Why are the limbs still here?

HORSESHOE BEND (KAIT) Eight weeks ago an ice storm laid waste to trees and power lines all across Region Eight.

Since then, much of the damage has been picked up and hauled away.

But that's not the case in Horseshoe Bend--where residents have watched the storm debris pile up higher and drier.

Now the residents are speaking up--and asking an important question: "Why is this stuff still here!?"

Kristy Gelsinger and James Kelley are neighbors in Horseshoe Bend. They have cleaned up their yards and are frustrated that the debris is still there after several weeks.

Gelsinger, "We'd like to have either an area where we can take the stuff or somebody come pick it up or let us burn or anything to get it cleaned up."

Kelley, "I wanna know when they are gonna pick this up. That's what I want to know. When are they gonna pick it up. I can't seem to get any answers."

I figured it was easiest just to go to city hall and track down the mayor and ask him about the burn ban and why debris wasn't being picked up.

With the loss of some trucks due to a fire station fire, the town has been under a burn ban. It will be lifted on Wednesday. But there are conditions being set by the fire chief.

Mayor Bob Barnes, "He chose to do it by ward so he's gonna let one ward burn one day. He's gonna start with ward 4 and go 4,3,2,1 and then we'll start back over when those 4 burn on a rotating basis."

Barnes says to keep your fires small and contained since there is so much brush and debris in the woods.

I then asked Mayor Barnes when he thought the debris would be picked up.

"I feel like probably next week we should be on the road starting to pick the debris up."

To get ready they had to acquire a debris truck, that should be in place this week. Hire some temporary workers and get a bucket truck to cut limbs off with.

The city decided to do it's own clean up based on the FEMA and Army Corp of Engineers estimate of over 400 thousand dollars.  Of that, the city would have had to come up with at least 92-thousand.

And it's a big task. Based on this map prepared by the Corp of engineers.

Barnes, "We've got 30 thousand 5 hundred and 5 yards of debris to pick up. 32 stumps. And we got a thousand 38 trees that got to come down on the city rights of ways. "

Also over 2700 trees with hangers to either be trimmed or cut down.

Mayor Barnes wanted to let the people know what was going on.

Barnes, "I apologize to the people I know it seems like it's been a long time getting there but I don't really want to jump unless I can see where the landings gonna be."