Dickinson Harvey victims threatened with fines over storm debris

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THE COUNTDOWN BEGINS: The City of Dickinson says dozens of families have only 30 days to get the debris left by Harvey off their property, or they'll face fines to be levied by a judge.

More than seven months after Hurricane Harvey, Dickinson is cracking down on those who still haven't cleaned debris piles.

Earlene Harvour's pile started a couple weeks ago after a group of volunteers gutted her home. While she's thankful the walls, tile, and trash are removed, she can't believe the action the city took.

Last week, she received a warning citation saying she has 30 days to remove the debris.

"We won't get in to what I said," Harvour said. "We won't do that."

In all, the city said it handed 60 families the same warning.

A spokesperson said the piles and flooded vehicles go against city ordinance related to improper waste and disposal.

Jose Martinez was shocked when a notice appeared on his door.

"Last year has been rough," Martinez said. "It's been seven months now and we're still recovering from it."

Instead of fighting it, Martinez returned home Tuesday to clean.

"I understand where they're coming from because I don't like to see a trashy neighborhood either, but I think they should provide us with a place to go dump it," Martinez said.

Cleaning the debris isn't cheap for Harvey survivors we spoke with. Taking a truckload to the local dump costs $80.

To rent a dumpster, it's $380 for delivery and setup, $32 per ton and $3 a day to use it.

A city spokesperson said if issues aren't corrected, staff may begin issuing citations and the penalty will be established by a judge.

While some plan to meet the 30-day deadline, Harvour is at a standstill just weeks after volunteers helped her remove trash.

"I'm still thankful that they came and helped us," Harvour said. "I am regretting that the city is taking the attitude that they're taking about this whole thing."
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societyroad to recoveryhurricane harveystorm damagegarbageDickinson
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