News Cast 11/16

News Cast for November 16th:

Another tragedy on the roads 

Two people are dead in Highlands County after a crash near the intersection of state road 70 and nine mile grade, route 721. 

The Florida highway patrol said both drivers were critically injured as an SUV trying to pass caused the head on collision. 

Dead were one passenger in each vehicle, A 68 year old man from Melbourne and a 68 year old man from Rotunda West. 

The driver of the SUV was a 65 year old Melbourne woman. 

The driver of the sedan was a 72 year old Rotunda West woman. 

All of the occupants wore seat belts in the Monday afternoon crash which closed down the road for some time. 

The crash remained under investigation. 

President Joe Biden signed the $1.2 trillion dollar infrastructure bill. 

Florida could get close to $50 billion dollars. 

$13 billion is set aside for Everglades projects. 

Agriculture commissioner Nikki Fried said she supports the plan because it will create jobs and help the economy. 

It also makes investment in rural broadband. 

The plan would include $66 billion for Amtrak.  It could potentially increase the amount of passenger trains into Okeechobee headed to Orlando, Tampa and Miami. 

Okeechobee commissioners agreed to contribute $100,000 toward the Cattlemen’s Square project. 

The Okeechobee Tourist Development Council could provide another $50,000 for the cattle drive sculpture itself. 

Okeechobee Main Street predicts the park will help downtown and bring customers to shops and restaurants. 

County Commissioner Kelly Owens said she is not convinced on the economic benefits and has not seen any real numbers about those impacts. 

The US Army Corps of Engineers will announce the optimized lake schedule model run, schedule that will be the framework of the new Lake Operational plan on Tuesday. 

Nobody is really happy.  Coastal interests said they’ll get too much lake water.   

The Okeechobee Utility Authority said they won’t get enough. 

Senator Ben Albritton said he’s committed to doing all he can to help the region. 

He maintains the point of spending millions on the Herbert Hoover dike was to improve its integrity and hold more water in the lake. 

Glades County is negotiating with a Hallandale Firm, VSO company,who want to develop a hotel and fast food drive through restaurant in Moore Haven. 

They’d like to purchase two lots in the county business park. 

The project would require a zoning change for the two lots. 

Commissioners also hired Wright Construction to engineer the planned Muse Public Safety Complex. 

The cost $75,000 is funded as part of a $900,000 grant provided by the state. 

Glades remains interested in a joint station with Hendry County.