News Cast 9/9

News Cast for September 9th:

Glades turns down fire tax 

After several months of discussions the Glades County Board of County Commissioners voted (5-0) to not pursue a new fire assessment this year. 

Most of the objections came from residents on fixed incomes and owners of small businesses that told the board this was not the right time to increase taxes. 

The plan was to add a new around the clock station with two full-time units at all times. 

One would go to Buckhead Ridge and serve eastern Glades County while the other would serve Moore Haven and other parts of the county. 

The cost would have been up to $121 dollars per residence and 4 cents per square foot for commercial business. 

There was some concern about agriculture paying large bills. 

County Commissioner John Ahern says Graham Farms in Moore Haven would have paid at least $13,000 for barns that were basically fire proof. 

The county was encouraged to work with the school system to see if they can train more volunteer firemen. 

Violence surrounds man visiting Okeechobee 

An Apopka man was behind bars on $375,000 bond facing several felony charges. 

Bobby Kemp, 35 allegedly entered a home on SW9th Lane without permission, armed himself with a knife, and made threats. 

The resident fired three gunshots at Kemp as he fled.  Two rounds struck the vehicle he was driving. 

Later Sunday Kemp was accused of kidnapping a female, forcing her to go with him to Osceola County. 

During the trip he reportedly beat her and threw water in her face constantly to keep her from talking. 

Charges include armed burglary, felony battery and aggravated assault. 

The female was treated for injuries at a hospital in Osceola County. 

City welcomes donation 

City officials said they appreciate the donation from the Frank Altobello Family Fund to help downtown parks. 

$100,000 was offered as a match to the city cash contribution. 

Councilmember Noel Chandler said he wished that Altobello was still alive to present the donation. 

He said Altobello had done an outstanding job as a successful businessman to give back to this community. 

Mayor Dowling Watford said the city would find the matching funds and that this donation would definitely enhance the Flagler Park improvements. 

City faces commercial zoning decision 

A chain motel is one of the options a developer will consider for a section of land turned down twice for rezoning. 

The latest application is for heavy commercial. 

Engineer Steve Dobbs said the city has agreed to consider commercial uses in this location which is the second block east off 441. 

The city turned down residential zoning and a town house project on these two properties earlier this year. 

The city did pay for the application fee for the rezoning application.