(From the City of Joplin)
The City of Joplin recently requested a two-week extension of the 90/10 funded EDR initiative. The EDR initiative was originally granted by the President of the United States in response to the devastating tornado that struck Joplin on May 22, 2011 to help our community with a faster recovery. This initiative allows for the removal of loose, tornado debris from private, residential property. Funded 90% by the federal government, the private, residential property cleanup effort was granted for 75 days from the day after the tornado and ends on August 7. However, the City did not receive notification of this initiative until May 30, 2011. Due to the seven day time lapse, the City requested the extension to address any final details that may remain in the loose, tornado debris cleanup process.
The contractor has committed to the completion of the debris removal from the remaining private, residential properties by the August 7 deadline. Based on information obtained from the contractor, the items that could remain after the August 7 deadline is some curbside pickup and removing some remaining trees, stumps or root balls. We believe the financial impact on the City of completing these final items after the August 7 deadline will be minimal.
While the private, residential property cleanup of loose, tornado debris is nearing completion by the August 7 deadline, other cleanup efforts will continue over the next several months. The removal of debris from commercial property is not considered eligible for federal reimbursement and/or direct pickup under Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) public assistance program guidelines. A deadline of August 8 to have contracts signed for the cleanup of the loose debris on commercial property was recently set to help ensure the continuation of the recovery effort. Demolition of structures, including foundations and basements, is the next phase of the cleanup effort and will continue as more details will be released by the City in the next several weeks to help our citizens. Therefore, you may still see the remains of these efforts in the tornado-affected area.
“In looking back to May 22, with the miles of devastation and loss facing us, we have made extraordinary progress in the cleanup of our City,” said Mark Rohr, City Manager. “Much of this effort is attributed to the hard work and resiliency of our citizens, as well as nearly 70,000 volunteers who have come to our community to help ensure a quick recovery. Their work was in addition to our federal and state agencies and contractors who have been working tirelessly. Although we have suffered a tragedy, we have been blessed with the Miracle of the Human Spirit. August 7 will come and go, but the spirit of our residents and the many supporting us will continue as we move forward in our recovery. The cleanup of our community in a just a couple of months’ time is truly remarkable and I would like to thank everyone who has responded to our community in our time of need.”