News Cast 5/25

News Cast for May 25th:

Another active hurricane season 

Hurricane activity will be above normal for the 7th consecutive year. 

Up to 21 named storms, 10 hurricanes and six major storms are predicted. 

NOAA Administrator Rick Spinrad said conditions are ripe for a lot of storms. 

“There is a 65 percent chance of an above normal season, a 25 percent chance of a near normal season and just a 10 percent chance of a below average season.” 

Forecaster Matthew Rosecrans mentioned the loop current looking similar to the infamous 2005 storm season. 

37 year old Nicholas Pierce was charged with arson in the second degree and felony criminal mischief. 

Okeechobee deputies said a resident heard an explosion in his backyard and saw Pierce running away from a burning trailer. 

About $4,000 worth of power tools inside the trailer were lost. 

No one was injured. 

Bond was $32,500. 

Boating safety is on the minds of law enforcement like sheriff deputies, the coast guard and the FWC. 

Memorial Day is a huge weekend for boating in the state. 

FWC Lt. Col Alfredo Escanio urged safety. 

He said boating and booze don’t go together. 

“If you are going to be out with your families enjoying the water and having fun and you’rr going to be drinking alcoholic beverages, have a designated driver.  It is simple to have a designated driver and it will prevent tragedies.”  

Other tips include always wear a life jacket, check your emergency equipment,  watch the weather, file a float plan, and let relatives and friends know where you’re going and when you plan to return. 

A Lorida woman picked up on a warrant in Okeechobee for animal cruelty. 

31 year old Lauren Fraser is charged with starving a dog. 

A pit bull mix named Lilly was found in terrible conditions on Ram Road in Lorida earlier this year. 

The dog had been adopted out from Okeechobee animal control.  The owner then gave it to Fraser. 

On the Purina body conditioning system of 1 to 10, the dog was rated a 1. 

It was wobbly on its feet and weighed about half the weight of a normal dog its size and breed, the arrest report said. 

The Highlands Humane Society was able to nurse the dog back to health.  

Unemployment levels in rural counties have hit new record lows. 

Okeechobee had 2.4 percent unemployment in April. 

There were about 700 fewer people in the work force here in April compared to March. 

Glades County had 2.2 percent unemployment in April. 

Labor economist Adrienne Johnston said some job sectors are really booming. 

“Professional business services have added jobs at 8.8 percent since February, 2020.  Leisure and hospitality has the most jobs left to recovery.  Manufacturing has gained jobs and has seen strong growth in financial activities.” 

The labor force is up three percent in the past year across Florida. 

Florida also set a record for tourism in the first quarter of 2022 with 36 million visitors.