Massive Clean Up Under Way in Westerly - ABC6 - Providence, RI and New Bedford, MA News, Weather

Massive Clean Up Under Way in Westerly

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By: Melissa Toupin

Cleaning up and digging out in hard hit Westerly.

Bulldozers scraping the debris which buried the Misquamicut beach area following Hurricane Sandy.

"I have never seen it so bad," said resident Diane Favreau.

Eight companies nation wide bid for the clean up jobs. The town hiring three including two with Rhode Island roots.

"There was a matrix that was given to us that follows the FEMA guideline. So we felt like we followed the process carefully and made a good decision," said Westerly Town Manager Steven Hartford.

Rhode Island based Cherenezia Excavation taking the lead on Crandall St. Today they will fill more than 20 dumpster's. The job putting local residents back to work.

"In this down economy this was like a shot in the arm so to say," said Robert Ferreira, superintendent fro Cherenzia.

With so much debris making for a long road ahead the company hired 10 to 15 new employees. Most of the workers hired from Westerly.

The massive clean up is expected to cost the town several hundred thousand dollars. FEMA will reimburse the town for 75%. Westerly's portion will be around one to two hundred thousand dollars.

"We have an excess of over eight million dollars set aside, in really a rainy day fund, so we have the money," said Hartford. He says tax payers should not anticipate and increase.

Residents like Favreau are excited to be able to see grass and pavement again.

"I think once the debris is moved it won't look as bad. It gives you hope," said Favreau.

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