5/3/2013 3:23:00 PM President signs disaster declaration for region
President Obama has signed a disaster declaration for Southwest Minnesota, according to JinYeene Neumann, Cottonwood County Engineer.
Neumann said she received the notice last night. The disaster area status means city and county expenditures related to the disaster will be reimbursed by the federal government. That includes debris clean-up, overtime charges, electrical work and many other costs. Windom officials expect costs to exceed $250,000.
"For the county, that means we will get funding to help with debris removal from the last storm," Neumann said.
Bids for the county's debris removal project are expected to be opened May 6. It covers any treee branches or "widow makers" that are in the county right-of-way.
Neumann said that project will likely begin in mid-May.
Meanwhile, city crews wrapped up the city debris removal project yesterday. City Street Superintendent Bruce Caldwell said city crews will no longer be picking up brush and trees from city curbs.
"Property owners need to haul their brush and trees to the Cottonwood County Landfill," Caldwell said. "There were a couple locations they (city workers) didn't pick up as the piles were placed on the boulevard several days after the deadline and most of that material wasn't ice damaged. Therefore the property owners need to haul that material away at their expense.
Caldwell added that the city compost site will take 12-inch or smaller branches, rakings and twigs (nothing larger). The larger items must be taken to the landfill.
On Monday the city staff will start cleaning up city parks beginning at Tegel's Park at Cottonwood Lake.