The Weekly Newspaper serving the citizens of Morenci, Mich., Fayette, Ohio, and surrounding areas.

  • Snow.2
    FIRST SNOW—Heavy, wet flakes piled deep on tree branches—and windshields—as the area received its first significant snowfall of the season. “Usually it begins with a dusting or two,” said George Isobar, Morenci’s observer for the National Weather Service, “but this time it came with a vengeance.” By the end of the day Saturday, a little over four inches of snow was on the ground. Now comes the thaw with temperatures in the 40s and 50s for three days.
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    SKEWERS, gumdrops, and marshmallows are all that’s needed to create interesting shapes and designs for Layla McDowell Saturday at Stair District Library’s “Sculptamania!” Open House. The program featuring design games and materials is one part of a larger project funded by a $7,500 Curiosity Creates grant from Disney and the American Library Association. Additional photos are on page 7.
    Morenci marching band members took to the field Friday night dressed for Halloween during the Bulldog’s first playoff game. Morenci fans had a bit of a scare until the fourth quarter when the Bulldogs scored 30 points to leave Lenawee Christian School behind. Whiteford visits Morenci this Friday for the district championship game. From the left is Clayton Borton, Morgan Merillat and James O’Brien.
    DNA PUZZLE—Mitchell Storrs and Wyatt Mohr tackle a puzzle representing the structure of DNA. There’s only one correct way for all the pieces to fit. It’s one of the new materials that can be used in both biology and chemistry classes, said teacher Loretta Cox.
  • Front.tar.wide
    A TRAFFIC control worker stands in the middle of Morenci’s Main Street Tuesday morning, waiting for the next flow of vehicles to be let through from the west. The dusty gravel surface was sealed with a layer of tar, leaving only the application of paint for new striping. The project was completed in conjunction with county road commission work west of Morenci.
  • Front.pull
    JUNIORS Jazmin Smith and Trevor Corkle struggle against a team from the sophomore class Friday during the annual tug of war at the Homecoming Games pep rally. Even the seniors struggled against the sophomores who won the competition. At the main course of the day, the Bulldog football team struggled against Whiteford in a homecoming loss.
    YOUNG soccer players surived a chilly morning Saturday in Morenci’s PTO league. From the left is Emma Cordts, Wayne Corser, Carter and Levi Seitz, Briella York and Drew Joughin. Two more weeks of soccer remain for this season.
  • Front.ropes
    BOWEN BAUMGARTNER of Morenci makes his way across a rope bridge constructed by the Tecumseh Boy Scout troop Sunday at Lake Hudson Recreation Area. The bridge was one of many challenges, displays and games set up for the annual Youth Jamboree by the Michigan DNR. Additional photos on are the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.homecoming Court
    One of four senior candidates will be crowned the fall homecoming queen during half-time of this week’s Morenci-Whiteford football game. In the back row (left to right) is exchange student Kinga Vidor (her escort will be Caylob Alcock), seniors Alli VanBrandt (escorted by Sam Cool), Larissa Elliott (escorted by Clayton Borton), Samantha Wright (escorted by JJ Elarton) and Justis McCowan (escorted by Austin Gilson), and exchange student Rebecca Rosenberger (escorted by Garrett Smith). Front row freshman court member Allie Kaiser (escorted by Anthony Thomas), sophomore Marlee Blaker (escorted by Nate Elarton) and junior Cheyenne Stone (escorted by Dominick Sell).
  • Front.park.lights
    GETTING READY—Jerad Gleckler pounds nails to secure a string of holiday lights on the side of the Wakefield Park concession stand while other members of the Volunteer Club and others hold them in place. The volunteers showed up Sunday afternoon to string lights at the park. The decorating project will continue this Sunday. Denise Walsh is in charge of the effort this year.
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Fayette village council 7.15.09

Written by David Green.

Fayette’s ordinance regarding fences around swimming pools must be repealed, said a village council member, and he’ll introduce a motion at the next meeting.

Jerry Gonzales said no tickets have been written for violations because the ordinance is not enforceable as written. He said his motion will seek to repeal only the portion of the fence ordinance that pertains to pools.

Since a law is in place that’s not enforced, Gonzales said the village could be found liable in a lawsuit. He said the issue of fencing in a pool should be between a homeowner and the insurance company.

“People will still get into your pool with or without a fence and you’ll still be responsible,” said councilor Julia Ruger.

Village administrator Amy Metz said the issue would first have to go to the zoning board before council voted to repeal.

Village financial officer Lisa Zuver said that fencing around pools may already be a state law.

“If the state has it in place, great,” Gonzales said. “Get it off our backs.”

List the law as being in accord with Ohio Revised Code, he said.

Metz said the intent this year was to notify people of the existing law.

“If it’s our ordinance—and it is because we looked at it years ago—then get rid of it,” Gonzales said.

It leads to selective enforcement, he said.

“The zoning board meets next week. We’ll vote at the next meeting,” he said, “either for something that works or to repeal it.”

COORDINATOR—Gonzales reminded council that the position of maintenance coordinator has been vacant for more than a year and should be filled by the end of this year.

The person chosen will serve as coordinator for the other full-time village maintenance worker.

Gonzales said the position needs to be handled by someone who is part of the  maintenance crew. He said the village administrator can’t fill the role since she isn’t present watching the crew work.

HABITAT—Kristine Clark gave council members an update on the Habitat for Humanity house planned for Fayette, as reported in last week’s Observer.

Clark said construction on the ranch-style home is scheduled to begin Sept. 12 at the corner of S. Gorham and Gamble streets.

Clark said there’s often a perception that a Habitat home is a give-away, but that’s not at all the case. The new home-owners are given a zero percent interest 25-year loan and make monthly payments.

“We had 124 volunteers on our last build,” she said. “We’ll bring a lot of people into the community.”

Certified local contractors are hired for some parts of the construction process, such as heating and plumbing.

LAGOONS—Rip-rap has been spread around the banks of the sewage treatment lagoons and new valves are on order for lagoon number two. The transfer line between the two lagoons needs to be replaced.

LIGHTING—Metz told council she is pursuing a $95,000 grant of federal “stimulus” funds for replacement of lights at the ball fields. Energy efficient lighting would also be installed in the track area and at the tennis courts.

Gonzales voted against the application. He stated his opposition to receiving stimulus funding at a previous meeting.

STOPLIGHT—Police chief Jason Simon told council members that the stoplight is getting expensive to repair. He also said the light is very expensive to operate and that Metz is investigating the availability of more cost-efficient models.

Gonzales stated his opposition to the “silly regulations” of the state highway department. He suggested buying a used stoplight on eBay and installing it overnight.

“Let’s use common sense on this,” he said.

CRUISER—Chief Simon said the 1999 Crown Victoria police cruiser has several failing components and repair costs are adding up. Council should consider replacing the vehicle, he said.

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