Morenci city council 2011.08.10

Written by David Green.

By DAVID GREEN

Morenci city council will soon be a member short due to the impending resignation of Joe Varga.

City administrator/clerk Renée Schroeder told councilors Monday night that Varga will be submitting a letter of resignation because he is now working Monday nights in his new job.

Varga has a little over two years yet to serve, Schroeder said. Council will appoint a new member who will serve through November 2012. The appointee will have the option of running in the 2012 election for the final year of Varga’s term.

Council members are regularly elected to a four-year term.

“It is a good opportunity to get your feet wet and learn what council is about,” mayor Keith Pennington said. “Anyone who’s interested in giving it a try should let us know.”

FESTIVAL—Another opportunity to volunteer exists with the Town and Country Festival committee.

City treasurer Crystal White, who is a member of the committee, reported that festival committee chair Sue Snyder is stepping down.

Snyder served in the position for five years and is ready for someone else to take a turn. Snyder said she is willing to help the new person learn the job, and she will still coordinate with the rodeo group that comes to the festival.

White said the festival made a profit this year, which includes a 50/50 split with the Eagles’ beer tent. The festival should receive more than $800 from the beer sales.

White said the festival committee recently reviewed what went right and what didn’t from the 2011 event. They have some ideas for changes in 2012, but a final decision might depend on the new coordinator.

TREES—Schroeder told council the city has until Aug. 19 to apply for a tree planting grant from Consumers Energy. If the city received the maximum grant of $3,000, about 30 trees could be purchased.

Trees must be planted along city streets or on city property, and the grant can’t be used to replace cut trees. Schroeder suggested that council might want to use the grant for planting trees in the parking lot projects. There are several “green areas” incorporated in the design to give a break from the pavement.

LIGHTS—Council has discussed the placement of new light poles for the south parking lot, but in the end it was decided to allow the project engineer to work with the contractor in determining placement.

  • Front.splash
    Water Fun—Carter Seitz and Colson Walter take a fast trip along a plastic sliding strip while water from a sprinkler provides the lubrication. The boys took a break from tie-dyeing last week at Morenci’s Summer Recreation Program to cool off in the water.
  • Front.starting
    BIKE-A-THON—Children in Morenci’s Summer Recreation Program brought their bikes last Tuesday to participate in a bike-a-thon. Riders await the start of the event at the elementary school before being led on a course through town by organizer Leonie Leahy.
  • Front.pokemon
    LATEST CRAZE—David Cortes (left) and Ty Kruse, along with Jerred Heselschwerdt (standing), consult their smartphones while engaging in the game of Pokémon Go. The virtual scavenger hunt comes to life when players are in the vicinity of gyms, such as Stair District Library, and PokéStops such as the fire station across the street. The boys had spent time Monday morning searching for Pokémon at Wakefield Park.
  • Front.drum
    on your mark, get set, drum!—Drew Joughin (black shirt), Maddox Joughin and Kaleea Braun took the front row last week when Angela Rettle and assistants led the Stair District Library Summer Reading Program kids in a session of cardio drumming. The sports and healthy living theme continued yesterday with a Mini Jamboree at Lake Hudson State Park arranged by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. Next week’s program features the Flying Aces Frisbee show.
  • Girls.on.ride
    NADIYA YORK and Aniston Valentine take a spin on the Casino, one of the rides offered at Wakefield Park during Morenci’s Town and Country Festival. This year’s festival remained dry but with plenty of heat during the three-day run. Additional photographs are inside this week’s Observer.
  • Front.softball
    Angela Davis (2) and teammate Allison VanBrandt break into a jig after Morenci's softball team won its third consecutive regional title.
  • Front.art.park
    ART PARK—A design created by Poggemeyer Design Group shows a “pocket art park” in the green space south of the State Line Observer building. The proposal includes a 12-foot sculpture based on a design created by Morenci sixth grade student Klara Wesley through a school and library collaboration. A wooden band shell is located at the back of the lot. The Observer wall would be covered with a synthetic stucco material. City council members are considering ways to fund the estimated $125,000 project and perhaps tackling construction one step at a time.
  • 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
  • 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.
  • 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.

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