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Today's News

  • County to auction off 42 properties

    By Suzette Cook, Reporter

    Investors looking to buy property in Levy County can show up at the Levy County Court House on June 17 at 10 a.m. to bid on 42 parcels.

    The properties have been escheated or reverted back to belonging to Levy County. The County researches escheated properties and decides on which parcels to keep as investments and which parcels to offer up to the public to enter them back on County property tax rolls.

    The minimum opening bids range from $200 to $16042.50 and, once purchased, the new owners won’t owe the current year’s property taxes.

    According to Levy County Attorney Legal Assistant Susan Haines, “Back taxes are gone, and the board voted to forgive taxes for the current year.” But Haines suggests potential buyers do their research because the properties are sold “as is” and future the property taxes become the responsibility of the new owner.

  • County breaks ground on new animal shelter

    It was the sort of day that, had they known, the dogs would have jumped somersaults and even the finickiest cats would’ve sidled up and allowed their ears scratched. All because of a generous $220,000 for a new Levy County animal shelter, which was the subject of a groundbreaking ceremony on may 7 in Bronson. The shelter will be heated in the winter and cooled in the summer, allowing 50 dogs a chance to find forever homes in comfort.

    The shelter is projected to be complete in September 2019.

    Commissioners, elected officials, county employees, and animal welfare advocates were all in attendance at the groundbreaking ceremony. With four canopies set up on the future site of Levy County Animal Services newest building, the happy event brought smiles and laughter. The new building will be located next to the former Animal Services building, near the entrance to the Levy County Solid Waste Transfer Station, more commonly known as the landfill or dump, at 12051 NE 69th Lane, between Bronson and Williston.

  • Former Chiefland resident a hero for helping protect CPD K-9s

    Suzette Cook, Reporter

    Former Chiefland resident Tom Bennett may live in Georgia now, but he says his heart, “is still in Chiefland.”

    At the May 13 Chiefland City Commission meeting, Bennett was recognized for raising funds to purchase ballistic vests to protect two Chiefland Police Department K-9s.

    CPD Captain Ray Tremblay presented Bennett with a “Community Hero Award” plaque that reads, “With sincere appreciation for purchasing K-9 ballistic vest to help protect Chiefland Police Department’s K-9 Blitz and K-9 Riddle in the line of duty.”

    Bennett started a GoFundMe drive to raise $2,000 for the vests when he heard that the CPDs K-9s didn’t have protective vests and that the department couldn’t purchase them due to a limited budget.

    Bennett, who grew up in Chiefland, reached out to the CPD because a K-9 in his neighborhood was shot and killed in the line of duty and he wanted to make sure that didn’t happen in Chiefland.

    Tremblay said he considers Bennett family and refers to him as “Uncle Tom.”

  • 2019 CMHS senior scholarships

    Note: Students receiving Bright Futures Scholarships will be revealed at the Chiefland High School Academic Awards on May 24 at 9 a.m.

  • City election qualifying period June 10-13

    Suzette Cook, Reporter

    Chiefland citizens who are registered to vote can apply to run for three seats coming up for election on August 6.

    Groups 1,3, and 5 are currently held by Mayor Chris Jones and Commissioners Rollin Hudson and Norman Weaver.

    At the May 13 commission meeting, Chiefland City Manager Mary Ellzey relayed that the fee for qualifying is $448 and applications will be accepted by the City from June 10 to 13 between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m.

    The date of the election is Tuesday, Aug. 6 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. at Chiefland City Hall.

  • Chaplain a treasure at Chiefland flea market

     By Suzette Cook/Reporter

    “If they have a funeral, I’m there. If they have a marriage, I’m there.”

    Chiefland Farmer’s Flea Market Chaplain Dick Brown says he serves  hundreds of  vendors and customers every weekend.

    On a typical Saturday morning he might be hanging out in a booth sitting under a T-Rex dinosaur mounted on the wall like a prehistoric trophy. Or maybe he’s helping a couple who works at the flea market plan their upcoming wedding. 

