03/08/2013 07:26 EST | Updated 05/08/2013 05:12 EDT

MP requests state of emergency funding for Gatineau Valley

A Pontiac MP is calling on the federal government to recognize damages suffered by communities in the Gatineau Valley after heavy snowfall during December storms.

Mathieu Ravignat said losses to maple syrup operations, recreational trails, private forests and outfitters have totalled nearly $3 million.

"The real need is to recognize the region as a disaster zone, so associations and businesses that were victims of December’s storm can access special funding programs to help them with the significant losses they are facing," Ravignat wrote in a press release.

He wrote a letter requesting the designation to Conservative ministers Denis Lebel, Maxime Bernier and Joe Oliver.

The province recently announced that some municipalities in the area will be eligible for an assistance program, but the federal government hasn't stepped in.