Ashfield promises federal help after N.B. floods
Federal cabinet minister Keith Ashfield is promising the federal government is standing by to offer relief to victims of the floods that hit New Brunswick this week.
Under federal disaster assistance rules, Ashfield, who is the Conservative MP for Fredericton, said the provincial government is responsible for dealing with emergencies, such as flooding, until the damage figure reaches $750,000.
Premier David Alward said he expects millions of dollars will be needed to repair the damage inflicted on communities in southern and western parts of the province.
Roads, bridges and houses across the province were destroyed when days of heavy rain caused significant flooding.
If the premier's estimates hold true, Ashfield said the federal government will take over and there is no financial limit for the federal disaster relief assistance.
"No, there's no cap. Once it's above and beyond that threshold figure, that $750,000 in the case of New Brunswick, then it's picked up by the federal government," Ashfield said.
Ashfield said besides money, the federal government can supply personnel to help repair infrastructure damaged by the flooding.
"If we look at the hurricane situation that happened in Newfoundland this past summer, the Department of National Defence went in with their engineers and built some temporary bridging and that type of thing. So obviously, that service would be available," Ashfield said.
Ashfield said Defence Minister Peter McKay has already spoken with Alward about offering help from the military.