Friday, March 13, 2009

Haldimand "Province Declares Disaster"

Provincial disaster declaration opens gates to financial relief

People in flooded Dunnville and Cayuga areas can still apply

Posted 1 hour ago

A Dunnville councillor and the Dunnville Chamber of Commerce president were thrilled to learn late Friday afternoon that financial assistance was on the way for flood victims.

After 3 p.m. on March 13, Coun. Lorne Boyko, who initiated the search for provincial funding, received an email stating that Municipal Affairs and Housing Minister Jim Watson declared a disaster in the flooded areas of Dunnville and Cayuga.

"Great news!" Boyko said when interviewed by The Chronicle.

"Now the real work will begin and that's the raising of funds by the community," he noted. "But I know the community is up to it."

Chamber president Carolyn Chymko, like Boyko, was sure the province would help and was thrilled to learn she was right.

"I just received a $100 cheque and now it's worth $300," she said.

The same welcome multiplication will be applied to a $10,000 donation from Bruce Power president Duncan Hawthorne. Mayor Marie Trainer received confirmation of the donation on Friday.

After a disaster designation is made, the province, through the Ontario Disaster Relief Assistance Program, will provide two dollars for every one dollar raised by residents. The fund will be built up to 90 per cent of loss values to avoid a surplus. Based on early estimates from 60 home and business owners, damages added up to $1.7 million.

People who live in the recognized disaster areas and have not yet applied for assistance can still do so. To obtain further information call the county administration office at 905-318-5932.

As soon as possible, Mayor Marie Trainer will call a special meeting so disaster relief committee members can be selected from a list of willing residents. Once struck, the committee will follow provincial guidelines, review and appraise applications, oversee fundraising and distribute funds.
Flood damage occurred a month ago. On Feb. 13, three ice jams backed up Grand River water over its banks starting in Cayuga. The other jams were between Cayuga and Dunnville and between the Dunnville dam and Port Maitland.

Water rose by six feet in Dunnville but flowed away when the Canadian Coast Guard ice breaker Griffon opened up a waterway to Lake Erie.

While Lynn and Blair White seem to be the poster family for the flood, many people were suffering quietly as they deal with their own damaged properties, said Boyko.

He credited Chymko for spearheading efforts to help the Whites who live in the flood plain and do not qualify for house insurance.

The chamber president, other chamber members and volunteers and several residents teamed up to remove damaged drywall and floors. Jeff Carpenter and Ed Timmerman put out a letter asking for donations of construction materials. Many were received over two days and repairs are expected to begin soon in the home of the Whites.

Article ID# 1478004


  1. "disaster relief committee members can be selected from a list of willing residents"

    What list ?

    Is this a paid committee for friends of the council ?

  2. "As soon as possible, Mayor Marie Trainer will call a special meeting so disaster relief committee members can be selected from a list of willing residents"

    I have the same question as the above poster. Donna I read in the other post that you want to be on this committee. Have you put your name on a list? If so do you think that you even have a chance getting on that committee? Does this list exist? Will their be a notice in the paper asking people to submit their names? How can we even trust that council will make the right decisions?

  3. Donna I hate to be the one to tell you this but you will never be picked for this committee. Face it you are not a friend to many on council! I don't blame them one bit for not picking you! This is just your personal way of getting into the good books with people so when you run for Mayor in the next election you will win some local votes. Big deal you were in the paper again mouthing off. What have you done other than that to help out anyone?

  4. I have started a list of VOLUNTEERS. If anyone would like to be on this list PLEASE contact the Dunnville Chamber of Commerce at 905-774-3183. Just leave your name & phone # with them. Where it goes after I submit it to council I have no idea.
    I can only HOPE council will make the right decision!!!

