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

  • KayseInField
    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.
  • Front.winner
    REFEREE Camden Miller raises the hand of Morenci Jr. Dawgs wrestler Ryder Ryan as his opponent leaves the mat in disappointment. Morenci’s youth wrestling program served as host for a tournament Saturday morning to raise money for the club. Additional photos are on the back page.
  • Front.bank.2
    SHERWOOD STATE Bank opened its Fayette office at a grand opening Friday morning, drawing a large crowd to view the renovated building. Above, Burt Blue talks to teller Cindy Funk, while his wife, Jackie, looks around the new office. The Blues missed the opening and took a quick tour on Tuesday. Few traces remain of the former grocery store and theater, however, part of the original brick wall still shows in the hallway leading to the back of the building. The drive-through window should be ready for customers later in the month.
  • Front.carry.casket
    CARRYING—Riley Terry (blue jacket) and Mason Vaughn lead the way, carrying an empty casket outside to the hearse waiting at the curb. Morenci juniors and seniors visited Eagle Funeral Home last week to learn about the role of a funeral director and to understand the process of arranging for a funeral.
  • 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.make.three
    FROM THE LEFT, Landon Wilkins, Ryan White and Logan Blaker try out their artistic skills Saturday afternoon at the Morenci PTO’s first Date to Create event. More than 50 people showed up to create decorated planks of wood to hang from rope. The event served as a fund-raiser for miscellaneous PTO projects. Additional photos are on the back of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.F.office
    NEW OFFICES—Fayette village administrator Steve Blue speaks with tax administrator Genna Biddix at the new front desk of the village office. Village council members voted to use budgeted renovation funds targeted for the old office and instead buy the vacant bank building on the corner of Main and Fayette streets. The old office was sold to Sherwood State Bank. When everything is put into place in the spacious new village office, an open house will be scheduled. Council member David Wheeler donated all of his time needed to make changes in the bank interior to fit the Village’s needs.

Fayette council to seek levy renewals 12.19

Written by David Green.

Fayette’s long-running 2.9-mill operational levy hasn’t changed since 1968, and it’s not going to change for the next five years, either.

Council members voted 4-1 Thursday, with council Gerry Gonzales absent, to seek a five-year renewal of the levy. The option to replace the levy would have increased revenue by updating the levy to current property values.

Council will also seek a renewal of the 2.0-mill park levy.

Village administrator Tom Spiess told councilors of the need for replacement, noting the vast increases of costs for goods and services since 1968. To top it off, he received a note from Toledo Edison that day informing him of an impending end to discounted rates for water and sewer plants.

That communication arrived just as council members struggle to create a balanced budget.

Councilor Ruth Marlatt pushed for replacement.

“Let the voters decide if they can handle it,” she said.

If the measure is turned down in May, it could be placed back on the November ballot as a renewal measure.

Craig Rower noted the increase in sewer rates ahead due to the separation project and said he can’t justify raising taxes for village residents.

Paul Shaffer said eventually people won’t be able to afford to live in Fayette, nor will anyone want to move to the community.

“At what point are we going to tax people out of town?” Rower asked.

Marlatt responded to a comment about fears of the group becoming a tax-and-spend council by noting the cuts already taken. The village has a part-time police chief, is considering a part-time administrator, and is cutting back on workers’ hours.

“And you think we’re going to tax and spend?”

Fiscal officer Lisa Zuver told council that most property tax revenue goes into the general fund and noted the village is already $6,000 behind in revenue.

“It’s not like we’re trying to increase the millage,” Ken Delphous said. “We’re just trying to put it into today’s dollars.”

He said the money is needed to provide basic services and the village is just squeaking by on a 1968 level of funding.

Replacing the operating levy would increase funding from $19,606 to $43,948, based on information provided by county auditor Nancy Yackee. The owner of a $75,000 home would pay $61 more a year.

Marlatt was the only council member to oppose renewing the operating levy. Council voted unanimously to seek renewal of the park levy.

A request to advance $4,000 to the park board was also turned down. Rower, Shaffer and Mike Maginn opposed the request, stating frustration that board members failed to organize any fund raisers in the past year.

“Provide for yourself before you ask someone for help,” Rower said. “Not a single fund raiser. Nothing was done.”

Weekly newspaper serving SE Michigan and NW Ohio - State Line Observer ©2006-2016