(From the City of Joplin)
As rebuilding in tornado-damaged Joplin shifts into full swing, there’s an important detail that local officials want you to know: Don’t curb debris from your reconstruction materials, take it away instead.
Debris-laden curbsides and public rights-of-way became a common sight around town in the initial weeks after the May 22 tornado. Many debris piles have come and gone – some more than once, or even twice. However, when it comes to the leftover materials that result from repairing, rebuilding or building anew, a different disposal plan is needed.
“So far, we’ve made great strides in getting rid of our tornado debris,” says Jack Schaller, assistant director of Joplin Public Works. “Now that more and more rebuilding is occurring, we need citizens, builders, contractors and volunteers to know that the new debris from reconstruction materials must be hauled away and not placed on the curbside or public rights-of-way.”
Reconstruction debris is defined as anything that results from repairing, rebuilding or building anew such as: pieces of drywall, structural materials like wood or metal 2x4s, carpet or vinyl flooring scraps, fixture remnants, etc. Most importantly, shingles resulting from a roof repair or tear-off must be hauled away to a proper landfill.
Reconstruction debris is not eligible for pickup by government-funded contractors because the costs associated with that removal are not covered by Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) disaster reimbursements to the State and local governments. FEMA only reimburses the eligible costs of removing debris that has been generated by the disaster.
Typically, hauling off your leftover reconstruction materials is included in rebuilding costs so it’s important for property owners to ensure that their contractor or builder takes care of the disposal. The same is true for home, property or business owners who are making their own repairs.
Reconstruction debris on commercial properties also must be hauled to a proper landfill. Commercial debris resulting from the tornado is not eligible to be pushed to curbsides or the public rights-of-way.