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Local News

  • Low-key revelry rings in Cedar Key's 2008

    No rain pelted the heads of revelers. Except at Coconuts, no heavy amps battered their ears. Unlike on the eve of 2007, Cedar Key welcomed in 2008 with a quieter revelry.

    Some things stayed the same. As it had last year, Joel Benefiel's group reined at the Island Hotel. Local Traffic rocked the swamp at Coconuts.

    Local rockers Dock Street brought their Bob Seger-style stomp to the Seabreeze downstairs, and the up-and-coming duo of T.J. Brown and Josh Calvert were joined at the Raw Bar by Gulf Hammock songbird Naomi Cahours.

  • Landmark explores possibility of sale

    Landmark Communications Inc., parent of Landmark Community Newspapers, Inc. (LCNI), owner of the Williston Pioneer Sun News, has hired national investment firms to explore selling the Norfolk, Va.-based company.

    "I can confirm that Landmark Communications has retained investment banks JPMorgan and Lehman Brothers to assist in exploring strategic alternatives, including the possible sale of the company's businesses," said Richard F. Barry III, vice chairman of the company.

  • Tax reform could save money for some

    Using an average of 18 mills as a typical amount for Levy County taxpayers in the current tax year, Property Appraiser Francis Akins said property tax legislation on the Jan. 29, 2008 ballot could save some individual taxpayers $188.50 each.

    About 40 percent of the people in Levy County who are qualified for Homestead Exemption will see no change in their tax bill from this legislation, Akins added.

    The proposed legislation will mean zero additional savings for people who are qualified for Homestead Exemption, but who have an appraised property value of less than $50,000.

  • Merry Christmas Cedar Key

    In Cedar Key School's production of "The Littlest Christmas Tree," the littlest tree, played by Chloe Brown, sings of her hope to be chosen by Santa Claus to be this year's special Christmas tree.

  • Security fears prompt sad misunderstanding at base

    A British visitor who has visited Cedar Key several times a year for the past nine years recently told The Beacon of a bizarre incident, which may result in him being unable to visit here again.

    Peter White, a widower from England, loves to fish from the Big Dock when he visits Cedar Key. However, he says his attempt to show hospitality to U.S. troops stationed overseas may postpone his next fishing trip, perhaps indefinitely.

  • Schools to face more funding cuts

    This past summer, the Florida Department of Education warned school districts across the state that a general revenue shortfall could lead to a 4 percent cut in funding.

    Deterioration of the housing market was fingered as the main culprit.

    Lo and behold, they were right, as each district had their take shaved by 4 percent.

    In Levy County, that added up to slightly more than $634,000.

    Now just three months later, more storm clouds are on the horizon.

  • When Sharks ruled the gridiron

    Editor's Note: This week, in celebration of the Heisman Award and high school state championships, the Beacon is looking back to the days when Cedar Key School still played football.

    Did Cedar Key ever have a football team?

    Now, during the exciting postseason playoff games for state high school titles, college conference title games, bowl season announcements, Heisman Trophy presentations and National Championship aspirations, the answer reminds me of the response to a young girl's question regarding the existence of jolly old St. Nick.

  • CRA agrees on lender for bond

    Cedar Key Community Redevelopment Association member Gene Hodges had one last try at getting his fellow members to see reason, as he saw it, before the CRA adopted a resolution to accept a bid from SunTrust Bank to be the lender on the CRA's long-awaited, long-debated $9.2 million redevelopment revenue bond issue.

  • Santa visits Cedar Key, brings presents to all good boys and girls

    Santa Claus visited Cedar Key Monday night, stopping at the Cedar Key Community Center for the city's Christmas party.

    The Cedar Key Police fingerprinted children for the Child Safety database, and four of the 78 children who were fingerprinted won bicycles that had been donated to the police department.

    Parents and children enjoyed dinners of hot dogs and hamburgers, and every child who came to the party received a gift from Santa's Workshop.

  • Good words on storm drains

    Nobody ever thinks about storm drains, but in Cedar Key, those stormwater collectors literally protect the lifeblood of the economy.

    When it rains, storm drains collect and filter the at least the first inch of water running off the streets before it can run into the Gulf. The first inch of stormwater contains the majority of chemical and biological pollutants, including oil, antifreeze and gasoline, fertilizer, and animal feces, definitely substances that should be kept out of the waters that nourish sport and subsistence fishing, boating, swimming and aquaculture.