News Cast 12/5


December 5, 2023

News Cast for December 5th:

PUBLIC NOTICE – Okeechobee County Public Works Department

Road & Bridge Division – December 1, 2023

Location: Pine Ridge Park Area-This project will involve driveway pipe replacement and drainage work with partial lane closures on NE 28th Ave (Ellerbee Rd), NE 29th Ter, NE 30th Ave, NE 31st Ter and NE 11th Lane.

Start date: Tuesday, Dec 5, 2023 and End Date: Thursday, Dec 21, 2023

The single-lane closures are necessary to allow equipment to replace driveway pipes and conduct drainage work.

This project is being completed by the Okeechobee County Public Works Department – Road & Bridge Division, which is expected to provide cost savings to our taxpayers.

Drivers are urged to follow the directions of the flag men, drive with caution and plan ahead to allow for more time to pass through the area as the traffic volume on surrounding streets may be higher than usual.

Message boards are going to be placed in the project area to alert drivers of the work zones and provide updates on work progress.

For more information visit the Okeechobee County website or contact the Okeechobee County Public Works Department/Road & Bridge Division at:

Phone: 863-763-3514



The 29th annual Farm City Week luncheon honored dairy farmer Woody Larson and his wife Grace for contributions to local agriculture.

His father Red Larson started the business which is now the largest dairy in Okeechobee.

Woody said they are proud of the work they do and they appreciated the honor from Okeechobee.

“We are a good part of the local dairy industry.  I think of all the people that came before us that I learned a lot from, neighbors and other dairymen.  It is something that has been passed down.”

He noted he began a small beef herd in 1974 and that has also prospered.

“I’ve always had a few beef cattle.  It just kind of grew.  I have always had an interest in cows, people who know me know I’m a cow man.  I enjoy making our living with cows, we try to take care of them, and they take care of us.”

The luncheon also honored the OHS dairy evaluation team career development event.  They won the national FFA championship.

Team members included Luke Larson, Jenna Larson, Lilly Larson and Sophia Caves.

The city of Okeechobee Technical Review Committee approved plans for two new buildings at West Lake Roofing.  A 30,000 square foot building will be used for manufacturing and a 7,000 square foot building will be used for storage.

They also approve plans for the Culver’s restaurant and a car wash in the Park Street Commerce Center on route 70.  The FDOT has been asked for another curb cut to allow for the car wash. 

City staff did have concerns about parking and trucks in the West Lake project.

Chris Hetrick said they didn’t modify or change anything that was previously approved by the city for the site.

The expansion is expected to bring in an additional 60 vehicles per day into the commerce park.

The company also is working on development of three additional lots at the park.

An Okeechobee man was hospitalized after his vehicle collided with a building at 3912 highway 441 southeast on Saturday.  The incident report said a truck collided with a pole in the parking lot.  Ambulance took the man to Raulerson for treatment.

The Yearling Middle School Agribusiness team won the Florida state championships.

Ruby Keith won the individual title.  Levi Maggard finished fourth and Kinsley Vinson in eighth place.  Lexi Bandi was on the winning team.

A cash reward out for a 15-year-old Okeechobee teen facing rape charges in both Okeechobee and Highlands County.

He apparently fled to Avon Park after an incident in Okeechobee and is now listed as a runaway.

Heartland Crime Stoppers can be reached at 1-800-226-TIPS.

The Okeechobee County Sheriffs Office had no information on the teen.

Vehicle fires impacted local roads in the past few days.

Martin Grade (714) was shut down for a time at 710 last night as a tractor trailer goes on fire.  The truck was carrying mushrooms.  Martin County Fire Rescue put out the flames.

Sunday night a pickup truck fire started in the engine and destroyed the vehicle on route 70 near Bluefield Road.  There were no injuries.  St. Lucie Fire District put out the blaze.

The city of Pahokee urged by residents to do more code enforcement.  East Lake Village was mentioned as a problem area for blighted housing.

City attorney Burnadette Norris Weeks says they are working to get housing issues resolved through the special magistrate process.

Vice Mayor Clara Murvin admitted there is blighted housing and some businesses need to be improved.  She expressed confidence the city can improve the appearance of the city.