Thanks for listening to WOKC Okeechobee's True Country!

Local News

Florida’s Growing Alzheimer’s Population

Florida’s Growing Alzheimer’s Population Requires More Research 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

CONTACT: Morgan L. McCord

April 4, 2014

                                   850.212.5052

 

TALLAHASSEE, FL - The number of Floridians affected with Alzheimer’s is expected to grow by nearly 50 percent in the next decade, putting a strain on Florida’s health care system and increasing costs for taxpayers, according to a new report from Florida TaxWatch. The report, Florida’s Looming Alzheimer’s Crisis, calls for additional research into Alzheimer’s to prepare for the state’s aging population and to seek a viable preventative treatment.

 

“Florida must take steps to ensure the state has a sustainable long-term health care system to provide care for all Floridians,” said Dominic M. Calabro, President and CEO of Florida TaxWatch, the independent, nonpartisan, nonprofit taxpayer research institute and government watchdog. “Additional research will help Florida identify how to reduce costs associated with treating the elderly population, and allow Florida health care providers to deliver the highest-quality care to its patients.”

By 2025, Florida is expected to have more than 700,000 Alzheimer’s patients, who each had an average annual cost of care up to $56,000 in 2010. Better research into Alzheimer’s disease could help reduce these treatment costs and allow for cost-effective quality care, according to the report.

“With more than 480,000 Floridians affected by Alzheimer’s today, the financial, health, and emotional costs to caregivers is tremendous and will only continue to rise,” said Tamara Y. Demko, JD, MPH, Director of the Florida TaxWatch Center for Health & Aging. “To realize the greatest cost-savings for Florida and ameliorate the impact to our aging population and their families, we must invest in finding treatments and possible preventive therapies now, before any damage, fiscal or physiological, becomes irreversible.”

As the Alzheimer’s population grows, the costs for treatment are expected to also rise. Funding more Alzheimer’s research in Florida should result in lower cost of care, improved health outcomes for patients, and a high-return on investment for Florida taxpayers.

 


Charles Murphy News 4/4

News Cast for April 4th:

Water managers may appeal a ruling to ban back pumping of agriculture runoff into Lake Okeechobee. Attorney David Guest with Earth Justice said this was an historic moment in the effort to clean up Lake Okeechobee. He admits he is disappointed it took more than 11 years to get a victory in court but he blames the delays on the Water Management district. Guest says 9 billion gallons of water is back pumped into Lake Okeechobee each year.

An April 24th workshop set by the Okeechobee Board of County Commissioners to discuss management and maintenance of various cemeteries.

Several residents have complained because decorations on grave sites have been removed without their knowledge.

Commissioner Bryant Culpepper says he met with county officials to make sure residents are better informed on what decorations are allowed. Culpepper says he understands the difficulty for lawn maintenance crews.

Among arrests, 28 year old Joseph Salette was charged with lewd and lascivious molestation on a child under 12.

In the courts, 70 year old Jesse Williams received 21 months in prison for aggravated battery.  Williams cut 50 year old Gilbert Pickens in the back with a pocket knife last June 7th in Douglas Park, alcohol and jealousy was apparently involved.

Detectives Looking For Theft Victims

Sports Cast for April 4th:

Marissa Casimir and Yasmine Queen had two touchdowns apiece to lead Treasure Coast to a 32-0 win over Okeechobee in varsity flag football last night. Okeechobee was held to only three first downs on offense.

Titans Coach Devin Malloy said his team likes to run the ball, which is uncommon in flag football. The JV lady Brahmans overcame Treasure Coast 20-6 last night. Aaliyah Johnson scored two touchdowns and added an interception for Okeechobee.

She caught a 1 yard touchdown on the first drive and a 19 yard touchdown in the second quarter. She said the team’s third win of the year felt good. Andee Garcia added a touchdown and Clinesha Williams had a big game on defense for Okeechobee.

Westminster Christian swept Okeechobee in a softball double header in Miami yesterday, 11-1, and 16-3

On the sports schedule today, softball competes in the DOC 4 Life tournament in Ocala today and Saturday.

The JV softball team also competes in the Ocala tournament.


