News for 6/7/23

Members of the South Florida State College Board of Trustees got together this morning and selected Fred Hawkins as the new president for the school.
Hawkins, a former Florida House Representative, became the only candidate for the post after three previous candidates pulled their resumes from consideration.
He already has toured the campus and met with students, teachers, administrators and members of the community.
Current president Thomas Leitzel was slated to step down the first of the month, but a series of events hampered the naming of a successor.

It appears Highlands County’s burn ban and impact fees will be on for a bit longer. According to reports, the burn ban needs a notice of 10 days before can be lifted. That means it will be in effect until at least June 20th.
The county’s impact fees have been suspended for another year. Apparently, a study needs to be done before the first of July – and there’s just not enough time to crunch those numbers. Commissioner agreed to get a study done to determine if or when the moratorium might be lifted.
Impact fees are designed to charge developers for the impact that residential or commercial construction might have on the community.

Without much discussion, Sebring city council members last night approved the start of proceedings to annex some 88 acres at the intersection of US 98 and State Road 66 for development. Martz Family Holdings, who own and operate Insight Auctioneers, want the property to enhance and develop their operation – currently now being run just off State Road 66.
As part of the plan, municipal water service would be run to the sight. Martz said a full build-out of the property will take 5-to-6 years to complete.

Do you like avacados? A Frostproof grove owner hopes so. Mitchell McLellan reportdly is switching from oranges in an effort to begin a new cash crop.
McClellan reportedly has 700 avocado trees on seven acres, and he says he’s the only farmer in the area now growing avocados for commercial production.
He said he made the switch because Hurricane Ian and citrus greening has made growing oranges too risky financially.
Avocados require a bit of patience. McLellan says it’ll take two years before he sees a harvest.

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