Senator Mark Kirk tours Washington tornado damage

By WEEK Producer

November 26, 2013 Updated Nov 26, 2013 at 8:16 PM CDT

WASHINGTON, Ill. -- State and federal officials said they are making progress in removing debris from Washington.

U.S. Senator Mark Kirk joined Washington Mayor Gary Mainer and the director of the Illinois Emergency Management Agency in the tornado ravaged town on Tuesday.

IDOT and public works crews have been working around the clock to clear debris. They say so far almost 2,000 tons have been removed.

An application for federal funding has been submitted and officials hope they will have an answer soon.

"We're hoping to have an answer before Thanksgiving for individual assistance and that's assistance specifically for individual homeowners and businesses for federal money, that's grants and low interest loans depending on the situation,” said Jonathon Monken of IEMA. “The next important step is to make sure people are registering."

Monken said along with getting the debris cleared, the weather is a big concern for progress. If a big winter storm hits, it may halt the rebuilding process which, for some, could begin this week.