    For Brown it’s about making sure that nobody feels disconnected from the church experience because they’re job requires them to work Fridays through Sundays from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

    “If you’re working weekends, it’s hard to attend a church service,” Brown says.

    I’m here if they need anything,” he adds. “If people need prayer,” I’m here.

    Brown says he never interferes during a sale as he makes his way through the market. He is soft spoken but friendly and easy to approach.

  • Chamber Banquet awards Business, Citizen, First Responder of the Year

    Three major honors were the subject of the Greater Chiefland Area Chamber of Commerce Awards Banquet on May 2, making this year’s edition a big draw. Hosted at Haven in Chiefland with a slew of door prizes and an auction hosted by Daniel Jerrels, the banquet combined the Citizen of the Year and the Business of the Year awards and for the first time added the First Responder of the Year award.

    The funds raised from the auction go to a children’s backpack food program and a scholarship fund supported by the Chamber.

    The Chamber also presented the family of Betty Walker a special plaque for the late Chiefland Mayor’s “many years of dedication, caring and generosity to the community of Chiefland, Chiefland.” Walker passed in February after serving seven terms as mayor and more than 15 years on the City Commission.

    The Citizen of the Year award went to a tireless advocate for working service dogs, Barbara Snow, who is the executive director for the Southern Region of the U.S. War Dogs Association, Inc.

  • County road adjacent to RV park on paving list since 2003

    Suzette Cook, Reporter

    The two-mile long road known as Levy County Road (LCR) 201 that runs adjacent to Strawberry Fields RV Park in Chiefland has been on Levy County’s road paving and resurfacing schedule for 16 years.

    That list, re-prioritized in 2013, is about to come under scrutiny as a result of a 4.5-hour-long special meeting hosted on April 30 by the Levy County Board of County Commissioners.

    Commission Chair John Meeks said the prioritizing of the list is a staff-level decision while putting roads on the list is left up to the commission.

    “It’s your responsibility to vette these roads, make sure they meet the criteria, and the roads that are on here, we need to do a hard count,” Meeks told Road Department Coordinator Alice LaLonde.

    “There are roads on here that don’t match our criteria and they need to be removed,” he added.

  • 42nd Wild Hog Canoe Race enjoys record crowd

    It’s shortly after noon and Joey Canova is cheering on boaters from the scorer’s table as they approach the finish line of the 42nd Annual Wild Hog Canoe Race on April 27.

    While the water this year was up, and boaters reported a healthy current that helped pushed things along, the race is always a grind, no matter the conditions and no matter your experience and strength. And most competitors stumble just before completion, as they’re required to lift their boats over a log that bridges about a foot or two over the water, in between the U.S. 19 bridge and the finish line. Even if the boat goes over smooth, getting back in the boat is often a problem.

    “You never know how the race is gonna end,” yells out Canova, as one duo has to paddle to the finish facing backwards after they scramble to get back in their boat in time on the other side of the log. Canova was the master of ceremonies, filling in for longtime announcer Don Lindsey, who was suffering health problems.

  • Third generation rancher sets stage for life lessons

    Suzette Cook, Reporter

    Cattle Rancher Eugene Carter III is at home on a horse named Tennessee. He is flanked by his two Black Mouth Cur dogs that are under his command just as the five bulls in front of him are. With a series of whistles, Carter, 56, steers the dogs that steer the bulls, and they all make their way across his arena.

    On the other side of the pen, a new generation of bull riders is gearing up. Spurs, vests, helmets, chaps.

    For Carter, a 1980 graduate of Chiefland High School, where he was an active member of the FFA, this is a full-circle moment.

    Carter said he built his first bull riding ring back in 1986 and named it “the dungeon.”

    “I rode bulls, my brother rode bulls,” Carter said. “We had cows, and me and Daddy and my brothers would get our bulls and try to ride them.”

    Carter started hauling bulls and now, more than 30 years later, he manages 90 acres, 75 head of cattle and is the founder of Renegade Rodeo. Carter’s four sons followed in his footsteps helping out on the ranch and learning the ins and outs of rodeo and arena life.