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Today's News

  • Trial for Parker, Yearty delayed

    Suspended Levy County Commissioners William “Sammy” Yearty and Robert “Tony” Parker will be tried separately from co-defendant Pamela Williams Blair and their federal corruption trial is delayed until Aug. 3.

  • Property values fall

    If you heard a soft groan coming from city halls, town halls, and county and school offices it was to be expected.

    Levy County Property Appraiser Oz Barker released his office’s 2009 estimate of taxable values for regional, county and municipal governments.

    Barker, who at one time thought the decline in property values for the county would be about 7 percent, sent out his estimate showing it is down over 10 percent.

  • Levy reading, math scores down

    The Florida Department of Education released the results of the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test in reading and math for third-graders last Thursday.

    The results show that 68 percent of Levy County students in reading and 77 percent in math meet or exceed expectations for their grade level. This year’s results are down from 2008, which showed that 74 percent of Levy students in reading and 79 percent in math met or exceeded expectations.

  • Message to the graduates

    This is a yearly column by the editor, updated with latest information.

    This is a big weekend for many young people in Levy County, as they leave high school and move on to the next phase of their lives.

    Graduation ceremonies are scheduled for most Levy County schools this weekend, a landmark day for a few hundred young adults who are ready to venture out into the world.

  • Are children safe?

    There was a recent story that should have sent a little bit of anxiety through all the parents in Levy County.

    The attempted kidnapping of two young boys from Joyce Bullock Elementary School in Williston recently points out how vulnerable our children can be. Joyce Bullock has fences around it, but it is a huge campus and it's impossible for the faculty to keep an eye on all children once school is dismissed.

    Ultimately, the safety of children is a parent's responsibility, but all of us have trusted our children to the schools at one time or another.

  • Chiefland wins spring football game

    After a brief grappling period to size up the visitors, Chiefland football seized the upper hand in Friday's spring matchup against Fort White. The visiting Indians were limited both in ground and air corps; the host Indians were not, and the 12-0 Chiefland final showed it. The first score came in the second quarter with a four-yard run to the goal line by Jamantye Thompson, set up first by a 25-yard run and then a 30-yard run on the keeper by starting QB Eugene Carter.

  • Coaching cuts force schools to punt

    When you go to a district tournament game at the end of each sporting season, the Florida High School Athletic Association reminds you of a few important facts.

    “Interscholastic events are an extension of the classroom,” intones the game announcer.

    The purpose is to remind those in attendance how much sports and school go together.

  • Recession hits Levy school operations

    Levy County’s largest service business has been hard hit by economic downturn.

    The board that oversees the operation has been advised that its assets valued at $2,427,803,027.00 just last year have slipped in value by 7 percent and will slide a total 18 percent by the end of next year.

    That means the revenues are likely to drop by as much as 50 percent at the current rate of return on those assets. The out-of-town parent business has told the local unit it cannot provide an infusion of cash because the overall income is down, dragging down its revenue picture.

  • Coffee with the Lions

    Morriston’s Small Farms subdivision is in an uproar over the location of lions, tigers, bears, apes and monkeys in their neighborhood — with some animals as close as 250 feet to a child’s bedroom.

     

    “I get the pleasure of looking at the lion while I have my morning coffee,” said Neva Riding, who lives across from a lion cage at the animal sanctuary on Southeast 192nd Court.

  • FEMA at work to provide help in Fowlers Bluff

    The big golden brown vehicle looks a lot like an RV on a visit to Fowlers Bluff just sitting outside the Volunteer Fire Department building, but the big dish on top says it is much more.

    FEMA — the Federal Emergency Management Agency — has sent the big bus known as a Disaster Recovery Center and a team of workers to help the residents affected by the spring flooding between March 26 and May 5 on the Suwannee River.