CHIPLEY - Chipley City Council weighed its options on debris removal during a workshop held Thursday evening.
Kevan Parker with Wheeler EMC updated the council on the debris hauling status and put in perspective options for continued debris processing.
"Once the contractors stop ... whatever debris is left, is the property owners responsibility and you can stay out of it," Parker said, listing the first of three options for continued debris removal. "You can hire your own contractor, and then you're responsible for paying that monthly invoice" or have the city's staff pick it up.
The final pass will start on the west side of the town, which is the least impacted area of the county on March 15, and work north to south and then west to east.
"That's telling you that your area is one of the last - if not, the last - area to be picked up by April 15," he said.
As of March 4, Crowder Gulf has picked up 191,391 cubic yards of vegetative debris in Chipley, removed 1,481 hangers and 105 leaners.
With the deadlines approaching, the county has requested an extension from the state on the hauling deadline. However, in the meantime, local governments have to plan the next step in cleaning their cities.
It's important to note - particularly with the final pass - trucks will only pick up hurricane-related debris, meaning, crews have to be under the impression that the contents of the pile resulted from hurricane damages. If a roof does not have a tarp on it and has, for example, piles of electronics on the right of way for hauling, Parker suggested that pile may not be picked up. Also, eligible trees for removal only include those with a stomp that protrudes out of the ground by 50 percent, which possibly would not include a tree that was snapped in half as a result of hurricane winds.
Consequently, the need for continued debris hauling is a priority.
"We're going to have to consider ... what will the city's obligations and responsibilities be," said Chipley Mayor Tracy Andrews. "It's not that we need to wait, we need to be thinking about it now so that we can plan for it."
City Administrator Dan Miner recommended that residents not wait to see how the options unfold, rather, adhere to the deadlines already in place for the final pass.
"Hopefully people will take advantage of what's offered to them," he said after the workshop.
Debris must be out on the right of way by March 15.
In the future, after options have been weighed, it's likely going to become an issue of code enforcement violations if property owners allow leftover debris to become a nuisance, he added.
"It will be case by case," he said. "If it's a nuisance, we're going to have to deal with it."
In other business, council members discussed noise nuisance ordinance Ordinance No. 957, updating the Noise Control times for "yelling, shouting, etc." from 10 p.m. - 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. - 7 a.m. and noise from construction or repairing of buildings from 7 p.m.-7 a.m. to sunset to sunrise.
The council was given Resolution No. 19-22, which shows support for House Bill 0190 (Northwest Florida Rural Inland Affected Counties Recovery Fund) and recognizes the impact of Hurricane Michael and the need for economic recovery.
Chipley City Council will meet for its regular meeting 6 p.m. Tuesday at City Hall, 1442 W. Jackson Ave.