Manitoba flood cost soars to $815M
Latest pricetag of $100M more than previous estimate
The cost of the Manitoba flood of 2011 has soared to $815 million, about $100 million more than the province's last estimate.
The last time the government updated the cost of this year's flood, in mid-October, Premier Greg Selinger said the number could surpass $700 million — well over the prior estimate of $632 million.
Finance Minister Stan Struthers said the provincial government's share of the total costs is $343 million, while the federal government is expected to pick up the rest.
"It was an unprecedented flood and now it's got an unprecedented pricetag," Struthers told reporters on Wednesday.
"We're going to work with our federal partners to make sure that they're there and helpful with us."
Not included in the total were the $100 million spent on an emergency channel on Lake St. Martin, as well as the costs of fixing roads and dikes.
Big-ticket projects such as the Hoop and Holler dike cut are included in the province's costs, as well as compensation programs.
Opposition Leader Hugh McFadyen of the Progressive Conservatives accused Selinger's NDP government of low-balling the flood costs during this fall's election.
"It creates big challenges for budgets going forward, and the expenditures will not end as of March 31 of this year," McFadyen said.
The province is expected to release an precise figure in its second quarter financial report, which could come by the end of the week.