Tri-City Clothing cleanup will likely fall on taxpayers' shoulde - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Tri-City Clothing cleanup will likely fall on taxpayers' shoulders

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WATERLOO (KWWL) -

The  city of Waterloo is now making decisions on what to do with a large pile of rubble that's been collecting garbage for almost a year.

The rubble, once Tri-City Clothing on Logan Avenue, is a result of a large fire that happened in December.

The fire is believed to be started by a space heater issue.

It took crews hours to put out, and a large part of the mess is still there.

It's important to remember the mess is technically the landlords responsibility -- not the business owners of Tri-City.

The landlord has refused to finish the job, now the city is tackling the problem, which means the clean-up will ultimately fall on the shoulders of taxpayers.

The city will most likely be footing a $17,000 bill.

Quentin Hart, the councilman in charge of the ward where Tri-City once was, is frustrated about the mess.

"This person has profited from having this business here over the course of years, our citizens deserve more than that landlord leaving that junk here," said Hart.

Hart says the landlord has left the city no choice, the mess has been there long enough.

"Listen in the background, you can hear children playing. It's dangerous and it's disrespectful to our community, and now the city has to take care of it," he said.

Which ultimately means money out of taxpayers' pockets.

The current and only bid for the clean-up is going at $175 per ton.

With about 100 tons of garbage, if the bid is followed through, it'll cost close to $17,000 for the clean-up.

To put that in perspective, Hart says it costs only around $7-8 thousand to clean up houses.

Hart says once the clean-up is secured, they'll be searching for a way to recuperate the money lost.

Also adding to the cost, although the city isn't certain the rubble contains asbestos, they have to treat it as such.

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