News Cast 12/6

News Cast for December 6th:

Marrying agriculture and the environment 

Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried laid out her priorities for the 2022 legislative session. 

One is reducing greenhouse gases and promotion of more sustainable agriculture.  Another is forcing best management practices on producers. 

Senator Gary Farmer said the state needs to provide incentives for farmers to use BMPS. 

“We have a very unique water system in Florida, the aquifer system.  It needs to be treated gently.  We need to recognize some of the practices that may be putting us in danger.  We need to incentivize these producers to work with us as partners to preserve these important resources.” 

Another bill would provide tax incentives for farmers and ranchers to place solar panels on land not being used for agriculture.  Up to $25,000 would be available. 

Governor Ron DeSantis appointed Melissa Kindell to the Indian River State College Board of Trustees 

Kindell, of Okeechobee, is a Pediatric Dentist and Owner of Everglades Pediatric Dentistry.  

She is President of the Board at Martha’s House and serves on the Executive Board of the Economic Council of Okeechobee. 

Also appointed was Anthony George, an attorney in Stuart, Susan Caron, a Contractor in Ft. Pierce, Joe Conrado, a restaurant owner in Vero Beach, and Milo Thornton, Chief Deputy for the Indian River Sheriff’s Office. 

A hurdle is passed for the Indiantown development of Regional Impact known as Terra Lago. 

The Indiantown planning board unanimously approved the first phase. 

240 homes could be built along with acres of commercial space. 

The village council holds a public hearing on the project Thursday night. 

No one spoke against the project.  The only two speakers were in favor of the development. 

Eventually over 2,400 homes and acres of commercial development could be introduced. 

Spokesman for the developer, the Garcia Group, Josh Kelham said they want to keep prices down.  A three bedroom house would cost between $250,000 and $300,000. 

No decision has been made yet on whether Friends of Army Aviation will return to Okeechobee next Veterans day and provide rides for veterans on board Huey helicopters. 

Todd Chambers organized a visit this year at the airport that was well received. 

Chambers said he sees different reactions from veterans when they look at the life-saving choppers who rescued the injured and transported troops during the Vietnam War. 

He said it was gratifying to bring this event to his home town. 

The two helicopters displayed this year did not serve in Vietnam but closely resembled those that did fly.