Friday, Oct 24, 2014

MICHAEL D. BATES

Hernando Today

Three running for Russell’s commission seat

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The District 4 Hernando County commission seat became wide open when incumbent Republican Dave Russell announced he was stepping down at the end of his term.

Ulta Beauty officially opens Friday at Coastal Landing

- — Hernando County’s first Ulta Beauty store officially opens at 10 a.m. today at the Coastal Landing shopping center off State Road 50.

Hernando’s jobless rate falls for first time in 4 months

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Hernando County’s unemployment rate dropped in September for the first time in four months.

Teamsters’ employees will not get raises in Hernando

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Hernando County, which was poised to give salary increases to hundreds of employees — union members and others — instead will give them only to some non-un...

Hernando prepares for possible Ebola outbreak

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Hernando County public safety officials say even though the chances for an Ebola outbreak here are slim, they are prepared.

Four to vie for state House in District 35

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Because of term limits, current state legislator Robert Schenck, a Republican, must step down this year.

Dukes, Lodato, Moore competing for Dist. 2 seat

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The District 2 Hernando County Commission race features three high-profile candidates who have distinctly different ideas on how to bring economic prosperity to the area.

Spring Hill man could face charges after removing 244 political signs

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Charges are pending against a Spring Hill man who removed 244 political signs from vacant lots throughout Hernando County and stacked them in his driveway, deputies said...

Two attorneys vie for 5th Judicial Circuit

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Those who live in the 5th Judicial Circuit will vote for a new judge after the incumbent was defeated in the August primary.

Assisted living facility approved for Wiscon Road

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Hernando zoning board denies proposed winery north of Brooksville

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— More than a dozen people who live in a rural area north of Brooksville gave Hernando planning and zoning board members on Monday several reasons why a proposed winery wo...

Distillery, winery may be in the works

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Hernando County soon might have a large-scale distillery and winery.

Tourism center, educational facility on commission agenda

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County staffers Tuesday will suggest three possible locations for the construction of a visitor information center at Interstate 75.

Micro Matic USA plans even bigger expansion

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Driving along the Suncoast Parkway, motorists don’t get a clear indication of the expansiveness of the Brooksville-Tampa Bay Regiona...

Key Mariner Boulevard lane closure set for Nov. 1

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Motorists exiting the Mariner Square Plaza know how difficult it is to get onto Mariner Boulevard and turn south.

Hernando teacher arrested on sexual battery charges

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A 40-year-old male graphic design teacher at Springstead High School was arrested Friday and charged with having sexual relations with a 17-year-old female student.

Gas card audit prompts changes at Hernando Beach Volunteer Fire Department

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A long-awaited audit looking into public service employees’ fuel card usage pinpointed three areas where the Hernando Beach Volunteer Fire Department needs improv...

Fine Arts Council eyes new home

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The Hernando County Fine Arts Council has endured a bumpy ride in recent years as it deals with friction at board meetings, loss of members and declining revenue.

Little Rock Cannery gets new lease on life

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The Little Rock Cannery, saddled with budget problems in the last four or five years, repeatedly has come back from the brink of closing.

Yet another site proposed for tourism-educational center

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The list of possible sites for an educational-tourism center in Hernando County grew to five last week.

County resumes control of Spring Hill waterfall

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The next time motorists driving by this community’s main entrance on U.S. 19 notice the waterfall not working, the flags not waving or grass getting a bit long, w...

Stewy’s Skate Park concessionaire calls it quits

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— For the past 15 months, Sean Cunningham has sold cold drinks and snacks to patrons at Stewy’s Skate Park in Spring Hill.

Scallop season yields big dividends

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Scallop hunters used to travel to Citrus County to launch their search for the tasty bivalves nestled in shallow sea-grass beds in the Gulf of Mexico.

Hernando works to curb increase in dogfighting

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Davey, a 2 1/2-year-old pit bull, romps around these days in the office of Hernando County Animal Services, tail wagging and affectionate to anyone who pets his black-an...

Hernando commission approves 2014-15 budget

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County commissioners approved the fiscal year 2014-15 budget during Tuesday’s second and final budget hearing.

