Today's News

  • Business Council discusses revenue

    The Nature Coast Business Development Council discussed generating its own income source, industrial development sites and an offer from Williston to locate in the new city hall in the fall at its March 8 meeting in the College of Central Florida Jack Wilkinson Campus.

    Memberships is an avenue of raising money beyond the amount provided by the county.

    The reason for an additional revenue stream is to give the council more flexibility and while the idea has been discussed for a time, the membership drive was finally kicked off earlier in the year.

    Councilmembers discussed the governor’s Economic Development Fund. The governor included $85 million in the fund for the next fiscal year just as he did in the current fiscal year. Of that amount, only about $35 million have been allocated for grants in this fiscal year so there is still money available. Some communities are gearing up to submit additional applications. It was suggested that NCBDC members think about what the organization can submit to help Levy County and communities to become more competitive to attract jobs and help businesses grow.

  • Marijuana ordinance bans dispensaries

    The Levy County Commission on March 20 adopted an ordinance banning medical marijuana dispensaries in unincorporated areas while treating its growing and cultivation like other nurseries.

    The unanimous passing of the ordinance, based on a motion from Mike Joyner and a second from Matt Brooks, came after the second of two public hearings on the matter held at the Courthouse in March.

    The ordinance is consistent with the Board’s earlier proposal, based on one of the recommended options from county attorney Anne Bast Brown. In seeking guidance for the ordinance from the Board, Brown noted that the state’s current direction on the issue provided legal buffering for the banning of dispensaries, but that the county could be at a severe legal disadvantage if it discriminated against medical marijuana nurseries.

    The ordinance, which replaces the moratorium on medical marijuana, treats growers and cultivators of medical marijuana like any other agricultural industry, subject to zoning and land-use regulations.

  • The wonderment of technological advances

    I used to think how wonderful it must have been for someone born in the 1890s, like my grandpa and lived through the Industrial Revolution, the Great Depression, two world wars, the Ford assembly line, airplanes, space travel, the telegraph, telephone, radio, television — everything we use all the time and don’t give a second thought — my grandpa saw in its very beginning.

  • I love spring, pollen

    I love spring.

    The other seasons are OK, but spring is — as Muhammad Ali described himself — the greatest.

    I like the boiling heat of summer. We always joked in Oklahoma and Texas that it was so hot you could fry an egg on the sidewalk, but I’ll bet in Florida that you could boil an egg in the Gulf. I wish the Watermelon Festival was in a cooler month. I guess it would be if melons were a winter crop.

    I couldn’t tell much difference between summer and fall during my one full year here in the Sunshine State. I didn’t like winter too much. It was much colder than I thought it would be, but it wasn’t as rainy as I imagined. Also, deer come out during the wintertime and stand alongside roads; staring, daring. At night, they’re hard to see with flat dull coats; they give me the creeps; ghosts with big eyes glowing red in my lights. Deer along the roadside instill fear in me until I pass it by. Then, dread starts to build again and I pray I’ll see the next one in my headlights.

  • Citizen Viewpoint: Kudos to Levy County Animal Control

    Levy County Animal Services takes a small step forward in Levy County.

    We want to recognize the efforts of Levy County Animal Control for the new efforts to curb the number of unwanted animals in Levy County. The county recently launched a feral cat sterilization program. In this new plan, the county will provide traps to be used by residents to trap feral cats, so they can be brought to the animal control offices to be spayed or neutered.

    While the problem of unwanted pets is a challenge for many communities, we must take a more responsible approach. We as a community should recognize this first step of many needed improvements in how we treat our pets.

    The Levy County Animal Services always receives criticism for whatever they do. We know and understand the role they have. It is easy to be a critic. While we don’t know or are in a position to criticize or compliment their work, we all need to recognize the importance of their work.

  • A few tips for driving under the influence

    I’ve been thinking about this for awhile now, but never seemed to get around to writing anything about it. But, while going through the police reports, I was reminded again that it takes someone unlike me to be a police officer.

    Police officers see good people at their absolute worst and — they also see bad people at their absolute worst. Fortunately, most bad people who commit criminal acts are either really dumb or careless and get caught sooner than later.

    To help those who have a propensity to break the law, I have come up with a few tips that might help you stay out of trouble.

    First tip: Anyone who is under the influence of alcohol or drugs should always perform a complete vehicle inspection before driving through Chiefland.

    Second: Highway 19 is wide and there is absolutely no reason to cross a yellow line into oncoming traffic unless you’re high.

