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Pott. County declares state of emergency due to ice storm damages

Elisabeth Slay
The Shawnee News-Star
Tree

The Pottawatomie County Commissioners declared a state of emergency due to damages from last week's ice storm in their regular meeting Monday.  

In the meeting, District 1 Commissioner Melissa Dennis said workers in her district are accessing damages and hauling off fallen tree limbs.  

Dennis said residents in her district need to take any tree limbs they've cleaned to their curb and the district will pick them up.  

Also, in the meeting Dennis put forth two blanket purchase orders for equipment to pick up debris and four dumpsters where people can dispose of their debris.  

According to District 2 Commissioner Randy Thomas, though there was minimal damage in his district, residents in his area also need to take any fallen limbs to their curb and the district will remove them.  

Thomas said in 2007 Shawnee approved a site near Twin Lakes to take and dispose of debris from extreme weather events.  

The commissioner explained the county has reused this site over the years and intends to use it again once the city gets approval once more from the Department of Environmental Quality.  

"We can have the site opened by the end of the week," Thomas said. 

Thomas said Dennis has a site she where she can stage her clean up but the site will take three to four weeks to be approved by the DEQ.  

Therefore, Thomas said the debris District 1 collects will be transferred from the stage site to the Shawnee site.  

Dennis said District 1 is keeping a daily log of funds spent during the cleanup process so it can be reimbursed through the Federal Emergency Management Agency. 

Thomas said the damage in District 2 was so minimal he may not attempt to receive reimbursement.  

In addition, Dennis said cities and school districts within the county need to keep track of funding they've used in the cleanup process and inform the commissioners of what needs to be reimbursed. 

Dennis said a meeting will be held soon between the district and the cites to discuss this further. 

According to OG&E, as of Monday afternoon 131,791 people were without power with 1671 in Shawnee, 210 in Tecumseh, 76 in McLoud, 60 in Meeker and 50 in Maud.  

OG&E said in a statement they estimate full restoration for all customers between Wednesday, Nov. 4 and Friday, Nov. 6. 

Check back for updates.