• True to her word Monday night, newly appointed interim city manager Oel Wingo was on the job by 7:30 a.m. Tuesday.
    Wingo was chosen in a 4-1 vote in a special called city council meeting, following council members’ interviews with three potential interim managers.
    Councilor Brooks Holloway was the lone dissenter, averring he saw no need for an interim manager since he believed a full-time person could be hired quickly–perhaps in two to three weeks.

  • Gary Denning, 50, of Trenton is facing a felony cruelty to an animal charge after he attacked the family's pet Golden Retriever with a machete severing its spinal cord on Thursday, according to a Levy County Sheriff's Office press release.
    The dog, severely injured from being struck several times with a machete, was alive when deputies arrived, but was later euthanized by Levy County Animal Control.
    Denning told deputies the dog was not aggressive and he was getting back at his brother-in-law following an altercation over small dent in Denning's truck.

  • Residents of Ocala Highlands West who packed the Levy County Commission meeting Tuesday morning were outraged by the board’s 2-1 decision to close the only Levy County road they have used to go in and out of their neighborhood.
    Southwest 216 Terrace, between County Road 464 and Southeast 59th Lane, is six-tenths of a mile long and it is owned, not by Levy County, but by descendants of Emory Priest, who requested its closure.


    Land was the hot topic at the latest Levy County School Board meeting but 77 acres in Williston will likely cost a pretty penny, but not in the near future.
    The committee that has been meeting regularly to locate the best site for the future Williston High School made its recommendation to the school board, but the actual acquisition is possibly years off. They started with eight sites, narrowed it down to four and ultimately to the one they consider to be the best.

  • Revenues for the Levy County General Fund, are lagging behind estimates for the first six months of the fiscal year putting the county $1,345,342 in the red.
    County Clerk of Court Danny Shipp presented the bad news to the three commissioners in attendance at Tuesday's Board of County Commissioners meeting in Bronson. Commissioner Marsha Drew of Yankeetown (R-District 3) was absent from the meeting.


    Falling tax revenues have forced the Legislature to cut state funding including a $4.7 million  cut to  Levy County schools that could affect as many as 50 employees.
    School Board Superintendent Robert Hastings said, there are “no sacred positions” and “nothing will be left unturned” as he looks for every way to save money and jobs.

  • The Yankeetown Town Council has decided to file a civil action asking the 8th Judicial Circuit Court in Levy County to review the Levy County Commission’s approval of a conditional special exception permit to Tarmac King Road mine near Inglis.
    The decision was anticipated by the County Commission, which on Tuesday approved spending $10,000 to hire a firm specializing in such cases at the request of County Attorney Anne Bast Brown.

  • Levy County Commission votes to close portion of Southeast 216 Terrace at property owner's request, forcing subdivision residents to use Marion County road to get in and out. Details in this week's Pioneer

  • Only a few blocks from downtown Williston lays a sea of color that takes your breath away, causing you to marvel that such spendor is not in a vast rural setting, but contained expertly on three city lots.

    For Bill and Nellie Boyd, the artistry that has transformed their home and yard into a gardener’s paradise has been a labor of love.

    Bill first became enamored with daylilies back in 2000 after visiting Wimberly Way Garden and receiving the gift of a day lily called Total Perfectin.

  • James Brown had to think hard about what he likes about working on the old Shell Pond School.

    “It hasn’t hit me yet. It hasn’t jelled,” The 56-year-old carpenter said, gripping a handsaw and standing in front of a pile of salvaged timber. “That’s a tough question. It’s such a simple structure. What it can become, I guess. That’s what it’s about.”

  • World War II vets will meet Thursday,  May 12 at 11 a.m. at the Ivy House in Williston.
    Last month's meeting was at Salt Creek Restaurant in Suwannee. New members were Victor and Dorothy Durrance of Old Town and Gainesville. The couple has returned to Texas but will return in the fall to resume their residency.
    Mr. Durrance and Bob Heise had a long discussion about their war time experience.
    For questions or more information, call Virginia Lewis at 528-2310 or Dot Halvorsen at542-7697.


  • Levy County is in the market for a new public safety director who – depending on who you listen to – will split their time  70 percent to emergency medical services and 30 percent to fire services, or 80 percent medical and 20 percent fire, or  85/15.

  • Justin Fairbanks, 9-year-old son of Kymber Altman and Matt Wilkinson has been diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML) and will be hospitalized at Shands for the six month duration of his treatment.
    A fund to help defray the family’s expenses has been established at Perkins State Bank. To make contributions, use this information:
    Perkins State Bank
    Justin Fairbanks and/or Kymber Altman
    Routing # 063102783
    Account # 100939462

  • It is going to be hard for a lot of Williston Red Devil Baseball fans next season when the sight and sounds of Red Devil Baseball Head Coach Jim Smith are absent following his surprise retirement announcement  April 29.
    Smith turned in his notice from his head coaching position after 23 years, the last 15 at the helm of the Williston Red Devils.
    Smith was faced with this life changing decision following some personal health issues.

  • Hattie Rowe and Mimi Johnson were chosen as the mother and daughter who looked most alike. Their similarities won them lunch for two, courtesy of the Williston Pioneer.
    Congratulations and thanks to every one who submitted photos.
    Happy Mother's Day!

  • The Tarmac King Road mine near Inglis is a project unlike anything else to be considered in Florida and it proved it with a record-setting public hearing that went until a final vote at 2:42 a.m. Wednesday.
    The Levy County Commission public hearing on Tarmac’s application for a conditional special exception permit started at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday and ended with a vote that took less than 30 seconds from motion to a 3-1 tally.

  • Because the city failed to follow its own ordinance, Williston electricity customers were overcharged over $196,000, according to Councilman Norm Fugate.
    Fugate met Tuesday with the city’s auditor, who told him, he said that findings indicate the city failed to re-calculate its cost adjustments quarterly.
    The cost adjustment and utility taxes are accrued to ensure customer’s bills are levelized rather than be allowed to flucuate monthly. Customers have consistently paid the same base rate, with only the fuel adjustment charges and taxes changing.

  • Horse lovers and racing enthusiasts will be glued to their TVs this Saturday as Churchill Downs marks  the 137th birthday of the Greatest Two Minutes in Sports with the Run for the Roses–the Kentucky Derby.
    This year, Williston and Levy County residents will also take deeper interest in the race since two Williston-area horses are in contention to run for the first jewel in racing’s Triple Crown.

  • The city of Williston will observe the National Day of Prayer, Thursday, May 5 at noon in the pavilion at Heritage Park.
    The National Day of Prayer  is an annual day of observance held on the first Thursday of May, designated by the United States Congress when people are asked "to turn to God in prayer and meditation.The law formalizing its annual observance was enacted in 1952.