Morenci city council 6.3.09

Written by David Green.

By DAVID GREEN

With home foreclosures on the rise, the incidence of unkept lawns is also increasing.

“We’re starting to get a lot of complaints,” said city administrator/clerk Renée Schroeder. “There are a lot of foreclosed homes.”

The DPW is operating with a smaller crew than in past years, she said, and currently one worker is out for health reasons. This is making it hard for city workers to handle the mowing at vacant properties.

City council members voted at a rescheduled meeting Thursday to allow city supervisor Barney Vanderpool to seek bids from lawn maintenance companies to handle the task. Vanderpool was given permission to choose the least expensive qualified company when the 10-inch length for grass and weeds is violated.

The property owner will be billed, and if  not paid, the cost will be added as a lien on the property taxes.

EMS—Council hired Chief of Police Larry Weeks to also serve as the Morenci Area EMS administrator, taking over the part-time position from Cindy Lazarz who is giving the position up at the end of the month.

Weeks was involved in several aspects of public safety in a previous job, Schroeder said, and she believes he will do well in this role. Township board members also approved of hiring Weeks.

The administrator’s duties include, for example, filing reports, working with the Lenawee County Medical Control office, billing, working on the annual budget and attending board meetings.

BUDGET—Council approved the city budget for the next fiscal year totaling $2.456 million. This represents an increase of $8,153 from a year ago.

Three-percent wage increase are included for hourly employees and lump-sum increases for department heads. The city will realize some health care savings by increasing the co-pay for for name-brand medications.

BRIDGE—Council approved a resolution to reapply for bridge replacement funding for the Silver Creek bridge on the east end of town. Weight restrictions continue to be placed on the Main Street structure due to maintenance needs.

Funds will be sought through the Local Bridge Program—one of three funding programs through which the city is attempting to secure funds for replacement.

STREET REPAIR—Wenn Seal Coating and Striping will be paid $6,500 to fill cracks on Main Street. The entire length of the street is included in the contract, with the exception of the state-owned portion from the stoplight to the caution light.

FIREWORKS—Council approved a $5,000 fireworks contract with Colonial Fireworks for June 27 during the Town and Country Festival.

Joe Farquhar is collecting donations to pay for the show.

  • Homecoming Court
    HOMECOMING—One senior candidate will be chosen Morenci’s fall homecoming queen during half-time ceremonies Friday at the football field. In the back row are seniors Mikayla Price, who will be escorted by Mason Vaughn; Madison Bachman, escorted by Kiegan Merillat, and Mikayla Reinke, escorted by Griffin Grieder. Senior Ariana Roseman is absent from the photo. Her escort is Garrett Smith. In the front is sophomore Abbie White, who will be escorted by Ryder Price; junior Madysen Schmitz, escorted by Harley McCaskey and freshman Madison Keller, escorted by Jarett Cook.
  • Front.cross
    HUDSON RUNNER Jacob Morgan looks toward the top of the hill with dismay during the tough finish at Harrison Lake State Park. Fayette runner Jacob Garrow focuses on the summit, also, during the Eagle Invitational cross country run Saturday morning. Continuing rain and drizzle made the course even more challenging. Results of the race are in this week’s Observer.
  • Front.bear
    HOLDEN HUTCHISON gives a hug to a black bear cub—the product of a taxidermist’s skills—at the Michigan DNR’s Great Youth Jamboree. The event on Sunday marked the fourth year of the Jamboree. Additional photos are on page 12.
  • Front.crossing
    Crossing over—Jim Heiney was given a U.S. flag to carry by George Vereecke (behind Jim in the hat), turning him into the leader of the parade. Bridge Walk participants cross over Bean Creek while, in the background, members of the Morenci Legion Riders cross the main traffic bridge on East Street South. Additional photos appear on the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.hose Testing
    HOSE safety—The FireCatt hose testing company from Troy put Morenci Fire Department hose to the test Monday morning when Mill Street was closed to traffic. The company also checks nozzles and ladders for wear in an effort to keep fire fighters safe while on calls.
  • 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.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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