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Wednesday Briefing: Assisted Living on Cypress, $200,000 Lawsuit Against Sheriff, Autism’s Surge

| April 20, 2016

autism spectrum

How not to squander the potential of autistic people: See below.

Today: Mostly sunny. Highs in the upper 70s inland…in the mid 70s coast. East winds 10 to 15 mph. Tonight: Mostly clear. Lows in the lower 60s. East winds 5 to 10 mph. Details here.
Today’s fire danger is moderate. Flagler County’s Drought Index is at 249.
Today’s tides: at the beaches, at the Intracoastal Waterway.
Today’s document from the National Archives.
The OED’s Word of the Day: philodox, n..
The Live Community Calendar
Today’s jail bookings.

Today’s Briefing: Quick Links

In Flagler and Palm Coast:

Note: all government meetings noticed below are free and open to the public unless otherwise indicated. Many can be heard or seen live through each agency’s website.

The Flagler County Tourist Development Council meets at 10 a.m. in board chambers at the Government Services Building. Council members will discuss the actions of the Flagler County Commission on Tuesday that clear the way for significant spending on stadium and spectator equipment and the addition of a staffer in the tourism bureau’s office, whose job description the council will review. See details here.

Flagler Department of Juvenile Justice Council meeting, 9 a.m. at the Government Service Building room 3.

The Flagler County Technical Review Committee meets at 9 a.m. in the first-floor conference room at the Government Services Building in Bunnell.

The Palm Coast Planning Board meets at 5:30 p.m. at City Hall. It will review the technical site plan for the Starling of Palm Coast assisted living facility planned for 144 Cypress Point Parkway, not far from City Market Place.

Cancellation: The Flagler County Contractor Review Board meeting scheduled for 5 p.m. today was cancelled.

future problem solversHelp Flagler Schools’ Future Problem Solvers Get to International Competition in June: Fifty-nine students from four schools–FPC, Bunnell Elementary, Rymfire Elementary and Indian Trails Middle–have won invitations to international competition in lansing, Michigan, June 1-5. But they’re raising money to get there, and they need your help. It’s about $1,000 a student, though most students will be chipping in around $400 each, reducing the needed match. FlaglerLive is proud to be a sponsor. Now go help them out.

Local News Recap:

Updated jail bookings and day and night shift incident summary reports are available here.

County Approves Big Spending on Tourism Office Staff and Rigs and Hints at Raising Tax: In one of those now-routine, quick-action special meetings immediately following a workshop on the subject (thus depriving the public any chance to mull over proposals or mobilize an opposition at a meeting scheduled with more notice, and shading the meeting from television viewers but not live audio) the commission voted to expand the staff of the tourism office from five to six full-timers, buy nearly $300,000 worth of stadium-like equipment such as floodlights, a stage and bleachers that have little to do with promoting the county, and suggested that they may want to raise the local tourism sales tax from 4 to 5 percent to generate more money for more spending.

Man wrongly arrested in mistaken identity case to sue Sheriff’s Office for $200,000: Attorney Josh “Davis has served the Sheriff’s Office official notice that his client intends to file suit,” the Observer’s Jonathan Simmons reports. “It will be for the $200,000 maximum allowed by law, for false arrest and confinement, Davis said. The false arrest will have long-term effects on Dakota Ward’s future, Davis said, and the experience was traumatic for Dakota Ward and his family.”

Gate Gas and Aldi Grocery Will Rise at Corner of SR100 and Belle Terre, Ending Political Signs: You can soon smack those signs goodbye as the hyper-visible corner lot’s 13 acres are about to give way to a commercial development that will ultimately number six businesses, including a gas station and a grocery store. The property will be called the Shoppes of Palm Coast and will give way to buildings, parking lots and a retention pond, but will still be framed in trees and grass.

R-Section Shooting Is Caught on Private Surveillance Video, But No Suspects or Known Injuries: A shooting that took place in palm Coast’s R-Section around 11 p.m. Monday night in the area of 11 Riverview Place was caught by a resident’s surveillance camera. Several shell casings were recovered, but no suspects or known injuries. A sheriff’s department source said the shooting may have been gang-related.

St. Augustine priest’s body found in Georgia: “Steven James Murray, the man named as a suspect in the priest’s disappearance, had “reached out” to detectives early Monday morning, saying he had come to a point where he wanted to offer information on the location of Father Rene Robert,” the St. Augustine Record reports. “Robert, 71, was reported missing last Tuesday when church officials became concerned that he uncharacteristically missed an appointment and his Facebook page had fallen unusually silent.” (Story paywall-protected)

“Go Forward!” Flagler Beach Tells County, Clearing Way for $900,000 Design of Beach-Erosion Project: For the design, the county is relying on its own money from Tourist Development Council revenue, generated by a 4 percent sales surtax on short-term rentals, hotels, motels and other short-term lodging. It’s also relying on state transportation dollars. For construction, it’s eyeing the same pots and that of the Department of Environmental Protection.

