Morenci city council is whole again with a vacant seat filled.
Council members voted unanimously Monday night to appoint former planning commission member Greg Braun to fill the unexpired term of Jason Bryant.
Braun will serve until the November election. At that time he can seek voter approval for another year in office until the end of Bryant’s term in November 2009.
Mayor Doug Erskin praised Braun’s work on the planning commission when Erskin served as chairperson.
Sandy Wheeler was appointed to fill a vacancy on the zoning board of review. Wheeler works as a real estate agent.
City clerk/administrator Renée Schroeder told council the state’s prison labor program was reinstated, but at a large increase in costs.
The program was halted last year due to the state’s financial situation.
“I think they met with a lot of opposition when they canceled the program,” Schroeder said.
To help pay for the program, the rate was nearly doubled to $30 a prisoner for an eight-hour work day. Mileage is also paid.
City supervisor Lonnie Vanderpool pointed out that prison work crews from the county are still available at a much lower cost.
The city has hired prison crews in the past to help with miscellaneous maintenance projects.
EXEMPTION—Council passed a resolution establishing guidelines for granting poverty exemptions from property tax.
Exemptions are based on federal poverty guidelines. The current poverty threshold for a single person is $10,210 and $20,650 for a family of four.
Applicants must file a request with the board of review. Exemptions may be granted for only one year at a time.