In a bid to cut through the constant onslaught of soundbites and vague half-pledges emanating from the newly formed Government, Mr Morgan has demanded clarity from the Brexit Secretary when it comes to what and how much will be given to Portsmouth with regard to no deal preparations.
Mr Morgan’s forceful letter to the Brexit Secretary comes following fresh claims from Government frontbenchers this week that, “No deal is now a very real prospect” and Chancellor Sajid Javid’s comments that there would be “significant extra funding” for 500 new Border Force officers and “possible” improved infrastructure at British ports.
Mr Morgan said:
“For many months now, I have been working with Portsmouth International Port, the Local Resilience Forum and local community leaders in a bid to get to the bottom of the implications of a no deal for our city.
I have written countless letters to the Department for Transport, the Brexit Department and the Ministry of Housing, communities and Local Government. The answers have been chaotic, disorganised and inconsistent and have demonstrated a complete lack of understanding for Portsmouth’s unique situation.
Today I have asked for an end to this regime of uncertainty. I have demanded information on what reimbursement mechanism to recover the future costs of no deal Brexit is in place, which department will be reimbursing our city and how much we will be getting. We need answers to these questions now.”
Mr Morgan has consistently said that no deal would be disastrous for the city, agreeing with major employers such as Airbus and with comments made by the CBI that uncertainty surrounding Brexit is ‘crippling UK business investment’. As a result, Mr Morgan has maintained pressure on the Government to provide funding for these preparations so that the people of Portsmouth do not bear the brunt of poor planning.
Portsmouth South MP, Stephen Morgan said:
“No deal Brexit poses significant risks, as identified by the Local Resilience Forum, to our city in terms of congestion arising in and around PIP. To demonstrate this point, in March Portsmouth City Council hosted briefing discussions where BAE said that they were so concerned about the impact of congestion that they were rescheduling their maintenance plans for the Royal Navy fleet.
Portsmouth City Council has spent £1m in set-up costs for W4 at Tipner as part of the Operation Transmission. In the event of a no-deal, there will considerable additional cost.
I want to see Government funding given to our city so that our council coffers are not decimated by poor planning and a refusal to acknowledge the disastrous consequences of a no deal for Portsmouth”.