News Cast 6/14

News Cast for June 14th:

Congressman opposes new gun laws 

17th district congressman Greg Steube has long supported the 2nd amendment. 

He went on the house floor to blast approval of stricter gun laws stemming from recent mass shootings across the country. 

Steube said the bill will take away gun rights for anyone ages 18 to 20. 

“Democrats will take away the lawful rights of 99.7% of adult Americans between the ages of 18 and 20 for the acts of a few wicked people.  The daughter off to college, living by herself, can’t buy a shotgun to protect herself in her own home against a rapist, all because 0.3% of that age group has committed a violent crime.” 

A bi-partisan group of Senators authored a compromise bill that will add resources to prevent suicides and address mental health issues. 

The bill would also prohibit those diagnosed with mental illness from purchasing guns. 

The Rivers Coalition wants no releases from Lake Okeechobee to the east coast, ever. 

They are pushing for lake levels to be lower and more water sent south. 

Lt. Colonel Todd Polk of the US Army Corps of Engineers said lake water isn’t just used by agriculture. 

“When we talk water users it is the municipalities on the east coast that use the most water.  We also use the water for recreation.  You talk about keeping the lake lowers level, to do that we have to push water out constantly.  If we didn’t have storms coming every year, sure we’d keep the lake levels lower, but that is not a feasible option.” 

Stuart Mayor Merritt Matheson said they want to get benefits of boat traffic to and from the lake but not any of the water. 

 “We are not talking about shutting off the cross Okeechobee waterway.  We are talking about zero regulatory discharges as our goal.  We only want local tidal basin runoff.” 

The lake level today is just over 13 feet. 

Martin County Commissioners rejected a proposal to allow some backyard chickens in residential neighborhoods.

Commissioner Harold Jenkins said he did not think most of county would want chickens near homes.

 “We would have people so against it that we would have this room filled with people completely against the idea of backyard chickens in a residential community.” 

Resident CD Asterreedes told commissioners she didn’t want chickens near housing development. 

“I have no problem if the chicken is in an agriculture area.  We do have a problem if they are waking you up at 4 in the morning.  The chickens are very filthy.  They bring snakes, rates, foxes, it is just ridiculous to have kids on one hand in this house and a bunch of chickens all over the place.” 

Commissioner Ed Ciampi said they were talking about a handful of chickens in rural areas.  He said some want chickens and some use them for eggs. 

Hendry County reports a shortage of cement. 

They are also pushing for a new road access into Pioneer Estates. 

Commissioner Ramon Iglesias supports the idea in case there is an emergency like a wild fire and the only road is closed.