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County News Digest

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By Jeff M. Hardison

Sex business ordinance set for approval

BRONSON - The Levy County Board of County Commissioners may approve a new ordinance related to sexually oriented businesses, according to Levy County Attorney Anne Brown.

The meeting to consider adopting the new ordinance is slated for Dec. 18, starting at 6:30 p.m.

The county attorney and others have been working on the ordinance for about two years, according to Levy County Coordinator Freddie Moody. The ordinance can be adopted at this meeting, Brown said.

County approves letter against GRU choice

BRONSON - Levy County commissioners on Dec. 4 approved sending a letter to Gainesville Regional Utilities to protest the placement of a sludge field in eastern Levy County.

The GRU field is next to State Road 24, right on the eastern edge of Levy County. The commission noted its disapproval of the special exception being awarded to a property owner to allow the sludge field.

Emergency management among the best

BRONSON - Levy County Emergency Management Director Mark Johnson said this county is one of 15 out of the 67 counties in the state, which has reached 100 percent of the "Tier I" level of National Incident Management System Training (NIMS).

The county is 62 percent complete with its "Tier II" NIMS training, Johnson said. In 2008, the county plans to start implementation with tabletop exercises, he said.

NIMS began after the terrorists' attack on Sept. 11, 2001, he said. It is to provide the government with a cohesive response to emergencies.

No action was required. Johnson simply gave the commission an update on NIMS. He thanked the commission for its cooperation in the effort.

Boat ramp grant accepted

BRONSON - Levy County Parks and Recreation Director Matt Weldon found unanimous approval from the County Commission on Dec. 4 when he told the five-member board the county had been awarded a $103,110 grant from the Florida Boating Improvement Program.

Weldon anticipates being able to start the project for the Camp Azalea Boat Ramp within six months.

Assessment collection method gets OK

BRONSON - A resolution to create a uniform method to collect special assessments for solid waste met with unanimous approval Dec. 4 by the Levy County Commission.

The non-ad valorem assessment collection method had to be adopted because the fees for garbage service increased, according to County Attorney Anne Brown.

Bridle Trace plat gets approval

BRONSON - The final plat for Bridle Trace subdivision received unanimous approval from the Levy County Commission on Dec. 4.

The 267-acre subdivision is platted to be 26 residential lots, each measuring about 9.5 acres. The subdivision is in County Commissioner Nancy Bell's district.

Exception granted for shop near Inglis

BRONSON - A special exception was granted Dec. 4 to "Bob" Ghamandi to move his machine shop out of Inglis and into the unincorporated land in county north of there.

He will fabricate from metal to make highly technical vacuum equipment. The 2.6 acres of land is zoned for commercial use. He reportedly moved from the city because he needed to expand his shop size.

Employee earns $500 bonus for course work

BRONSON - Paula Bunkley received a $500 bonus from the County Commission Dec. 4.

The government leaders awarded the county employee the money because she completed a course with the Florida Department of Environmental Protection. Bunkley works at the Levy County Landfill.

Waste Management Director Benny Jerrells sought and received the bonus for his worker, as he has for every worker who merited a similar bonus in the past.

Detour coming for CR 339 bridge

BRONSON - The bridge near U.S. Alt. 27 for Levy County Road 339 needs to be repaired, according to Levy County Road Administrator Bruce Greenlee.

The Florida Department of Transportation plans to repair the bridge, he said. He sought and received approval on Dec. 4 to use CR 339-A as a detour during the time of construction. Greenlee said DOT did not tell him when or how long the bridge would be under construction.

Levy approves technical programs

BRONSON - Levy County commissioners on Dec. 4 unanimously approved two possible projects that would be funded by the state Small County Technical Assistance Services program.

County Coordinator Freddie Moody said there is a potential for using $4,050 on web site improvements or for a review of the assessment method for Emergency Medical Services.

Assessment review groups are chosen

BRONSON - Government Services Group (GSG) and the law firm of Nabors, Giblin & Nickerson (NGN) of Tallahassee received unanimous County Commission approval Dec. 4 to serve in regard to fire, road and solid waste special assessments.

The fees for this service this year are $9,975 for fire, $7,875 for road and $7,500 solid waste assessments.

Commissioner Nancy Bell said she wants to seek bids from other providers for this service because GSG and NGN made errors before in relation to special assessments.

Mental Health contract gets approval

BRONSON - The annual contract for mental health and addiction services between the County Commission and Meridian Behavioral Healthcare was approved Dec. 4.

The fee was the same as last year - $75,124.

Library gets discount for some of its bills

BRONSON - The Levy County Public Library System is seeking an 80 percent discount on its phone and Internet bills again this year.

Library Director Bonnie Tollefson received unanimous County Commission approval Dec. 4 to use the E-Rate application, which seeks federal funds to help pay telecommunication bills for the library. The application was successful last year.

Tollefson is known for finding grant funds to help the public library system.