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Gilchrist County Sheriff’s Office
provides more assurance
against voter intimidation

Levy County Democrats
provide voter information

Levy County Democrats in Bronson Florida
Here, Terrace James stands behind a table where she is stationed for voter information at about 8:40 a.m. on Tuesday morning (Oct. 20).

Levy County Democrats in Bronson Florida
Here, (from left) Terrace James, Harriett Jones and Stacey Peters sit behind a table for voter information, which is seen below a tent a couple of hours later than when the first photo was taken on Oct. 20.

Story and Photos
By Jeff M. Hardison © Oct. 22, 2020 at 2:10 p.m.
     TRI-COUNTY AREA –
A review of some aspects related to early voting showed plans by the three counties’ sheriffs’ offices and current action by Levy County Commission and the Bronson Town Council in regard to the General Election voting for Nov. 3 and the two weeks before Election Day 2020.

 


More Below This Ad

Gilchrist County Florida Springs Capital of the World ad HardisonInk.com

 


     Gilchrist County Sheriff Bobby Schultz is known as “America’s Sheriff.” He is the president of the Florida Sheriffs Association.
     Sheriff Schultz is taking some added action to protect and defend the United States Constitution and the Florida Constitution as he seeks to assure every single voter in Gilchrist County has equal protection under the law to cast a ballot for whatever candidates, judge retentions and amendments they choose.
     Sheriff Schultz said he plans to have an increased presence at the Gilchrist County Courthouse during the early election period in that county. Beyond that, Sheriff Schultz said he intends to have an extra level of patrol at the polling places in Gilchrist County on Nov. 3 to reduce the potential for anyone attempting to intimidate or harass any voter.
     Gilchrist County Assistant Supervisor of Elections Tracy Sanders said on Thursday morning (Oct. 22) the county also has poll deputies, who are men and women who volunteer to help make sure there is no polling within 150-feet of the precincts’ polling places, and those volunteers help voters be certain to follow guidelines for voting. Those poll deputies will call the Gilchrist County Sheriff’s Office if there is an issue, Sanders said.
     In the past 12 years, Gilchrist County Assistant Supervisor of Elections Sanders said, there never has been a reason to call the GCSO. Sanders mentioned that she and Supervisor of Election Connie Sanchez are both happy with Sheriff Schultz going the extra mile to assure safety, and a fair election in Gilchrist County in 2020.
     Levy County Sheriff Bobby McCallum, who is the vice president of the Florida Sheriffs Association, said he plans to conduct enforcement at the same level as for all elections. Levy County Supervisor of Elections Tammy Jones, Sheriff McCallum said, works with the Levy County Sheriff’s Office to certify special poll deputies.
     Levy County Supervisor of Elections Jones is the past president of the Florida Supervisors of Elections (FSE). Hillsborough County Supervisor of Elections Craig Latimer is the FSE president. Leon County Supervisor of Elections Mark Earley is the FSE vice president. Marion County Supervisor of Elections Wesley Wilcox is the FSE president-elect.
     Levy County Sheriff McCallum said there will be a poll deputy at each polling precinct. If that deputy sees a reason to alert Supervisor Jones, then that will happen. If there is any need for a law enforcement response, then the LCSO will be there to serve the public as always in this county.
     Dixie County Sheriff’s Office Maj. Scott Harden said the DCSO has received no complaints as of Thursday morning (Oct. 22) regarding attempts at voter intimidation or harassment in Dixie County. Maj. Harden, like Sheriff McCallum, said the poll deputies will be in place.
     Dixie County Supervisor of Elections Starlet Cannon works with DCSO, Maj. Harden said, in the same way Supervisor Jones works with the LCSO, Maj. Harden said.
     Meanwhile on Monday and Tuesday, the Levy County Democrats learned the Levy County government in Bronson and the Bronson Town Council enforce their rules against campaigning.
     The Democrats had attempted to set up a table near the Quonset hut across the street from the backside of the Supervisor of Elections Office. Levy County Coordinator Wilbur Dean said on Thursday morning (Oct. 22) that the Monday (Oct. 19) first day of early voting was when he had to confront the Democrats.
     Dean said the group had requested permission to set up a table there and that the matter had been thoroughly discussed beforehand. He denied the request. He said the reason for the denial was because that piece of county property was to be a neutral site politically.
     If the Democrats set up there, Dean said, then the space would have to be open to all groups seeking the same ability.
     The Levy County Democrats set up on the other side of the road in the grassy median next to the road on Tuesday morning (Oct. 20).
     Early that morning, Terrace James, a Democrat who volunteered to man a table there to provide voter information set up the table, which included a sign endorsing the election of Joe Biden for President and Kamala Harris for vice president.
     Within a relatively short time that morning, Bronson Vice Mayor Jason Hunt told the Levy County Democrats that they can have a voter information site on the city property, but they must remove any campaign material for any party or candidate.
     On Thursday morning (Oct. 22), Vice Mayor Hunt said he was following the ruling by Town Attorney Steven Warm who told him that the city property must be seen as neutral.
     There can be no promotion of one candidate or party on city property, Jason said Warm told him.
     Vice Mayor Hunt said that when the Democrats asked him what they should do if a Trump campaigner showed up, he told them that they should contact him, and he would tell those people the same thing.
     When Hunt was asked by HardisonInk.com for his explanation of why people throughout the decades have campaigned on primary day or election day by holding signs, wearing tee-shirts and the like, Hunt said people can walk on sidewalks with signs. Putting up a tent or a table next to the road, on Bronson city property, however, is not permitted in that town.
     The Levy County Democrats took down the campaign material, and plan to continue through Nov. 3 to provide information to voters who ask for it about the election – including information about the amendments to the Florida Constitution that are on this year’s ballot.

