Breaking Highlands county news, local sports and events, and weather from Highlands Today | HighlandsToday.com | Highlands Today
Wednesday, Jul 29, 2015

Pinnell, Gary

Highlands Today

Highlands County commissioners trim budget

Tuesday, Jul 28, 2015 - SEBRING — Sheriff Susan Benton whacked her budget request by a half-million dollars, and Clerk of Courts Bob Germaine trimmed another $6,000. Together with other reductions, the FY2015-16 Highlands County ...

Citrus acreage plummets in Highlands County

Saturday, Jul 25, 2015 -

SEBRING — Highlands County has lost more than 15,000 citrus acres in the past 10 years.

Four county officers are millionaires

Thursday, Jul 23, 2015 -

A few Highlands County public officials are wealthy, but they aren’t getting rich in office, their latest financial disclosure forms show.

Commissioners change budget oversight process

Wednesday, Jul 22, 2015 -

Commissioners set the maximum millage at 8.55, which means there will be no tax increase next year. The property tax millage could go lower, but not higher without re-notifying taxpayers.

Six candidates in sheriff’s race

Tuesday, Jul 21, 2015 -

SEBRING — Six candidates are already in the running for Highlands County sheriff, and four or five others have picked up packets from Elections Supervisor Penny Ogg.

Bag limited proposed for large mouth bass

Saturday, Jul 18, 2015 -

In the fall and winter, there are days when Don Hatcher hopes for a cancellation. Although he’s semi-retired, his boat may be booked solid for days on end. Last year, he scheduled 130 excursions, and he’s o...

Site designated for new veterans memorial

Saturday, Jul 18, 2015 -

SEBRING — Highlands County veterans will have a new memorial.

Will we have enough health care workers?

Thursday, Jul 16, 2015 -

Two days ago, Rebecca Sroda sent out a needs assessment to 20 home health agencies in Highlands, Hardee and DeSoto counties: are there enough home health workers?

The challenges of Florida citrus

Thursday, Jul 16, 2015 -

“May you live in interesting times.” That purported Confucian curse may seem especially apt to citrus farmers who have been fighting Huanglongbing since 2006.

The new normal

Tuesday, Jul 14, 2015 -

SEBRING — Here’s the job market’s new normal: pay scales are sluggish, part-timers can’t find full-time work, fewer Americans have jobs and fewer are looking. Older workers are retiring, and y...

County nixes employee bonuses

Monday, Jul 13, 2015 -

Should Highlands County pay a bonus to the next tourism director? Only if they hire a contractor, commissioners decided Tuesday.

Wife pleaded with EMS to take her husband to Tampa General

Sunday, Jul 12, 2015 -

— Four months ago, when her husband had a stroke and seizures, Becky Crivello asked the emergency medical technician to call Aeromed. She wanted her husband flown to Tampa Gen...

An Alzheimer’s irony: loved ones are more affected than victims

Friday, Jul 10, 2015 -

SEBRING — Forgetting is a hallmark of Alzheimer’s disease.

Sheriff: tiny grant pays dividends for jail, mentally ill

Friday, Jul 10, 2015 -

— Commissioners accepted a mental health grant Tuesday that not only helps mentally ill prisoners straighten out their lives, but saves money for Highlands County.

Griffin wants SNL to pay $12,000 attorney fees

Thursday, Jul 9, 2015 -

— Supervisors Dick Miller and Dave Halbig will be reimbursed for their attorney fees, so now Greg Griffin wants to be reimbursed too.

Governor: CitraPac will create 240 new jobs

Thursday, Jul 9, 2015 -

SEBRING — CitraPac will break ground on a new 37,000 square-foot manufacturing facility that will be constructed at Sebring Commerce Park, add $14 million in capital investments, and create 240 jobs, Gov. Rick Sco...

Commissioners, public discuss $139 million budget

Wednesday, Jul 8, 2015 -

— Negotiations, if that’s what they were, began Tuesday evening over Highlands County’s 2015-16 budget.

County budget: $19 million bigger, $4 million deficit

Tuesday, Jul 7, 2015 -

— Next year’s spending plan will be $19.2 million larger than the current budget, according to a message released last week to Highlands County commissioners.

Sheriff’s office low bid: $9.8 million

Sunday, Jul 5, 2015 -

— And the low bidder is…

Where do thundershowers come from?

Sunday, Jul 5, 2015 -

— Why does South Florida get afternoon thundershowers? Why is hail relatively rare in Florida? Why does the wind gust? And why is Florida the lightning capital of the U.S.?

