Fayette village council 2012.08.29

Written by David Green.


Representatives from Fayette’s park board attended the Aug. 22 village council meeting to discuss questions about park board spending.

Board member Scott Wagner suggested that council owed the board an apology after criticizing the group for making purchases that council approved.

“You came to us and asked us to buy a lawn mower,” Wagner said, “then you turn around and say we’re spending too much money. It made us look incompetent.”

Wagner referred to the Aug. 1 State Line Observer article that reported on  questions and criticism about park board spending. Mayor Ruth Marlatt said the issue probably should have been discussed at the park board meeting.

Or, on the other hand, Wagner said, the park board could have been invited to attend council’s committee-of-the-whole meeting to discuss the issue.

Village fiscal officer Lisa Zuver said she would take blame for saying that park board spending was out of control.

“The park had a balance of $55,000 at the beginning of the year and it’s down to $20,000,” she said.

More than $20,000 was spent on refurbishing the infield of the main ball diamond, she said.

That was a project that’s been neglected for years, Wagner said, and the board has saved for three years in order to tackle a big project.

“But it wasn’t a savings because the pool got closed,” Zuver said. “If you still had the pool, you wouldn’t have any money.”

Without the pool, Wagner answered, those costs aren’t a concern. The only spending out of the ordinary was the ball field project.

The Observer article actually makes no reference to “out-of-control spending.” The phrase was used in a previous story about village spending in general. In the article Wagner referred to, Zuver invited council members to look at the spending report and see where park money went.

Marlatt noted that the ball field project and moving playground equipment both cost more than expected when council approved the work. She said she was sorry that issue came out the way it did, but council members did have questions.

Audience member Shirley Jo Wagner said that when times get tough, people tend to point a finger at each other. Instead, she said, everyone needs to work together to build the park program—a very important part of the community.

Park director Nick Ramos told council that the board is considering starting a fall co-ed softball league for Sunday afternoon play. He knows of four teams that are interested.

Marlatt praised Ramos for the time he spent helping to prepare for the Bullthistle Festival.

Council approved the transfer of funds left over in the Blues Festival account to cover some costs of summer ball leagues.

  • 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.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.
  • Front.chat
    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.

Weekly newspaper serving SE Michigan and NW Ohio - State Line Observer ©2006-2016