Municipal Affairs
April 25, 2007

Government Committed to Expedite Disaster Assistance for Daniel�s Harbour

The Government of Newfoundland and Labrador today reaffirmed a commitment to assist the town and displaced residents of Daniel�s Harbour following a series of landslides in the area.

"Daniel�s Harbour is being dealt with as a matter of priority for the Provincial Government," stated the Honourable Jack Byrne, Minister of Municipal Affairs. "We are sensitive to the fact that this emergency situation in Daniel�s Harbour is difficult for residents. The province will ensure that residents and businesses which have been displaced will be taken care of in a fair and equitable manner, as was the case for homeowners affected by a flood in Stephenville, regardless of eligibility under the federal disaster assistance program. The situation in Daniel�s Harbour has not yet qualified under the federal program."

"We have met directly with those affected to provide information on the process and time frame involved in effectively assessing the situation, securing the area and determining a compensation package for those affected. We are working to expedite the process to ensure that government has the proper information to proceed, as we continue to work diligently to access the full extent of the impacts of this event, all of which affect our ability to make the right decisions on financial assistance. Once we gather all of this information we expect to be in a position to make a recommendation to Cabinet and provide financial assistance as quickly as possible."

Minister Byrne visited Daniel�s Harbour and met with Mayor Steve Carey and the affected residents last week to assess the situation and offer assistance to work with the town to help deal with arising issues. Officials from the Fire and Emergency Services � Newfoundland and Labrador, municipal engineering, and the Department of Transportation and Works remain on-site to monitor and assess a number of issues including property damage, transportation issues and permanent fixes to the highway. The Department of Natural Resources is working closely with Jacques Whitford to monitor the ground stability. The Department of Human Resources, Labour and Employment has arranged interim living arrangements for all dislocated families which will continue until those affected receive a compensation package.

"The full extent of the damage is yet to be determined and geo-technical experts are continuing to assess ground conditions to determine the impacts of the landslide. Our first priority remains ensuring the safety of the public," added Minister Byrne.


Media contact:
Heather MacLean
Director of Communications
709-729-1983, 690-2498

2007 04 25                                               4:25 p.m.


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