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

  • KayseInField
    IN THE FIELD—2004 Morenci graduate Kayse Onweller works in a test plot of wheat in Texas. She’s part of Bayer CropScience’s North American wheat breeding program based in Nebraska, where she completed post-graduate work in plant breeding and genetics.
  • Front.winner
    REFEREE Camden Miller raises the hand of Morenci Jr. Dawgs wrestler Ryder Ryan as his opponent leaves the mat in disappointment. Morenci’s youth wrestling program served as host for a tournament Saturday morning to raise money for the club. Additional photos are on the back page.
  • Front.bank.2
    SHERWOOD STATE Bank opened its Fayette office at a grand opening Friday morning, drawing a large crowd to view the renovated building. Above, Burt Blue talks to teller Cindy Funk, while his wife, Jackie, looks around the new office. The Blues missed the opening and took a quick tour on Tuesday. Few traces remain of the former grocery store and theater, however, part of the original brick wall still shows in the hallway leading to the back of the building. The drive-through window should be ready for customers later in the month.
  • Front.carry.casket
    CARRYING—Riley Terry (blue jacket) and Mason Vaughn lead the way, carrying an empty casket outside to the hearse waiting at the curb. Morenci juniors and seniors visited Eagle Funeral Home last week to learn about the role of a funeral director and to understand the process of arranging for a funeral.
  • Front.lift
    MORENCI student Dalton McCowan puts everything into a dead lift attempt Saturday morning during the Wyseguy Push/Pull event. Lifters helped raise more than $1,600 for the family of the late Devin Wyse, a former Morenci power-lifter who graduated last year. Commemorative T-shirts are still available by contacting teacher Dan Hoffman.
  • Front.make.three
    FROM THE LEFT, Landon Wilkins, Ryan White and Logan Blaker try out their artistic skills Saturday afternoon at the Morenci PTO’s first Date to Create event. More than 50 people showed up to create decorated planks of wood to hang from rope. The event served as a fund-raiser for miscellaneous PTO projects. Additional photos are on the back of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.F.office
    NEW OFFICES—Fayette village administrator Steve Blue speaks with tax administrator Genna Biddix at the new front desk of the village office. Village council members voted to use budgeted renovation funds targeted for the old office and instead buy the vacant bank building on the corner of Main and Fayette streets. The old office was sold to Sherwood State Bank. When everything is put into place in the spacious new village office, an open house will be scheduled. Council member David Wheeler donated all of his time needed to make changes in the bank interior to fit the Village’s needs.

Fayette village council 02.24.2010

Written by David Green.

By DAVID GREEN

Fayette residents have the opportunity in May to decide whether or not to accept First Energy’s offer of a nine-year rate fix for electricity, along with a six percent discount on a portion of the bill.

Passage of the proposal would lead to a no-strings-attached donation of $50,000 to the village general fund, although the deal would tie customers to First Energy as their electrical provider for nine years.

Approval of the offer would push all village electrical customers into the program, but individuals could opt out of the deal for a $25 fee.

The discount—six percent for residential customers and four percent for small businesses—applies only to the electrical generation portion of a customer’s bill. Mayor Ruth Marlatt said an average customer would save about $36 a year through the discount.

Gary Keys of First Energy’s Wauseon service center, said the offer is being made to all Northwest Ohio communities served by the utility in order to manage long-range investment in coal. The utility wants to maintain its customer base.

Councilors Julia Ruger and Tom Molitierno voted against placing the proposal on the ballot.

There was no discussion about the issue at the meeting, but Marlatt said later that at the committee level, council members favored approving the proposal in order to meet the deadline for the May election.

Council can take a closer look at it before the election and could decide whether or not to urge residents to vote one way or another.

TOWNSHIP—Mayor Marlatt urged council members to show support for township business by attending the board meetings. She spoke of making a schedule so all councilors would attend at least one township meeting a year.

CAMP—Marlatt and village administrator Amy Metz spoke with Camp Palmer and Harrison Lake State Park officials about scheduling a joint activity in the fall that could include an overnight stay at a camp, activities such as geocaching and the ropes course, and a meal in town.

They also spoke about the possibility of a community swim at the Camp Palmer pool.

GRANT—After the village failed to obtain a grant through the Ohio Public Works Commission for the $111,000 W. Industrial Drive sewer project, Metz told council she applied to the state’s Small Government Program.

She’s also seeking funds that would aid in widening Gamble Street leading to the new school. She sees the prospect of obtaining that grant as more positive.

VOLUNTEERS—Metz thanked Mike Maginn for donating time to make repairs at the village hall. His work was valued at $500. She also thanked Collin Barnhiser for volunteering his time to help with snow clearing during the recent snowstorm.

SIDEWALKS—Councilor David Borer said that sidewalks would be examined this spring to determine maintenance needs.

DENTAL—Village employees have received no wage increases since 2005. Instead of seeking a raise now, they are asking council for the addition of dental coverage on their insurance plan.

One quote to cover the village’s eight full-time employees came in at $6,000, said financial officer Lisa Zuver, but she’s hoping to find a less expensive offer.

PURCHASES—Council approved employee purchases at Kaiser’s Supermarket and D & R Hardware without the need for a purchase order.

The previous council stopped blanket accounts, Zuver said, and it’s resulted in a lot of paperwork for something as simple as a few nuts and bolts.

RECYCLING—Council approved a payment of $600 to Gorham Township as part of a five-year contract for joint operation of the new recycling center. The payment will help with installation of an electrical line to the facility. The village will pay only a dollar in each of the next four years.

Metz thanked the volunteers who help operate the center. Proceeds from the recycled material go to the Parks and Recreation board.

ASSISTANCE—Details on the second assistance night program will be announced prior to the March event. Representatives from various area agencies will attend the session to offer information and answer questions.

APPROVAL—Mayor Marlatt said councilors should expect a few short, one-topic meetings to approve items due to the new once-a-month schedule. With required three readings, four months would be needed before legislation would take effect. For an emergency meeting, however, at least five members are required to be in attendance.

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