UK leaves the EU are well developed. "Representatives from key public services and the voluntary sector, including local councils, fire, police and other critical services across Essex are working to an agreed action plan and risk assessment.

"The Essex Local Resilience Forum strategic team will meet to discuss the updated information from Government and review existing plans about how best to use the funding to support our local area and our communities."

The funding has come as Prime Minister Boris Johnson faces growing political challenges after he made the decision to suspend parliament in the run-up to the October 31 Brexit deadline.

Mr Johnson has claimed there is "ample time" for MPs to debate Brexit but rivals have labelled the move undemocratic.

The Essex Resilience Forum was contacted for comment.

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