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County hoping flooding qualifies for disaster relief

The County of Grande Prairie is hoping to get disaster relief funding after it suffered extreme flooding this spring. CAO Bill Rogan says repairs to its infrastructure are estimated at $3.5 million.

“It’s a big number and we just felt it was large enough to make an application to the province for some disaster relief funding. Hopefully, we’re successful.”

The rapid spring thaw caused both the Bear Creek and the Beaverlodge River to flood in April, leading to the closure of several County roads that had water flowing over them. Rogan believes all but one have been reopened, but almost all need more repairs.

“We do need to do work on most of those sites. They’re really just made passable, so to speak, and we need to do a lot more work to make them functional long-term.”

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If the County is identified by the province as a disaster area, that would mean any landowners with damage could apply for funding as well. A similar process recently happened in the City of Grande Prairie for anyone whose property was damaged in the flooding on August 2, 2016.

“It opens the door for those that were affected on private lands to apply as well,” Rogan says. “We are aware of a few residents that were flooded out or damaged equipment.”

It’s believed other municipalities are also applying for a Disaster Recovery Assistance Grant. Rogan says he hopes to hear back next month, but knows a government decision could take longer.

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