Town enlists Senator Grant Mitchell’s support
Town looks to feds for flood mitigation funding
Mayor Terry Yemen and CAO Ray Romanetz met with Senator Grant Mitchell and gained his support in regard to Drumheller’s flood mitigation.
Previously, the Province of Alberta approved Drumheller for 90% of the funds needed to move flood mitigation forward through the Alberta Community Resilience Program (ACRP) for a $3 million project. This left the additional 10% for the town to cover.
When meeting with Senator Mitchell in November he was able to help navigate the path to appropriate Federal departments for other potential grants to offset costs for flood mitigation not covered by the already approved grant through ACRP.
Mayor Yemen said, “Senator Mitchell has been a very valuable asset to us. We’ve met with him and he’s had doors open up for us. We’ve received calls made by Ottawa to Drumheller saying, ‘ We understand you need some help. How can we help?’ That’s all because of Senator Mitchell.”
Mayor Yemen and CAO Romanetz have been advised through discussion with the Honorable Amarjeet Sohi, Federal Minister of Infrastructure and Communities and his Executive Assistant, Mike Burton, there may be grant money available for all the flood mitigation projects under the Federal Clean Water and Wastewater Fund. This would help offset 50% of the project by Federal contribution, leaving only 50% instead of the initial 90% to the provincial government. According to Minister Sohi the funding cannot be approved without endorsement from Alberta Infrastructure.
“There is limited funding in Ottawa and so timing is crucial.” Mayor Yemen said, “All the province has to do is bless the project then we can move it forward. There’s still a process in Ottawa where they have to look at the project and agree it fits the criteria. We need the province’s approval before we can apply.”
Mayor Yemen has already been in contact with MLA Rick Strankman to help push the province forward on the Provincial level.
Mayor Yemen said, “Yes he is willing to put a letter of support to the province but I said we need more than just a letter. We need someone to go and knock on the Minister’s door and have a face to face. He needs to explain the value of this program so we can move it forward in a timely manner.”
According to Mayor Yemen there is another conference call scheduled for the end of the week with Senator Mitch- ell regarding flood mitigation. With support in place on the Federal level, the project needs to be pushed through the Provincial government for approval.
“This is a community thing. Yes, the Town is spearheading it but the more numbers and support we get the better it is. We understand there is this funding available and we just need the province to urgently review this and give the town approval so that we can move forward and make an application to the Federal government.” Mayor Yemen said, “There’s strength in numbers. I would like to see the community rally behind this and tell the province to get this done finally.”
Senator Grant Mitchell helps navigate the path to appropriate Federal funding for grants to offset flood mitigation costs.