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Local News

  • Do you want to help count people?

    The U.S. Census Bureau is looking for a few good people to work in the 2010 Census and at least one Chiefland official is hoping the count gets done accurately.

    Project and Finance Director Laurie Copeland says Chiefland’s population in the 2000 Census fell two people short of qualifying for more federal grant money.

    “We’re two recorded people between the 650,000 category and 700,000 category” for Community Development Block Grant, she said.

    “The federal government is using the 2000 data. . . and there is no way to change it.”

  • Small investment reaps millions in savings

    It’s the offer no one can refuse.

    Give me $651 in county money and I’ll give everyone in your county an average discount of 20 percent on their prescriptions.

    Heck, if their pets use medicines manufactured for human consumption, I’ll toss in a discount on their prescriptions, too.

    And those folks won’t have to pay a fee to get the discount.

    Levy County Commissioner Lillie Rooks said that’s just what happened.

  • Progress Energy open house draws crowd

    CRYSTAL RIVER — Residents swarmed the National Guard Armory in Crystal River Tuesday to look

     

    at maps of the potential routes of Progress Energy Florida’s new

    transmission lines.

    “We sent out about 6,000 letters in the whole area,” said Gail T. Simpson,

    manager, public policy and constituency relations for Progress Energy.

    By a rough estimate, at least 500 residents attended Tuesday’s open house.

    The parking lot at the armory was overflowing.

  • County Budget Picture Murky

    Levy County’s finances are a mixed bag and commissioners may wish they could read tea leaves to know the county’s future.

    Clerk of Court Danny Shipp and Sheila Rees, head of county finance, gave a report on county revenues and expenditures during Tuesday’s Board of County Commissioners’ meeting that was neither glowing or dismal.

    For the first three months of the fiscal year revenues estimated general fund revenues are up with Rees estimating the county will receive $5,321,042 for the period when the commission had budgeted $5,173,241.

  • Visitors learn how manatees are tracked

    Folks both young and old braved the cold to come out Saturday morning to Manatee Springs State Park, where members of the U.S. Geological Survey’s Sirenia Project held an informative exhibition on the exciting technologies and techniques used in tracking area manatee populations.

    In addition to traditional VHF tracking methods, visitors were also shown new, high-tech digital and GPS (Global Positioning Satellite) tags, which allow researchers to update tagged manatee positions every 15 to 20 minutes and pinpoint their location to within several yards.

  • Bid protest set aside

    The Chiefland City Commission has set aside a bid protest filed by an Illinois company over a pump for the city’s wastewater operation because it came late and the product was too expensive.

    Laurie Copeland, city project and finance coordinator, said the request for bids on the pump said bids could be submitted for diesel or gas-fueled pumps, that the city only intended to spend $47,000 on the pump, and the city reserved the right to waive certain specifications.

  • Property appraiser moves closer to the public

    It was his ninth day in office and Levy County Property Appraiser Osborn “Oz” Barker was restless.

    He’s eager to get to work, but first there is a week of training in Tallahassee. When he returns he will be on the move. He has his Bible and a copy of “God’s Promises to You,” by Max Lucado on his temporary desk in the old office occupied by his predecessor Francis Akins.

    Barker’s Christian beliefs are well known. He makes no secret that he seeks to walk with Jesus.

  • Orlando man accused of Wal-Mart thefts

    An Orlando man charged with attempting to steal about $1,600 in merchandise from Wal-Mart Supercenter in Chiefland was arrested in a car containing merchandise similar to that in the store incident.

    Wal-Mart security officer Mike Flowers recognized Willis Jerome Gilbert while the Orlando resident was in the store on Saturday, Jan. 10.

    While the police report said Flowers recognized Gilbert from a flier circulated by Wal-Mart, Flowers told police he recognized him from an incident in the store in June in connection with forgery charges.

  • St. Johns donate 121 acres to CFCC

    The Central Florida Community College Foundation has received a gift of land from Ron and Marcia St. John of Trenton. The donation of 121 acres in Gilchrist County supports the college’s Promise for the Future campaign to build a permanent Levy Campus just north of Chiefland on U.S. 19.

    The St. Johns were among the first to pledge support for the campaign and to become involved in garnering additional support from the community for the project.

  • Rotarians look for those who will take the 'Promise'

    The Tri County Springs Promise is ready to hit the road and work to preserve the water quality in the area’s waters.

    Charlie Smith, president of the Trenton Rotary Club unveiled a new PowerPoint presentation that promotes the program and seeks money to support its projects.

    “We’ve gotten involved in this thing and we’ve got to keep pushing. It’s a three-year program,” the Gilchrist County businessman said.

    He said storm water runoff is part of the problem polluting area waters.