Following three severe weather events and a state of emergency, the province says people may qualify for additional support.
Two events in June and one in July created flooding issues in Manitoba this summer.
After the Hydrologic Forecast Centre predicted high water situations in the Red River Valley in the spring, the province says they activated the Red River Floodway and the Portage Diversion.
“High water issues started in the spring and the response focused on the Red River Valley,” Infrastructure Minister Ron Schuler says. “Excessive rain events hit two areas of the province in early June and then again at the end of June into early July, creating overland flooding issues. We are able to provide disaster financial assistance programs for all three.”
From June 6-10, almost 200 millimetres of rain were dropped onto some areas of the province. The rural municipalities (RM) of De Salaberry, Piney, Reynolds, La Broquerie and Stuartburn, and the Municipality of Emerson-Franklin all reported overland flooding.
Next, from June 28 to July 5, areas had what the province is calling "a one-in-1,000-year rain event." Heavy precipitation in Minnedosa, Rapid City and Rivers resulted in Little Saskatchewan River becoming "swollen," making its way to the Assiniboine River. In order to lower the Assiniboine River, the province activated the Portage Diversion was activated from July 2 to 9. This resulted in municipalities being forced to evacuate some properties out of precaution.
Now, disaster financial assistance (DFA) may be available to people following these events.
“Manitobans are always encouraged to check their insurance policies first, then consider a DFA program application,” Schuler says. “The DFA program should be used as a last resort.”
The province says DFA programs help when a "widespread natural disaster strikes and creates an unreasonable financial burden." This fund is only for specific disasters and usually goes towards local governments, occupied private residential properties, farms, small businesses and not-for-profit organizations.
“We are pleased to be able to offer these programs even at a time when COVID-19 is consuming an enormous amount of provincial resources,” Schuler says. “Preliminary estimates show at least two of the programs will be substantial enough for potential cost-sharing with the federal government through the federal disaster financial assistance arrangements.”
The province says the application deadline for local authorities and the private sector for DFA is December 10.