Tire recycling event slated for landfill

Standing bodies of water can serve as a breeding ground for mosquitoes, and mosquitoes have been found to transmit Zika Virus.

In an effort to reduce areas where water can collect and subsequently reduce mosquito breeding, the Citrus County Solid Waste Management Division will be accepting tires at the Central Landfill free of charge for recycling on Thursday, November 5 and Friday, November 6 from 8am to 4:30pm and Saturday, November 7, 2020 from 8am to 2:30pm.

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Help sea turtles survive: FWC has hatchling tips

Florida Fish & Wildlife Commission logoSea turtle hatchlings are beginning to appear on beaches throughout the Sunshine State, and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) is asking the public to help ensure these tiny turtles reach the ocean by following a few simple guidelines.

During sea turtle nesting season (March 1 – Oct. 31), it is important to keep your distance from these protected marine reptiles and their nests. You should allow hatchlings to crawl toward the ocean on their own. Any interference or disturbance, including getting too close, can cause hatchlings to become confused and lose their way.

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Assistance with utility bill payments available

PHOTO: Courtesy of Duke Energy

Citrus County Housing Services continues to assist low-income residents with their utility bill payments.

Through the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) helps low-income families with home heating and cooling costs.

LIHEAP is funded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services through the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, and has been established to help qualifying low-income homeowners and renters pay for a portion of their primary heating costs.

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CCSO well represented at public manager course

Five Citrus County Sheriff’s Office (CCSO) leaders, alongside 145 employees from many other government agencies in the region, were graduated today from Florida State University’s Certified Public Manager (CPM) program.

According to the Florida Center for Public Management, the CPM program is a nationally-recognized leadership development program for public managers and supervisors. It is currently offered in 38 states and by the federal government.

The program is described by the Florida Center for Public Management to consist of 32 days of classroom instruction, supplemented by homework assignments and open-book exams.

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2 of 3 burglary suspects wanted in crime spree now jailed

Two of three suspects were arrested after detectives solved a rash of burglaries that were committed on Aug. 8 in the area of Woodland Estates in Crystal River.

Citrus County Sheriff’s Office (CCSO) detectives have already identified and arrested two out of the three culprits.

“This case is not fully closed, but I am extremely proud of our deputies, detectives, and intelligence analyst for the work they have done so far. Despite the diligent efforts of our case detectives, the third suspect has not yet been identified. If anyone has information regarding these crimes, or believes to know the identity of the third suspect, please call our office at 352-726-1121,” said Sheriff Mike Prendergast. ”

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CARES Act Round 2: Funding available for qualifying small businesses

BOCC SealTo stimulate the local economy, Governor Ron DeSantis has awarded Citrus County $6,528,498 in federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES Act) funds.

The County has already awarded more than $2 million of these funds to date.

The Citrus County CARES Small Business Grant Program Round 2, approved by the Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) on Aug. 25 provided recovery grants to eligible small businesses adversely impacted by the COVID‐19 Pandemic.

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Citrus County man charged with capital sex battery on a person under 12 years old

Daniel Enrique Grisales (CCSO mugshot)

Citrus County Sheriff’s Office detectives in the agency’s High Tech Crimes Unit on Aug. 26 arrested 34-year-old Daniel Grisales of Dunnellon on charges of capital sexual battery against a juvenile victim under the age of 12.

As members of the Central Florida Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) task force, detectives receive tips for the exploitation of children that may be occurring within the community.

This investigation began after a popular internet company reported that child pornography was sent to multiple people through their mobile app.

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Alexander Park receives donation for basket ball courts’ renovation

FROM LEFT: Terrance Hollis, Matthew Vieux, Devonte White, Robert Simmons, Cortney Sawyer, Citrus County Parks and Recreation Director Francine Noble, BOCC Chairman Brian Coleman and Denzel Alexander.(PHOTO: Cynthia Oswald on Aug. 25, 2020).

On Aug. 25, at the Board of County Commissioners’ (BOCC) meeting, Dr. Devonte White, who was born and raised in Inverness, and now resides in Texas, presented his proposal to renovate the basketball courts at Alexander Park.

The BOCC voted unanimously to accept his generous Citrus County Community Charitable Foundation, Inc. grant donation of $10,000, along with a $2,000 donation from the local community and support the renovations to the basketball courts.

“I wanted to renovate my childhood basketball court in order to keep the kids in the neighborhood off the streets and on the court,” said Devonte in a post on Twitter when he began working on the project.

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Region’s July jobless rate hits 9.6%

OCALA, Fla. (Aug. 21, 2020) – The unemployment rate in the CareerSource Citrus Levy Marion region was 9.6 percent in July, one percentage point higher than in June and  5.2 percentage point higher than the region’s rate a year ago rate.

There were 19,083 unemployed in the region, 2,428 more than the previous month and 10,272 more than July 2019.

The region’s labor force was 197,884, an expansion of 3,144 since June. While there was a slight uptick in employment over the month – an increase of 716 to 178,801 – the bump in labor force was driven by the increased number of unemployed.

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