 


 

COVID-19 Kills 162 More
Floridians In 48 Hours

One More Levy Countian
Is Hospitalized In 48 Hours


COVID-19 Death Toll Levy Dixie Gilchrist counties

Above are the results on Thursday (Oct. 22), according to the Tallahassee office of the Florida Department of Health (FDOH). These records are the current TOTAL numbers updated by the FDOH in the most recent 48-hour period measured. In the Tri-County Area, there are 40 people TOTAL who have died from COVID-19 so far. There have been 185 people TOTAL so far from the Tri-County Area who have been reported as hospitalized because their COVID-19 symptoms were so serious they needed to go to the hospital. This includes one more person from Levy County who was hospitalized within the most recent 48 hour reporting period.
(The Florida Department of Health notes on a website that it updates COVID-19 results each 24 hours. On occasion, this is not true. This has happened at least three times in the past four months. On Wednesday evening (Oct. 21) at 7 p.m., those results were not on the website. Hence, these are the results for 48 hours.)

Published Oct. 22, 2020 at 3:10 p.m.


PUBLIC HEALTH ADVISORY
Residents are advised to wear masks
in public and to socially distance.
Avoid crowds, closed spaces & close contact.



     COVID-19 can be transmitted by people who show no symptoms.
     The best method to reduce the odds of infection and the subsequent symptoms of serious illness and even death from COVID-19 is to limit contact with other humans.
     To find the most updated information and guidance on COVID-19, please visit the FDOH’s dedicated COVID-19 webpage by clicking HERE
     For information and advisories from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), please visit the CDC COVID-19 website by clicking HERE.

     For another set of data, former Florida Department of Health geographic data scientist Rebekah Jones has created FloridaCOVIDAction.com. Those numbers are different than the FDOH, which are in the graphic above.

 


Levy County plans
to help two business interests;

 Health center progressing In Chiefland
Levy County Commission Bronson Florida
The four County Commissioners present Tuesday are (from left) Rock Meeks, Lilly Rooks, Matt Brooks and John Meeks.

Story and Photos
By Jeff M. Hardison © Oct. 19, 2020 at 9:10 p.m.
All Rights Reserved
     BRONSON –
By a 4-0 vote of approval Tuesday morning (Oct. 20), the Levy County Commission agreed to move forward with helping two businesses.


Levy County Nature Coast Business Development Bronson Florida
David Pieklik relaxes before making his presentations to the County Commission on Tuesday.

Levy County Commission Bronson Florida
Levy County Construction and Maintenance Director Jimmy Jones (left) and Solid Waste Department Administrative Director Rod Hastings are seen in the audience before making their presentations to the County Commission on Tuesday.

Levy County Supervisor of Elections Tammy Jones
Levy County Supervisor of Elections Tammy Jones speaks to the County Commission and is granted approval of some budget matters. Supervisor of Elections Jones is very busy now with early voting taking place at her office. Mail-in ballot drop-off locations have been built inside the Williston Public Library and at the Luther Callaway Public Library in Chiefland. There is the Mail-in drop-off box at the front of the Levy County Supervisor of Elections Office in Bronson too. That slot is just to the right of the front door.

