Quebec unveils $50M plan to improve flood response
The Quebec government is ponying up about $50 million to ensure the next time there's historic flooding like we had last spring, the response is much less chaotic.
Public Security Minister Martin Coiteux was on hand Thursday for the unveiling of a 24-point action plan designed, among other things, to put more money toward preparing for the possibility of large-scale floods, and to make it easier and faster for flood victims to receive their cheques.
About $20 million will go to municipalities to update their emergency plans, while most of the rest will go toward fixing the province's woefully outdates flood maps — a process which is expected to take years.
Coiteux says last spring's experience has led him to concede the government needs to do better.
"We have to improve. We have a duty to improve our ways to operate, our ways to intervene," Coiteux says.
Meanwhile, Coiteux says 80 per cent of the victims have already received 70 to 80 per cent of the compensation money they're owed, and that his department is "working hard" to get the rest of the money out.
During the floods, Coiteux admitted his department was overwhelmed by the thousands of claims from people suffering damage to their homes, which meant that many have had to wait months for their compensation money. Some are still waiting for cheques, and 10 months later, some are still being put up in hotels, on the public's dime.
-CJAD 800's Andrew Brennan contributed to this report.