Seasonal manatee speed zones in effect statewide

Seasonal manatee speed zones in effect statewide

Now that weather and waters are warming, manatees are disbursing into their popular feeding and loafing areas. To ensure manatee safety, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) law enforcement officers, along with federal and local law enforcement partners, will be increasing patrols in these areas.

This effort coincides with seasonal manatee zones that went into effect April 1 and run through Nov. 15. The speed zones are intended to protect the state’s official marine mammal from collisions with boats.

Warming weather increases boat traffic too, which is why the FWC also reminds operators of boats and personal watercraft to slow down and watch out for manatees in springs, rivers and Atlantic and Gulf waters. The state’s lumbering “sea cows” are leaving the warmer enclaves such as freshwater springs, power plant outflows and canals, where they spent the winter, and migrating into more open waters.

Boaters should pay strict attention to signs that delineate each seasonal manatee protection zone and their boat’s speed. For information on manatee protection zones and maps, go to MyFWC.com/Manatee and select “Protection Zones.” That page contains a link for county maps; select “Click here for maps of these areas.”

In addition to obeying speed regulations, boaters and operators of personal watercraft can avoid collisions with these large marine mammals by:

  • Wearing polarized sunglasses to help spot the creatures in the water.
  • Watching for large, telltale circles on the water’s surface (manatee footprints) indicating the presence of manatees.
  • Looking for a snout just above the surface.
  • Slowing down when the presence of manatees is indicated.

Boaters and others who find sick or injured manatees should report the animal and its location to the Wildlife Alert Hotline at 888-404-3922.

For more information about Florida manatees, visit MyFWC.com/Manatee, where you can access the Boaters Guide To Living With Manatees brochure.


Former Captain with OCSO Passes Away

Brock, Dexel-1Dexel “Buster” Waymon Brock, a former captain with the Okeechobee County Sheriff’s Office, died on Tuesday, April 1, 2014. He was 62.

Buster was a lifelong resident of Okeechobee, and was loved and respected in the community as a Law Enforcement Officer. He served seven years with the Okeechobee City Police Department and       twenty-three years with the Okeechobee County Sheriff’s Office before his retirement in 2009.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Heroes 4 Hope, 1115 N. Parrott Avenue, Okeechobee, Florida 34972.

Visitation will be at 3:00 p.m. until services at 4:00 p.m., Saturday, April 5, 2014 at Buxton & Bass Okeechobee Funeral Home, 400 North Parrott Avenue, Okeechobee, Florida.


Gov. Scott Signs Legislation that Cuts $400 Million in Annual Vehicle Registration Fees for Floridians

Gov. Scott Signs Legislation that Cuts $400 Million in Annual Vehicle Registration Fees for Floridians

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Today, Governor Rick Scott was joined by Senate President Don Gaetz, Speaker of the House Will Weatherford and other members of Florida Legislature, as well as county tax collectors and business community leaders to sign Senate Bill 156 that cuts $400 million in annual vehicle registration fees for Florida families. Governor Scott also sent a letter to the tax collectors encouraging Floridians who require a registration renewal before September 1 to only register for one year. To view the Governor’s letter to the tax collectors, click HERE.

Governor Scott said, “Last winter, we announced our intent to return $500 million to Floridians by cutting taxes. Today, we are rolling back many of the 2009 tax increases on annual motor vehicle registrations. This will result in an annual savings of $25 per typical motor vehicle and will let families keep nearly $400 million of their hard-earned money in their own pockets—because it’s their money!”

Senate President Don Gaetz said, “From day one of the 2014 Legislative Session, Governor Scott and the Florida Legislature committed to making a reduction in vehicle fees the centerpiece of meaningful tax relief for Florida’s families. I am pleased to see Senator Negron’s bill become the centerpiece of the Governor’s $500 million ‘It’s Your Money’ tax cut and honored to witness this recurring reduction in vehicle registration fees become law here today.”

House Speaker Will Weatherford (R-Wesley Chapel) said, “The Florida House was proud to make lowering fees for Florida drivers a priority this session.  Governor Scott has been a leader on keeping taxes low for Florida’s families and I thank him for signing one of our top priorities into law today.”

