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Six apply for Hancock police chief opening

DDA buys hardware store building

HANCOCK — Hancock has received six applications from potential police chief candidates, city manager Mary Babcock said at Wednesday’s City Council meeting.

Chief Wayne Butler will be retiring at the end of November. He has held the position since 2014.

The position had been posted through the state chiefs’ association and nationally. Councilors Whitney Warstler and Richard Freeman Jr. indicated they would like to serve on the committee. Babcock said she would also reach out to other law enforcement agencies in the area for someone to fill the other spot.

Candidates include people locally and from as far away as Wyoming, Babcock said.

Also Wednesday, Hancock’s Downtown Development Association closed the purchase of the former Risto’s Hardware Store building on Quincy Street.

“We will be looking at what we can do in the storefronts that have plastic hanging, to at least try to brighten that spot until the (request for proposals) is done,” Babcock said.

The Michigan Economic Development Corp.’s Redevelopment Ready Community’s program will work with the city to conduct feasibility studies for the property.

The council also approved the Michigan Department of Natural Resources Trust Fund Grant for the purchase of waterfront land that will give the city connectivity along the Navy Street trail. The project total is $231,900 with a local match of $60,300. The city has already done the environmental assessment and title search, Babcock said.

Next the city will conduct an appraisal of the property and meet with the title owners to see if the city can buy it at that price.

The DNR would be willing to work with the city if more money is needed, Babcock said. Although the city would have to reapply, the chances of success are higher than if the city were applying for a brand-new grant.

In other action, the council:

• Heard from Babcock the city is trying to spread the word about the proper way to apply the new garbage stickers. People are asked to fold the sticker in half at the top of the bag so it is stuck to itself. The city recently switched to stickers instead of custom garbage bags.

• Approved Up and Running’s quote of $10,545 for new entry door locks for city hall and the police department entrance and evidence room.

• Approved Dave’s Hancock Service estimate of $8,120.84 to remove and replace the engine assembly on the 2016 Tahoe police vehicle.

• Approved selling the city’s 1983 Vactor truck to Tim’s Excavating for $20,000.

• Approved the Recreation Commission’s recommendation of $35,000 to build a new garage at the Hancock Driving Park. The estimate covers the cost of building materials, Babcock said. The Department of Public Works will take down the current garage and build the new one.

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