Tuesday, January 16, 2018
News Roundup

Residents question county's plans for water treatment facility, wells in Ridge Manor West

RIDGE MANOR WEST — Hernando County utilities officials want to make their water operations on the east side of the county more efficient and be prepared for future growth.

They believe they have found the perfect site for a combined water treatment plant and well field on a 17.6-acre parcel north of Cortez Boulevard along the western side of Sherman Hills Boulevard. One active 16-inch well and a well casing ready to be tapped are on adjacent county property.

But nearby neighbors in Ridge Manor West and Sherman Hills say that the property is the wrong place for expanded utilities. They have organized a petition drive and plan to bring a stack of questions when county officials hold an informational meeting for residents at 3 p.m. Wednesday at the utilities administration building on Cortez Boulevard in Brooksville.

Ridge Manor West resident Dorene McAndrews has been doing research on well fields, and she and other neighbors are worried that pumping at the site will cause sinkholes.

She points to a case in 1998 when the owner of a Spring Hill television repair and sales business watched the back of his shop slide into an 80-foot-deep, 150-foot-wide sinkhole.

The business owner blamed the adjacent Florida Water Services pumping station, and in 2000 a geologist from the Southwest Florida Water Management District agreed, writing: "I find ample reasons to conclude that the operation of the wells by Florida Water Services substantially contributed to or may have caused the sinkhole event."

McAndrews also contends that a water operation on the parcel, currently owned by Lee Pallardy Inc. Profit Sharing and 401K Plan, will be an eyesore, will put the neighborhood in jeopardy from chemicals used at water plants and will lower property values.

Sherman Hills property owner Alfred Broadman said the water operation doesn't belong in a residential neighborhood, and he wonders why the county settled on the Pallardy site when the county Utilities Department already owns a large parcel on nearby Kettering Road.

The County Commission approved a contract to pay $470,000 for the Pallardy site in November, contingent on a rezoning to industrial use and on a hydro-geological evaluation.

The Hernando County Planning and Zoning Commission will consider the rezoning next month, and the County Commission several weeks later.

The site evaluation has been completed, and there was no mention of the potential for sinkholes, said Susan Goebel-Canning, the county's director of environmental services.

She said the Kettering Road property has a sewage treatment plant on it and would not be used for a well field.

The Pallardy site will allow the eventual construction of two water storage tanks that could eventually hold 4 million gallons, as many as nine wells and a water treatment facility that could serve the Cortez corridor all the way to U.S 301, Goebel-Canning said.

Building there would allow the county to close a smaller treatment plant on Lockhart Road and other small, less-efficient water facilities in the area.

Comments
Pope begs forgiveness for ‘irreparable harm’ from sex abuse

Pope begs forgiveness for ‘irreparable harm’ from sex abuse

SANTIAGO, Chile — Pope Francis begged for forgiveness Tuesday for the "irreparable damage" done to children who were raped and molested by priests, opening his visit to Chile by diving head-first into a scandal that has greatly hurt the Catholic Chur...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Some fear Spa Beach billowing net sculpture could catch birds and storms

Some fear Spa Beach billowing net sculpture could catch birds and storms

By WAVENEY ANN MOORETimes Staff WriterST. PETERSBURG — International artist Janet Echelman may have fulfilled her $75,000 feasibility contract with the city and previewed her billowing, parasol-inspired sculpture for Spa Beach, but for some, key ques...
Updated: 1 hour ago

Florida boy, 6, dies of rabies contracted from a bat

ORLANDO — A 6-year-old Florida boy has died from rabies he contracted after being scratched by an infected bat.The father of Ryker Roque told NBC that the boy died Sunday at an Orlando hospital.Father Henry Roque said he had found a sick bat, put it ...
Updated: 2 hours ago

Pasco man fatally struck on Interstate 70 in Kansas

SALINA, Kan. — The Kansas Highway Patrol says a Florida man died after he was hit by a car as he walked along Interstate 70 near Salina.The patrol says 35-year-old Cody Nordlund of New Port Richey died Sunday night.He was walking in an eastbound lane...
Updated: 2 hours ago
North Korea calls Trump a ‘lunatic’ and a ‘loser’ in response to nuclear button tweet

North Korea calls Trump a ‘lunatic’ and a ‘loser’ in response to nuclear button tweet

North Korea’s official news agency responded Tuesday to President Donald Trump’s controversial "nuclear button tweet," describing it as the "the spasm of a lunatic," according to AP."The spasm of Trump in the new year reflects the desperate mental st...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Forecast: More warm weather, but frigid conditions are returning to Tampa Bay

Forecast: More warm weather, but frigid conditions are returning to Tampa Bay

The sunny skies and warmer temperatures that took hold on Martin Luther King Day will extend into Tuesday across Tampa Bay.10News WTSPFeels-like temperatures around the Tampa Bay area They will last only a day, however, as the region will see a shor...
Updated: 3 hours ago
The Daystarter: Boat fire claims 42-year-old mother of two; cold kills fish, attracts vultures, Licht on Bucs’ ‘brutal’ year; warm returns, for a day

The Daystarter: Boat fire claims 42-year-old mother of two; cold kills fish, attracts vultures, Licht on Bucs’ ‘brutal’ year; warm returns, for a day

Catching you up on overnight happenings, and what you need to know today.• It will actually warm up just a tad before another cold front arrives and sweeps east across the Gulf coast. Tuesday’s highs will be in the 70s but expect cooler temperatures...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Pasco plans industrial site on utility property

Pasco plans industrial site on utility property

DADE CITY – Commissioner Jack Mariano remembers the message from economist William Fruth.Just seven months after Mariano joined the commission in 2004, Fruth, of Palm City, told the county’s elected and appointed officials that Pasco should explore d...
Published: 01/16/18
From the food editor: Recipe for warm, cozy Pita Ribollita soup

From the food editor: Recipe for warm, cozy Pita Ribollita soup

When I first made this soup, Florida was in the grips of a cold weather snap, the likes of which rarely happens in this part of the state. We’re talking a whole week of lows in the 30s. The 30s! It was everything I ever wanted and more — the rare win...
Published: 01/16/18
Help wanted: Seminole Hard Rock in Tampa has 250 jobs to fill

Help wanted: Seminole Hard Rock in Tampa has 250 jobs to fill

TAMPA — Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino is holding a hiring event next week to fill more than 250 positions. The event will take place in the Hard Rock Cafe from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Jan. 24. Available positions include culinary, beverage, hotel, spa, ...
Published: 01/16/18