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.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.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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