  5. For the record regarding poster #4 when you ask Donna "what have you done" I doubt that she will reply so I will do it for her; Donna and her husband Ted with their own money and vehicle bought, picked up and delivered insulation and moisture barrier for the White home in Dunnville. I know this for a fact because she asked for my assistance but I was at work at the time so she went ahead and did it alone. In addition, to you and the rest of the pissing match contestants out there, in a case where people are in need of help your time would be better spent doing what you can in that regard than making blind observations and inane comments about others.

    Steve Donaldson

  6. "The same welcome multiplication will be applied to a $10,000 donation from Bruce Power president Duncan Hawthorne"

    Wonderful News! Thank you Bruce Power!

  7. To Donna and Ted, you both have huge hearts. I am sure that the White family appreciates everything that has been done for them. The community has done what they always do, rally around those that need the help.

  8. I forgot to same thank you to Steve for his post. You are right Donna would not have answered that poster!

  9. "Mayor Marie Trainer will call a special meeting so disaster relief committee members can be selected from a list of willing residents."

    They should all be Dunnville people and not people from elsewhere looking to further agendas.

    Also, this committee should NOT be hand-picked by the Mayor but by representatives of the local service clubs who actually know who the best and most sincere and trusted organizers are in the community.

    Marie Trainer isn't exactly know for sound judgement at the best of times.

  10. A committee of this nature has to be comprised of media-shy, quiet, unnassuming members of the community who have impeccable reputations and are able to work well as a team.

    Any local controversial or outspoken individuals should never be on a committee of this nature.

    The potential for conflicts and problems is just too great.

    This is a disaster relief committee and it just isn't the time or place for people to be grandstanding and self-promoting themselves.
    There are other committees for less dire and urgent projects out there for that kind of stuff.

  11. Thanks for your comments everyone!

    A special thanks to Carolyn and Steve!

    As far as the forming of the committee the Province has very tight rules. One of these rules is that our elected officials will be appointing the committee members. I trust that our council will do what is needed for the community!

  12. "I trust that our council will do what is needed for the community!"
    Are you kidding????
    Lorne Boyko and Craig Grice sit on the board of the GRCA and I suspect they were aware that the ice breaker was called upon on February 7 as a precaution. If the GRCA was aware that there was a threat of flooding at the Cayuga and Dunnville end of the river, why was the county not better prepared for flooding? Emergency crews did a fantastic job once the flooding started but things should have been done well before the waters backed up as a result of the ice jams. Main Street is effectively a dike for Dunnville. With the huge hole in the dike where Sunfish Creek flows under Main Street, it was inevitable that the river would back up under Main Street. Just down the street sits a huge pile of sand. Why could Sunfish Creek not have been plugged to prevent it backing up. The same could have been done for Maple Creek. It would have been much more cost-effective to plug up the holes in the dike than to sit back and hope the water doesn't get too high. I believe there was a serious screw-up here. It's amazing that Boyko is coming to the rescue after the fact. Perhaps he should have been on the ball before hand and saved many people lots of heartache and hardship. A new home that had just been given the blessing of the GRCA ended up with $100,000 in damages. Homes backing up to Maple Creek were severely damaged. Boyko has been on the GRCA board for many years. I would have thought he might have learned something. And now he is going to sit on a committee to discuss development for Dunnville. God help us!

  13. Good questions how do we find the answers? Feb. 7th was a Saturday and if I am not mistaken the Griffan was in the Port Maitland area on that day. At that time there was no ice jams in that part of the river.

    What else is Donna suppose to say but "trust that council will do what is needed"?

    No council member will be allowed on this committee!

  14. Why stop at Dunnville.....the entire County should be considered a disaster area....after 20 years under Trainer, it should be a no-brainer.

  15. Agreed!

    The Trainer experiment should be called as a failure by now one would think.

    Grice also.

    Those two are crippling Haldimand and need to go.

  16. If Boyko and Griece knew befor hand that the river was going to flood at either Brantford or Dunnville and I suspect they did and said nothing to prepare the people for this disaster they should be prosecuted. Now they present themselves as pillars of virtue and the saviors of the community. Whats new?