Morenci city council 10.17.09

Written by David Green.


The chain link fence at Oak Grove Cemetery will be removed, leaving a portion of the property without a fence along M-156.

Morenci city council members voted unanimously to remove the fence that’s located along the southern side of the cemetery front. The older wrought iron fence will remain in place.

City supervisor Barney Vanderpool was asked for his opinion and said he isn’t completely in favor.

“I just like the fence barrier,” he said, “but it would be easier for mowing and leaf collection. I’m sure it would look a little nicer with it gone.”

A few citizens have commented on the incongruity between the chain link fence and the wrought iron fence, and council members decided to discuss the issue.

Vanderpool said the job could probably be completed in a day by using prison labor. Councilors voted earlier in the meeting to renew a contract with the Gus Harrison Facility for occasional help.

Vanderpool also commented on how good the freshly-painted wrought iron fence looks following the recent effort by volunteers helping Nathan Arno with an Eagle Scout project.

ZONING—At the Sept. 28 council meeting, council members voted 6-0 to hire Jacob Barnes as residential zoning administrator to replace the late Jack Baird. Barnes already serves as the commercial and industrial inspector.

Councilors voted Monday to approve a revised job description for the position.

HANDICAP—Council discussed a complaint about the lack of handicap accessible sidewalk approaches at the new walks at the elementary school.

City clerk/administrator Renée Schroeder said the approaches are the city’s responsibility. Vanderpool said the city has put them in after removing portions for other work and this wasn’t the case in this situation.

Vanderpool said if the city does one, it should others nearby and he wondered where the effort would stop?

Council members Leasa Slocum said the ramps would be very important to the mother of a handicapped child who wants the youth to be as independent as possible.

Mayor Doug Erskin suggested taking the issue back to the committee level for more discussion.

VOLUNTEER—Vanderpool expressed his appreciation to Art Slocum who repaired a hole in the stucco wall of the library. “Art has done the work more than once,” he said.

STOP SIGN—Councilor Tracy Schell reported that due to extra enforcement on East Locust Street, a stop sign would not be erected at the intersection of Locust and Page streets.

The issue will be reconsidered if speeding problems return.

The citizen requesting the sign is satisfied with the decision, said police chief Larry Weeks.

LIBRARY—At the Sept. 28 meeting, council gave its approval to a Garden Club request to plant a tree in front of the library in honor of the late Keith Whitehouse.

A portion of the sidewalk will be cut out and benches will be installed.

HALLOWEEN—Council approved trick-or-treating hours from 6 to 8 p.m. Oct. 31.

  • Front.cowboy
    A PERFORMER named Biligbaatar, a member of the AnDa Union troupe from Inner Mongolia, dances at Stair District Library last week during a visit to the Midwest. The nine-member group blends a variety of traditions from Inner and Outer Mongolia. The music is described as drawing from “all the Mongol tribes that Genghis Khan unified.” The group considers itself music gatherers whose goal is to preserve traditional sounds of Mongolia. Biligbaatar grew up among traditional herders who live in yurts. Additional photos are on the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.base Ball
    UMPIRE Thomas Henthorn tosses the bat between team captains Mikayla Price and Chuck Piskoti of Flint’s Lumber City Base Ball Club. Following the 1860 rules, after the bat was grabbed by the captains, captains’ hands advanced to the top of the bat—one hand on top of the other. The captain whose hand ended up on top decided who would bat first. Additional photos of Sunday’s game appear on page 12 of this week’s Observer. The contest was organized in conjunction with Stair District Library’s Hometown Teams exhibit that runs through Nov. 20.
    VALUE OF ATHLETICS—Morenci graduate John Bancroft (center) takes a turn at the microphone during a chat session at the opening of the Hometown Teams exhibit at Stair District Library. Clockwise to his left is John Dillon, Jed Hall, Jim Bauer, Joe Farquhar, George Hollstein, George Vereecke and Mike McDowell. Thomas Henthorn (at the podium) kicked off the conversation. Henthorn, a University of Michigan–Flint professor, will return to Morenci this Sunday to lead a game of vintage base ball at the school softball field.
  • 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.

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