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Local News

  • Annual Empty Bowls Soup Supper slurps up donations

    Suzette Cook, Reporter

    When the doors opened at 3 p.m. on Feb. 6 at the Cedar Key Community Center, it didn’t take long for favorite soups to sell out.

    They wiped out split pee first. Other favorites included Spiced Indian Cauliflower, Chicken Butternut Squash, Bean Soup with Sausage, and the classic Minestrone.

  • Government shutdowns leave impact on Levy County

    Suzette Cook, Reporter

    With a possible government shutdown on the horizon, Levy County farmers and federal programs could be affected again by lack of funding.

    President Trump set Feb. 15 as the date of a second shutdown which is three weeks after he opened the government up after record closure of 35 days.

  • Common Core end leaves Levy schools in limbo

    Suzette Cook, Reporter

    An executive order delivered by Governor Ron DeSantis on Jan. 31 leaves future textbook and classroom curriculum purchases for Levy County schools in limbo.

    Executive Order 19-32 outlines a path for Florida to “improve its education system by eliminating Common Core and paving the way for Florida students to receive a world-class education to prepare them for jobs of the future,” states a press release from the governor’s office.

  • Levy County graduation rates top State average in 2018

    Suzette Cook, Reporter

    Levy County School District’s graduation rate for the 2017-18 school year rose to 87 percent surpassing the State graduation rate of 86.1 percent.

    Superintendent of Schools Jeffery R. Edison said the number of students graduating in Levy County fluctuates from year to year. School Board of Levy County recently prepared a total of 368 high school diplomas. Bronson Middle High School had 93, Cedar Key High School had 14, Chiefland Middle High School had 96 and Williston had 165 diplomas to award.

  • City considers charging event planners for road closures

    Suzette Cook, Reporter

    The Chiefland City Commission is considering a fee schedule for events held in city limits that require road closures.

    Mayor Betty Walker raised the topic as new business during the Jan. 28 meeting, and commissioners and the Police Chief Scott Anderson starting doing the math on what it costs taxpayers every time roads are closed.

    “I think when we are doing new events, I think they need to pay a price,” Walker said. “I think some other cities are going to that.”

  • Levy school district driving force behind proposed accommodations bill

    Suzette Cook, Reporter

    Florida Senator Bill Montford filed a proposed bill on Jan. 16 that will address student accommodations when taking Florida Standards Assessments (FSA).

    According to Levy County Superintendent of Schools Jeffery R. Edison, students currently cannot utilize accommodations such as graphic organizers on the exams, even though they are allowed to use them in the classroom.

  • Fighting fire with fire

    Suzette Cook, Reporter

    You can hear the blades spinning in the distance. Florida Forest Service crew members are hoping that the helicopter on its way from Withlacoochee to the Goethe State Forest headquarters will be a big one.

    “Hear the bird?” one firefighter yells out. “Sounds like the Huey!”

    Within 10 minutes, a Bell UH-1H, aka “the Huey,” with the No. 24 on its nose, comes into view, makes a smooth landing and is greeted by Incident Commander Jerry Horton.

  • Cedar Key man charged with first degree murder over neighbor death

    An argument between neighbors turned deadly for a Cedar Key man.

    According to the Levy County Sheriff’s Office, Cedar Key resident Matthew Whyte, 27, was arrested for first degree murder after he struck his neighbor, Thomas Rafferty, 55, twice with a board and drown him near the edge of a Cedar Key shoreline the night of Dec. 30.

    Whyte was under the influence of methamphetamines, according to the report.

  • County in final stages of permanent School Resource Deputy placement

    Suzette Cook, Reporter

    Cedar Key High School Principal Kathy Lawrence says she is looking forward to the permanent placement of School Resource Deputy Julie Gironda at the home of the Sharks on Jan. 9.

    Gironda has been part of the rotating coverage of CKS since March 2018 with other Levy County Sheriff Office deputies who have been working overtime on their days off from patrol or other assignments. “It will be good for the students build a relationship with a permanent SRD,” Lawrence said.

  • Drummond Bank hoops tourney returns to Cedar Key

    For the third year in a row, Drummond Bank is sponsoring the Drummond Bank-CKS Sharks Beach Ball Holiday Tournament in Cedar Key over the holiday break. This year’s event will take place Dec. 27 through Dec. 29 at the CKS gym. Each day games will begin at noon and run through 9 p.m., as there will be a total of six games each day.