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.

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    Fayette's Demetrious Whiteside (left)Skylar Lester attempt to keep the ball from going out of bounds during Morenci's recent basketball tournament for fourth and fifth grade teams. Morenci's Andrew Schmidt stands by.
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    MORENCI pep rallies generally end with a tug of war. The senior class entry, shown above, did not advance to the finals. Griffin Grieder, Alaina Webster, Kyle Long and Jazmin Smith are shown at the front of the rope, giving it their best effort.
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  • Athletic Fields
    SPORTS COMPLEX—Fayette’s outdoor athletic facilities will include three ball fields for summer recreation leagues at the southwest corner of the school. The baseball and softball fields, along with the running track, will be constructed on the east side of the school. Outdoor athletic fields were not part of the new school project from 2007, but voters approved a $1.4 million levy for a school addition and the sports fields last August. Both projects are scheduled to be complete by July 20.
  • Front.teacher Leading
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  • Front.F.band
    TROMBONISTS Jake Myers (left) and Max Baker perform Friday at the annual Senior Citizens Luncheon at Fayette High School. The National Honor Society and the FFA chapter teamed up to serve a meal to area seniors and to provide musical entertainment. Both the school band and choir performed. Additional photos are on page 7 of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.poles
    MOVING EAST—Utility workers continue their slow progress east along U.S. 20 south of Morenci. New electrical poles are put in place before wiring is moved into place.

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