Thursday, June 21, 2018
News Roundup

Flood control project in south Brooksville could be jeopardized by lawsuit

BROOKSVILLE

A federal judge has issued a temporary restraining order against Hernando County, halting work on a drainage retention project intended to ease chronic flooding in south Brooksville.

A significant delay in the work could financially jeopardize the project.

Late last month, American Tower Asset Sub LLC filed a complaint alleging that the county project is on property that the company leases.

Since 2007, ATAS has leased the site and operated a communications tower on Jefferson Street next to the South Brooksville Community Center. According to the complaint filed by the company, several other companies operated the tower previously.

Earlier this year, the county began to excavate a portion of the 5.6-acre site, which it purchased in 2010 from Dauson Supply Corporation. The county has a long-term plan to alleviate flooding in south Brooksville and the drainage project on the Jefferson Street site was a key first step.

The complaint details a dispute between ATAS and both the county and the former owner over what portion of the property is leased to the tower company. ATAS maintains that it leases a larger portion of the site while the county and the previous owner said a much-smaller section is leased.

The tower company alleges that, because the construction of the pond partly surrounds the tower, it will "cause permanent damage to ATAS's ability to access, operate and maintain'' its equipment. It would also pose a threat of structural and flooding issues at the site, the complaint said.

In a court filing by deputy county attorney Jon Jouben late last month, the county "needs to complete construction of the drainage retention area on or before Jan. 30, 2014, or it will lose approximately $200,000 in funding for the project from the state of Florida.''

Jouben also notes that state environmental rules will require the contractor to secure and maintain the site, which is not currently part of the job they were hired to complete.

A federal judge is slated to conduct a hearing next week on a motion to seek a longer term shutdown of the project through an injunction.

Barbara Behrendt can be reached at [email protected] or (352) 848-1434.

Comments
The Daystarter: CareerSource used credit cards to boost hiring totals; report says Winston suspension coming; Hedman wins Norris Trophy; get ready for Pride

The Daystarter: CareerSource used credit cards to boost hiring totals; report says Winston suspension coming; Hedman wins Norris Trophy; get ready for Pride

Catching you up on overnight happenings, and what to know today.• Today is also the official start of summer, not that anyone will be able to tell. It will be hot and muggy with just a 30 percent chance of rain heading into Friday, according to 10We...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Rays journal: 7 pitches, 3 straight homers prove too much in loss to Astros

Rays journal: 7 pitches, 3 straight homers prove too much in loss to Astros

HOUSTON — The Rays were engaged in a third straight tight, go-either-way battle with the defending champ Astros on Wednesday.Until they were not.A brutal seven-pitch sequence by starter Nathan Eovaldi changed everything, as he gave up three con...
Updated: 6 hours ago
Romano: Intrigue behind all those manicured lawns

Romano: Intrigue behind all those manicured lawns

I’ve always thought homeowners associations had a lot in common with cops.People love to complain about them and often accuse them of abusing their power. And yet as soon as a neighbor paints his house a hot shade of fuchsia, you’re screaming for the...
Published: 06/21/18
Tampa tech firm Newgentek hiring 20 following expansion

Tampa tech firm Newgentek hiring 20 following expansion

TAMPA — Information technology company Newgentek plans to hire 20 new employees over the next two years following an expansion of its Tampa headquarters."In the last 90 days, the Newgentek team has grown 24 percent and is now operating at 80 percent ...
Published: 06/21/18
Daniel Ruth: Florida should consider taking back its outsourced foster care services

Daniel Ruth: Florida should consider taking back its outsourced foster care services

We hear a great deal about how government is the source of all evil, a wasteful, incompetent coven of lazy paper-pushing bureaucrats.That is why the heavens open and the angels sing and all is right with the world whenever we can wrest away various s...
Published: 06/21/18
A tight supply cuts into Tampa Bay home sales while prices keep rising

A tight supply cuts into Tampa Bay home sales while prices keep rising

Tampa Bay’s two largest counties showed anemic home sales in May as prices continued to rise due to a tight supply. In Pinellas, sales of single-family home plunged nearly 12 percent from the previous May, the second-worst showing in a year. P...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Could Lucky’s Market move in to Clearwater’s old Albertsons?

Could Lucky’s Market move in to Clearwater’s old Albertsons?

Lucky’s Market is considering a move in to the old Albertsons box space in Clearwater, according to preliminary plans filed with the city. Lucky’s master broker, Rick Lewellyn, was listed on an agenda as discussing renovating the existing property wi...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Clearwater wants $40 million from the county for a stadium. But there’s not $40 million to give.

Clearwater wants $40 million from the county for a stadium. But there’s not $40 million to give.

CLEARWATER —The city’s proposed $79.7 million overhaul of the Philadelphia Phillies’ spring training facilities depends on getting $40 million in bed taxes from Pinellas County.But records show even if county officials wanted to bankroll the Phillies...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Police: Couple leased someone else’s home to 15 families at same time

Police: Couple leased someone else’s home to 15 families at same time

LARGO — Vanessa Rodriguez thought she found the right house for her three kids, in the right neighborhood, for the right rent. She signed the lease for April 30, sent a $2,300 money order and planned to move in June 1.Then the delays started. She sai...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Rays see the results of keeping a good, young core group together

Rays see the results of keeping a good, young core group together

HOUSTON — The Rays saw a lot on the weeklong trip that ended with Wednesday's game against that Astros, beyond the street hustlers prowling in Times Square and the urban cowboys and girls parading through H-town.There was an impressive debuting...
Updated: 7 hours ago