Flooding at Lighthouse Cove. February 25, 2018. (Photo by Matt Weverink).

Provincial Officials To Survey CK Flood Damage (GALLERY)

As water levels recede in the municipality, Chatham-Kent’s mayor and other officials are seeking the province’s help with flood recovery.

They’ll get a chance to share some of their concerns in person as Ontario’s Minister of Municipal Affairs visits the area Monday afternoon to survey the damage.

MPP Bill Mauro will be in Thamesville just after 2pm Monday before making his way to Chatham.

Chatham-Kent’s Fire and Emergency Services Chief Bob Crawford says the municipality is working closely with the province and keeping them briefed on what’s going on.

“They’re available to give us some advice if we need. They have a provincial operating centre in Toronto that’s always up and running and it’s staffed. They did send some staff down here to lend a hand, if need be,” says Crawford. “Really, what we need from the province is in the recovery period. When we see the water subside in terms of levels, we’ll then be working closely with the province to see what we can do for the public.”

Crawford says it is important that Mayor Randy Hope discusses recovery with the province to ensure Chatham-Kent has access to programs like Ontario’s Disaster Recovery Assistance Program.

Mayor Hope says he has a good idea of some of the things he wants to talk to the province about.

“Number one: There has to be an evaluation of slope stabilization. I mean along our riverfront there are beautiful rides, but those are banks that are along the river — we’re going to have to make sure that the packing of the soils and the slope stabilization is there,” explains Hope. “We’re going to need additional funding in order to do the evaluations and the repairs.”

Hope adds that he met with Lakeshore Mayor Tom Bain Saturday morning to discuss flooding at Lighthouse Cove.

He says with the current, a lot of debris is going to end up in the lake and mouth of the river.

“We will be going to the province and the federal government because it’s both jurisdictions. This is a navigable water system and we’re going to be asking them for financial support in order to do cleansing — so that’s taking debris out of there and getting it out of the navigable water system so it doesn’t create havoc in Lake St. Clair,” says Hope.

Hope says the municipality will need to look into many different factors of the flooding once the water subsides to a normal level. He says staff will be looking at what needs to be accomplished, what has been learned, and what needs to be done to sustain infrastructure.

-With files from Matt Weverink