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Legislative Report
(11 May 2011)

Home Security for Seniors

Saskatchewan’s seniors have given so much of their time and energy to help shape and grow this province, which is why our government looks for every opportunity to give back to them. In an effort to improve the safety and security of our seniors, we have introduced a new home security program for low-income seniors and those who have been victims of home invasions. Seniors can take advantage of a free home security audit and have the appropriate security devices such as deadbolts, viewers, and smoke and carbon monoxide detectors installed in their homes for free. This added protection, that many would not be able to afford otherwise, will help to provide peace of mind to our seniors and their families. Prince Albert was selected to pilot the security initiative because of the large number of senior citizens who will benefit from the program. Once the program is rolled out province-wide, around 13,000 households will be eligible.

No-Fault Insurance Changes

Saskatchewan’s no-fault car insurance is one of the crown jewels of our province, but we’ve discovered a loophole through which criminals who steal cars and cause collisions also receive coverage. That’s why we’re making amendments to The Automobile Accident Insurance Act. Formerly under the act, criminals who stole cars and injured themselves in collisions could access all of the same benefits through SGI's injury coverage as law-abiding citizens who actually pay insurance premiums. The amendments to the act ensure that criminals who steal cars cannot collect injury benefits.

Flooding Affecting Some Provincial Parks

The May long weekend is the official start to camping season in Saskatchewan. With that in mind, you may want to check the Provincial Parks website to find out if your destination is being affected by spring flooding. Abnormally high water levels in a number of parks are affecting public access and disrupting services and facilities. Updates will continue to be posted to the website and an operating status report for the provincial park system will be issued again before the May long weekend. As for seasonal campers and those who have a reservation in the affected areas, parks staff will be contacting them directly.

Flood Assistance

As flood waters continue to rise in many other areas of the province, more communities are looking for assistance under the Emergency Flood Damage Reduction Program. Since the damage mitigation program was announced in February, the Saskatchewan Watershed Authority (SWA) has received more than 700 requests for help under the program. The safety of you and your family, as well as your home and property, is a top priority for our government as we face the challenges caused by unusually high spring runoff. Further details about the Emergency Flood Damage Reduction Program, up to date flood forecasts, free well testing and important safety information are available at the provincial flood website.

Patching Our Highways

With last winter’s record snowfall melting, the province’s pothole patrol is swinging into action. Highway crews and contactors are making temporary road repairs to cracks, breaks and potholes revealed by the spring thaw. When the roads get drier, long-term repairs will begin. Our government anticipated potential flooding this spring by doing aggressive surveillance of problem areas, arranging for additional equipment and supplies to be ordered or on standby, assembling emergency repair trailers and re-deploying staff from drier areas.

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