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.

ProMedica moves forward with health service plans for Morenci 5.28.09

Written by David Green.

By DAVID GREEN

ProMedica Health Systems will move forward with plans to move its Morenci services into the Charles Fay Manor building.

ProMedica awaits word from the Morenci city council stating its preference for the former hospital building.

After ProMedica abandons the building, the structure will likely be donated to the city or else the building will be demolished and the land donated to the city.

Board support for the donation has been discussed, said ProMedica senior vice-president for continuing care Lori Johnston, but final approval is still needed.

Johnston said the company will move ahead with a survey of the land and a Phase I environmental scan.

“We’re working on preliminary plans for moving the senior center and Dr. Gray’s office,” she said. “We haven’t figured out all the logistics, but [Dr. Gray’s office] is very supportive. They really struggle with accessibility issues.”

Johnston said the board is quite certain of its position on the hospital building.

“We’ve come to the point where we know we need to move,” she said.  “It doesn’t make sense to invest money in that building.”

“Everything is very preliminary, but we would like to complete the move by the end of the year.”

Johnston acknowledged that the Fay Manor looks like a real mess after a water leak over the winter, but it can probably be refurbished in about 60 days.

The kitchen needs to be enlarged, she said, and partitioning of some areas is needed.

Old hospital

If the city doesn’t have an interest in using or leasing the hospital building, ProMedica would have the structure demolished and donate approximately five acres of land to the city.

The donation would come with some restrictions, Johnston said. ProMedica would not want anything that would compete with its existing services. The board would want to examine suggested services before allowing them.

A nursing home would be acceptable, she said, but radiology might not because in the future, physicians might offer that service in their offices.

Council member Tracy Schell asked if there was a time constraint on when the city would need to decide whether or not to accept the hospital building.

Once ProMedica has moved out, they won’t want to continue maintaining it, Johnston said.

Schell asked if ProMedica would consider giving the city cash totaling the expected cost of demolition ($200,000). That would give the city additional time to attempt a lease.

Johnston said she would have to check with the board. She noted that liability for the building and the cost of maintaining it would go to the city if that approach were taken.

Council member Keith Pennington asked for clarification on the term “green space.” Any environmental issues would be taken care of, Johnston said, and the land would be graded and seeded. Details would be more specific in a contract.

The city attorney will study the final paperwork before council makes a decision, Pennington said.

ProMedica will continue with its plans, Johnston said, but needs direction from the city.

City administrator/clerk Renée Schroeder said she’s heard a suggestion to turn the building into a fitness center and another to create apartments. Neither was a proposal with any money behind the suggestion, but only ideas.

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