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Rogers City praised for commitment to progress

News File Photo Rogers City Mayor Scott McLennan talks in January at City Hall in this News file photo.

ROGERS CITY — Team Rogers City is a champion for its small town and works hard to promote and develop it.

At last week’s meeting, Lt. Governor Garlin Gilchrist joined via Zoom teleconferencing to share his thoughts on the progress made in Rogers City.

Gilchrist said Rogers City should be an example to other cities. The way the community comes together to accomplish things is how progress is made, even during the COVID-19 pandemic, Gilchrist said.

“I want to thank you for the community connections you have made in Rogers City, Governor Gretchen Whitmer and I know communities are stronger when they are connected,” Gilchrist said. “When we come together, we can do better, and we have seen that obviously in Rogers City, and across the state, over the last 13 months.”

In the last year, several new businesses have opened in Rogers City, and high hopes exist for the upcoming tourism season. Mayor Scott McLennan said there is a sense of excitement in the city, and residents are eager to help make upcoming projects a reality. He said they are also proud of recent successes, like being named a Redevelopment Ready Community by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation.

“There is a lot of excitement within the community, and what we have been able to do together is fantastic,” he said.

The city is currently working toward becoming a Michigan Mainstreet community, which opens up doors to more benefits from the MEDC.

“If we can get it, it would be a really big deal for us, that is for sure,” McLennan said.

One of the reasons people love to live and visit Rogers City is because of the (natural) resources it has, especially its lakes and forests. McLennan said it is important to maintain and protect them, and that is why the city is moving forward with projects like a tree-canopy, which will help to reduce stormwater runoff into Lake Huron, and installing electric car chargers downtown.

During the meeting, two environmental groups gave presentations about how they work on environmental issues, and gave updates on rising problems like invasive species and pollution, which threaten the water, woods, and air.

Samantha Nellis said invasive species like sea lampreys, Baby’s breath, and European frogbit are all found in the area. She said the Baby’s breath is alarming because it is found near parks and water, and hopes the spread of the frogbit, which looks like a small lily pad, is limited because of the natural tide of the big lake.

Nellis said frogbit has spread significantly in Alpena.

“It has totally taken over the area of the wildlife sanctuary,” she said. “I’m hoping there is too much wave action here for it to take over, but in calm or slow moving water, it can really be aggressive.

McLennan said Department of Public Works employees are trained to identify invasive species and remove them if possible.

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