Burlington Flood Update #4

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Halton Region now has officially recorded 3,097 Burlington homes that have experienced flooding and all of the flooded sites have been visited. Staff from the Region are in the process of arranging one-on-one follow up appointments with over 300 of those homes.

Over 80 home owners that had more than one flood in the last number of years, including August 4, have been contacted by the Region to set up appointments to install flood mitigation measures. Those mitigation measures potentially include installation of backflow valves and sump pumps. In addition the Region has distributed almost 2,000 ex-gratia $1,000 grants for those who experienced sanitary sewer backup and will continue to process other applications.

The Insurance Bureau of Canada estimates there are over $80 million of insured losses for homeowners in Burlington. Based on our calculated estimates, we believe the uninsured losses are in the range of 10 to 20% of that number.

Many of our residents have found that they were not insured or were severely underinsured to cover the damages sustained from the flooding. For many, this means that the costs to rebuild are almost unbearable. It is a hard lesson and a reminder to all of us to check our home owners’ insurance policy and ensure that we are very well versed on the specifics of what is covered and what is not.

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Burlington Flood Update #3

Council passes resolution to seek support from the province of Ontario

Burlington City Council held a special council meeting yesterday morning to pass three resolutions:

  • To approve a request to the Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing to declare the City of Burlington a “disaster area” for purposes of the public and private components of the Ontario Disaster Relief Assistance Program;
  • To approve a request to the Region of Halton to give immediate priority to sanitary sewage issues for residents who experienced flooding on multiple occasions, including but not limited to May 13, 2014 and August 4, 2014; and
  • To direct staff to investigate the implications of establishing a program to assist homeowners with the cost of building permit fees directly related to flood remediation.

The full text of these resolutions will be available online through the Agendas and Minutes portal next week. All resolutions were passed unanimously and I encourage you to watch the meeting online as there was great information shared by City management and by several resident delegates, as well as questions and comments from all members of council. A press release regarding this special council meeting is also available online.

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Burlington Flood Update #2

Yesterday I spent several hours visiting many neighbourhoods in Burlington and speaking with over 100 residents who have had flooding of their homes and properties. As many know, my wife and I shared a similar experience and we understand personally what these residents have lost.

We have formally been notified that 1,578 homes that have had flooding but I believe the final number will be closer to 2,000.

We have had extensive flooding in many areas of Burlington: from the Headon Forest/Palmer Drive area, to Brant Hills/Mountainside area, with the greatest number of homes affected in neighbourhoods in south and south east Burlington. Although the percentage of homes overall is low, the impact for those that have been affected is severe. Many residents do not have adequate insurance coverage and have suffered tens of thousands of dollars damage, in many cases damage is over $100,000.

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City of Burlington Flood Update

Storm cleanup efforts continue 

The City of Burlington was hit by a massive rainstorm on Monday, Aug. 4. Meteorologists say Burlington received two months of rain in one day. Considered to be a 1 in 100 if not 1 in 250 year weather event, this is 150 to 200 millimetres of rain over a number of hours-the same amount usually received over July and August. As a result, extensive flood damage has occurred in a number of areas.

Having been affected by the flood in my own home, I have tremendous empathy for residents whose lives have been turned upside-down by this storm. Floods are the most frequent natural hazards in Canada and the most costly in terms of property damage.

We are meeting today with a team from the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing to tour a number of the hardest hit areas and to lay the groundwork for potential funding from the province of Ontario help for both the residents and the City. Continue reading

Honouring our Korean War Veterans

Korean naval monumentEarlier this week I attended a dedication of the Royal Canadian Naval Ships in Korea Memorial Monument.

Many residents are very familiar with the Naval Memorial Monument in Spencer Smith Park which was unveiled in May of 1995 with thousands of veterans and supporters in attendance. This significant monument is a cenotaph that honors the memory of the Royal Canadian Navy and Canadian Merchant Marine seamen and their ships that were lost during World War II. This monument is a special addition to Spencer Smith Park that attracts residents and visitors, a place to stop and reflect on our naval history and to those who fought for freedom. Continue reading