The Weekly Newspaper serving the citizens of Morenci, Mich., Fayette, Ohio, and surrounding areas.

  • Front.cheers
    MACEE BEERS joins other Fayette Elementary School students for the annual Mini-Cheer performance during the half-time break at the basketball game.
  • Family.3.wide
    CHILDREN at Stair District Library’s Family Story Time toss scarves into the air during an activity. The evening program provided a mix of stories, songs, dancing, crafts and snacks Monday evening. The program is offered at 5:30 p.m. every Monday for five more weeks. The program is designed for three to five year olds and their family.
  • Front.newpaper.2
    THE INTERVIEW—Evelyn Joughin (right) records the interaction with an iPad while Jack Varga, next to her, asks questions of Morenci Elementary School principal Gail Frey. Morenci senior Sam Cool (standing) listens. Cool serves as the editor for the newspaper written by members of Mrs. Barrett’s second grade class.
  • Front.code.2
    WRITING CODE—Brock Christle (left), a Morenci fifth grade student, takes a look at the progress being made by fourth grader Anthony Lewis. Libby Rorick, a sixth grade student, is next in a line of girls trying out the coding tutorials. This year marked Morenci’s second year of participation in the Hour of Code project.
  • Front.gym.new
    REMIE RYAN (left) tries to dodge the foam wand held by Hayden Bays during physical education class at Morenci Elementary School. In the background, Lauryn Dominique and Brooklyn Williams stay clear of the tag. Second grade students were working on cardiovascular health on the first day back from vacation. For the record, Safety Tag is a very difficult sport to photograph.
  • Front.lift
    MORENCI student Dalton McCowan puts everything into a dead lift attempt Saturday morning during the Wyseguy Push/Pull event. Lifters helped raise more than $1,600 for the family of the late Devin Wyse, a former Morenci power-lifter who graduated last year. Commemorative T-shirts are still available by contacting teacher Dan Hoffman.
  • Front.library.books
    MACK DICKSON takes a book off the “blind date” cart at the Fayette library. Patrons can choose a book without knowing what’s inside other than a general category. The books are among those designated for removal so patrons can consider them gifts. In Morenci, new books and staff favorites were chosen from the stacks and must be returned. Patrons get a piece of chocolate, too, to take on their date, but no clue about their “date.” One reader said she really enjoyed her book for a few pages, but then lost interest—so typical for a blind date.

3.17.10 Julie Weatherington: Aquifer designation concerns not justified

Written by David Green.

At the January 13, 2010, US EPA public hearing in Bryan, Ohio, for the MICHINDOH Sole Source Aquifer (SSA) which I attended, there were a number of farm families, elected officials and farm bureau representatives who expressed grave concerns that SSA designation would impact USDA cost-share funding to agricultural practices.

I have contacted Soil & Water Conservation Districts, NRCS District Conservationists and a Farm Services Agency in Miami, Montgomery, and Preble counties in southwest Ohio where they have had the Great Miami-Mad River Buried Valley Aquifer SSA designation for 23 years.

I am pleased to report that there is no impact or hold-up for distributing USDA cost-share funds for any farm whether in or out of the SSA boundary. This is also true for the Western Allen County (OH) SSA (1992) in northwest Ohio. I called the NRCS Ohio State Office and was told that not only would there be no hold-up for funds, but that there would be extra consideration for farms in the SSA boundaries. This agrees with information from Ohio EPA and US EPA as well.

Furthermore, rules and laws of Ohio would not be imposed on Michigan or Indiana.  In addition, only under the SSA designation do private wells in rural areas get protection under the federal Safe Drinking Water Act.

This is the program that is implemented by state EPAs and DEQs which many at the hearing thought already protected them. Without designation, there is NO federal protection for private wells.

Also, the petition process creates a cost for replacement value for the aquifer that is certified by the federal government. This is a valuable and free insurance policy to everyone in the SSA boundaries. In case their ground water supply is contaminated, there is already a value established for the cost of replacement.

With this good news, I am sure that all of the farmers, local elected officials and farm bureau representatives will want to change their objections to one of full support. This is a great gift to all of the people of the MICHINDOH SSA.

– Julie Weatherington-Rice, PhD

Certified Professional Geologist

Certified Professional Soil Scientist 

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