News Update for 5/13/22
It’s official, there will be elections for all the seats coming up in this year’s local elections. That includes three school board and two county commission races.
Resident Reece Martin yesterday filed to run for the District Four Highlands County School Board seat now held by longtime incumbent Bill Brantly.
Martin, a 52-year-old Lake Placid resident, is a graduate of the University of Central Florida. He has worked with Lake Placid Youth Baseball and is the Proprietary Products Manager at Nutrien Ag Solutions.
Brantly was elected to his current post in 2014.
Traffic was tied up on State Road 66 yesterday afternoon in Hardee County when a tanker truck overturned near the Oak Hill Ranch. Witnesses say the Harper’s Transport vehicle swerved to avoid a car and rolled several times. Although the rig apparently was pretty messed up, the driver walked away with a few bumps and bruises.
The cargo of juice reportedly was pumped out before the tanker was righted and taken away. Florida Highway Patrol officials have released no names or accident description.
More sad news for the citrus industry, the Hunt Bros. Inc. citrus packinghouse in Lake Wales reportedly now has closed for good. The action leaves just 13 such facilitiess across the Sunshine State.
Officials attribute the primary reasons for the closure to the impact of Hurricane Irma and the effects of citrus greening. They say had been hoping for trees to bounce back from the disease, but after the big storm, the packing house lost it’s supply of fruit virtually overnight.
The operation had been in business since 1928.
A Lake Wales contractor has been charged with Grand Theft and fraud. Polk County Sheriff’s authorities arrested 45-year-old Don Stephen Wildmon. He is accused of accepting more than $23,000 to work on a home in Davenport – but apparently never started the job.
Reportedly, the case stretches back to January of last year. Wildmon reportedly has been released on a $5,000 bond awaiting trial.
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