Morenci city council weighs tower land lease offer 3.19

Written by David Green.

Morenci city council members discussed Thursday an offer from SBA Communications for a lump sum payment for lease of land in Morenci’s industrial park.

SBA offered to pay $67,000 for a 30-year lease. The company currently pays $5,700 annually, subject to a 15 percent increase every five years.

City auditor Phil Rubley favored the lump payment, but council members decided last week to ask for $75,000 for the 30-year lease.

The 300-foot tower was erected for Verizon in 2001.

Council approved an agreement with the Michigan Department of Corrections for the occasional use of prison labor crews from the Gus Harrison Facility.

The rate is $30 per prisoner for crews working eight hours a day or $37.50 for 10-hour days, plus 38 cents a mile transportation cost to Morenci.

  • Front.splash
    Water Fun—Carter Seitz and Colson Walter take a fast trip along a plastic sliding strip while water from a sprinkler provides the lubrication. The boys took a break from tie-dyeing last week at Morenci’s Summer Recreation Program to cool off in the water.
  • Front.starting
    BIKE-A-THON—Children in Morenci’s Summer Recreation Program brought their bikes last Tuesday to participate in a bike-a-thon. Riders await the start of the event at the elementary school before being led on a course through town by organizer Leonie Leahy.
  • Front.drum
    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.
  • Front.art.park
    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.
  • Front.train
    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

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