Chilean President Sebastian Piñera announced this week the second part of his emergency reconstruction plan during a visit to the lower-middle class borough of Lo Prado. Beneficiaries of the new program are mostly lower middle class families.
Government figures show that 370,051 homes were damaged by the earthquake, including 81,444 which were totally destroyed.
“We’ve established a criterion of eligibility for two types of subsidies between 2010 and 2011,” explained housing minister Magdalena Matte. “The first is a subsidy for the construction or reconstruction of the homes that were completely destroyed and another is for those houses that were partly destroyed by the earthquake and the tsunami.”
Matte said the program will cost 2.5 billion dollars and assured that “the permanent houses that will be built on the coast will be of good quality and property owners will be able to choose building materials.”
To receive a reconstruction subsidy no prior savings or proof of prior living conditions are required. People with the lowest incomes will get additional help.
Families should go to their respective municipalities, real estate companies or to regional Serviu offices for greater information about the program. Each of these institutions has been instructed to help those affected by the earthquake in reconstructing their houses.
“The government is fully aware of the tremendous damage the earthquake and the tsunami have caused thousands of people and it will do everything possible to help victims and to lend an efficient and quick hand to those families that need it most,” said President Piñera. “We aim at giving people all the basic necessities to get through this winter with dignity so that they can start getting their lives back to normal.”
By Loretta van der Horst – Santiago Times
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