Luther Callaway Public Library Chiefland Florida
Here is a picture of the outside of the library in Chiefland, where mail-in ballots may be deposited. Books can be deposited outside, but the mail-in ballots are placed in a secure location inside.

Levy CountyCoordinator Wilbur Dean
County Coordinator Wilbur Dean looks at some notes before addressing the County Commission.


     Nature Coast Business Development Council Executive Director David Pieklik approached the County Commission with a request to draft incentive agreements under the Local Economic Development Fund program for the two existing businesses that are expanding.-
     Tri-County Saw Shop recently opened its new location at 7551 N.W. 150th St. north of Chiefland, off of U.S. Highway 19 near the College of Central Florida campus. This relocation to the area just south of the City of Fanning Springs is from its previous location at 11571 N.W. 74th Court – just south of Chiefland on State Road 345.
     Tri-County Saw Shop had been at the former address for about four years. It is owned by Steven Crews, who now has more visibility and accessibility while adding more retail-showroom space at the new location.
     It was initially expected three additional jobs would be added through the expansion, though more jobs were brought on, Pieklik said.
     While an application had been on file for quite some time, Pieklik added in his written request to the County Commission, construction delays and the global COVID-19 pandemic prevented the application from being processed sooner. Based on the application score, Pieklik said, an impact analysis and other factors considered including similarly awarded projects, the requested incentive amount will be in the range of $7,000 to$10,000.
     The other application Pieklik sought Tuesday as was given the go-ahead to move forward with the process is for Taylor Trailers.
     This 17-year old trailer manufacturer desires to relocate to a larger property to allow more services to be performed, Pieklik noted. Currently, it is landlocked at its present location at 14298
S. U.S. 19 in Chiefland.
     There is tremendous volume of orders that adding more square
footage and increased production would significantly address, Pieklik said.
     Owner Shawn Taylor is looking at two sites – one nearby to the shop in Chiefland and the other site for relocation would be in Williston, Pieklik said.
     A loan would be sought to close on either one of those possible sales, Pieklik said, and an incentive award would help provide the required down payment.
     At least four new welding positions would open because of a larger building, at average annual wages of $35,000. All 13 currently employed would be retained, Pieklik said.
     With a high application score, a target industry that feeds from the College of Central Florida’s Welding Technology Center and other factors, a recommended incentive award would be
expected to be in the range of $15,000 to $20,000.
     Pieklik spoke to the County Commission about other companies that were given incentives, including A&M Manufacturing, the boat building company that moved to Chiefland from Dixie County.
     That grant from the county was for $60,000.
     To read more about A&M Manufacturing, click HERE.
     Pieklik spoke about the Chiefland Health Center making progress.
     Currently, this center is anticipated to provide health services such as for cardiology, general surgery, urology, urgent care and more. Ashwin Kolaventy is the executive director of the business, which is connected with Panacea Health Systems of Ocala.
     In a telephone interview Tuesday, Kolaventy intimated that the global COVID-19 pandemic slowed plans to open the health center in Chiefland.

Health Clinic possible for Chiefland Florida

possible health clinic in Chiefland Florida. Maybe in the future.
Above are pictures of the future site of Chiefland Health Center, 304 N. Main St. (U.S. Highway 19) in beautiful downtown Chiefland. It is about one block from Palm Medical Group’s facility in Chiefland. Palms Medical Group offers many medical services. Please click on the ad on the LIFE PAGE  to see more. The most recent urgent care facility in Chiefland is up by Walmart. To see the story about Quick Care Med, click HERE. There has never been a hospital in Chiefland. There was one in Williston but after a series of owners over the past 15 years, it was closed. As for the site of the future Chiefland Health Clinic, it used to be a location for the Citrus County Hospice, but that hospice went out of business. The deli sandwich makers at this location opened The Garden Patch, a wonderful little sandwich shop in the Save-A-Lot plaza.

