The Ottawa County Emergency Management is operating an Outreach Center in the Reiman and Trowbridge roads area. First aid, and information on cleanup and debris collection sites will be available.
In addition, The Salvation Army will operate a canteen at the Outreach Center, with food and beverages for residents and workers involved in the cleanup.
The Genoa Athletic Complex will be the clearing house for lost and found.
Assistance needs and volunteer efforts are being coordinated through the American Red Cross and the Ottawa County Emergency Management Agency.
Residents with specific needs are encouraged to contact Ottawa County EMA at 419-734-6900 or United Way 2-1-1 (dial 2-1-1 or 800-650-4357).
Residents/businesses are reminded that debris should be sorted and placed at the edge of the road in following categories:
• Steel/scrap metal
• Yard waste
• Clean wood waste
• Brick, block and concrete waste.
County and township road crews will conduct roadside pickups of materials, which will be taken to the centralized debris site located at Allen Elementary School. Residents should not take materials to the site on their own.
Regular household trash will not be accepted as part of the effort. Regular trash pickup services should be used for these need.
Permits are required from the Ottawa County Building Department for repair of damage. Any questions, or to verify contractors, call the office at 419-734-6767.
The Attorney General’s Office offers the following tips for consumers choosing a contractor after a disaster:
• Find out all you can about the contractor. Identify his or her name, address and phone number before signing any contractors. Check the complaint history with the Attorney General’s Office or the local Better Business Bureau.
• Be cautious of a contractor who does not provide proper identification, does not have a local permanent place of business, cannot provide references or demands a large up-front payment.
• Never sign over your insurance check to a contractor. Arrange with your bank for a Certificate of Completion.
• Get written estimates from more than one contractor.
• Never sign any document until you understand its purpose and all blanks are filled in. Insist on a copy of every document you sign.
• Before paying any bill, ask the contractor to provide you with a sworn statement that all materials have been paid for an that all subcontractors have been paid.
• Residents are encouraged to contact their insurance agent for information as it relates to their homeowner’s or rental supplemental coverage, which might include temporary housing, food spoilage and replacement/repair of property. Individuals with automobile or vehicle damage should also contact their agents.
Ottawa County Auditor Jo Ellen Regal advises property owners with buildings either damaged or destroyed by the tornado to complete an Application for Valuation Deduction For Destroyed or Damaged Real Property Form (DTE Form 26). The form is available from the auditor’s office at 419-734-6740.