Morenci council opposed to county proposal 2015.07.15

By DAVID GREEN

Morenci city council added its name to the list of local government units opposed to a proposal to allow off-road vehicles (ORVs) on county roads.

If county commissioners allow ORVs on county roads, the measure would have no direct effect on Morenci residents, police chief Michael Creswell told council members Monday, because cities and villages can make their own rules.

However, he said, the measure would have an impact on all residents whenever they drive outside of town. Creswell and members of the county police chiefs association are visiting all local government units to urge opposition to the proposal. 

Creswell said there have been 30 crashes involving ORVs since 2010, including three fatalities. 

"It's no secret that our roads are really deteriorating and ORV tires don't mix well with pavement," he said. "We all think it's a recipe for disaster."

Creswell thinks the county is rushing into the issue without enough thought, fueled by a push from a minority of drivers.

The county commissioners have scheduled a public hearing at 7:05 p.m. July 30 to hear opinion on the issue. The hearing is planned in the old county courthouse located at 301 N. Main St., Adrian.

Council member Brenda Spiess said she favors allowing ORVs on city streets and would like council to look at the issue.

UNIFORMS—Council voted to seek bids for a company to provide uniform rental for the DPW workers. The contract is expiring for the current provider, Cintas, and council is hoping to find a less expensive service. The current cost is $6,000.

SUMMER REC—Due to an unexpectedly large turnout in the Summer Recreation Program, council voted to hire Hunter Nino as the fourth person to work under the direction of Allison Piercy. Ninety-three children have registered for the program.

SOFTBALL—Council approved the use of the Wakefield Park softball diamond for an Aug. 1 tournament. Organizer Mike Perez of Blissfield will pay a $50 use fee and a $50 clean-up fee that would be returned if the park is returned to a clean state.

ELECTION—Gail Johnson will serve as the election inspectors chair for the Aug. 4 special election to vote on a proposed library millage. She will be assisted by Tonia Hoffman, Laurie Schisler and Megan Thompson.

DONATION—Phil McCaskey presented a check for $1,400 from the Morenci Eagles to the Town and Country Festival committee. The Eagles share profits from the festival beer tent.

THANKS—Council voted to send a letter of thanks to Morenci native Harry Burdick who recently gave another donation to the Morenci Fire Department. Burdick now lives in Marion, Ohio.

Morenci fire chief Brad Lonis said that not only has Burdick been a financial supporter, he also offers advice pertaining to various department matters.

MOSQUITOES—City superintendent Barney Vanderpool said that spraying for mosquito control might begin this week. The city hasn’t sprayed for the past five years.