City of Little Rock Declares Storm Cleanup Complete

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LITTLE ROCK- After nearly 4 months, the City of Little Rock says cleanup from the Christmas Day storm is complete, but some neighborhoods still have piles of yard waste lined up on the curb.

Mayor Stodola says 22,000 tons of storm debris is now mulch thanks to the hard work of the Public Works Department and federal funding that helped pay for the clean up efforts.

The Christmas Day 2012 storm dumped several inches of snow and ice on Central Arkansas, snapping tree limbs, uprooting electric poles, and knocking out power to hundreds of thousands of people. After the snow and ice melted, the clean up process began. Crews spent months chopping down trees, cutting up branches, and picking up all the debris on the side of the street.

The City of Little Rock contracted help to tackle the large job, filling 5,300 trucks full of storm debris at a cost of about $1 million. 85 percent of the cost the federal government paid for, but the remaining 15 percent came from the Public Works Department’s budget. The Mayor says those funds were used up in the first few days after the storm. “We’ll make do. We run a tight ship and we’ll tighten the belt if we have to.”

The City of Little Rock is declaring the job is finished, but it doesn’t look like it in some neighborhoods. The Mayor explains anything still left out will be picked up as part of the city’s regular yard waste service. “When people are out there trimming the trees and raking leaves doing all the kinds of things that we normally do, we have our crews that come through on a regular basis.”

Carey Matthews lives in West Little Rock and says she’s satisfied with the clean up process, and understands why it took so long. “It seems like the city was pretty good about getting all the extra debris picked up.”

But she expects to see clear streets and curbs soon. “There may be a few places where there’s a little bit left over, but overall they’ve done a great job I think.”

Anyone with any remaining debris in their yard can call 311 for a pick up or haul it away to the dump themselves. All the debris collected by the city was turned into mulch and compost. It’s available to purchase for gardening and landscaping. $14 to fill the back of a pickup truck, or mulch can be delivered by the dump truck load for $50.

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