Lee County Commission dicusses status of cleanup from March 3 tornadoes


By Michelle Key

The main topic of Monday night’s county commission meeting was the clean-up and recovery efforts from the March 3 tornadoes.
City Engineer Justin Hardee informed the commission that more than 150,000 cubic yards of vegetation debris has been picked up from the county right of ways. Hardee explained that it is anticipated that the debris removal company will complete their initial pass of the affected areas by the end of this week and will then stop operations for a week. Workers will return to the area and it is tentatively planned for them to make a second pass of the area starting the Tuesday after Easter. This will allow land owners more time to continue to move debris from their property to the county right of ways for pick up.
Julie Garrett from the Small Business Administration office of Disaster Assistance also gave an update.
According to Garrett, approved SBA disaster loans now total $1,649,200. Thirty-five loans have been approved and records indicate that 49 people that have been referred to the SBA for a disaster loan have not yet applied. Garrett explained that it is important for those individuals to apply for the disaster loans so that they can remain in the FEMA pipeline should they not be approved for the loan.
Additional grant consideration from FEMA is only available for those that have completed the SBA loan applications. These funds can be used for those things that one’s insurance may not cover.
The SBA Center is open to assist people from 8 a.m. to 5 p,m. at theSUSCC campus. Call 800-659-2955 to request a paper application or apply online at www.disasterloan.sba.gov
In other business, the commission:
• approved a restaurant retail liquor license application for Backyard Bar N Grill
• approved a single event use liquor license for Twenty-One Acres
• Roger Rendleman notified the commission that the contract for the sale of the land in Beauregard is expiring and that the buyer has indicated that they will not seek further extension of the contract due to financing difficulties
• Commissioner Johnny Lawerence informed the commission that a dedication ceremony for the Bennie G. Adkins Meeting Center will be April 26 at 1 p.m.
• Rendleman discussed the possibility of placing the Railroad Avenue property up for sale or for lease in the future.


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