Senator Joe Negron said, “I am proud to have been the sponsor of SB 156. By signing the bill today, Governor Scott will roll back $400 million in car registration fees that was put in place in 2009. He is putting money back into the pockets of Florida families and this is great news!”

Representative Ritch Workman said, “I thank Governor Scott for his leadership to give tax dollars back to Florida families. Since 2009, Florida families have paid too much for registering their cars and this legislation changes that. I am thankful our Governor supports the notion of not taking revenue we don’t need from Floridians.”

Representative Mike Hill said, “By rolling back the car registration fees, families and businesses will all feel the benefits of Governor Scott’s work that created such positive economic recovery for Florida. It is great to know this legislation will have a positive impact on everyone who drives a vehicle in Florida and I am proud to support it.”

Mark Wilson, President and CEO of the Florida Chamber of Commerce said, “No new taxes or fees mean more freedom for Floridians and small businesses, and more economic growth for Florida. Governor Scott’s tax relief efforts will put money back into the pockets of Floridians and small businesses and further help Florida to become more competitive. The Florida Chamber applauds the Florida Legislature and Governor Scott for working to cut taxes on Florida’s families and job creators,”

Tom Feeney, President and CEO of Associated Industries of Florida said, “Today is a great day for the taxpayers of Florida because they are getting to keep more of their own money.  This is a win for Floridians who register their family car and for businesses who register fleets.  I am proud to stand with Governor Scott as he rolls back the 2009 annual tax on motor vehicle fee registrations.”

Bill Herrle, Florida Executive Director of the National Federation of Independent Business said, “The signing of this legislation today is very exciting for motorists who will start paying less for their annual vehicle registration this fall. This reduction will directly benefit the families and businesses of Florida.  On behalf of all those who will benefit from this fee reduction, I say thank you Governor Scott.”


Governor Rick Scott and the American Cancer Society Discuss Cancer Research Funding

Governor Rick Scott and the American Cancer Society Discuss Cancer Research Funding

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Today, Governor Rick Scott met with representatives from the American Cancer Society to discuss the investment in the “It’s Your Money Tax Cut Budget” to make Florida among the best states in the nation for cancer research. The Governor’s proposed funding for cancer research includes $60 million for existing Florida Cancer Centers to assist in achieving National Cancer Institute (NCI) designation, and another $20 million commitment for peer-reviewed research grants.

Governor Scott said, “Investing in cancer research is important to all Floridians, and will help save the lives of countless individuals. Because of Florida’s high-quality cancer research centers, Floridians don’t have to leave our state to receive world-class treatment. I am glad to meet with representatives from the American Cancer Society to discuss the importance of cancer research funding, and how we can work together to eliminate this terrible disease.”

Dr. John Montgomery, Chair Board, Florida Division of the American Cancer Society, said, “As you know, Florida ranks 2nd  in cancer incidence in the country and 15th in funds granted to cancer research programs by the National Cancer Institute. We appreciate Governor Scott’s ongoing commitment to Floridians fighting cancer, and their families. His budget proposal to establish more NCI-designated Cancer Centers in Florida can enhance the ability of our state’s cancer research community to provide better treatments through discoveries – working in concert with the state’s proven model of funding the best science through a competitive, peer-review process”


Rooney Statement on Fort Hood Shooting

Rooney Statement on Fort Hood Shooting

Washington, DC – U.S. Rep. Tom Rooney (FL-17) issued the following statement on today’s shooting at Fort Hood, Texas:

“Tara and I were shocked and saddened to learn of another shooting at our former home, Fort Hood. While we are still waiting for all the facts, we do know that four people are dead and 16 have been wounded. For the families of the fallen, and for the soldiers who have been injured, life will never be the same. Tara and I send our thoughts and prayers to all the soldiers at Fort Hood and their families, and our deepest condolences to the families of those who were killed.

“We do not yet know how or why this tragedy occurred, but nearly five years after the Nidal Hassan shooting at Fort Hood in 2009, it is clear that we must do far more to ensure that our troops are safe when they are at home on base. We must thoroughly investigate what happened today, so that we can take whatever action is necessary to prevent something like this from ever occurring again.”

