The province will provide a measure of relief for Calgary residents following a devastating rain and hail storm two weeks ago.
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney said in a news conference Thursday that the June 13 storm will fall under the Disaster Relief Program (DRP).
A relief package will be rolled out to help cover uninsurable damage and loss to Calgary residents and the areas of Airdrie and Rocky View County.
Kenney outlined that affected communities will submit an application under the DRP with the estimated cost of repair or replacement to affected areas.
Some potential payments could go towards uninsurable damage to private property.
Kenney said he’s glad to hear that no one was severely injured in the storm and that relief is on the way to affected Calgarians.
“No one was hurt but the hail and flood damage was massive,” he said.
“What I was so touched to see is how the community came together immediately. And that is exactly the Alberta spirit that will get us through this.”
Kenney said they’d continue to aid Calgarians suffering from the economic downturn due to COVID-19 but won’t bail out insurance companies.
“First of all, we the government, through the disaster recovery program, will be providing support for damage to uninsurable private property, ” he said.
“I don’t want to let the insurance companies off the hook.”
Calgary storm wreaked havoc
On June 13, a storm with tennis-ball sized hail rocked Calgary – particularly northeast and southeast communities. The storm left cars and property in ruins with residents picking up the pieces.
The community banded together with a plea for relief in a letter to Premier Kenney.
The letter, written by community leader Khalil Karbani, asked for the province to classify the storm as a natural disaster. That would allow residents to claim disaster cash to aid in the rebuilding process.
In the letter, Karbani said many community members were out of work due to COVID-19. They were without money to cover the new cost of repairs.
The letter said that insurance companies have levied large deductibles on Calgarians in the community. In many cases, the resident couldn’t afford the deductible that didn’t cover all the damage.
Relief, with confusion on what’s covered
Karbani said he’s excited to see the province stepping up. He’s still left unsure of what was being covered by the government.
“I got really, really excited to see we got what we wanted, which was a natural disaster announced by the premier. Which he did,” he said.
“But still very confusing for us as the resident who always got insurance and has paid insurance premiums. But now, unfortunately, there seems to be some sort of a loophole that they’re hiding behind. “
Karbani wondered how much of the damage is uninsurable and how much of it’s covered by insurance.
He’s hoping for a speedy response from the province so repairs can be made.
“We want the next part, the process, done quickly and efficiently. Then we can start getting this work done as quickly as possible rather than holding out on it,” he said.
“Now we’ve got some confidence to say that it should be done fairly quickly, so we can move forward from it.”
More information on applying for the disaster relief program can be found on the province’s website.