FORT MCMURRAY, AB (August 16, 2016): Today, Brian Jean, MLA Fort McMurray–Conklin issued the following statement on Fort McMurray reconstruction:
“It has been three months since the fire ceased to threaten Fort McMurray, and ten weeks since residents could return. For the residents of the neighbourhoods of Abasand, Beacon Hill and Waterways these have been ten weeks of intense frustration as the provincial government has lost all sense of urgency about their need to rebuild their burned-out homes.
“Premier Notley needs to show leadership on this file and increase the urgency inside government to solve this. Dealing with reconstruction at the usual speed of government won’t cut it for the residents of Fort McMurray.
“The Premier can start by ordering the health ministry and Alberta Health Services to repurpose some of their hundreds of executives to assist the Chief Medical Officer in clearing any of the red tape the government is throwing in front of reconstruction. Before the end of this week, Alberta Health and Alberta Health Services should give reconstruction the ‘all clear.’ Nothing would be more helpful for the mental health of the residents of Fort McMurray than getting the rebuild underway quickly.
“In the last three months there have been residential fires in other places in Alberta and nowhere, other than Fort McMurray, are burned-out homeowners being prevented from taking their insurance money and rebuilding. This must stop. Alberta Environment, Alberta Municipal Affairs, and Alberta Health have to clear the red tape and let the residents of Abasand, Beacon Hill and Waterways begin to rebuild their homes and their lives. The bureaucratic red tape is re-victimizing those whose lives were most impacted by the fire.”