Legislative Report
(4 August 2010)

Provincial Disaster Assistance Enhancements

This summer’s severe weather has left many families across the province picking up the pieces as they rebuild their communities and their lives. Many of us cannot even imagine the loss, devastation and stress of dealing with the aftermath of a storm that leaves your house or business almost unrecognizable. Our government is committed to doing everything we can to alleviate some of that hardship. Our government recently made improvements to the Provincial Disaster Assistance Program (PDAP). PDAP provides financial assistance for essential, uninsurable property caused by floods, tornadoes, plow winds or severe storms. Under the enhanced plan, principle residence owners can now claim $240,000 instead of $160,000. Maximum assistance for businesses owners, non-profit organizations, boards, charitable organizations, and owners/operators of primary agricultural operations has increased to $500,000, also up from $160,000. Our government also dropped the deductible on individual assistance claims from 20 per cent to five per cent. These changes to PDAP offer greater financial assistance to families across Saskatchewan. Other improvements to the PDAP program include:

  1. The Saskatchewan residency requirement for small business and agricultural enterprise owners has been eliminated;
  2. Eligible landlords receive $240,000 per unit to a $500,000 maximum for multiple properties;
  3. Primary agricultural maximum increased from four quarter sections to 12 quarter sections of land per event;
  4. The maximum $30,000 relocation payment is now separated from the property claim rather than being deducted from it;
  5. Regional park authorities now have the same eligibility same as municipalities; and
  6. The deductible for municipalities and regional parks has been fixed at 0.15 per cent of their current taxable assessment.

These changes are being recognized by communities across Saskatchewan who can really use some good news while they cope with the aftermath of this summer’s severe flooding. "This is hearing the people, hearing the needs of the people of the city and what they went through," said Yorkton Mayor James Wilson, reacting to enhancement of PDAP for victims of flooding.

Summer storm victims also don’t have to worry about whether or not they’ll benefit from these changes. The enhancements to PDAP are retroactive to April 1, 2010. While money alone can never replace everything that was lost, our government is working hard to help people with the financial hardship these storms have caused.

Unprecedented severe weather earlier this summer caused extensive property damage in communities across Saskatchewan, including Maple Creek, Yorkton, Saskatoon, North Battleford and in the Raymore/Kawakatoose area. Since June, more than 100 Saskatchewan communities have been designated as eligible disaster areas.

For more information, call the Provincial Disaster Assistance Hotline at 1-866-632-4033 or go to the Corrections, Public Safety and Policing website.

If you have a question about this Legislative Report or any other matter, just Contact Don.

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