The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Local News

June 20, 2011

Council OKs 60-day hold on rebuilding

JOPLIN, Mo. — A heart-tugging drama unfolded Monday night in the Joplin City Council chambers as residents unsuccessfully pleaded for the council to reject a proposal to place a hold on the rebuilding of their homes.

The city staff, trying to deal with acres of residential rubble, proposed a 90-day hold on building permits for the construction of new houses in the heaviest damaged part of the city while it undergoes a government cleanup called “expedited debris removal.” That issue drew comments from four people, and the council ultimately imposed a 60-day hold on rebuilding.


Creed Jones, vice president of human resources at EaglePicher Technologies, said he and his family lost their home, as did 57 other employees of the company. Many others sustained damage or were otherwise affected by the devastation, he said.

The company employs highly skilled experts in the field of energy and battery technology, and they already are being recruited by other companies to leave Joplin, Jones said. They may be inclined to take those offers if they cannot rebuild here quickly, he said.

“Don’t do this to those people who have already suffered so much,” Jones told the council as he choked back tears. He suggested that the city instead expedite building permits.

Larry Elder, who lives on South Monroe Avenue, said he could salvage the basement of his house and the floor that covers it if he could get to work quickly to erect a roof and walls around it. He said other area cities stricken by tornadoes have not imposed similar restrictions. “It sends the wrong message to developers,” he said. “It sends the wrong message to people who have lost everything.”

Darren Collins, of Galena, Kan., a builder whose wife owns a beauty salon on South Byers Avenue that was destroyed, said people do not understand why business buildings can be rebuilt but homes cannot. He said houses will be erected in other area towns to attract those who are delayed in Joplin. He asked the city to limit building activity block by block as debris removal is conducted instead of instituting a blanket hold.

Susan Butler said she lost her home on South Iowa Avenue and her law office on East 20th Street. “This property moratorium is a devastating blow to those who have lost everything,” she said.

A 90-day hold could mean that residents could not start building until September, and then could be delayed by cold weather or run out of money when insurance payments for rent expire.

Butler said the city has cited safety issues as one reason for the hold, but she questioned whether anyone understood what was unsafe about building on existing home lots.

Their comments drew applause from the audience.

Text Only
Local News
  • Cherokee County Commission accepts general counsel's resignation

    Kevin Cure, who has served as general counsel for the Cherokee County Commission since 2005, submitted a handwritten resignation to the board on Monday in the aftermath of a landfill controversy.

    July 22, 2014

  • Mike Pound 2010.jpg Mike Pound: Parents can get help with school supplies

    I don’t know much about demographics other than the fact that I no longer belong to a “targeted demographic.” When I was younger, I was bombarded by commercials and ads from companies that were trying to sell me things that I not only needed but wanted.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Jasper County Commission reviews traffic plans

    The Jasper County Commission will hold public hearings today and Thursday on a number of traffic changes proposed in the county. No one spoke when the first hearing was held Tuesday as part of the regular commission meeting, according to Jim Honey, Eastern District associate commissioner.

    July 22, 2014

  • Neosho school board hires company to manage substitutes

    Citing its hopes of shifting health care costs and utilizing more time from retired teachers, the Neosho Board of Education granted a contract Monday to a temporary employee company to manage its substitute teacher program.

    July 22, 2014

  • Main Street TIF district study to begin

    A measure that allows the city to charge its $15,000 in administrative costs for studying a proposal to create a tax increment financing district on South Main Street was approved Monday by the Joplin City Council.

    July 21, 2014

  • Carthage man pleads guilty in sexual abuse case

    A Carthage man pleaded guilty Monday to sexual abuse of a 12-year-old girl in a plea agreement that would cap the length of his prison term at no more than 15 years.

    July 21, 2014

  • Burglary conviction draws shock prison time

    A Joplin man who received 120 days of shock incarceration time Friday in a drunken-driving case in Jasper County Circuit Court was assessed a concurrent sentence Monday in a burglary case.

    July 21, 2014

  • State audit of Joplin School District begins

    Staff members from the state auditor’s office have begun their audit of the Joplin School District, Superintendent C.J. Huff said Monday. They are expected to be in the district four days per week for the next five to six months, or perhaps longer, until the audit is complete, Huff said.

    July 21, 2014

  • Mike Pound 2010.jpg Mike Pound: Family gatherings mirror circle of life

    The annual family gathering is getting bigger. There tends to be an ebb and a flow to most family gatherings. When you’re a kid, and especially if you’re a kid from a large Catholic family, the gatherings seem to be huge.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • 071714 Jasper Cty Dispatch1_72.jpg Area communities, Jasper County work to improve communications

    The first law enforcement officer to respond to a fatal shooting last November at Northpark Mall was from the Duquesne Police Department — not Joplin. Joplin police Chief Jason Burns said he wasn’t bothered by that. “We dispatch for them, and they had an officer close who could get there faster,” he said. “And getting help to people as quickly as possible is more important than jurisdictions.”

    July 20, 2014 2 Photos

Must Read


A state lawmaker who is one of two doctors in the Oklahoma Legislature is insisting that unaccompanied immigrant minors being housed at Fort Sill be quarantined. Do you think those kinds of measures should be taken?

A. Yes.
B. No.
     View Results
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter