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Province to Cover Ice Storm Recovery Costs

Web posted on February 26, 2014

Ontario is helping municipalities affected by the December 2013 ice storm by working with the federal government to fund 100 per cent of their eligible recovery costs through a one-time Ice Storm Assistance Program. At the peak of the ice storm, over 800,000 hydro customers were without power.

"Ontario is stepping up to the plate and supporting our cities and towns with the costs incurred in the aftermath of the December ice storm. Our new program will provide the financial support the affected communities need to fully recover from this significant event." Comments Linda Jeffrey, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing.

While program details are still being finalized, eligible costs may be as much as $190 million based on estimates from municipalities. It is anticipated that the program would cover costs related to the immediate emergency response, such as setting up warming centres, and the subsequent cleanup of debris necessary to protect public safety.

Costs incurred by the province for a natural disaster of this size qualify for federal government assistance under the Disaster Financial Assistance Arrangements program. Ontario intends to seek federal reimbursement for costs under this program.

As many municipalities continue to clean up, the province is working with them to assess the damage and determine the full extent of ice storm related costs. The province has previously supported municipalities with one-time programs, including tornado assistance for Leamington and Midland in 2011, and the 1998 ice storm assistance program.

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