The costs of the flood protection measures combined surmounted to 933.438 Bulgarian Lev, or €477.259 Euro. A small part, 5% of the total sum (46.959 Lev, or €24.010), was provided from the municipal budget of Smolyan. The majority of funding 886.478 Lev (€453.249) originated from the EU through the Operational Programme “Regional Development 2007 – 2013 (Contract No BG161PO001/1.4-06/2010/011), ‘Support For Small-Scale Measures To Prevent Flooding In Urban Agglomerations’). This programme was approved by the European Commission in 2007 and applied to the whole territory of Bulgaria for the period 2007-2013. The main objectives of the Operational Programme were to:
- reduce the socio-economic differences between Bulgaria and other EU Member States;
- make living and working conditions in Bulgaria more attractive;
- develop tourism potential; and
- stimulate investments in smaller municipalities.
The Operational Programme fell under the framework laid out for Convergence and Regional Competitiveness and Employment Objectives (co-funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF)) and had a total budget of around €1.6 billion.
The benefits of the measures (in terms of reduced damage due to flooding) have not been estimated and quantified. One could say, however, that the damage of the 2005 flood event will now be avoided during future heavy precipitation events. In fact, a reoccurrence with significant damage could have occurred in 2014. The year 2014 was a very wet year and other neighbourhoods in Smolyan have experienced flooding, but the Ustovo district was not affected. Other co-benefits have not been taken into account.
The new measures of the current Municipal Development Plan will be funded by different sources such as by the municipal budget, the Operational Programme ‘Environment’ (2014 – 2020), Cross-border Cooperation Programmes, and by the Inter-ministerial Committee on Disaster.