Rooney and his wife, Tara, both served in the U.S. Army JAG Corps and were stationed at Fort Hood from 2000-2002. Rooney has led efforts to classify the 2009 Fort Hood shooting as a terrorist attack in order to provide a higher level of benefits, including the awarding of Purple Hearts, to the survivors and the families of those who were killed.


Statement by Commissioner Adam H. Putnam on EPA Action

Statement by Commissioner Adam H. Putnam on EPA Action to Allow Florida to Protect State Waterways 

Tallahassee, FL – Commissioner of Agriculture Adam H. Putnam released the following statement today, after the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency proposed to withdraw federal numeric nutrient criteria.

“The withdrawal of federal numeric nutrient criteria by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will enable Florida to manage our unique and diverse waterways.

“The Florida Legislature embraced the state’s adoption of a more comprehensive, science-based approach to managing the health of Florida’s water bodies, demonstrating our commitment to protect our precious natural resources and creating the framework for the EPA to withdraw the overlapping federal standards.”

To find more information on the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, visit www.FreshFromFlorida.com.


Sports Cast 4/3

Sports Cast for April 3rd:

WOKC photo tennis district tournament 1 WOKC photo tennis district tournament 2 WOKC photo tennis district tournament 3

The boys finished up second at the district 14-3A tennis tournament at the sports complex.

The girls team finished 4th.  Jensen Beach had a clean sweep with all of the district titles in singles and doubles this year.  They also claimed the girls’ district title.

OHS boys tennis coach Morgan Ungerott said she knew her team would be determined to make regional after disappointment last year. Ungerott and the school system praised the Board of County commissioners for resurfacing the tennis courts in time for the district tournament. Okeechobee will play on the road next Tuesday.

On the sports schedule today, OHS baseball visits St. Lucie West Centennial at Tradition Field at 3 pm.

OHS softball competes in the Doc 4 Life tournament through Saturday in Ocala.

The flag football teams will host Treasure Coast tonight with JV game at 5 and varsity to follow around 6 pm.

The OHS track teams compete in a meet at Moore Haven at 3 pm.


Charles Murphy News 4/3

News Cast for April 3rd:

Okeechobee’s landfill will be getting new household garbage from Lake Placid beginning sometime this month.  The Town approved a deal with Waste Management for up to 50 tons per day and 5 thousand tons per year and expects to save money. Town Manager Phil Williams expects the service to start in mid-April. The town negotiated 25 dollars per ton for household garbage.  The county will benefit from the tipping fees charged.

Attorney Jennifer Williamson of Okeechobee won the Treasure Coast Friends of the National Rifle Association volunteer of the year award recently. Williamson is active in raising money for local youths to learn about shooting sports and gun safety while also doing charity work with clay shoot tournaments.

The State house and senate both included 5 million dollars in their proposed spending plan for the Kissimmee River restoration.  Both plans also have 40 million budgeted for the C-44 reservoir and treatment area located near Indiantown.  The spending plan also included 3 million dollars for farmers north of the lake to continue best management practices.

City council will consider an appeal from fired city patrolman Larry Parsinoff on May 6th.  The officer is appealing a ruling by a grievance committee to uphold the termination on grounds he lied to superior officers and failed to accomplish assigned tasks.

Pilot Survives Plane Crash in GC

4 2 14 Registation Fees Release

Sports Cast for April 3rd:

WOKC photo tennis district tournament 1 WOKC photo tennis district tournament 2 WOKC photo tennis district tournament 3 The boys finished up second at the district 14-3A tennis tournament at the sports complex.

The girls team finished 4th.  Jensen Beach had a clean sweep with all of the district titles in singles and doubles this year.  They also claimed the girls’ district title.

OHS boys tennis coach Morgan Ungerott said she knew her team would be determined to make regional after disappointment last year. Ungerott and the school system praised the Board of County commissioners for resurfacing the tennis courts in time for the district tournament. Okeechobee will play on the road next Tuesday.

On the sports schedule today, OHS baseball visits St. Lucie West Centennial at Tradition Field at 3 pm.

OHS softball competes in the Doc 4 Life tournament through Saturday in Ocala.

The flag football teams will host Treasure Coast tonight with JV game at 5 and varsity to follow around 6 pm.

The OHS track teams compete in a meet at Moore Haven at 3 pm.


« Previous PageNext Page »