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St. Ambroise Beach meeting Wednesday night (July 11) 0

By Angela Brown, Portage Daily Graphic

Coun. Garth Asham as seen at Rural Municipality of Portage la Prairie council on Tuesday. Asham is encouraging the Province to spend more time focusing on the clean up of St. Ambroise beach following last year's flood damage.  ...Staff photo by Angela Brown

Coun. Garth Asham as seen at Rural Municipality of Portage la Prairie council on Tuesday. Asham is encouraging the Province to spend more time focusing on the clean up of St. Ambroise beach following last year's flood damage. ...Staff photo by Angela Brown

While there has been much focus on the Delta Beach and St. Laurent 2011 flood damages, the community of St. Ambroise was also hit hard by the flood

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Rural Municipality of Portage la Prairie council reported Tuesday that residents in St. Ambroise are worried about how the loss of business will affect their tourism industry.

Coun. Garth Asham will be attending the public meeting planned for St. Ambroise this Wednesday night (July 11) to discuss the future of the beach. The meeting was called by the residents of St Ambroise to look at the situation of St Ambroise provincial park.

"It's for the status right now, and the ongoing status the provincial government has plans for," said Asham.

To show its support, The RM has sent a letter to the Province about the St. Ambroise Beach impact.

"(We) got the response back that right now as of 2012, it is not going to open for the season," Asham said. "Going forward, they are not sure of what the plans are going to be, until they get some further studies on what development can be put back there."

John Lavallee, a St. Ambroise resident is part of the group "Concerned residents of St. Ambroise."

Up to 250 people are in the group from the community.

Lavallee said the provincially -owned beach and park needs to be worked on in an effort to help bring people back to St Ambroise.

"We want to know what is happening," he said.

Store could close

Lavallee added the local St. Ambroise convenience store is in a difficult situation as it may close since it is losing so much business without the tourist traffic from the beach over the summer and the hunting lodges in the fall.

"People are hurting economically because of the storm. Farmers and ranchers, and other people who own businesses in town are suffering because of that," he said, adding about five of the roughly 10 local hunting lodges have also had to close due to damages from the storm of 2011. "We are afraid of what is going to happen in the future to our community if we just let things slide."

The St. Ambroise beach and campground have remained closed since the 2011 flood.

Lavallee said a petition will be available at the meeting held Wednesday, July 11, and that it would be taken to the Manitoba Legislature to show the Province the serious nature of the situation, which impacts the community.

Lavallee added a separate meeting was also previously held about two weeks ago.

The upcoming meeting this Wednesday, July 11 will be held at the MMF Youth Centre in St. Ambroise, at 7 p.m.,

It will be another opportunity to address the residents' concerns.

"The people want to know what is happening and are looking for answers," Lavallee said.

angela.brown@sunmedia.ca

angela.brown@sunmedia.ca


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