 

 


Repaving U.S. Alt. 27
continues in Levy County;

Expect daytime traffic delays
By FDOT Communications
Published Oct. 16, 2020 at 10:10 a.m.
     CHIEFLAND --
A resurfacing project started yesterday (Thursday, Oct. 15) on State Road 500 (Alternate U.S. Highway 27) in Levy County.
     The $5.8 million Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) project will take place on the road in the area from just west of Levy County Road 124 in Chiefland to just west of State Road 24 near Bronson.
     FDOT has hired Anderson Columbia Co. of Lake City to complete the work.
     In addition to milling and resurfacing, the project will include shoulder and drainage improvements, traffic monitoring upgrade, bridge joint repairs, and other incidental construction.
     Motorists should expect some daytime delays; however, during construction, at least one lane will remain open in each direction at all times.
     Additionally, Levy County Road 32 (Ishie Avenue) may be closed for a maximum of seven consecutive days one time during the project.
     Work is expected to be completed in the spring of 2021.

 


Commissioner Nikki Fried
proclaims
‘Mask Up Florida Week’

By FDACS Communications
Published Oct. 15, 2020 at 5:10 p.m.
     TALLAHASSEE –
Today (Thursday, Oct. 15), Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Nikki Fried, an independently-elected member of the Florida Cabinet, issued a cabinet proclamation recognizing Oct. 16 to 23 as “Mask Up Florida Week” in the state of Florida to raise awareness on the importance and effectiveness of mask-wearing as a way to help curb the spread of COVID-19 and save lives.
     “COVID-19 continues to be a global health crisis unlike any we’ve ever faced, devastating our communities, public health, and our economy,” Commissioner Fried said. “It’s crucial that we stand united in our response against this virus and take common-sense steps to protect each other, like wearing masks when in public.
     “I’m proud to proclaim ‘Mask Up Florida Week’ to raise awareness on the effectiveness of mask-wearing and to encourage everyone to do their part to help beat COVID-19. With so many lives and livelihoods on the line, we have to take our responsibility seriously and mask up to protect our loved ones, businesses, essential workers — and make sure we’re doing all we can to keep Florida safe,” she added.
     Commissioner Fried has been a strong proponent of mask-wearing during the COVID-19 pandemic and called on the governor in June to institute a statewide mask order.
     As COVID-19 cases spiked to record-breaking rates statewide in July, Commissioner Fried made available the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services’ (FDACS) Division of Consumer Services helpline to help hold bad actors accountable for ignoring COVID-19 directives, such as local government mandatory mask orders.
     In September, Commissioner Fried and FDACS launched a nine-part video series to provide guidance on COVID-19 safety precautions for farmworkers, including wearing masks, social distancing, and more.
     The proclamation, which can be read in full below, builds on Commissioner Fried’s and FDACS’ efforts to raise awareness on effective practices to reduce the reduce the spread of COVID-19, protect consumers and businesses, and save the lives of Floridians.


PROCLAMATION
     WHEREAS, COVID-19 is a respiratory disease that can result in severe illness or death by the SARS­-CoV-2, which is a virus that can be spread from person to person; and
     WHEREAS, the World Health Organization has classified COVID-19 as a global pandemic, which has broadly spread throughout the State of Florida and remains a significant health risk to all residents and visitors, especially members of our most vulnerable populations; and
     WHEREAS, as of October 14, 2020, at least 758,538 people in the State of Florida have tested positive for COVID-19, resulting in a record-breaking number of 15,788 lives lost and 46,482 hospitalizations; and
     WHEREAS, health authorities, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Surgeon General of the United States, and the Florida Department of Health, have recommended the use of face coverings as an effective means of preventing the spread of COVID-19; and
     WHEREAS, face coverings are used to trap droplets that are released when the wearer talks, coughs or sneezes, are relatively inexpensive, and readily available; and
     WHEREAS, for decades, mask-wearing by medical professionals has been the standard practice in hospital settings to help block the transmission of droplet-based diseases by preventing the spread of germs; and
     WHEREAS, the evidence shows the proper use of face coverings over the nose and mouth, in conjunction with social distancing and frequent hand-washing is a safe and effective strategy for mitigating the spread of COVID-19 in Florida; and
     WHEREAS, it is in the public interest to stand united in our response to curtail the spread of COVID-19 within the State of Florida by encouraging the use of face coverings, safeguarding the health and lives of Florida’s 21.4 million residents.
     NOW, THEREFORE, I, Nicole Fried, Commissioner of Agriculture and Consumer Services for the State of Florida, do hereby proclaim that October 16 through October 23, 2020, shall be known, designated, and set aside as MASK UP FLORIDA WEEK in the State of Florida to raise awareness on the importance of “Masking Up,” wearing face coverings, which help to ensure the public’s health, safety, and welfare as we continue to navigate the COVID-19 global health pandemic.

