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A new tool to better prevent flooding

The Maralpin Joint Association for Flooding, Planning and Water Management (SMIAGE) was created to protect the population after the deadly October 2015 storms.

Recently launched, SMIAGE is a new committee which aims at preventing floods and subsequent damage. A little more than a year after the dangerous floods in October 2015, the Alpes-Maritimes has adopted a new tool to better protect the population: the Maralpin joint association for flooding, planning and water management (SMIAGE). Established under the impetus of the Department and under the aegis of the State, this public establishment of territorial watersheds (EPTB) means a pooling together of strengths and means.

“Department to face major risks”

The association, which recently held its first union committee, links the Department, the seven public establishments of inter-municipal cooperation of Alpes-Maritimes, the community of the municipalities of Alpes Provence Verdon, “Sources of lights” in the Alpes-de-Haute-Provence, and the six inter-municipal bodies. With one goal: “To better prevent flooding and better protect the population, the department to face major risks,” said Eric Ciotti, who will chair SMIAGE alongside four vice-presidents: the mayors of Saint Martin du Var Hervé Paul, of Cannes David Lisnard, of Grasse Jérôme Viaud and of Antibes Jean Leonetti.

Budget: 21 million

After the floods of 1994, and the tragic night of 3 to 4 October 2015 which resulted in 20 lives lost and caused more than 600 million euros of damage, could this ever happen again? “It will take time and a great deal of perseverance: the fight against flooding is the work of a generation,” said the prefect Georges-Francois Leclerc. But this fight has now been fortified: “We are operational,” affirmed Eric Ciotti, – “and the SMIAGE has a team: 23 Department staff members were put at the disposal of the organisation. They have a budget of 21 million euros of investment  ̶ 10 of which are from the sale of the airport  ̶  financed by the Departmental Council.

The SMIAGE above all has a clear trajectory: continue the reinforcement of the dam of Saint-Laurent du Var and continue the reinforcement of the left bank of the Var between Colomars and Castagniers.

“Markets will also be launched for the reinforcement of all the dykes and the maintenance of all the rivers”.

Residents of these areas will be relieved to know that the new committee SMIAGE is up and running and working to prevent floods and hopefully prevent future tragic events from occurring.

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