Morenci city council 06.09.2010

Written by David Green.


It’s not often that a municipality will remove a tax early, said Morenci mayor Keith Pennington, that action was approved by city council May 24.

City property owners began paying an annual assessment for the combined sewer overflow project in 1992—just as the 1963 sewer project was finally paid off—and there were two years of payments still on the schedule.

Sufficient funds have been collected to pay off the debt, Pennington told council members, and he urged council to stop the assessment.

The move should save taxpayers about $120 from their summer tax bill this year and next.

If the time comes in the future when additional taxes are needed for a project, Pennington said, he hopes they remember this time when council gave taxpayers a break.

MUSIC—Council discussed the Chamber of Commerce request to play music downtown every day all summer.

Downtown apartment dweller Cheryl Cowgill said she found it offensive to have music playing as loud as it was in December.

“It’s my home,” she said. “You wouldn’t want me blasting my music into your home for 11 hours a day.”

Councilor Tracy Schell said she enjoys the music, but since concerns were raised, she suggested allowing the music only for special events. It shouldn’t be considered special just because it’s Friday, she said.

Pennington added that it would be left to the Chamber’s discretion and played at an appropriate volume.

Art Erbskorn voted against the proposal.

ALCOHOL—The Morenci Eagles club agreed to a special use permit for a beer tent at the Morenci Town and Country Festival.

FIBER OPTICS—A representative from D&P Cable told council he read in a recent Observer about effort to bring a fiber optics line to the city. He said his company has had a line into the city for several years. Although the company has focussed on residential customers, changes in technology makes it more affordable for small business customers.

EMS—Council approved a 10 percent increase in the annual assessment charged for ALS ambulance service.

  • 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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