Gov't to allocate $5m more to East Portland emergency fund
The Government is to provide an additional $5 million to carry out further emergency works in sections of East Portland that were severely affected by heavy rains recently.
Heavy rains lashed Portland which resulted in homes being destroyed or flooded out, land slippage, and devastation to crops.
State Minister for Transport, Works and Housing, Richard Azan, says an assessment would have to be done to determine the amount of funding required for the longer-term repairs to roads and infrastructure.
Minister of Local Government Noel Arscott, says the parish council has spent between $3 and $4 million to carry out minimal work.
Arscott also says the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management and the Ministry of Labour and Social Security have stepped in to provide mattresses, tarpaulin, foodstuff and other items to the neediest families.
He says the local government ministry is in the process of preparing care packages for displaced persons.
Azan also says a technical team visited the roadway in West Retreat which has broken away, and is currently undertaking design work, which is expected to be completed by the end of the week.
He says it is estimated that the Government will have to secure between $35 million and $40 million to carry out the repairs.
Meanwhile, Arscott says a comprehensive approach will to be taken to address the recurring problems caused by heavy rainfall in Portland and other parts of the island.
He says a team from ODPEM has already started work to identify vulnerable areas across the island, with the aim to formulate a national plan on how to treat with them.
The local government minister says included in the plan will be the matter of relocation and building the resilience of vulnerable communities to natural disasters.