Downtown Morenci grants 6.24.09

Written by David Green.

Several downtown businesses showing improvements in their storefronts are getting a financial boost through the Morenci Downtown Development Authority (DDA).

DDA officer Tim Decker told city council members Monday that the $2,000 set aside for the project has all been allocated.

Businesses were invited to apply for grants of up to $250 to pay for materials for façade improvements.

“Our goal was to provide $2,000,” Decker said, “and we accomplished what we wanted to do.”

Decker told council members the DDA board also voted to provide $500 should the city choose to improve the drive along the north side of Johnson Hardware and behind the Pizza Box.

There’s a standing water issue that needs to be addressed, Decker said, and city supervisor Barney Vanderpool is examining the problem.

Decker explained that the DDA captures increases in taxable value of all property located within the DDA zone. The city and council continues to receive the base tax money that was in place when the DDA zone was established; only increases go to the DDA.

Decker said it will take several decades for the DDA fund to grow large enough to tackle a major project, but the group would like to continue aiding city projects.

Chamber sidebar

The Morenci DDA isn’t the only group offering cash to help out businesses. The Morenci Area Chamber of Commerce has its own grant program.

Members voted to create a pool of $1,000 to help Chamber member businesses enhance the appearance of buildings. Grants up to $250 are available for any eligible project for reimbursement of materials. The funds are not to be used for labor.

The deadline to apply for a grant is July 7 and applications will be considered at the chamber’s July 9 meeting at noon at the Pizza Box. Projects must be completed by Sept. 1.

 Application forms for Chamber members are available from Renée Schroeder at City Hall.

  • 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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    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.
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    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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