Healthy Start provider takes over in Highlands

Saturday, Jul 4, 2015 -

Highlands County has a new Healthy Start provider, and it’s the same corporation that operates Hansen House, a Sebring emergency shelter and residential program for a...

Should county require bear-proof garbage cans?

Thursday, Jul 2, 2015 -

— County Club of Sebring residents are deciding whether they should invest in bear-proof garbage cans.

2nd firm wants to manage landfill, recycling

Sunday, Jun 28, 2015 -

— A second company is asking to manage Highlands County’s landfill and recycling operations.

Animal euthanasia numbers coming down

Saturday, Jun 27, 2015 -

— Whereever Twyla Ostrowski goes in Lake Placid, she’s still asked what’s going on with the animal control ordinance.

HIV-AIDS all but gone in Highlands

Friday, Jun 26, 2015 -

— If Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach was a state, it would rank sixth in new HIV infections.

Future Boom? Sebring predicted among fastest-growing U.S. cities

Thursday, Jun 25, 2015 -

Since the Great Recession ended, oil towns have dominated America’s fastest-growing economies. Now, gasoline prices have dropped.

Miller denies Griffin’s allegation

Tuesday, Jun 23, 2015 -

— Supervisor Dick Miller had denied violating the Florida Sunshine Law, and will present his defense at the next Sun N’ Lake Improvement District meeting.

Progressive proposes curbside recycling

Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 -

— It’s been years in the making, but Progressive Waste Solutions has finally proposed a recycling deal with Highlands County.

Highlands white majority below 70 percent

Friday, Jun 19, 2015 -

— Every year since 2007, when Christopher van der Kaay was hired as an adjunct instructor, he has seen South Florida State College change.

Last hurricane was a decade ago

Thursday, Jun 18, 2015 -

Ask six people in Lakeshore Mall to name the last hurricane to pass through Highlands County, and they’ll draw a blank.

Flood plain maps are here

Wednesday, Jun 17, 2015 -

— Three years ago, the Federal Emergency Management Agency released preliminary flood plain maps. At Joedene Thayer’s home on Lake Rachael, for instance, it appeared he...

Sheriff’s office bids delayed

Tuesday, Jun 16, 2015 -

— Highlands County will have to wait two weeks to find out how much the proposed sheriff’s office will cost.

Do you know the rules of poverty?

Saturday, Jun 13, 2015 -

The poverty class tends to believe in fate.

When Sebring was young

Friday, Jun 12, 2015 -

— For Sebring, the runup to World War II began with a June 12, 1941 telegram from Congressman J. Hardin Peterson:

Parting is such sweet sorrow

Friday, Jun 12, 2015 -

— General Manager Michael Wright has accepted a $69,000 buyout of his contract. Friday will be his last day at Sun ’n Lake Improvement District.

Halbig to answer Griffin complaints

Thursday, Jun 11, 2015 -

— Sun N’ Lake Supervisor David Halbig plans to reply to Public Works Director Greg Griffin’s complaints at Friday’s board meeting, 9 a.m. in the SNL commu...

No solution yet for Lake Charlotte

Thursday, Jun 11, 2015 -

— While there were more than two opinions about how the county and the state ought to proceed at Lake Charlotte, residents who met Wednesday afternoon at the Bert J. Harris Jr...

Understanding poverty

Wednesday, Jun 10, 2015 -

— Holly Parker lived poor years ago, but her understanding about the mindset of poverty popped open when she attended a United Way seminar.

Florida gas tax 7th highest in USA

Tuesday, Jun 9, 2015 -

— Richard Miller moved from Detroit to Houston, then to Highlands County.

Census: Sebring, Lake Placid lose population

Sunday, Jun 7, 2015 -

— If the U.S. Census is to be believed – and officials in two cities question the latest estimates – then inner city residents are moving to the county.

Sports complex isn’t profitable

Saturday, Jun 6, 2015 -

— It’s 10 a.m. Thursday, and the 60-plus men’s league is taking batting practice. The pitcher delivers highlighter-yellow softballs, and bam, bam, bam, the hitte...

Elections office will stay downtown

Thursday, Jun 4, 2015 -

SEBRING – Highlands County is remodeling the Kenilworth Office Building to store elections equipment and records, but the supervisor of election’s office will remain in the Government Center, Supervisor Pen...

Heartland Triathlon grows to 1,200 participants

Wednesday, Jun 3, 2015 -

— How did the Heartland Triathlon grow from under 1,000 last year to more than 1,200 this year?

Summer tourism plan to be partially implemented

Tuesday, Jun 2, 2015 -

— The county is withholding the implementation of its summer marketing plan while identifying target customers.

Ready to change the world

Sunday, May 31, 2015 -

— In a word, it was touching.