Morenci city council 4.21.10

Written by David Green.

Morenci city council members voted April 12 to hire one of their own to fill a temporary vacancy in city hall.

Council voted 5-1 to hire Leasa Slocum at $9 an hour to fill in for Diane Varga who is on medical leave for at least six weeks.

Slocum abstained from voting and Jason Cook cast the “no” vote, stating that  he didn’t agree with the pay rate.

The hiring is retroactive to when Slocum started working on a volunteer basis in early April.

Council member Greg Braun pointed out that the committee had checked with legal counsel to be sure it was acceptable to hire a council member.

City administrator/clerk Renée Schroeder thought Slocum would be a good choice on short notice because she is familiar with the workings of city hall and this would reduce training time. The motion also calls for Slocum to work at city hall while other employees are on vacation.

FURNACE—Blissfield Heating and Plumbing offered the low bid of $5,300 for a Lennox HVAC system for the fire hall. Six companies submitted bids.

PHOTOS—Schroeder told council that the ICE grant requires that photographs of the buildings that would be torn down for the parking lots and street widening must be submitted to the Michigan Historical Preservation office to see if they have any historical significance. The state can take 60 days to respond, either declaring them to have no historical value or giving them further review with a site visit. The properties (Dunbar’s Auction House, the Community Center and a house on Orchard Street) cannot be purchased until the process is complete.

TREES—The city won a Tree City USA grant for 25 trees which will be planted along Page Street and in the industrial park.

Consumers Energy will remove some trees when relocating utility poles on Summit Street and west on Congress Street. The company will pay for the removal and for planting replacements.

DOGS—Resident Jean Hardy complained about dogs being allowed to defecate on private property.

Police chief Larry Weeks responded that’s illegal without permission from the property owner. Weeks said officers can’t actively search for problems of this nature, but they will respond to complaints lodged by residents.

Weeks added that dog owners are required to clean up after their pets if on public or someone else’s property. He said a dog must be on a leash when it leaves the property of its owner.

Cook suggested putting notice in the paper letting people know the ordinance in case they’re ignorant of it.

Weeks said he agrees with public education, but to really effect a change, he said, there’s a need to follow up on complaints.

  • Front.nok Hok
    GAMES DAY—Finn Molitierno (right) celebrates a goal during a game of Nok Hockey with his sister, Kyla. The two tried out a variety of games Saturday at Stair District Library’s annual International Games Day event. One of the activities featured a sort of scavenger hunt in which participants had to locate facts presented in the Smithsonian Hometown Teams exhibit. The traveling show left Morenci’s library Tuesday, wrapping up a series of programs that began Oct. 2. Additional photos are on page 7.
  • Station.2
    STRANGE STUFF—Morenci Elementary School students learn that blue isn’t really blue when seen through the right color of lens. Volunteer April Pike presents the lesson to students at one of the many stations brought to the school by the COSI science center. The theme of this year’s visit was the solar system.
  • Front.leaves
    MAPLE leaves show their fall colors in a puddle at Morenci’s Riverside Natural Area. “This was a great year for colors,” said local weather watcher George Isobar. Chilly mornings will give way to seasonable fall temperatures for the next two weeks.
  • Front.band
    MORENCI Marching Band member Brittany Dennis keeps the beat Friday during the half-time show of the Morenci/Pittsford football game. Color guard member Jordan Cordts is at the left. The band performed this season under the direction of Doyle Rodenbeck who served as Morenci’s band director in the 1970s. He’s serving as a substitute during a family leave.
  • 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.
  • 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.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.

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