COPING with border disruption spilling over from Kent as well as changes to trading standards legislation are among the main concerns for Surrey County Council over Brexit.
Whether there is a deal or no deal outcome, the scenario presents an “array of potential possibilities, implications and uncertainties”, councillors have been told.
The “primary risk” for the county council to deliver its key services will be a potential reduction in the workforce if non-UK European Union staff decide to leave or relocate. One particular area of concern is the supply chain of staff for care and construction services.
Surrey is working with neighbouring county councils Kent and Essex to look at how to manage traffic implications, such as Operation Stack, as well as with boroughs and districts, NHS England and the Environment Agency through the local resilience forum (LRF).
A paper outlining the county’s ‘Preparations for Exiting the European Union’ was presented to councillors at the cabinet meeting on February 26. Deputy council leader Colin Kemp said because there was still uncertainty around Brexit they were still unable to get a full plan in place.
He said: “The final decision when it comes and what it will look like is unknown. We do show that the work is going on and our response to the questions the Government has put to us.”
Cllr Kemp said one good thing to come from this so far was the “stronger” relationships the council had built with partners through the LRF around emergency planning.
The county has been given £38,000 from the Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government as well as £170,000 from central government to “respond to any Brexit implications”.