News Cast for July 1st:
WOKC will be closed on Monday, July 5th.
Water management chimes in on LOSOM
The Governing Board of the South Florida Water Management District took three hours of public comment on the optimum level for Lake Okeechobee.
Okeechobee Mayor Dowling Watford said it should be 12.5 to 15.5 feet.
“That is the ideal level if you ask anybody for ecology, navigation, recreation and water supply, everyone agrees that should be the level.”
Pam McAfee blamed water management for the death of her dog after a canal ride.
“On May 23 we cleaned out our boat some lily pads fell out of the boat. Bella ate one and it killed her. I didn’t know at the time that the lily pads were toxic but South Florida Water Management did.”
Steve Walker, Spokesperson for the Seminole Tribe, asked for another 90 days to review the proposals.
“Brighton and Big Cypress reservations rely on Lake Okeechobee for its water supply especially during times of drought. We would like additional time to review the models. Brighton’s models were unexpected and unexplained and we need more time to understand the impacts and if it takes into account the tribe’s demands.”
The US Army Corps expects to have a recommendation on the schedule in early August.
Be cautious on Lake Okeechobee
Expect a busy July 4th weekend on Lake Okeechobee but come prepared.
Have safety equipment, flares, know the weather, and wear life jackets.
Chris Day of Tow Boat USA was on the WOKC Morning Show with Billy Dean to promote boater safety.
He said you can expect more law enforcement on the lake this weekend.
“You will have more law enforcement checking on those boating under the influence. Usually there is more patrols to make sure you are boating sober.”
Day said the pandemic brought out a lot of inexperienced boaters which led to more rescues on the Lake this year.
Arrests of note
Warren Williams, 45, was charged with choking a woman, putting a knife to her throat, and cutting her hand with a knife.
Williams faces charges of aggravated battery with a deadly weapon, aggravated assault and other charges.
Bond was set at $241,000.
Deputies said the incident was domestic in nature. The victim was not hospitalized.
Alcohol was said to be a factor in the incident.
Robert Collins, 38, faces charges he stole two vehicles, a Toyota Tacoma and a Ford F250.
He also allegedly stole a travel trailer.
At least one of the alleged thefts were reported in St. Lucie County.
Okeechobee Deputies said he used a false name and possessed a firearm as a convicted felon.
Police said he even gave his fiancé a false name.