News Cast for October 27th:
More US 441 North growth
The South Florida Water Management District signed a near $4 million contract to start construction of a new field station in Okeechobee.
They plan to join it together with the service center on land they own on NW 50th Drive and could break ground next year.
They first need to extend a sewer line to the property.
Spokesperson Libby Pigman said they wanted a more appropriate location for the field station.
“We had to move from the old location because we ran out of room to expand there. It was a little bit incompatible with the residential area. We had a lot of traffic and vehicles going in there, the lot was small, and it wasn’t a good location for us.”
They expect design work to take about nine months. State Contract and Engineering won the contract.
The district also is developing plans for a water project across the street on a portion of the former Okeechobee School for boys property. They also have paid for a communications tower on the Grassy Island Property that will cost $5.1 million.
A baited dove field in Okeechobee was inspected by Florida Fish and Wildlife officers earlier this month.
They issued six warnings, one citation to hunters and an appearance in court for the land owner for a baited field.
Officers didn’t reveal the location.
The report said they found doves taken with unplugged shotguns, failure to maintain possession of migratory game birds, hunting doves with a proper permit and failure to display a hunting license.
The Florida Department of Corrections has a vacancy rate of nearly 14 percent for guards and the rate is higher at Okeechobee Correctional.
DOC Secretary Ricky Dixon said its not like they don’t try to hire people, its just a tough sell.
“In region IV the vacancy rate for guards is 13.9 percent. That is not as bad as it seems. Okeechobee is a problem institution and that is skewing the number quite a bit higher.”
The state is also planning an investment in air conditioning prisons. Three out of four prison dorms don’t have AC right now.
The state had unprecedented heat this summer and prisons allowed inmates to wear shorts and t-shirts.
Activists are pushing for cold water fountains, adding fans, and allowing more access to showers for inmates to battle the heat.
Osceola county voters in Kenansville will help select nominees for the vacant house district 35 seat with primaries on November 7th. The general election is in January.
The democrats running are Tom Keen, Marucci Guzman and Ricchi Bagga.
The republicans in the race are Erika Booth, Ken Davenport and Scotty Moore.
Democrats said the key issues are growth and development, the Florida school choice program, and abortion.
Kenansville kids can celebrate Halloween with their trunk or treat event tonight Oct. 27 at 6 pm.
It will be held at the metal building behind the school museum on Canoe Creek Road.
They do need volunteers. There will be games, prizes desserts, drinks, a costume contest and other events.