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.train
    WRECKAGE—Morenci Fire Department member Taylor Schisler walks past the smoking wreckage of a semi-truck tractor on the north side of the Norfolk and Southern Railroad tracks on Ranger Highway. The truck trailer was on the south side of the tracks
  • Front.sculpta
    SCULPTORS—Morenci third grade students Emersyn Thompson (left) and Marissa Lawrence turn spaghetti sticks into mini sculptures Friday during a class visit to Stair District Library. All Morenci Elementary School classes recently visited the library to experience the creative construction toys purchased through the “Sculptamania!” project, funded by a Disney Curiosity Creates grant. The grant is administered by the Association for Library Services to Children, a division of the American Library Association.
  • Funcolor
    LEONIE LEAHY was one of three local hair stylists who volunteered time Friday at the Morenci PTO Fun Night. Her customer, Aubrey Sandusky, looks up at her mother while her hair takes on a perfect match to her outfit. Leahy said she had a great time at the event—nothing but happy clients.
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    LEARNING THE ROPES—Kristy Castillo (left), co-owner of Mane Street Salon, works with Kendal Kuhn as Sierra Orner takes a phone call. The two Morenci Area High School juniors spent Friday at the salon as part of a job shadowing experience.
  • 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.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.

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