In Florida and in State Government:

Note: Most proceedings below can be followed live on the Florida Channel.

Sen. Joe Negron, a Stuart Republican who is slated to become Senate president in November, will continue a four-day tour of the state’s universities. (9 a.m., Florida Polytechnic University, Lakeland. Also, noon, University of South Florida, Tampa. Also, 3 p.m., New College of Florida, Sarasota.)

Cabinet: Aides to Gov. Rick Scott, Attorney General Pam Bondi, Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam and state Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater will meet to prepare for an April 26 Cabinet meeting. (9 a.m., Cabinet meeting room, the Capitol.)

Parole cases: The Florida Commission on Offender Review will consider numerous parole cases involving crimes committed in the 1970s and 1980s. (9 a.m.)

–Compiled by the News Service of Florida and FlaglerLive

In Coming Days in Palm Coast and Flagler:

Click on the links for more details:

April 21-24 “Into the Woods,” the musical with music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim and the book by James Lapine, is featured nightly at 7:30 at the Flagler Playhouse and at 2 p.m. on Sunday, April 24. The musical is based on Brothers Grimm and Charles Perrault fairy tales. Tickets are $20 for adults, $15 for students. Book here.
April 25: It’s the next edition of “Doughnuts with Doughney,” that is, coffey and doughnuts with Flagler Beach Police Captain Matthew Doughney, from 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. at the Flagler Beach 7-ELEVEN convenience store, 408 South Oceanshore Boulevard. Questions, please contact Captain Doughney at (386) 517-2024.
April 26: Sentencing of Waldemar Rivera at 1:30 p.m. in Courtroom 401, Flagler County Courthouse, before Judge Matthew Foxman. Rivera was found guilty on March 23 after a two-day trial of raping his then-13-year-old step-daughter two years ago. He faces up to 30 years in prison. He had declined a plea that would have netted him 10 years, and declined a judge’s advice, after the first day of trial, to consider taking a plea.
April 26: ElderSource is holding a public hearing at 10 a.m. at the Flagler County Public Library. The goal is to provide a listening session for anyone interested to share opinions about aging needs that impact you personally as well as your neighbors. Elder Source is a private, not for profit agency designated by the state as the Area Agency on Aging and Aging & Disability Resource Center for Northeast Florida. See the event flier here.
April 26: Palm Coast government holds a groundbreaking for its new $25 million Wastewater Treatment Plant 2 at 8 a.m. on Peavy Grade (west side of U.S. 1, about 2.9 miles north of Palm Coast Parkway). A sign will be posted on U.S. 1. The plant will add 2 million gallons per day of additional sewer capacity that will be needed to accommodate anticipated growth. The city got a low-interest loan from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection for the funding, so the new facility is being built without the need for an additional increase in rates to Palm Coast Utility customers.
into-the-woods-playhouseApril 29-May 1 “Into the Woods,” the musical with music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim and the book by James Lapine, is featured nightly at 7:30 at the Flagler Playhouse and at 2 p.m. on Sunday, May 1. The musical is based on Brothers Grimm and Charles Perrault fairy tales. Tickets are $20 for adults, $15 for students. Book here.

A detail from Jean Shin's 'Chemical Balance' installation at the Smithsonian, showing prescription pill bottles collected from nursing homes and arranged like stalagmites. Pill bottles similarly fall from the ceiling like stalactites, not shown in the image. (Mr. TinDC)

(Mr. TinDC)