 


Commission agrees with state’s
choice for next administrator
of FDOH in Tri-County Area;

Levy County Commission approves
$165,000 for new LCSO phone system

By Jeff M. Hardison © Oct. 6, 2020 at 11:10 a.m.
     BRONSON –
As part of its planned matters to approve or deny requests on Tuesday (Oct. 6), the Levy County Board of County Commissioners approved a request for a vote of concurrence on the appointment of the next administrator for the Florida Department of Health (FDOH) in Tri-County Area of Dixie, Gilchrist and Levy counties.
     Florida Surgeon General Scott Rivkees, M.D., the leader of the FDOH, on Sept. 23 requested concurrence from the Levy County Board of County Commissioners on the appointment of Natalie McKellips as the administrator for the Florida Department of Health of the FDOH units in Dixie, Gilchrist and Levy counties pursuant to 154.04 Florida Statutes.
     Florida Statute 154.04 notes aspects required in each of Florida's 67 counties regarding the public health units there.
     Minimally, according to law, each county health departments must have personnel consisting of a county health department director or administrator and a full-time public health nurse, a public health environmental specialist, and a clerk. All such personnel shall be selected from those especially trained in public health administration and practice, so far as the same shall relate to the duties of their respective positions.
     The Tri-County Area does not have a county health department director, which according to Florida law "shall be a physician licensed under chapter 458 or chapter 459 who is trained in public health administration and shall be appointed by the State Surgeon General after the concurrence of the boards of county commissioners of the respective counties."
     Since the law notes "or an administrator," though, the Tri-County Area has had and will have a continuation of a county health department administrator. And as the law notes, this person is "trained in public health administration" and "may be appointed by the State Surgeon General after the concurrence of the boards of county commissioners of the respective counties."
     During the Levy County meeting, Commissioner John Meeks asked Locke about the potential to return to a county-by-county set of FDOH units for Levy, Gilchrist and Dixie counties.
     Locke said she will let the next person who will be the Tri-County Area FDOH administrator answer that in the future. Meanwhile, though, this system does appear to be saving the state taxpayers some money, she intimated.
     As for the Gilchrist County Board of County Commissioners, that set of people approved the request from Dr. Rivkees for McKellips to replace Locke, upon Locke’s retirement – which is set for December -- during the Gilchrist County Commission meeting on Monday (Oct. 5).
     As for the Dixie County Board of County Commissioners’ approval of Dr. Rivkees’ request, that is on the Oct. 15 agenda for that County Commission to consider.

     In another matter of more immediate urgency, the Levy County Commission approved $165,000 to be used from the General Fund Contingency Reserves portion of the Fiscal Year 2020-2021 Budget, which just began on Oct. 1.
     Levy County Sheriff Bobby McCallum told the County Commission that as recently as Sunday (Oct. 4), a terrorist group that has intended to extort money from the Levy County Sheriff’s Office again attacked the non-emergency telephone lines.
     These telephonic terrorists tried to hold the 352-486-5111 non-emergency Levy County Sheriff’s Office line hostage for millions of dollars on July 16, Sheriff McCallum first told the Levy County Commission at its July 21 meeting. Since then, the sheriff has been working with his IT staff to find a system that will be resistant to this form of attack.
     The LCSO non-emergency system is 25-years-old, he said on Tuesday (Oct. 6).
     Levy County Commissioner Mike Joyner, a retired law enforcement officer who finished his career as being part of the LCSO years ago, said he knows the Sheriff’s Office needs this new telephone system.
     Sheriff McCallum mentioned a couple of significantly large Florida counties that have experienced terrorists attempting strike as a test on 9-1-1 system facilities too.
     He asked the County Commission to authorize the expenditure of $164,478.95 to replace the existing telephone system, and the security part to protect the system.
     On a motion by County Commissioner Lilly Rooks, seconded by County Commissioner John Meeks, the authorization was approved.
     Jared Blanton, MBA, CPA, the finance officer and chief deputy clerk for Levy Clerk and Comptroller Danny J. Shipp, explained to the County Commission some of the logistics of its approval of this expenditure and how it will work.
     As for the Dixie County Board of County Commissioners and the Gilchrist County Board of County Commissioners approving the FDOH’s choice for the next administrator of the Tri-County Area,
IN OTHER ACTION
     Carol Drysdale, Levy County resident, received approval from the County Commission to proclaim October as Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month, and furthermore, the County Commission recognized Oct 15 as Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day.
     The County Commission also heard from representatives of the Levy County 4-H program to recognize Oct. 4-10 as 4-H Week in this county.
     The County Commission approved a special exception for the construction of a 150-foot tall cell tower in the on a parcel of land located in Manatee Farms Estates at Unit 1, Lot 30. The address there is 12451 N.W. 85th Ave., Chiefland, according to records. The property is owned by Chiefland Baptist Church Inc.
     And the Levy County Commission performed other actions as well on Tuesday (Oct. 6).

