Limerick awaits Ontario’s decision on derecho compensation
February 2, 2023
By Michael Riley, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter
Victoria Tisdale, the clerk and treasurer in Ontario’s Limerick Township, updated the township council of potential Municipal Disaster Recovery Assistance (MDRA) compensation due to the derecho that hit Limerick in May, 2022 at their meeting on Jan. 16.
She also told them that they’d be taking up the issue of the storm and its aftermath with the Ministry of Northern Development, Mines, Natural Resources and Forestry (MNDMNRF) at the Rural Ontario Municipal Association conference during its Jan. 22 to 24 conference. Council will have an update on these discussions after the ROMA conference.
Tisdale told council at their Jan. 16 meeting that they had gotten an update on the submission they’d made to the MDRA for compensation for derecho damages and the resultant cleanup. In her report to council included in the agenda package, she said that the majority of the items that they’d submitted were approved as eligible.
“They have a few clarifying questions regarding gravel and road conditions prior to the storm. We are working on providing them the documentation they have requested. This is very positive news! We hope this indicates a decision in the near future. As always, I will keep council informed as the information comes in,” she said in her council report.
Widespread damage was caused by the derecho that swept through Limerick Township on May 21, 2022, and both Limerick and Tudor and Cashel Township share a ratepayer whose sizeable acreage is prone to high risk of fire and/or flooding. A shift in the beaver population as well as where they put up their dams was noted due to the damages caused by this storm; fallen trees across waterways. Tisdale noted in her report to council that much of this risk is in areas that are currently inaccessible.
With the significant damage that Limerick suffered as a result of the derecho, every road was blocked and inaccessible because of fallen trees. Their Roads department worked with loggers and dangerous tree removal companies to rectify this situation and clear the roads and ditches of debris. Much of the damage occurred in the bush, which is inaccessible to the township’s Emergency Services.
Tisdale also said that the township representatives going to ROMA were going to take up the derecho situation and its aftermath with the MNDMNRF and ask them the following questions; is the MNDMNRF aware of the situation in Tudor and Cashel and Limerick and what is the strategic plan of attack that we can pass on to the constituents of these municipalities to address these concerns? Will the MNDMNRF work with property owners that have significant portions of land to maintain to address both fires and flooding? Does the MNDMNRF have a plan to address the potential of flooding due to blocked waterways from both trees and beaver dams that have to be relocated due to fallen trees?
Limerick council will have an update on these discussions with the MNDMNRF about this situation at their February meeting.
Michael Riley is a Local Journalism Initiative Reporter for The Bancroft Times.
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