Minister of Water and Housing, Hon. Horace Chang, says that the Water Resources Authority (WRA) will be investigating the cause of the recurrent flooding of New River, in St. Elizabeth.
“We need to investigate if there is any physical problem contributing to the increased frequency and the Water Resources Authority has to take a look at that. We need to discuss with the community, some mitigating factors, drainage, and again look at the possibility of assisting in relocation,” the Minister told reporters on Wednesday (November 3) during a tour of the area.
Residents of New River in St. Elizabeth wade through flood water to get to and from their homes. Minister of Water and Housing, Dr. Horace Chang, toured the area on Wednesday November 3.
He argued that while the cost of relocation would be significant, the condition requires that the Government seek a solution to the challenge posed by the continued flooding of the area.
“It is a very productive community (but) we have to look at building a new community for them, the cost of that is significant, but together we can make a difference,” Dr. Chang said.
Mayor of Black River, Councillor Jeremy Palmer, who was on the tour, said his office and other agencies have been working to bring relief to the residents, some of whom have had their homes inundated since the passage of Tropical Storm Nicole late September.
“It is a community that we have to pay close attention to. This is a case that demands some sort of assistance, and I can venture to say any investment in this community in terms of alternate housing would be well repaid,” Mr. Palmer said.
Also on the tour were Custos of St. Elizabeth, Hon. Wilfred Nembhard, Councillor for the Santa Cruz Division, Stallin Brown, and technical personnel from the Ministry and the St. Elizabeth Parish Council.