Tuesday, Jul 29, 2014

BATES, MICHAEL D.

Hernando Today

Stewy’s Skate Park concessionaire ramps up for another year

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Sean Cunningham considered not renewing his lease as concessionaire at Stewy’s Skate Park.

Brooksville, Hernando officials finding common ground

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Last week city residents learned Hernando County once again will provide mosquito spraying in Brooksville.

Hernando starts spraying again for mosquitos in Brooksville

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— County Administrator Len Sossamon has directed the mosquito control department to resume nightly spraying of the insects in the city of Brooksville after a four-month im...

County to scale back hours at Little Rock Cannery

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— Barring any last-minute influx of money and members, the county will be forced to reduce the operating hours at the beleaguered Little Rock Cannery starting Oct. 1.

Scott engages critics, pitches jobs plan in Brooksville

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Critics question timing of Cemex mine delay

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— A Cemex official said he has four months to convince residents their fears of expanding mining operations along State Road 50 and Fort Dade Avenue are groundless.

Property tax plan would return mosquito control to Brooksville

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— Mosquito control would return to Brooksville thanks to a new funding plan proposed Tuesday by county commissioners.

Hernando commissioners give nod to sales tax referendum

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County commissioners voted 5-0 Tuesday to pass a formal ordinance allowing the Penny for Projects referendum to appear on the Nov. 4 general election ballot.

Spring Hill sinkhole home declared unsafe

- SPRING HILL — A home on the edge of a sinkhole that opened in Spring Hill was declared unsafe Monday and the homeowner was given until Tuesday morning to remove her belongings, according to Hernando County...

Proposed county budget shows millage hike

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— When Hernando County commissioners meet Tuesday to set a proposed property tax rate for the fiscal year beginning Oct. 1, they will consider a possible tax hike to accom...

Democrats plan minimum wage rally

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President Obama in February raised the minimum wage for federal contractors from $7.25 to $10.10 per hour.

Jobless rate rises slightly in June

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Hernando County’s unemployment rate was 7.9 percent in June, up from 7.7 percent in May.

Chili’s, Gator’s Dockside submit building plans in Hernando

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— Diners can soon add two more choices to their eating-out options.

Sting nets 10 arrests of unlicensed contractors in Hernando

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An undercover operation cracking down on unlicensed contractors netted 10 arrests and civil citations totaling $9,675.

Cemex expansion plan denied by Hernando zoning board

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— Dozens of people packed planning and zoning commission chambers Monday to protest a local mining company’s plan to expand operations on 730 acres along State Road...

Details sought for educational-tourism center

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Much has been written about a potential site for a $6 million educational-tourism center in Hernando County.

Cemex works to ease fears about new mine

- — Worries about loud booms, vibrations shaking homes and rock trucks thundering along tree-lined Fort Dade Avenue all are unfounded.<...

Hernando candidates stump during Politics in the Park event

- — It was billed as “Politics in the Park,” and while there was no park, there was plenty of politicking going on Thursday night at the Knights of Columb...

Similar projects in Hernando, Pasco not a concern, commissioners say

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— If Hernando County creates a recreation area inside the Weekiwachee Preserve, it will be in direct competition with a proposed project off U.S. 19 in Pasco County called...

Hernando considers building tourism center at Weeki Wachee State Park

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— Hernando County commissioners would like to build a proposed educational-tourism center adjacent to Weeki Wachee State Park and directed staff Tuesday to meet with state...

Alternate sites eyed for tourism center

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HernandoCounty commissioners on Tuesday will discuss new locations for the proposed educational-tourism center, including near Weeki Wache...

County housing market continues upswing

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— Hernando County’s housing market continued to show signs of improvement in May, with sales of existing single-family homes up about 7 percent from a year ago.

Hernando Beach fire chief rejects allegations

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Hernando Beach Fire Chief David Freda said allegations made by an anonymous person that he abused his gas card by buying and drinking alcohol with on-duty firefighters a...

Old Navy closes in Coastal Landing, Ulta to fill spot

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— Exit Old Navy, enter Ulta.

Hernando’s property values increase for first time in seven years

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— In 2007, Nancy Pelosi made history by becoming the first female speaker of the House. That same year, Steve Jobs, then-CEO of Apple Inc., introduced the iPhone to consum...

