The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

May 2011 Joplin tornado

June 29, 2011

Commissioners say debris will be picked up in county

JOPLIN, Mo. — Paul Burrington said that before the May 22 tornado, his family’s property at the end of Marwalk Drive near Duquesne was a secluded sanctuary, often attracting scores of deer.

Now, 21 of the trees that had surrounded the home are on the ground, and Burrington is wondering how he’s going to get rid of all that lumber and other tornado debris.

Burrington and his wife, Patti, say they are watching what’s going on with debris removal in Joplin and Duquesne, but they are uncertain at this point whether that will extend to their property.

The Burringtons’ home is one of a number of tornado-damaged properties in Jasper County that are outside of any city limits. Paul Burrington said county crews were working down the road for a time, but then left.

“We pay the same taxes as everyone else, so we’re wondering what’s going to happen,” he said. “Really, we’re just hoping to get rid of the smaller limbs and debris. If they don’t do anything, I’ll just split the logs for firewood.”


John Bartosh, presiding county commissioner, said the county wants to help residents in the unincorporated areas, but there were some complications in working out details with the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the Army Corps of Engineers.

County road crews had started some work, because the commissioners at first planned to use county workers and seek reimbursement from FEMA. County residents’ loose debris will be picked up, but the county is having to go through most of the steps required of Joplin and Duquesne, and the work is to be completed under federal contract, said Norman Rouse, attorney for the commission.

“Since the county doesn’t have the ability for condemnation or nuisance ordinances or anything, we thought at first we wouldn’t qualify (for reimbursement),” he said. “So the commission decided the county would just go ahead and do it ourselves.”

After discussions with FEMA, the county asked homeowners to sign the same right-of-entry letters being used in Joplin and Duquesne. About 26 have been returned so far, and the forms still are being accepted, according to Darieus Adams, Western District associate commissioner.

“We’ve got most of them in-house, and insurance companies have to be contacted, so Joplin is helping us out with that,” he said. “Once that’s done, we’ll turn them over to FEMA, and the corps will start work. Now, we can put that into motion.”

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May 2011 Joplin tornado
  • Local new-home construction catches up to previous pace

    After a slow start early in this fiscal year for Joplin, the construction of new houses has resumed at the pace that existed in fiscal year 2013, when permits for new houses averaged more than 16 per month. Since November, the beginning of Joplin’s fiscal year, permits for 118 houses have been issued for a total cost of $12.8 million. The average value has been about $108,000.

    June 11, 2014

  • 052212 unity walk1_72.jpg SLIDESHOW: One year later, One day of unity, updated Photos from a day of events commemorating the May 22, 2011 tornado anniversary

    May 22, 2012 1 Photo

  • 060314 Farmers rebuild 1_72.jpg Farmers Insurance writes manual based on experience from Joplin disaster recovery

    Joplin’s housing recovery from the 2011 tornado is one for the books. Jeff Dailey, CEO of Farmers Insurance, announced Tuesday that not only will Farmers Insurance stick with Rebuild Joplin to repair and replace the homes left on the local group’s waiting list, but the company also will kick off a similar recovery effort today for the city of Sea Bright, New Jersey, based on a book it has written to expedite disaster recovery that is based on its experience in Joplin.

    June 3, 2014 2 Photos

  • r052214butterflygarden.jpg New park feature opens on tornado anniversary to encourage healing

    Cunningham Park has become an emotional place for Pamela Praytor. The name of her son, Christopher Lucas, is engraved on a monument that stands in the park in memory of the 161 people who were killed in the May 2011 tornado. “Even though I cry when I come, it’s OK,” she said. “It’s part of the healing.”

    May 22, 2014 2 Photos

  • r051214greenbldgs3.jpg Home, business cited as examples of energy efficiency, strength

    Ramona and Charles “Hugh’’ Shields were not the least bit reluctant on Monday to open their new house in the tornado zone to a bunch of strangers who had a lot of questions. “I used to live in a house where I had to wear two pairs of socks in the winter to keep my feet warm — not anymore,’’ said Ramona Shields. “This house is nice and warm in the winter, and nice and cool in the summer.’’

    May 12, 2014 2 Photos

  • Mercy Health System to receive $23 million FEMA grant

    The Federal Emergency Management Agency will provide Mercy Health System of Joplin with $23 million in public assistance funding by the end of the year. The disaster relief was announced Friday by U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill.

    April 25, 2014

  • Respond With Love flower.jpg Joplin pays it forward with flowers; residents asked to return bulbs ‘fostered’ for other towns

    Suzan Morang’s front yard bloomed brightly last year from a colorful array of bulbs that she will happily pass on to someone else this year. Morang, 1207 Xenia Court, is a participant in America Responds With Love, a national nonprofit organization that distributes bulbs to disaster-stricken cities.

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Creator of Joplin-based ‘Dear World’ exhibit features Boston bombing victims in new work

    The messages written on the skin of some Boston Marathon victims may be different, but Joplin residents will recognize the handwriting. Robert X. Fogarty, the creator of the “Dear World: From Joplin with Love” exhibit, took his signature style of photography and inspiration to Boston. Fogarty traveled to Joplin in 2011 and took pictures of community members with inspirational messages written on their bodies in black ink.

    April 21, 2014

  • r041414wildwood.jpg Opening of nursing home another recovery milestone

    Gladys Dutton has done a lot of things in her life, but Monday’s dedication of the Communities at Wildwood Ranch nursing home marked a first. “I’ve never cut a ribbon before,” she said. “I hope I do a good job.” Dutton was one of four residents to participate in the opening of the $8.5 million nursing center that eventually will be home to 120 people.

    April 14, 2014 1 Photo

  • Joplin Redevelopment Corp. preparing for first property sale

    The first sale of property from the Joplin Redevelopment Corp. to Wallace Bajjali Development Partners is scheduled for May 16. The city staff will be working to prepare for that sale, it was discussed on Tuesday at a meeting of the JRC.

    April 9, 2014

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