2 Overview of the FRMP and SWMP process
2.1 Roles and responsibilities
The legal responsibilities for surface water and drainage are complex with different authorities responsible for different parts of the drainage system. Scottish Ministers, SEPA and the responsible authorities have various roles and responsibilities with regard to drainage and surface water flooding, in general terms under various governing Acts, and specifically under the FRM Act. A summary of the key duties and powers in relation to surface water flooding is given below, and further information is given in Appendix 2. It should be noted that the key duties and powers described below are not exhaustive.
Section 1 of the FRM Act places general duties on the Scottish Ministers, SEPA and the responsible authorities to:
- Exercise their flood risk related functions  to reduce overall flood risk
- Exercise their flood risk related functions to secure compliance with the European Floods Directive 
- Act with a view to achieving objectives set in the FRM Strategies and LFRMPs
- Have regard to the social, environmental and economic impact of exercising those functions
- Act in the way best calculated to manage flood risk in a sustainable way
- Promote sustainable flood management
- Act in a way best calculated to contribute to sustainable development
- So far as practicable adopt an integrated approach by cooperating with each other so as to co-ordinate the exercise of their respective functions.
Local authorities have general powers to manage flood risk (from all sources including surface water flooding) within their area, including implementation of measures described in the LFRMPs, carry out flood protection schemes or any other flood protection work. The definition of flooding under the FRM Act does not include flooding solely from a sewerage system (flooding solely from a sewerage system includes flooding from the sewerage system under usual rainfall events that fall under Scottish Water duties). Local authorities also have duties to provide adequate drainage of publicly adopted roads and duties under the land use planning system to consider the risk of flooding.
Scottish Water has duties under the Sewerage (Scotland) Act 1968 to provide and maintain public sewers to effectively drain surface water (under usual rainfall events) from the curtilage of properties.
SEPA has responsibilities under the FRM Act to map and assess flood risk, produce FRM Strategies, provide a flood warning service and to provide flood risk advice to planning authorities and National Park Authorities.
In addition we are all responsible for protecting ourselves and our property from flooding; this means the public and communities working to help minimise flood damage to their land or property without increasing flood risk elsewhere (if one person's acts causes increased flooding to another person's property there may be resulting common law implications). The public has an important role in sharing local knowledge and engaging in flood protection actions for their areas.
The FRM Act sets out a risk based approach to the management of flooding to ensure resources are targeted at the areas of highest risk and where the greatest benefits can be achieved. This risk based approach can be applied to all aspects of flood risk management planning including risk assessment, appraisal of measures and degree of partnership working. Effective assessment of flood risk and appraisal of measures to manage flood risk should underpin decision making at all levels of flood risk management planning including FRM Strategies, LFRMPs and SWMPs.
This is consistent with one of the overarching outcomes of the Ministerial Guidance on SFM, "a reduction in the number of people, homes and property at risk of flooding as a result of public funds being invested in actions that protect the most vulnerable and those at greatest risk of flooding".
2.3 FRM and SWM planning process
The principles in this guidance can be followed to address surface water flooding in any area. The FRM Strategies and LFRMPs will identify where the risk of surface water flooding is greatest and where surface water management planning priorities should be focused as a measure to manage the risk of surface water flooding.
The FRM Strategies for each Local Plan District ( LPD) will identify PVAs where the risk of surface water flooding is greatest and therefore where surface water management planning effort should be focused. The LFRMPs will summarise this information and describe the governance arrangements put in place to take forward the SWMP(s) in the LPD. The measures identified through the surface water management planning process will be described in the LFRMPs (Figure 5).
Figure 5. Overview of the flood risk management planning process.
FRM Strategies, LFRMPs and SWMPs will be developed to be complementary through collaborative partnerships between local authorities, SEPA and Scottish Water. It is intended that the FRM Strategies, LFRMPs and SWMPs will be supported by all parties. An overview of the surface water management planning process is given in Figure 6.
The FRM Strategies led by SEPA will:
- Provide a summary of the surface water flood hazards and impacts in the LPD
- In agreement with the LPD partnerships identify the urban areas (and the PVAs within those urban areas) with the highest risk of surface water flooding where surface water management planning effort should be focused
- Set high level objectives for surface water flooding for each PVA
- Describe sustainable measures to manage surface water flood risk that are funded by Scottish Water or the Scottish Government (through any agreed funding mechanism with COSLA). i.e. those measures that will require national prioritisation
- Describe sustainable measures requiring national prioritisation to manage surface water flood risk to be funded by Scottish Water or the Scottish Government subject to appropriate negotiation with COSLA
- The FRM Strategies will also summarise river and coastal flood risk, set objectives and identify sustainable measures to manage the risk of river and coastal flooding
- SWMPs led by local authorities should (as a minimum):
- Define geographical area of SWMP(s)
- Set up SWMP partnership(s)
- Collate and review existing information including information on current measures undertaken to manage surface water flood risk.
- Decide on appropriate levels of detail for the SWMP(s)
- Verify existing flood hazard and risk information (does it reflect observed flooding)
- Decide if further assessment is required
- Identify and prioritise drainage areas for further investigation
- Define more detailed objectives for the SWMP area ( E.g. identify priority receptors to address in the SWMP area)
- Identify a 'long list' of all potential measures
- Screen measures and identify a 'short list'
- Undertake high level cost benefit analysis of measures
- Prioritise measures and agree with funding bodies
- Provide information to lead local authority for inclusion in the LFRMP
- Implement agreed measures and review progress
The LFRMPs led by the lead local authority will summarise the relevant parts of the FRM Strategy in the supplemental part. The implementation part will then:
- Describe the governance structures set up for surface water management planning in the LPD
- Describe what measures (all measures) are being implemented in the current cycle to address surface water flooding
- State who is responsible for implementing the measures
- Identify the funding arrangements for the measures
- State when the measures will be implemented
- Sate how functions will be co-ordinated to implement the measures that are related to surface water flooding and urban drainage
- The LFRMPs will also summarise this information for river and coastal flooding.
Figure 6. Overview of the surface water management planning process (numbers in flowchart refer to subsequent sections in guidance).
2.4 Flood risk management planning and SWMP timescales (1 st planning cycle)
The first flood risk management planning cycle will run from 2015 - 2021, the statutory timescales required prior to this date to produce FRM Strategies and LFRMPs for this period are set out in Table 2. The SWMPs will therefore fit within these timescales.
|Table 2. Statutory dates for the production of FRM strategies and LFRMPs|
|Dec 2011||National Flood Risk Assessment
Identification of Local Plan Districts ( LPDs)
Identification of Potentially Vulnerable Areas ( PVAs)
|Dec 2013||Publish flood hazard and flood risk maps
Assess potential for Natural Flood Management ( NFM)
|Dec 2014||Public consultation on draft FRM Strategies||Public consultation on draft supplementary part of LFRMP
Responsible authority consultation on implementation part of LFRMP (note it is likely that SWMP measures will largely be included in the implementation part of the LFRMP)
|Dec 2015||Publish final FRM Strategies|
|Jun 2016||Publish final 1 st LFRMP|
|Dec 2018||Update and review National Flood Risk Assessment|
|Jun 2019||Publish 1 st LFRMP interim report|
|Dec 2019||Review and update flood hazard and risk maps|
|Dec 2020||Public consultation on draft 2 nd FRM Strategies||Public consultation on draft supplementary part of 2 nd LFRMP
Responsible authority consultation on implementation part of 2 nd LFRMP (note it is likely that SWMP measures will largely be included in the implementation part of the LFRMP)
|Dec 2021||Publish final 2 nd FRM Strategies|
|Jun 2022||Publish 1 st LFRMP final report
Publish final 2 nd LFRMP