Floods in Pas-de-Calais: Christophe Béchu discusses the State's purchase of flooded houses

Will the State buy back certain houses flooded in November and January during the record floods which affected Pas-de-Calais? The Minister of Ecological Transition and Territorial Cohesion, Christophe Béchu, raised this possibility on Tuesday January 23, during a visit to Arras for the establishment of a ministerial monitoring committee

Floods in Pas-de-Calais: Christophe Béchu discusses the State's purchase of flooded houses

Will the State buy back certain houses flooded in November and January during the record floods which affected Pas-de-Calais? The Minister of Ecological Transition and Territorial Cohesion, Christophe Béchu, raised this possibility on Tuesday January 23, during a visit to Arras for the establishment of a ministerial monitoring committee.

Eligible owners could benefit from “automatic repurchase by the State up to 240,000 euros”, the minister said during a press briefing. An “amicable buyout” may also be requested by owners whose accommodation has been less damaged.

Installation of around a hundred mobile homes

The prefect must “specify the conditions” allowing residents whose house has suffered damage which exceeds “half the market value” to benefit from a “purchase scheme within the framework of the Barnier fund”, specified Mr. Béchu .

Created in 1995, this major natural risk prevention fund was used in 2010 to finance the deconstruction of hundreds of houses in Vendée and Charente-Maritime after the passage of storm Xynthia.

In the longer term, “in the coming months, we will have to rethink the maps with the risks [of] flooding,” warned Mr. Béchu, referring to the need to rethink water governance, acquire pumps and “fight to avoid urban sprawl”. Faced with the lack of local rehousing solutions, he also announced the installation of “around a hundred mobile homes”, financed by a housing assistance fund.

“No one will forget you,” promised the Prime Minister, Gabriel Attal, during a trip to Clairmarais (Pas-de-Calais) on January 9, a few hours after his appointment to Matignon. “We are with you and I will obviously follow all of this very closely,” he insisted, in front of residents worn out by the repetition of bad weather.