POLITICS

Quebec announces additional $60 million in aid to help Lac-Megantic

07/13/2014 01:56 EDT | Updated 09/12/2014 05:59 EDT
LAC MEGANTIC,, - Quebec is granting an additional $60 million to compensate victims of last year's catastrophic train derailment in Lac-Megantic which left 47 people dead.

Municipal Affairs Minister Pierre Moreau told a news conference that $37 million of the amount would go to the owners of businesses in the disaster area.

A large swath of Lac-Megantic's downtown was destroyed when a runaway train loaded with volatile fuel oil jumped the tracks and exploded.

The government says it heard the complaints of those affected by the disaster and wanted to bring some balance to the treatment of their cases.

Business owners had complained they weren't getting help fast enough.

Moreau says there will be meetings this week with 37 business owners and that the compensation is available now.

There will be incentives offered to owners who want to rebuild their businesses in Lac-Megantic.

Moreau says if they wish to leave the area, they will be compensated for their sites based on fair market value.