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.

  • 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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