Beacon Theater opens new large-screen auditorium

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Transformers: Age of Extinction” is the first movie to play on Beacon Theater’s new large screen, which was scheduled...

Hernando considers raising bed tax 2 cents

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If Hernando County is going to compete with surrounding counties for tourism dollars it will have to raise the bed tax from the existing th...

Golden Corral shutters its Brooksville site

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The Brooksville Golden Corral has been a fixture at 940 S. Broad St. for 17 years.

Brooksville fire captains dispute allegations

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— Brooksville fire Captain William Kaplan, fired for failing to take appropriate steps after an off-duty captain took a fire truck out for a ride, said the incident could ...

Brooksville fire captain fired, another resigns over drinking incident

- One Brooksville Fire Department captain has been fired and another has resigned over an April incident involving drinking while driving a fire engine.

Commissioners approve marina rezoning in Hernando Beach

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— A divisive Hernando County Commission on Tuesday listened to four hours of debate before approving a rezoning request from Gordon Wolf who wants to expand his Blue Pelic...

Sossamon voted in as permanent economic development director

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— With limited discussion, county commissioners Tuesday voted unanimously to amend the contract of County Administrator Len Sossamon which makes him the permanent economic...

60-foot fallen pine removed from empty, foreclosed home

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If a tree falls in the forest and nobody is there to hear it, does it make a sound? And does anyone care?

Candidate qualifying comes to an end

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Let the campaigning begin.

County jobless rate inches up

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The county’s jobless rate inched upward in May to 7.8 percent. That’s slightly higher than April’s rate of 7.5

Sossamon eyed for permanent economic development director

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County commissioners Tuesday will consider making their administrator the permanent economic development director and increasing his base pay to $168,750.

Hernando’s public safety director settling in

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— Hanging on the wall of Scott Hechler’s office is a foot-long wooden replica of the hammer of Thor, the superhero who uses it to fly ...

Developer contributing $150K for road work

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The county administrator estimates it will cost taxpayers $10 million to improve the intersection of Mariner Boulevard and State Road 50, recently named the most dangero...

Brooksville residents feeling stung by mosquito spraying dispute

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— Kara Hazivasilis said she’s been cutting visits to city parks short these days because of an increase in mosquitoes.

Group forms to oppose Brooksville mining expansion

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A group of county residents and property owners oppose a plan by Cemex Construction Materials to build an open pit rick mine on 728 acres of undeveloped land along State...

Elected officers submit budgets

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— Now that all five of Hernando’s elected constitutional officers have submitted their 2014-15 financial proposals, it is up to George Zoettlein to crunch numbers a...

Brian Moore eyes county commission seat

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In 2008, Brian Moore ran for president of the United States representing the Socialist Party. Two years later, he ran as a Democrat in the Florida gubernatorial race aga...

More education about fertilizer ordinance underway

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— Hernando County officials have spent the last six months educating people about a new fertilizer ordinance that restricts application to certain times of the year.

Residents oppose Weekiwachee Preserve development at meeting

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— County leaders ran into a wall of opposition to developing part of the Weekiwachee Preserve into a beach and park during public meetings this week.

More candidates drop out of Hernando races

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— Four people have bowed out of their races for elected office in the last month.

County may make Sossamon permanent economic development director

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— Almost six months ago, Hernando County commissioners tacked on economic development duties to County Administrator Len Sossamon’s work load, with the caveat that ...

Ordinance prohibits sleeping on bus benches in Hernando

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— People should not view the newly passed ordinance against sleeping on bus benches as being overly punitive, county commissioners said Tuesday.

Tour offers view of Nature Coast education center site

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It was hot and sticky, and sweat poured over more than one person as they walked through part of the 11,206-acre Weekiwachee Preserve on Friday morning off Osowaw Boule...

Median home sale prices up $12K in Hernando

- — The Hernando County housing market improved in three key indicators in April, leading industry officials to predict an uptick heading into summer.

County to get fertilizer ordinance update

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— Hernando County’s new fertilizer ordinance restricting users to certain times of the year went into effect Jan. 1.

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