April 30: Prescription Drug Take Back Day: The front lobby of the Flagler Beach Police Department will be open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at 204 South Flagler Avenue, one block south of SR100 on the east side of the Moody/SR100 Bridge. This one day event will provide residents and visitors with a no cost, anonymous collection of unwanted or expired medicines.
April 30: Fort Matanzas National Monument hosts a special free day event from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Reenactors dressed as Spanish colonial women will describe the life of a typical woman in Saint Augustine during the Spanish colonial era. Reenactors will also be demonstrating how foods from three different cultures combined and created some of the best dishes available in 1740’s colonial Spanish Florida. Produce from three very different cultures – Native American, African, and Spanish – will be on display, with conversations about how each of these influenced the Spanish kitchen. The authenticity of the reenactment will be limited of course: there will be no reenacted massacres, exterminations or enslavement of Native Americans, nor will the Catholic Church’s role in the obliteration of native cultures be part of the celebration. Children welcome. For additional information, call 904-41-0116 or visit www.nps.gov/foma.
May 3 and 4: Open auditions for the 2016 Spotlight on Flagler County Youth Talent Show from 5 to 7 p.m. for students in grades K-12, at the Flagler County Youth Center, on the campus of Flagler Palm Coast High School. If you can sing, dance, play an instrument, or have any special talent, plan to audition. For information, email Cheryl Massaro or contact her by phone at 386/437-7540×5101. The talent show is on June 7 at the Flagler Auditorium.
May 5: The Palm Coast utility and public works union meets with Palm Coast’s management team in another bargaining session over a contract. The meeting is scheduled for 4 p.m. in the community wing at City Hall. It is open to the public.
May 7: Arbor Day in Palm Coast’s Central Park. The Arbor Day 5K Root Run/Walk, begins at 8 a.m. Register here. At the main event, themed “Feed a Mouth, Get a Tree, Grow a Community,” attendees can exchange canned food or pet food items for a free three-gallon native hardwood tree (one tree per household, while quantities last). The Native Butterfly Release will be at 11 a.m. at center stage. Other fun activities are planned for all ages. A free paper-shredding service, so bring your old documents for professional shredding! Plan to take advantage of this hands-free, uncomplicated process as totes will be wheeled to your car to help unload your paper and bring it to a chute that dumps all of it into a shredder. Free admission and parking. Contact Palm Coast Urban Forester Carol Mini at 386/986-3722 for more information.
May 10: Pegine Echevarria, a motivational speaker, headlines the Flagler Chamber of Commerce’s “Fearless and Focused Women in Business” lunch at the Hilton Garden Inn, 55 Town Center Parkway in Palm Coast. Echevarria, according to a chamber release, “is CEO of Team Pegine, a think tank, training and consulting, event management firm that specializes in leadership, team building, inclusion engagement and situational training.” The chamber took over the lunch series that was previously hosted by Palm Coast’s Business Assistance Center. Registration 11:30 to 11:45 a.m., $35 for chamber members with advance registration and payment, $40 the day of the event. Guests: $40 with advance registration and payment, $45 the day of the event. Reservations are due by May 5 by 5 p.m. Please call to reserve your seat or with questions, 386/437.0106.
June 7: A 1:30 p.m. hearing is scheduled in the case of Anna Pehota, accused of second-degree murder in the shooting death of her husband on Sept. 23, 2015, in the Hammock. Her trial was scheduled for April 18, but her attorney, Ray Warren, was granted a delay so he could explore Pehota’s memory issues, which could play a deciding role in the handling of her case. The results of that inquiry are to be the subject of this hearing.

Survey Request: The River to Sea Transportation Planning Organization (TPO), which includes Palm Coast, is seeking input from residents of Palm Coast as it plans transportation improvements for the Metropolitan Planning Area (MPA) that includes Volusia County and portions of Flagler County. The TPO has launched a “Tell the TPO” campaign to survey people who live or work in Volusia and/or Flagler counties, as well as visitors. The 11-question survey can be accessed here. All responses received by May 31, 2016, will be placed in a drawing for a chance to win a free iPad Mini.

The Day’s Best Reads:

 

Fact-Checking the Knaves:

Palm Coast Construction and Development Progress Reports

The following is an update of ongoing permitting, construction and development projects in Palm Coast, through April 13:

Road and Interstate Construction:

Moody Boat Launch to close April 6 through May 20 for improvements: Flagler County’s Moody Boat Launch will be closed April 6 through May 20 for improvements. “The scheduled upgrade will enhance the launch’s usability in a number of ways,” said Heidi Petito, Director of General Services. “The new system provides for ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) compliance, minimizes docking difficulties caused by fluctuating tides, and new lighting will promote boater safety and security.” The closure includes the Moody Boat Launch– located at 825 Moody Lane in Flagler Beach– the parking area, restroom, and dockage on the Matanzas River. It does not affect Betty Steflik Preserve and boardwalk. The scope of work includes dredging 1,650 yards of silt from the launch basin, thus improving navigability. The adjacent wooden docks will be replaced with an aluminum floating dock and gangway system. Additionally, the existing restroom will be replaced with an ADA compliant facility. Moody Boat Launch provides public access to the Intracoastal on the east shore, just south of SR100. The closest alternative boat launches are located at Herschel King Park on the west side of the river at 1000 Grady Prather Jr. Cove, Palm Coast, and Bing’s Landing on the east shore at 5862 N. Oceanshore Blvd. in Palm Coast.

Cultural Coda:

Beethoven String Quartet No. 14 in C-sharp minor, Op. 131, Afiara Quartet

Previous Codas:

 

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