By Rhonda Massad
As flooding on the West Island continues with little relief from Mother Nature, Member of National Assembly of Quebec for the riding of Jacques-Cartier, Geoffrey Kelley spoke with West Island Blog about financial relief possibilities for those impacted.
“People can expect town hall meetings to start as early as next Monday,” Kelley assured. “It all starts with your municipality who will inform you of the scheduling. The province is there to support the municipality because they are the ones who are closely connected with the residents and their needs.”
According to Kelley every morning Quebec’s Civil Protection Agency speaks to each city to coordinate efforts. The town hall meetings will outline what financial relief will be available to those who are impacted by the flood. Patience will be necessary as there are several areas of Quebec that are dealing with flooding but everyone will be served.
“I want to stress that it is important to keep all your receipts for expenses incurred for preventative measures,” Kelley said. “There will be money available for the some of what is purchased to prevent damage to your property.”
Kelley praised the Fire Department and public servants who are working tirelessly against a rising water table. Kelley also noted that there is help from the Department of Health and Social Services with regards to emotional support for those who are suffering through this crisis.
“When I was visiting people I could see the stress in their faces,” Kelley worried. “They are strong, but in some areas, this has been going on for three weeks, they are getting tired. I am concerned for the upcoming weekend.”
Kelley explained that the bridge to Ile Mercier is no longer open, 20 out of the 40 homes have been evacuated. People are being brought to safety by boat.
More rain is expected this weekend, up to 25 to 50mm (1 to 2 inches) from Friday through to Sunday. Water levels are reaching record levels along the Ottawa River as well as Rivière des Prairies and the Mille Îles River.
The West Island community has stepped up and various grocery stores are offering muffins and beverage to the hard working firefighters and police officers who are focussing their energies on those hardest hit.