Local News

  • Badlands fire sears county

    About 90 homes, businesses and other buildings near the Goethe State Forest were threatened Monday by a fire that's been burning in the area since April.
    Ludie Bond, wildfire mitigation specialist with the Florida Department of Forestry, said the fire, now officially known as the Badlands Fire, picked up steam Monday when it was fed by strong downdrafts from an approaching storm.
    "The fire started getting extremely aggressive and extremely erratic."

  • City hits stumbling block with audit

    The city of Williston has less than four months to meet the state’s auditing requirement. It can be done, but it’s going to take a lot of make up work, the city council learned Tuesday night.
    Helen Painter, of the auditing firm Purvis, Gray & Company, which is conducting the city’s financial audit, presented council members with a list of 15 items still not in their possession and needed to complete the audit before Sept. 30.

  • Voluntary burn ban in effect

    Levy County Emergency Management in cooperation with Florida Division of Forestry have decided to institute a VOLUNTARY burn ban for Levy County.

    Here are some of the reasons why this decision was made:

    •Levy County has not received significant long term rainfall in 30 days.

    •The drought index currently is 638 and is expected to rise until we have rainfall. To see the state drought index go to http://flame.fl-dof.com/fire_weather/KBDI/index.html

  • Chiefland Watermelon Festival this Saturday

    Chiefland celebrates its biggest cash crop with the 57th Annual Watermelon Festival on Saturday from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.
    Thousands come from surrounding communities to enjoy a free slice of the fruit, enjoy children’s activities, buy arts and crafts, and view the annual parade.

  • Judge upholds most of award in sex abuse case

    A 16-year-old boy who claimed in a civil suit that he was molested by his uncle and his grandmother did not prevent it should receive $22.44 million of the $26.4 million in damages awarded by a Levy County jury.
    But the decision may be appealed to the 1st District Court of Appeals, as the final judgment in the cases lists Stuart Markman as an appellate attorney for the grandmother and her insurer, Southern Owners Insurance Co.

  • Man killed at mud bogging event

    A 15-year-old New Port Richey boy is charged with manslaughter in the stabbing death of a man on Saturday at Horse Hole Creek Mud Bog near Inglis, according to a Levy County Sheriff’s Office press release.
    Roderic L. Sparks, 24, of Crystal River, was pronounced dead at Seven Rivers Memorial Hospital in Crystal River where he was taken following an altercation at the mud pit.
    Christopher Sutherlin Jr., 15, is charged with manslaughter and incarcerated at Levy County Jail. State law allows the publication of a juvenile’s name when charged with a felony.

  • Graduation

    More than 130 Williston High School seniors are candidates for graduation next Tuesday, June 7 when the class celebrates the end of one era and the beginning of another at the Phillips Center for the Performing Arts in Gainesville at 7 p.m.
    Erica Mason will lead the Class of 2011 and will deliver her address as the first black valedictorian in the school’s history. Mason promises to inspire her classmates with words that she not only believes in, but lives by and ensured her place at the top.

  • FFA Chapters collecting for tornedo victims

     The Williston FFA Chapters are holding a collection and donation drive to send peanut butter to victims of the recent tornado disasters.  Both middle school and high school chapters are starting with a school collection, challenging students to bring in a jar of peanut butter or a monetary donation.

  • Raleigh Store Vandalized

    On May 25 Deputy Ricky Turner responded to the Raleigh General Store in reference to an alarm call.  Upon arrival two subjects forcibly entered the front door shortly after midnight.  Upon entry the subjects stole lottery tickets, cigars and beer.  During the smash and grab the suspects were wearing mask.
    Earlier this year the store clerk was robbed at gun point, but Investigators do not believe the suspects are connected.
    Anyone with information  should contact Sgt Mike Narayan at 352-486-5111.

  • Burn Ban Lifted