FEMA Proposing Debris-Sorting Site in Chico

FEMA is looking at the former diamond match property in Chico as a place to temporarily dump and sort Camp Fire debris.

Posted: Dec. 12, 2018 3:35 PM
Updated: Dec. 12, 2018 3:58 PM

CHICO, Calif. - FEMA is looking at the former diamond match property in Chico as a place to temporarily dump and sort Camp Fire debris.

However, the location on West 16th Street has some neighbors in the area concerned about toxic materials and large vehicles that would need to transport the debris through the streets. 

"I don't think this is the place for it," said Mary O'Neal, a neighbor in the area of the proposed site. "This is a neighborhood of people and they're outside all of the time walking and there's a park right down at my corner. So I see that as a real detriment."

After the debris is sorted, a train would eventually haul it away from Barber Yard. 

Authorities estimate that it will cost at least $3 billion to clear debris from 19,000 homes destroyed by California wildfires. 

Federal Disaster Relief Officials said Tuesday that private contractors will likely begin removing debris in January in Butte, Ventura and Los Angeles counties. 

Most of the work will take place in Paradise. State OES officials said that after last year's wildfires, homeowners complained that contractors hauled away too much dirt. That's why the state will manage clean-up contracts this time instead of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. 

FEMA wants to hear from the public about possible alternatives to the proposed debris-sorting site and clean up process at a meeting next week. It will take place at Calvary Chapel Church Monday, Dec. 17at 6:30 pm. 

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