May 9, 2022
Northwest Florida Daily News
DeFUNIAK SPRINGS — In a process that momentarily went deeply granular, Walton County commissioners unofficially settled Tuesday on a vision statement for the county. The vision statement is part of a larger strategic planning effort that could, it was suggested Tuesday, even bring changes to the county’s seal and its “Pride, Preservation, Conservation” motto.
Orange County’s tourism industry is breaking records for the first time since the start of the pandemic. Orange County Comptroller Phil Diamond said this past March, Tourist Development Tax collection was $7 million higher than it was in 2019, and at $38,568,500, it was a 118.2% increase compared to the same month last year.
Highlands News Sun
SEBRING — Highlands County still has approximately 50 vacancies to fill, and needs to look at what it will cost to fill them. County commissioners recently discussed solutions, such as 10-hour days with four-days weeks or splitting some full-time positions into two part-time positions, allowing them to pay more per hour and saving on health insurance and other benefits.
Collier County Manager Mark Isackson plans to step down from his role on May 13, two months earlier than he had planned. The sudden resignation means the county will be without a manager while commissioners continue to narrow their six finalists for the job. In a memo sent to staff Wednesday, Isackson explained that his health has continued to deteriorate while he struggles with post-COVID complications.
MIAMI – Howard Perry said he fell on hard times after his pregnant wife and children died in a car crash. He owns a car, but he is homeless in Miami. Camillus House gave him a hand, and he has a job, but the dream of having access to a one-bedroom apartment feels far away. He qualified for a voucher program, and he is on a waiting list.
Sheriffs across Florida are preparing a court fight against Miami-Dade County ahead of the election for sheriff in 2024, with Mayor Daniella Levine Cava and commissioners trying to retain much of the policing power in County Hall. “From what I see, a lawsuit is coming,” Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri said during a break from a Thursday County Commission meeting on legislation divvying up police resources and authority once the first Miami-Dade sheriff in decades takes office on Jan. 7, 2025, as required by the Florida Constitution. “I think it’s likely.”
The Biden administration says it will partner with internet providers to lower the cost of high-speed internet plans for low-income Americans, the White House announced Monday. The Affordable Connectivity Program will provide plans of at least 100 Megabits per second of speed for no more than $30. An estimated 48 million Americans will qualify.
AROUND THE COUNTRY
A Kansas county is using vehicles outfitted with rooftop cameras and LiDAR units to quickly and inexpensively capture property images that are integrated into its cloud-based appraisal system. Historically, property appraisers in Johnson County, Kansas, drove up to each structure, took photos and then entered them into a system when they were back at their office computer. This year, however, the county has gone digital.