Council election: Candidates needed 2013.05.08

Written by David Green.

This isn't the first time that Morenci has become the town where no one wanted to be mayor. At least that's the way it's looking as the deadline approaches for candidates to file petitions. With the May 14 filing date just around the corner, no one has turned in a petition to run for mayor and no one has filed to fill any of the three expiring city council positions.

That situation could change quickly—people often wait until the end in hopes of seeing who else might be filing—but it does seem likely that at least one appointment is on the horizon. It's not easy coming up with four citizens willing to give up a lot of their free time to help lead city government.

That's the sort of candidate we would hope to see on the ballot—someone who would take the job seriously and give it more time than a mere appearance at a council meeting twice a month.

That's not the only situation where city residents are sought. Less than a week remains before the deadline passes to sign up for a seat on the commission to consider changing Morenci's City Charter. Despite newspaper stories, public notices and talk around town, only one person has returned a petition, leaving the commission short by eight members.

We wonder if this indicates a general lack of interest in changing the charter. It's a time-consuming project that comes with some cost, but maybe it won't happen at all if few people want to tackle the project.

Reasons to update the charter include removing some terms that no longer apply—such as the word “constable”—and changing the way city government works so that department heads—the city supervisor and the police chief—would report to the administrator instead of to city council as is done now. By state law, the library director reports to the library board of directors.

The way it looks now, changing the charter isn't going to happen, either from disinterest or a sense that it shouldn't be done. Eight more commissioners are needed, with only six days remaining.

 

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    LATEST CRAZE—David Cortes (left) and Ty Kruse, along with Jerred Heselschwerdt (standing), consult their smartphones while engaging in the game of Pokémon Go. The virtual scavenger hunt comes to life when players are in the vicinity of gyms, such as Stair District Library, and PokéStops such as the fire station across the street. The boys had spent time Monday morning searching for Pokémon at Wakefield Park.
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    on your mark, get set, drum!—Drew Joughin (black shirt), Maddox Joughin and Kaleea Braun took the front row last week when Angela Rettle and assistants led the Stair District Library Summer Reading Program kids in a session of cardio drumming. The sports and healthy living theme continued yesterday with a Mini Jamboree at Lake Hudson State Park arranged by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. Next week’s program features the Flying Aces Frisbee show.
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    NADIYA YORK and Aniston Valentine take a spin on the Casino, one of the rides offered at Wakefield Park during Morenci’s Town and Country Festival. This year’s festival remained dry but with plenty of heat during the three-day run. Additional photographs are inside this week’s Observer.
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    Angela Davis (2) and teammate Allison VanBrandt break into a jig after Morenci's softball team won its third consecutive regional title.
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    ART PARK—A design created by Poggemeyer Design Group shows a “pocket art park” in the green space south of the State Line Observer building. The proposal includes a 12-foot sculpture based on a design created by Morenci sixth grade student Klara Wesley through a school and library collaboration. A wooden band shell is located at the back of the lot. The Observer wall would be covered with a synthetic stucco material. City council members are considering ways to fund the estimated $125,000 project and perhaps tackling construction one step at a time.
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    WRECKAGE—Morenci Fire Department member Taylor Schisler walks past the smoking wreckage of a semi-truck tractor on the north side of the Norfolk and Southern Railroad tracks on Ranger Highway. The truck trailer was on the south side of the tracks
  • Funcolor
    LEONIE LEAHY was one of three local hair stylists who volunteered time Friday at the Morenci PTO Fun Night. Her customer, Aubrey Sandusky, looks up at her mother while her hair takes on a perfect match to her outfit. Leahy said she had a great time at the event—nothing but happy clients.
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    IN THE FIELD—2004 Morenci graduate Kayse Onweller works in a test plot of wheat in Texas. She’s part of Bayer CropScience’s North American wheat breeding program based in Nebraska, where she completed post-graduate work in plant breeding and genetics.
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    BEVY OF BALLS—Stair District Library Summer Reading Program VolunTeens, including Libby Rorick, back left and Ty Kruse, back right, threw a dozen inflatable soccer balls into the crowd during a reading of “Sergio Saves the Game.” The sports-themed program continues on Wednesdays through July 27.
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