NEW PORT RICHEY
Tourist events get preliminary $80,000 in funds
The county's Tourist Development Council earmarked $80,000 this week to support 10 local events that bring visitors to Pasco County. The funding, which awaits final approval by the County Commission, comes from the tourist tax charged on local hotels and other short-term lodgings. The events slated for funding include:
• Chasco Fiesta: $21,254
• Cotee River Bike Festival: $11,559
• Cotee River Seafood Festival: $4,577
• Harvest Festival: $4,288
• Kumquat Festival: $6,504
• Pasco Bug Jam: $11,801
• Pasco County Fair: $6,130
• Pasco EcoFest: $2,108
• Suncoast Arts Festival: $6,808
• Wesley Chapel Fall Festival: $4,972
Officials noted only 10 events requested funding this year, down from 17 last year and 23 back in 2007. For information about the events, visit the county's tourism website at visitpasco.net. To view the future requirements for this grant program, visit pascocountyfl.net.
NEW PORT RICHEY
Arrest comes week after 'device' found
Police have arrested a 24-year-old man less than a week after the bomb squad searched his house and detonated a possible "destructive device." New Port Richey police originally went to the home at 5820 Pine St. on Saturday afternoon to serve a warrant on Harlin Bruce Miller Jr., who was wanted on a federal charge of possession of an unregistered firearm. Detectives suspected there might be weapons and an explosive device at the home, however, so they evacuated the area and brought in the bomb squad. The bomb squad safely retrieved the device and detonated it. There was no sign that day of Miller. Police returned Thursday morning after receiving another tip that Miller had returned to the home. He was arrested without incident and will be transferred to federal custody, the New Port Richey Police Department said.
Education Center to hold orientation
James Irvin Education Center at 35830 State Road 52 is hosting three orientation sessions for parents and students. All sessions begin at 10:30 a.m. and will include light snacks, a tour of the facility and review of programs and procedures. Parents and students also will be able to complete any necessary paperwork and make class selections if needed. New student orientations are July 26 and July 31. Returning students orientation is July 30. Schedule pickup is from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 4 to 6 p.m. Aug. 14. For information, go to tinyurl.com/jamesirvin or contact the school's office at (352) 524-5700 or (813) 794-5700.