Hernando considers splitting proposed tourism center

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Turns out, getting the state to allocate $3 million for an educational-tourism center in Hernando County might have been the easiest part of the process.

Hernando commissioners approve 2014-15 budget

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— County commissioners officially put the fiscal year 2014-15 budget to bed at Tuesday’s second and final budget hearing.

Hernando considers spliting proposed tourism center into two concepts

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— Turns out, getting the state to allocate $3 million for an educational-tourism center in Hernando County may have been the easiest part of the process.

Hobby Lobby opening delayed

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The opening of Hernando County’s first Hobby Lobby store has been delayed.

County seeks to alleviate congestion at boat ramp

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Jon Auvil, of Dade City, said he tries to make the trip to Hernando Beach every Saturday to launch his boat into a newly dredged channel leading to the Gulf of Mexico.

Penny for Projects raises $159K

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The Penny for Projects political action committee raised $159,100 from June 1 through Sept. 5, according to Florida elections officials.

Brooksville chief: No excessive force in violent encounter

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Two Brooksville police officers acted appropriately when taking down a man who ended up hospitalized after the violent altercation, Police Chief George Turner said.

County may adopt new minimum operating standards at airport

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Hernando Commissioner Dave Russell said the minimum operating standards for the local airport have not been modified since 1997.

Hernando County’s jobless rate up for fourth consecutive month

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Hernando County’s unemployment rate was 8.8 percent in August, up from 8.5 percent the previous month.

Bike, walking path will connect beach to U.S. 19

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For years bicyclists and pedestrians in this coastal community have pedaled or walked cautiously along Osowaw Boulevard to reach the nearest big-box stores on U.S. 19...

With much on the line, penny sales tax push heats up

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Hernando County has launched a full-court promotional campaign to sell the public on the ‘Penny for Projects’ sales tax initiative voters will find on Nove...

Sheriff : Crime rate fell 40 pct. since 2008

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— About 10,000 more people have settled in Hernando County in the last six years — a 6-percent increase population.

Building permit fees to rise 25 percent over two years

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— The Hernando County building department, hampered in recent years by reduced staff, plans to alleviate that problem by increasing its fees for permits by 12.5 percent fo...

Negotiations help erase Hernando budget deficit

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BROOKSVILLE – Some last minute brainstorming Tuesday between the staff from Hernando County and the sheriff’s office resulted in the near closure of a $548,524 general fund shortfall and allowed county comm...

Dollar General approved for east Hernando

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— County commissioners voted unanimously Tuesday to approve a rezoning request allowing Dollar General to build a new store at the southeast corner of State Road 50 and Tr...

Lack of consensus on tourism center could lead to its demise, commissioners say

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— The county’s plan to build an educational-tourism center in Hernando County was originally to be a destination spot to draw people to the area.

Board approves property rezoning, storage expansion in Hernando

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It took only about 15 minutes for planning and zoning commissioners to conduct business Tuesday.

Commission to discuss proposed Dollar General

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A proposed Dollar General store in Ridge Manor caused discussion at a recent planning and zoning meeting when the board learned some people who live at an apartment comp...

Red-light camera battle could go to court in December

- A legal fight about Brooksville's much-debated red-light cameras could go to trial in December.

Papa Joe's plans re-opening

- Eight months after a fire destroyed Papa Joe's Italian Restaurant, owner Joe Giarratana said people still ask if he plans to re-ope...

County allays meter fears

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An advertisement in this month’s Spring Hill newsletter spurred some people to contact Hernando County commissioners and utility department employees.

P&Z board to hear request for storage facility

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Planning and zoning commissioners Monday will consider a request to allow a two-story, 10,200-square-foot climate-controlled storage building inside an existing facility...

Despite I-75 push, county prefers Weeki Wachee for tourism center

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— Despite a push by some to find yet another location for an educational-tourism center, Weeki Wachee Springs State Park is still the preferred site for county officials s...

Hernando sheriff returns $1.2 million to county

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— Sheriff Al Nienhuis announced this week that streamlining efforts within his department, combined with a hurricane season that has thus far been quiet, will allow him to...

State Road 50 project three months off pace

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The State Road 50 widening project has been under way for almost two years and motorists have at least another 12 months to endure the cons...

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