Morenci city council 7.16

Written by David Green.

By DAVID GREEN

Complaints from neighbors on W. Congress Street led police to the discovery of about 20 cats in a home—nearly all infected with either feline leukemia or giardia, or both.

Morenci Chief of Police Larry Weeks told council members Monday about a situation in the 200 block of W. Congress Street that resulted in the removal of the animals.

Weeks said the city doesn’t have regulations regarding cats as it does for dogs, but he took action due to health concerns. Because the giardia parasite can be passed on to humans, he believed there was a potential health hazard to people in the neighborhood.

He cited the city’s “emergency abatement” ordinance that allowed him to take immediate action.

About 20 cats were seized and nearly all tested positive for one or both of the diseases. Only four survived.

Concern was expressed that not all of the resident’s cat were in the house at the time, so Weeks gave neighbors permission to live trap cats and then call the police department for removal and testing.

Weeks said he’s looking at potential criminal charges for animal neglect. The county health department has offered to help the cat owner if she chooses to receive it.

Weeks said giardia causes stomach cramps and loss of appetite, but it’s not life-threatening and can be cured with antibiotics.

Weeks was assisted by county animal control officers and Dr. Sherilyn Shoemaker of Morenci Veterinary Clinic. Weeks urged council members to send a note of thanks to Dr. Shoemaker.

She was under no obligation to help, he said, but as a member of the community, she felt it was her duty to assist.

“I hope people will praise her efforts and proactive role in protecting the health of the community,” he said.

CONTRACT—Council members approved a three-year contract with the DPW union, calling for a three percent wage increase each year. The pact increases employee’s co-pay for medications and requires employees to contribute more to their retirement account in order to receive the full six percent contribution from the city.

LEASE—Council voted to renew a property lease to TNG Technologies for the city-owned industrial building on Chestnut Street, behind Wakefield Park.

The company will pay $2,000 a month for a two-year lease, plus a late fee of $250 a month, if applicable. The contract includes an at-will early termination clause with a 60-day notice.

Because the company is in arrears in rent currently, the city agreed to a $7,000 promissory note that must be repaid within 12 months.

REVIEW—The Board of Review will meet at 9:30 a.m. July 23 to consider errors and omissions only.

CANDIDATE—County road commission candidate Don Isley was present at the council meeting, urging those in attendance to consider his past experience on the commission.

RIVERSIDE—The Bean/Tiffin Watershed Coalition was named to coordinate volunteer projects at Riverside Natural Area. David Green was named as the contact person and he will inform city superintendent Barney Vanderpool of any projects.

An Eagle Scout candidate intends to do work at the park, including construction of a picnic table.

  • Front.bridge Cross
    STEP BY STEP—Wyatt Stevens of Morenci makes his way across a rope bridge Sunday during the Michigan DNR’s Great Outdoors Jamboree at Lake Hudson Recreation Area. The Tecumseh Boy Scout Troop constructed the bridge again this year after taking a break in 2016. The Jamboree offered a variety of activities for a wide range of age groups. Morenci’s Stair District Library set up activities again this year and had visits with dozens of kids. See the back page for additional photos.
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    LEADING THE WAY—The Morenci Area High School marching band led the way across the pedestrian bridge on Morenci’s south side for the annual Labor Day Bridge Walk. The Band Boosters shared profits from the sale of T-shirts with the walk’s sponsor, the Morenci Area Chamber of Commerce. Additional photos are on the back page.
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    LOOKING UP—More than 200 people showed up at Stair District Library Monday afternoon to view the big celestial event with free glasses provided by a grant from the Space Science Institute. The library offered craft activities from noon to 1 p.m., refreshments including Cosmic Cake from Zingerman’s Bakehouse and a live viewing of the eclipse from NASA on a large screen. As the sky darkened slightly, more and more people moved outside to the sidewalk to take a look at the shrinking sun. If you missed it, hang on for the next total eclipse in 2024 as the path comes even closer to this area.
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    THE MAYOR—Cecil Schoonover poses with a collection of garden gnomes that mysteriously arrive and disappear from his property. Along with the gnomes, someone created the sign stating that he is the Mayor of Gnomesville. He hasn’t yet tracked down the people involved in the prank, but he’s having a good time with the mystery.
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    TAKE A BREAK—Last Wednesday’s session of Stair District Library’s Summer Reading Program ended with a quiet period in a class presented by yoga instructor Melany Gladieux of Toledo. Children learned a variety of yoga poses in the main room at the library, then finished off the session relaxing. Additional photos are on page 7. Area children are invited to visit the library today when the Michigan Science Center presents a flight program at 11 a.m. and roller coasters at 1 p.m.
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    THE DERBY—Tyler “Smallpox” Flakne of Minnesota’s Home Run League All-Stars goes for the fence Friday night during the National Wiffle League Association’s home run derby in Morenci. This year the wiffleball national tournament moved from Dublin, Ohio, to Morenci’s Wakefield Park. During the derby, competitors had two minutes to hit as many home runs as possible. The winner this year finished with 21. See page 6 and 7 for additional photos.
  • Front.green Screen
    OUT OF THIS WORLD—Elizabeth McFadden and Elise Christle pose in front of the green screen as VolunTeen Noah Gilson makes them appear as though they are standing on the Moon. More photos from the Stair District Library’s NASA @ My Library program are on page 12.
  • Front.fireworks
    FIREWORKS erupt Saturday night over Morenci’s Wakefield Park during the waning hours of the Town and Country Festival. Additional festival photos are inside.
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