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Published: Friday, July 12, 2019 @ 1:00 AM
Time is running out for Beavercreek residents to have tornado-related yard debris hauled away for free in the aftermath of the Memorial Day storm.
The city, township and Greene County will continue to remove tree branches and brush without charge from areas affected by the EF 3 tornado as long as the organic debris is piled up by curbs on or before July 28.
“We’ve seen a significant drop in the amount of brush coming out. We’ve had a lot of dry weekends lately, and we’re not running trucks every day anymore,” said Beavercreek City Manager Pete Landrum. “There’s a lot to still be done, but we feel we have to move on to the next phase. We want to encourage people to utilize the free service for tree debris pickup.”
The cost to the city for picking up the organic debris, a task generally not covered by insurance policies, could total around $2 million, city officials have said.
Some properties, particularly around Gardenview Drive, appear to have been untouched since the storm. Landrum said it’s unclear whether owners have walked away, they live out-of-state and aren’t aware of the damages or there are other issues.
The city will send out mailers to residents to let them know volunteers are still available to help, and Landrum hopes the word spreads before the last day to put out yard debris.
“If they don’t want to live there or rebuild in that area, they should know they have value sitting there, even with a house that needs demolished,” Landrum said. “There are still volunteers desiring to help and assist, but there’s more volunteers than help being requested at this point in time.”
Next month, city zoning inspectors will knock on doors and reach out to owners of properties where clean-up and repair work is not evident. Landrum said the city is more interested in working with property owners rather than citing them for violations.
With more than 6,000 members, the Beavercreek Tornado Network Facebook page has become a valuable communications tool for survivors and volunteers to connect, and the group’s founder, Beavercreek resident Aysha Osten, is helping to coordinate volunteers.
Osten, who has been ill and started the social media page as a way to help friends and family in the storm’s aftermath, said people are contacting her about the untouched properties, saying they want to help clean them up but don’t want to trespass onto private property.
“There is going to be a deadline that they may not be aware of,” Osten said. “Right now we have volunteers who can help. If they wait too long, they’re going to have to pay.”
Osten said she will communicate privately with property owners and volunteers instead of posting addresses where work needs to be done.
STAY CONNECTED: Greene County News on Facebook
Property owners can send Osten an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Greene County Environmental Services, at 2145 Greene Way Blvd., will continue to receive yard debris without charge after July 28.
Construction debris is not being picked up by public services. Beavercreek officials said insurance typically covers removal of such debris.
Construction debris can be taken to the Montgomery County Transfer Facility, 1001 Encrete Lane, Moraine, or to the Xenia Demolition Landfill, 610 Dayton-Xenia Road, Xenia.