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Residents unhappy with mud boggers

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By Lou Elliott Jones, Editor

Mud boggers who use a private site on County Road 337 near N.E. 125th Street need to have their driver licenses, vehicle registrations and insurance papers up to date on Sunday, Oct. 26 as the Levy County Sheriff's Office is conducting a checkpoint at the intersection.

Capt. Evan Sullivan, spokesman for Sheriff Johnny Smith, said neighbors around the site are complaining about drunk drivers and littering associated with the weekend gatherings. "This is not a sanctioned mud bog because they do not charge money," Sullivan said. The checkpoint will run from noon to dusk, Sullivan said.

Commission Chairman Sammy Yearty said because the owners do not charge the mud boggers and the gatherings are held on private land it is not regulated by the county like the only licensed mud-bog operation near Inglis.

"We cannot prevent it on private property," Sullivan said, adding that the events are attracting Alabama and Georgia mud-boggers.

The site has wetlands and the Sheriff's Office has put in a request with the state Department of Environmental Protection to see if the activity is regulated under wetlands law.

In the meantime, Sullivan said, the Sheriff's Office will be issuing tickets for speeding, drinking, not having the proper documents.

Commissioner Tony Parker said he appreciated the effort. "They speed down through there and they speed through people's yards," he said. 'There have also been reports of gunfire."

He said some residents I the area are trying to sell their homes to move away from the problem.

Sullivan said the highway patrol has also been invited to participate in the checkpoint.

In other business, the commission approved:

Zoning 21 acres of land at the intersection of State Road 121 and Highway 19 to allow retail commercial development. The property is owned by Lebanon Station LLC, whose primary owner is Ben Stevens, said Catherine Lawhun. Commissioner Danny Stevens recused himself from the voting noting that Stevens is his cousin. The property is located in a commercial node, but had not been zoned, Development Director Rob Corbitt told the commission.

Appointing Commissioner Nancy Bell to the Team Levy Committee of the Nature Coast Business Development Council.

Tabling until a later date a presentation by Cedar Key Fire Chief Robert Robinson for construction of a new station on County Road 345.

A hardship variance for Violet McDaniel to allow her sister to live in a mobile home by McDaniel's home at 15770 NW 60th Ave.