REDDING, Calif. — The California Office of Emergency Services has finished debris removal for close to one-third of the homes registered in Shasta County.
1,015 sites registered with the state to be cleaned up. 1,002 wound up eligible for the process. As of Friday, Cal OES has finished work on 330 of the sites.
Of those 330 sites, 163,507 total tons of waste was removed. Shasta County Public Works Director Pat Minturn said the process is on a tight deadline.
"The chemicals that are in the homes, the heavy metals that are in the sidings and so forth, we need to address that and we need to address that before the rains come," said Minturn.
The sites are being tested for asbestos. 171 sites have contained bulk asbestos so far. 16,213 tons of contaminated soil total has been removed.
So far, the whole project has cost $31,475,855.
Ron Quigley with Cal OES said most of that money is covered outside of the county budget.
"The federal government is covering debris removal," said Quigley. "They are covering 75 percent and the state of California is covering 75 percent of the remaining 25 percent. So, the responsibility of the county equals out to about 2.5 percent."
For the site owners who decided to opt out of the state debris removal, a work plan for debris removal is due by October 15 and the clean up is supposed to be finished by November 7.
There are just 50 site owners who have not opted in or out. Many of them have not been located.
"We've sent a number of letters to the folks and have gotten a lot of compliance but the remaining 50, about half of them we haven't heard anything from," said Minturn. "We haven't even gotten any accepted mailings, they bounce back and we don't have a mailing address for these folks."
If the site owner doesn't opt in or out, the state will start a summary abatement process and leave the site owner with no choice.
Cal OES hopes to be finished with all debris removal by the end of the year.