News Update for 8/3/22

An Avon Park man reportedly was involved in a Hardee County traffic crash that claimed a life. Florida Highway Patrol reports indicate the 62-year-old driver failed to stop at a stop sign at the intersection of Lake Branch Road and County Road 664A.
His sport Utility vehicle collided with another SUV – driven by a Fort Meade woman. She was killed. Three of her passengers sustained minor injuries.
Apparently, no charges have yet been filed.

Avon Park firefighters were called out last night to extinguish a housefire. The blaze broke out in the home off Ben Hicks Street shortly after 11pm.
There were no injuries reported and the amount of damage to the house has not yet been released. The state fire marshal’s office has been called in to determine the cause.

There’s been a change of command at the Avon Park Bombing Range. In formal ceremonies yesterday, Lt. Col Michael S. Ryan accepted the standard of what is officially known as the 598th Range Squadron, Avon Air Force Range.
Lt. Col Ryan formerly served as the Director of Operations for Support Squadron 18th Wing of the Air Force. He takes command from Lt. Col Steven C. Thomas, who is retiring after two decades of service with the Air Force.

At their meeting yesterday morning, Highlands County commissioners reached a consensus, to trim back the millage a couple more tenths, and aim for an 8.3 mil property tax rate for the upcoming fiscal year. However, it was not unanimous.
Highlands County commissioner Arlene Tuck fought for a flat eight mils – which would be closer to the 7.8 mil rollback rate for the county. She lobbied without success, saying that the county could cut about half of the unfilled job-openings without affecting service.
However, Commissioners Kathy Rapp, Kevin Roberts, Christopher Campbell and Scott Kirouac agreed that a quarter mil reduction would be sufficient.

Highlands County school board members have agreed to hold an August 15 workshop to discuss a policy for what should, and should not be taught to sixth, seventh and eighth grade students in the way of sex education. After being told that the state has tweaked their requirements to say that students should be instructed on “the awareness of the benefits” of abstinence as the expected standard, board members agreed to add that into their requirements.
The afternoon session reportedly will address local values and local concerns.

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