Flooded Windsor homeowners now eligible for provincial disaster relief
Mayor Drew Dilkens has announced flood damage in Windsor qualifies the city for disaster relief from the provincial government.
A spokesperson for the Ministry of Municipal Affairs confirmed homeowners in all municipalities doused by a record-breaking rainfall on August 29 will be able to apply to Ontario’s Disaster Recovery Assistance program.
The announcement comes after officials from the ministry visited some of the more than 5,000 homes where basements were flooded.
The program provides “partial financial assistance to return essential property to its basic function,” according to the ministry’s website, but flooding caused by “sewer backup is not generally eligible under the program” though “there is a special provision to provide assistance to low-income households.”
Last week’s flooding marks the second time in less than a year thousands of homes in Windsor-Essex were overwhelmed by water.
The province agreed last September that flood-ravaged city residents qualified for Disaster Relief Assistance but scores were left high and dry. Of 583 homeowners who asked for help, only 122 received any money. Another 235 claims were denied and another 226 remained bogged down in the system. It is unclear how many will be approved or when.
The limitations of the disaster relief program led three area mayors to call on Premier Kathleen Wynne to create a provincially supported insurance program for residents who can no longer get flood insurance, but a spokesperson for the ministry said there are currently no plans to change the program.