 


Incoming Williston city manager shares her vision for the city
By Jeff M. Hardison © Oct. 2, 2020 at 3:10 p.m.
Updated Oct. 5, 2020 at 2:10 p.m.
     WILLISTON –
During a special Williston City Council meeting Tuesday (Sept. 29) there was a unanimous vote to approve Jackie Gorman, who is currently the City of Williston’s community development and grants manager, to be the next Williston City manager.
Jackie Gorman Williston Florida City Manager

 

 

Jackie Gorman
Photo Provided

 


     Gorman, who is also the city planner for Williston, will take her post as city manager after the Oct. 6 meeting, given that all goes as planned.
     Meanwhile, as of the Sept. 29 special meeting, Utilities Director
C.J. Zimoski is serving as interim city manager.
     The plan after the Oct. 6 meeting will be to have Zimoski serve deputy city manager. He will maintain his duties as utilities director, but also will be the leader of the public works department as well as assisting incoming City Manager Gorman as needed.

 

 

Laura Jones
Photo Provided

 


     Laura Jones, who is currently the assistant to the city planner, will become the acting city planner for Williston.
     In a telephone interview Friday (Oct. 2), Gorman said she is extremely confident that Jones will be an excellent city planner for Williston. Just as Zimoski is continuing to hold the reins for utilities, as well as accepting even more responsibility, so too is Gorman.
     Gorman is entrusting Jones with the duties of city planner, which includes everything from zoning permits to comprehensive land use, and more. The Williston Community Redevelopment Agency, though, will continue to be among Gorman’s points of focus, just as it has been.
     During the conversation Friday, Gorman agreed to send over a statement about what she sees now that she is going to be the city manager. Gorman provided the following.

     Williston is a wonderful community, and together we can continue to build upon the community's past and ultimately create a brighter future for everyone who lives, works and plays in the city.
     Williston is facing a very large growth spurt and it is important that we manage this growth so that Williston’s small-town charm is protected.  I am honored that our City Council has chosen me to lead the City through this change and will work tirelessly to ensure that Williston grows in a healthy sustainable manner.
     I promise you that all of us who work for the City will do our best to meet and surpass your expectations. We will always look for the most efficient and effective way to provide excellent service, generating the greatest possible return for every tax dollar.
     I look forward to working with everyone to better position the City of Williston for future success!
     Williston Police Chief Dennis Strow, who served as interim city manager for the past four months, said this tour of duty as interim city manager was much more active than in 2012, when he served before the appointment of now former City Manager Scott Lippmann.
     Chief Strow provided his insight regard incoming City Manager Gorman and incoming Deputy City Manager Zimoski.

     The City Council was able to choose from a known commodity, Strow said, which is better than hiring some person who is unfamiliar with Williston.
     “Williston was founded in 1897,” Chief Strow joked. “C.J. (Zimoski) started in 1898.”
     Actually, the chief said, Zimoski has been working for the City of Williston for 20 years now. He knows the utilities system and he knows the people, Strow said of the longtime city employee. Zimoski started working for the city by digging holes, Strow said, and he has advanced to become the utilities department director, the interim city manager for a short time and now is set to be deputy city manager, effective after the Oct. 6 City Council meeting, given that all goes as planned in that regard.
     Gorman has been working in this city for two years and has extensive municipal government experience, Strow said.
     The plan created by the City Council for Gorman as city manager and with Zimoski as deputy city manager is excellent, Strow said, because by using the talents of those two individuals working together, all of the residents and visitors of Williston will be best served.
     Strow said that when he was interim city manager, he relied heavily on both Zimoski and Gorman.
     As for Chief Strow finishing his job as interim city manager on Tuesday, he conceded that he is very happy to return to his profession in law enforcement.
     The Williston police chief mentioned that the day before (Thursday, Oct. 1) marked his 49th year in law enforcement.
     He was hired when he was 16 years old and was in high school. That hiring date was Oct. 1, 1971, Strow said.
     He and another high school student were hired by then Marion County Sheriff Doug Willis. Back then, when he was 16 years old, Strow and the other high school student would switch out monthly between radio duty and records duty.
     Then in 1973, Marion County Sheriff Don Moreland hired Strow to be a deputy sheriff. So, he has been a sworn law enforcement officer for 47 years. WPD Chief Strow has been in law enforcement ever since he was 16 years old, he said in a telephone interview on Friday (Oct. 2).
     Strow said he worked outside of his comfort zone for the past four months serving as interim city manager, however he feels his exposure to that aspect of city government will help the WPD as well as the Williston Fire Rescue Department to continue moving forward even better than before.
     “I was glad to leave (the job of interim city manager),” Chief Strow said, “but I learned a lot.”

