News Cast 12/1

News Cast for December 1st:

Promise kept by IRSC

Indian River State College reports great success with the Promise Program.

The program has provided two years of free college tuition to high school graduates in Okeechobee and the Treasure Coast.

They are also working to help with student fees and books.

Dr. Timothy Moore, in a speech before the Florida Chamber of Commerce, said the program provides opportunities, especially to low income students.

“We have the largest first-time enrollment in the history of the college.  2,000 high school students from our local districts, 33 percent of all high school students are enrolled in our college.  It is not just the rich kids trying to get by.  80 percent are from minority populations.  That is life changing.”

Two deputies killed 15 years ago were honored in the Glades on the anniversary of their deaths.

A section of County Road 715 between Pahokee and Belle Glade was named after eeputies Donta Manuel and Jonathan Wallace.

They were killed trying to stop a stolen vehicle fleeing from law enforcement on November 28, 2007.  A ceremony held on the anniversary to honor the men.

Their supervisor Captain Rolando Silvas said these two men served admirably.

“The scriptures said we should give honor where honor is due.  That is what we are doing here today.  That is what will happen each time people drive down 715 in western Palm Beach County and they see those markers.”

Suzette Manuel, the widow of deputy Manuel, said she was really touched by this recognition.

“He loved his job.  He loved what he did.  Despite the loss, my family and I know he lost his life doing what he loved.  I thank you for honoring him in such a wonderful way.”

The Shikar Safaria Club named its FWC officer of the year.

Dillan Hudson worked in Martin County for three years before being transferred to an inland position.

He helped develop eight night hunting cases, four turkey baiting cases, one illegal dog hunting case, and made five arrests for DUI or boating under the influence in 2021.

South Florida Water Management has been busy with water projects in Glades County.

Commissioners worry it takes too much property off the tax roll and agriculture production.

Others said it takes valuable commercial property along the Caloosahatchee River.

The projects include 9,270 acre feet of storage at Lake Hicpochee, 1,872 hundred acre feet of storage at the BOMA property and more storage along the Kissimmee River near Buckhead Ridge.

Commissioner Tony Whidden said they have kept the water levels too high and that has killed over vegetation.  He said many worried that the lake would become a mudhole or a reservoir once the dike was improved.

Libby Pigman assured the county commission that they will be keeping water in the lake this winter.

“We don’t want to over react and drain everything out and have a situation where we don’t have enough water coming into the lake in March or April.”

Some minor releases were approved by the US Army Corps of Engineers for the Caloosahatchee River.