The area around the Bulloch Family Ranch on Tom Costine Road is still flooded weeks after Hurricane Irma, a situation exacerbated by poor county maintenance of culverts, the ranch owners say.
TWO LOCAL GROUPS, the Polk County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Polk County and United City, are collaborating to collect goods and raise money to help Hurricane Maria victims in Puerto Rico | Donate
POLK SCHOOLS are taking in students fleeing Hurricane Maria’s destruction, and the Citrus Connection is offering transit passes for new arrivals from the islands, but extra funding is uncertain.
LAKELAND ELECTRIC is sending 20 workers and 10 vehicles to help the effort to restore electricity to Puerto Rico.
Brandon Trenaz Mills, 24, of Opa Locka, was struck and killed by a vehicle while walking along the road, possibly in the bicycle lane, near 2000 U.S. 92 early this morning.
Author Trent Saunders recounts stories he’s heard about smuggling onto Central Florida ranches in the 1980s. Sheriff Grady Judd vouches for the stories, saying he remembers staking out some of the deals when he was a deputy.
Consider the guitar. It takes many forms, and its six strings can be played in myriad ways. For example, this weekend you can hear:
- The lilt of the classical style as Midday Meditations starts its 2017-18 season Friday morning with artist Samuel Ortiz.
- The thrash of metal at “The Story of an Undead World,” a seasonal rock opera at LkldLive Friday night.
- The wail of mainstream rock as Saliva and seven other bands play Rocktoberfest 2017 at Masons Live on Saturday.
‘Food for Florida’ registration at the RP Funding Center drew people from several counties between Saturday and today.
Dramatic video: An LPD officer making a DUI stop at Florida Avenue and Main Street on Sunday was grazed by the rear-view mirror of a passing driver who was later charged with DUI and leaving the scene of an accident. Remember: Move over when you see flashing lights.
CITY COMMISSIONERS were busy Monday. Among other things they:
- Sold 10+ downtown acres for $3.7 million to Framework Group LLC, which plans to build 306 rental apartments and townhouses | Staff presentation
- Donated about $94,000 worth of property and rights of way to the developers of the massive Bonnet Springs Park planned for property west of downtown.
- Awarded raises of 4 percent each to City Manager Tony Delgado and City Attorney Tim McCausland after giving them favorable performance reviews.
- Applauded as Mayor Howard Wiggs named Ana Rivera winner of the October CityMakers Award | Also: CityMakers website profiles Rivera.
THE POLK SCHOOL BOARD had a lot of Lakeland action, too:
- Nearly 9,000 employees came to Joker Marchant Stadium for a motivational event that was mandatory for teachers on a day without students | Fox 13 coverage
- Employees entering the Tigertown event passed about 15 protesters expressing displeasure with Tenoroc High School Principal Jason Looney, who has been subject of two sexual harassment investigations that both concluded there was insufficient evidence to proceed.
- Justin Troller, who is a city commissioner, reported on Facebook (here) that he’s been reinstated as a school district employee, but Superintendent Jacqueline Byrd said his new job, which hasn’t been announced yet, would not involve working with students.
Many returned today after being turned away Saturday from Irma temporary food stamp registration at the RP Funding Center.
A group called The PeaceMakers LKLD (Facebook) held a painting party in Munn Park on Saturday to let homeless people express themselves and other people understand.
BROADBAND: City Commissioner Justin Troller pushes to expand Lakeland’s extensive fiber optic network into a utility offering fast, affordable Internet to residents and businesses. The first step, he says, is a test project in areas just north and east of downtown.
CIVICS: Alarmed that most students no longer understand how government works, Florida Southern College and All Saints Academy are combining forces to revive civics education, Bruce Anderson writes in his weekly politics column.
ROWBOTHAM: Radio exec Art Rowbotham calls “miraculous” a procedure that suppresses the effects of Parkinson’s disease that he’s experienced.