 

 


 

Mail Ballots sent
for the Nov. 3 General Election

Jeff M. Hardison, Voter, casts his ballot in the General Election Nov. 3, 2020
Jeff Martin Hardison, a registered voter in Levy County, prepares to place his completed ballot with the envelope signed and dated into the secure Ballot Drop Box located at the Levy County Elections Office, 421 S. Court St., Bronson. He put the envelope in the drop box on Monday (Sept. 28). Other Levy County registered voters have delivered their votes there already, too, for the Nov. 3 General Election.

Photo By Sharon Hardison © Sept. 28, 2020 at 4:10 p.m.

By Jordan Lindsey
Levy County Assistant Supervisor of Elections
Published Sept. 28, 2020 at 5:10 p.m.
     BRONSON --
The mandatory window for the Supervisor of Elections to mail ballots to all domestic voters is between the 40th and 33rd day before the election.
     The Office of Levy County Supervisor of Elections Tammy Jones began mailing ballots on Thursday, Sept. 24 to voters who requested Vote by Mail for the Nov. 3 General Election.
     Federal Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act (UOCAVA) ballots were sent to military and overseas voters a week earlier.
     The popularity of Vote by Mail continues to rise with a record of 8,500 requests from Levy County voters so far.
     The deadline to request a mail ballot for the General Election is Oct. 24 by 5 p.m. Requests can be made by visiting https://www.votelevy.gov/, emailing jordan@votelevy.com, or calling 352-486-5163. For a direct link to request a Vote By Mail ballot, click HERE.
     Voters are reminded to verify their mailing address is current.
     The United States Postal Service cannot forward Vote by Mail ballots.
     Vote by Mail ballots must be received by the Supervisor of Elections by 7 p.m. on Election Day to be counted.
     The USPS encourages voters to mail their ballot early to ensure timely receipt -- at least a week prior to Election Day. Mail ballots can also be returned to a secure Ballot Drop Box located at the Elections Office, 421 S. Court St., Bronson, FL 32621, and at the Chiefland and Williston Public Libraries during Early Voting hours.
     Voters can continue to check their mail ballot status on the Supervisor of Election's website https://www.votelevy.gov/ but now have the option to sign up for email, SMS (text), or voice call alerts at https://votelevy.ballottrax.net/voter/. Voters will be asked to enter basic contact information and select what notification methods and times works best for them.
     For additional information or answers to questions, please contact the Levy County Supervisor of Elections Office at 352-486-5163.


 


 

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127th Jingle Singers

Hardisonink.com Jingle Singers Johnette Ross, Carmem Tozzo, Stacey Peters Chiefland Florida

This is (from left) Johnette Ross, Carmen Tozzo and Stacey Peters singing the HardisonInk.com jingle on Sept. 26, 2020 in Chiefland. If you see Jeff Hardison and you want to sing the jingle, just let him know or send an email to hardisonink@gmail.com. He asks people to sing the jingle, and some of them agree to sing it. (Thanks people!)
CLICK ON THE PICTURE TO SEE THE VIDEO ON YouTube.c0m.

Published Sept. 26, 2020 at 1:10 p.m.
© Photo and Video by Jeff M. Hardison, All Rights Reserved

Your weather just got better.
 
--UPDATED--
THURSDAY  OCT. 22  3:10 p.m.
Levy, Dixie and Gilchrist counties
 
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