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.

Waldron cancels contract for code enforcer 7.23

Written by David Green.

Waldron’s effort to employ a code officer came to an end July 8 when council members voted to void the contract.

Council voted in October 2007 to hire Morenci police officer Don Thompson on a part-time basis to occasionally visit the village to check for code violations, such as lawn maintenance issues, junk cars and loose dogs.

Thompson’s work with the village never  got into full swing, clerk Ruth Hotchkiss said, and the contract was nullified. Only council member Roy Hall voted against the motion.

Thompson was hired on a six-month trial contract to spend a minimum of three hours in the village whenever he made a visit. He was also to be deputized by the Hillsdale County Sheriff’s Department and serve as a police officer when he was in the village.

Council will review the code officer plan with the village attorney, Hotchkiss said, and if approved, advertise again for an officer.

Several letters need to be mailed to property owners about tall grass and weeds. It was noted at the June meeting that only one warning letter is to be mailed. If the situation isn’t corrected, a village employee will mow the lawn and the cost will be added to the property owner’s tax bill.

MOWER—Council voted to spend $1,911 to buy a new motor for the village lawn mower from Chad Smig. Three estimates were received.

HANDBOOK—Information will be collected about the duties of village employees and turned over to the Ordinance and Legal Committee for review.

WINDMILL—The new windmill aerator at the park pond is not operating properly. A chemical will be purchased to deal with an algae problem.

SALARY—At the June 10 meeting, council members approved a pay increase to $7.65  an hour for part-time employee Dennis Hopkins.

Motions to increase his pay to $8 an hour and to $7.55 an hour both failed on 3-4 votes, but the $7.65 motion went through by a 6-1 vote, with Jeff Bernath voting against it.

SOIL—A pile of topsoil will be placed near the village maintenance building for residents to use.

MILLAGE—Council voted unanimously to leave the millage rate of 10.9812 unchanged for the 2008-09 fiscal year.

DRAINS—All storm drains will be located and recorded so an accurate list will be available in the village office. Cleaning of drains is needed.

BANK BUILDING—Arrangements are still being worked out for the sale of the former Bank of Lenawee building to the village for a nominal $1 fee. The Waldron branch of the bank was closed when the Bank of Lenawee was sold to First Federal Bank.

Hotchkiss said as of now there are no firm plans for how the building will be used.

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