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Pasco County's tax offices are set to begin selling birth certificates for Florida-born customers.

A government-issued birth certificate is a required part of the federal "Real I.D. Act" to obtain or renew a driver's license or a state identification card. Customers may also need their Florida birth certificate for any number of reasons.

"We are constantly striving to make it as easy as possible for our customers to comply with the needs of the federal mandates regarding identification," Tax Collector Mike Fasano said in a news release.

Customers who were born in Florida and who wish to purchase a birth certificate can visit any tax collector office in Pasco. Customers will be given an application. If they are under 18, a parent must sign the application. The cost for the first certificate is $18.25, with additional copies for $8.00 each. There is no limit to the number of certificates an individual may purchase.

Before purchasing the certificate the customer must present a valid driver license, state-issued ID, passport, military ID or any other government-issued ID.

The Pasco County Tax Collector maintains offices across the county. For addresses and hours of operation, visit The tax collector also has a dedicated call center which can assist in answering any questions about birth certificate sales and other services. Call (727) 847-8165, (813) 236-6020 or (352) 521-4360.

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Take Stock in Children ready to stand on its own

Take Stock in Children, a program that provides college scholarships and mentors to at-risk Florida students, wants to go its own way in Pasco County.

The Miami-based organization has informed the Pasco Education Foundation, which has administered Take Stock locally for several years, that it intends to run independently beginning with the new fiscal year in July, foundation executive director Tom Avramis said.

Take Stock in Children makes up about half of the foundation's budget and staff. Several education foundations partner with Take Stock, including those in Hillsborough and Pinellas.

But the scholarship program has operated on its own in several counties, such as Hernando, Citrus, Brevard and Miami-Dade, so the organizational change is not unprecedented.

Avramis called the program beneficial and said the foundation wanted to do "whatever is best for the kids" in it. He did not worry about the effect that a move might have on the foundation.

"We won't be as large, but that doesn't concern me. It's never been about the size," he said, adding that the foundation would continue its "aggressive mission" to support students, teachers and schools.

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Land O'Lakes

Taste of Pasco shares flavors as a fundraiser

Leadership Pasco Class of 2014 is hosting the fourth annual Taste of Pasco fundraiser on Saturday from 4-7 p.m. at the Rotary Pavilion at the Concourse, 15325 Alric Pottberg Road (off SR 52 just west of the Suncoast Parkway).

Sample great food and beverages provided by your favorite Pasco restaurants, plus enjoy musical entertainment, a silent auction and activities for children. Proceeds will benefit the Runaway Alternatives Project and the West Pasco Pregnancy Center.

Tickets are available for $25 per person; $30 at the event. Leadership Pasco alumni in good standing are admitted at no charge.

Children 12 and under also get in free and passes for all age-appropriate activities will be on sale at the event for $5.

To buy tickets or inquire about sponsorships, email or speak to a Leadership Pasco 2014 class member.

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New Port Richey

Historical society bringing displays to museum

Throughout April, the West Pasco Historical Society will have the following displays at the Rao Musunuru M.D. Museum, 6431 Circle Boulevard, New Port Richey, on Fridays and Saturdays from 1 to 4 p.m.

- Poetry is in Season: A display of portraits of famous poets, broadsides of poems and copies of books signed by poets from the collection of Daniel and Anni Callaghan, including poems by poets of Florida and west Pasco County.

- People of the Book: In honor of Easter and Passover, there is a display of old Bibles donated to the historical society, as well as the Torah, the Catholic Bible, the Book of Mormon, the Koran and facsimile versions of pages from English Bibles as early as the 16th century.

The public is also welcome to attend the swearing-in of the society's new board of directors, following by the presentation on "Spanish Florida: Its Africans, Indians and Europeans" by Michael Francis, with the Florida Humanities Council, at 1 p.m. on April 19.

Reservations are required and 20 seats remain. To reserve a seat call (727) 372-1742.

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