OTTAWA — The Ontario government has announced that former Manitoba deputy minister of infrastructure and transportation Doug McNeil has been named Ontario’s special advisor on flooding.
McNeil’s government experience includes 36 years in public service with the City of Winnipeg and Province of Manitoba. He also served as vice-president of engineering and construction with the Manitoba Floodway Authority and led the Floodway Expansion project which included a provincial review of floodway operating rules and flood protection studies of mitigation measures for Winnipeg.
In his new function McNeil will assess current roles and responsibilities of governments, agencies and organizations involved in flood management, including any opportunities for improvement; review feedback received; identify recommendations; and ensure all recommendations are consistent with the province’s ability to implement them, stated a July 18 release.
The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry has launched a new Surface Water Monitoring Centre webpage to offer access to early flood warning messages. The province held Flooding Engagement Sessions earlier this year in Muskoka, Pembroke and Ottawa to hear from municipalities and industry leaders on how to better prepare for floods.
“We heard from people across the province and saw first-hand the damage caused by flooding in so many communities,” said Minister of Natural Resources and Forestry John Yakabuski in the statement. “We want to help Ontarians protect what matters most, and the special advisor will help better prepare our province for flooding in the future.”