    Third: You’re still high if you think you can speed through Chiefland.

  • Indian bats come up short in rivalry tilt

    With just two regular season games under its belt heading into a road game against Lafayette March 6, the Chiefland baseball team has been solid in two of the three major phases of the game.

    Unfortunately, the bats had yet to follow the example of the Indians’ strong pitching and defense.

    In a repeat of its score at Williston in the season opener, CMHS fell 3-1 to Trenton Feb. 27, dropping the club to 0-2.

    Kelby Osteen and Wyatt Hammond combined to allow just three hits against the Tigers on the mound, while the Chiefland defense, for the second game in a row, committed only one error.

    Osteen made it through five innings as the starter, surrendering two earned runs and five walks while fanning four batters. Hammond tossed a pair of frames in relief, yielding one hit, no runs and no walks, and collecting a pair of strikeouts.

    Keegan McLelland drove in Seth Thomas on an RBI double for a 1-0 Chiefland lead in the first. Thomas and McLelland, who have hit safely in both regular season games, accounted for the only CMHS hits.

  • CMHS boys pick up top-3 finishes

    Led by L.J. Jenkins, who took second in the 400 meter dash and third in high hurdles, the Chiefland boys’ track and field team collect six top-three finishes in a five-school home meet Feb. 27.

    The Indians finished third overall, beating out Trenton and Williston, while Live Oak Suwannee and Jefferson County dominated to place first and second, respectively.

    CMHS senior Tramaine Brown finished third in long jump at 18 feet, 2 inches. Jalen Rutledge notched third in the triple jump for Chiefland with a mark of 34-11.5. Deshamar Shepherd also secured a third-place finish for the Indians, as he came up third in the 300 meter high hurdles with a time of 48.57 seconds. Luke Stockman rounded out CMHS’ top-three finishes by taking third in the 2-mile run with a mark of 12:08.22.

    The boys were narrowly defeated by Branford on March 1, 69-63, as Jenkins, Brown, Rutledge and Stockman boasted individual top finishes in events.

    Stockman brought home wins in the 1 mile, at 5:20.03, and again in the 2 mile, with an improved time of 11:54. Chiefland’s Gavin McLelland placed third in the latter event.

  • Lady Indians bolt to track victories

    The Chiefland girls’ track and field squad secured first place in nine events to beat out four schools at its second meet of the season.

    Chiefland edged out Suwannee 121-107 in points, and handily defeated Trenton, Jefferson County and Williston at the Feb. 27 home meet.

    The girls finished second to Bell in their opener and later beat Branford in a dual meet on March 1.

    Courtney Hayes and Lauren Jones each picked up a pair of individual first-place finishes as well as a top relay finish for CMHS at the Feb. 27 meet.

    Hayes took first in the high jump at 4 feet, 6 inches, and won the 200 meter with a time of 27.44 seconds. She also teamed with Chamirra McQueen, Raven Shepherd and Sierra Norris to win the 4x100 meter relay at 53.89 seconds.

    Jones topped her field in both the 1 mile (5 minutes, 47.19 seconds) and 2 mile (12:48.07) runs, and picked up another win in 4x800 relay with Aubrey Hudson, Banner Hodge and Jaycie Anderson, who combined for a time of 10:58.

    Norris added another CMHS win in the long jump (13 feet, 8 inches).

  • Trio-led Lady Indians to clash with Lady Tigers

    The Chiefland softball team has been far from perfect to start the season, just ask first-year head coach Jimmy Anderson.

    But its record heading into the March 6 meeting was flawless, at least, and the team’s three returning starters – ace pitcher Kensley Durrance, shortstop Erika Gilliam and first-base slugger Macie Thomas – have been the most consistent factor behind the success.

    During their latest stretch, the Lady Indians completed a season sweep of Class 8A Buchholz with a 6-1 win March 5 in Gainesville; came from behind at Class 5A North Marion March 2 to defeat the Lady Colts 10-7; and got past district foe Branford 4-1 on March 1.

    The March 5 win improved the team’s mark to 9-0 overall; the Lady Indians are 3-0 in District 1A-7 play.

    Meanwhile, Trenton cruised past its first pair of district opponents and boasted a 6-1 record heading into its March 6 meeting with Bronson. The Lady Tigers’ only blemish was a 4-2 loss at Class 5A Keystone Heights, whose only defeat was a 3-2 loss to reigning state champion Union County in its season opener.