Rapid City is beginning to return to normal after an early October blizzard damaged and destroyed many of the city's trees. The clean up effort is due in large part to a company contracted by the city to pickup and remove debris from curbsides and city parks.
Now that the work is nearly done, it's time to pay the bill.
According to Public Works Director, Terry Wolterstorff, roughly 100,000 cubic yards of debris was collected during curbside pick up alone. That's about 15,000 pick-up truck loads. Seventy-five thousand trees were trimmed and about 480 trees were removed, mainly in parkland.
The bill so far is approximately $2.5 million. That includes curbside pick up, grinding and hauling debris as well as tree trimming and removal. Those involved in the clean up say they are moving toward normalcy again.
"We are seeing a number of loads of wood and brush clean up after the storm but we are getting more towards out normal type of waste that we will get this time of year," said Karl Marbach, Superintendent of the Rapid City Landfill.
"We expect to be done with curbside pick up within the next couple of days and then we will finish up the chip removal in the next 10 days period and we will wrap up the grinding operation also so we expect in the next two weeks to be totally done with the operation," said Wolsterstorff
The $2.5 million bill won't be totally on the city's shoulders. Wolterstorf says there's a good chance FEMA will reimburse the city for 85 percent of the clean up costs.