Weekend Briefing: Code Enforcement’s Vise On Palm Coast, Wings Over Flagler Rocks
FlaglerLive | March 27, 2015
Weekend weather: Mild Friday thunderstorms possible in the afternoon, fantastically cool and sunny Saturday and Sunday. Details here.
Today’s fire danger is Moderate. Flagler County’s Drought Index is at 309
The weather in Colombo, Sri Lanka: cloudy, rainy, highs in upper 80s, lows in upper 70s. Details.
The Live Community Calendar
Today’s jail bookings.
In Flagler and Palm Coast:
Spring Break: Flagler County schools reopen Tuesday. Monday, March 30 is a teacher planning day.
Wings Over Flagler Rockin the Runways: The weekend in Flagler will be dominated by the three-day fly-in at the Flagler County Airport starting at 4 p.m. Friday through Sunday afternoon, with some 50 planes on exhibit, some of them providing flying tours, including a Ford Tri-Motor and a B-17. hours are from 4 to 9 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday, and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday concluding with a massive fly-off. Parking and shuttle service is free, and $5 airport parking is offered. Many education charities benefit from the event. Admission is just $12 adults, veterans $10 and kids 12 and under $5. No pets or coolers. Bring concert chairs. For more aircraft information go to WingsOverFlagler.com.
- B-17 Flying Fortress, “Guts and Backbone” of Air War, Brings Out Veterans and Emotions
- Berlin Airlift History Lands at Flagler Airport, Re-Igniting Memories of 328 Tense Days
- Wings Over Flagler Brings a Flying Fortress Of a Show At 3-Day, 50-Plane Rockin’ of Runways
Flagler County Citizens Academy: The ninth Flagler County Citizens Academy Class will participate in a final session on Friday before a graduation ceremony on Monday, April 6. The Citizens Academy provides Flagler County residents a unique educational opportunity to learn about the intricacies of the county government and the array of services it provides. Topics include the County Administration, the Board of County Commissioners, tourism and economic development, land planning, emergency services and parks and recreation, among many others. During the most recent three-hour session on Friday, March 20, the 27 residents in the current Academy acted out a mock County Commission meeting taking place during July 2020, where the following year’s budget was discussed to determine how to fund needed projects. Each person was given information to play roles such as the County Administrator, members of the public with specific concerns or County Commissioners to make the activity more authentic. Those acting in the role of “Commissioners” were tasked with prioritizing issues like replacing a helicopter, replenishing reserve funds and park repairs. “We provided the participants with a role to play and some talking points, but some of them really went out of their way to do research for their part, so everyone really learned a lot,” County Administrator Craig Coffey said. Further information about the next Academy starting in September will be available during the summer. For more information about the spring class, please contact Joe Mayer at 386-313-4007.
Flagler County Job Fair on April 24: A limited number of spaces are still open for businesses interested in reserving a free booth at the second annual Flagler County Job Fair. The event will take place on Friday, April 24, from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. at the Palm Coast Campus of Daytona State College, 3000 Palm Coast Pkwy SE, Building 3. Last year nearly 400 jobseekers attended the inaugural fair, which was hosted by the Flagler County Department of Economic Opportunity and CareerSource Flagler Volusia. This year Daytona State College and the Flagler County Chamber of Commerce joined the effort to positively impact Flagler County’s economic vitality. Among the businesses that have already registered are CoastalCloud, Edwards Jones Financial Service, Beutlich Pharmaceuticals and Target. A complete list of attending companies is available here. Businesses wishing to secure a place at the fair and job seekers interested in registering for preparation workshops should visit the job fair website. For additional information about the fair, please contact Casey Scott at 386-313-4098 or by email here.
Flagler Youth Dek Hockey Winter League Game and Registration: Come play the greatest game on earth. No skating required. For Boys and Girls ages 6-15. The registration fee is $25 to cover the cost of team T-Shirts, game time refreshments and season end awards. Equipment: Mouth Guard, Eye Protection, Shin Pads, and Gloves. Flagler Palm Coast High School Youth Center rink, off State Road 100. See the website. (9 a.m-11 a.m. Saturday)
Join Guana Tolomato Matanzas National Estuarine Research docents Saturday from 8:30 to 10:30 a.m. for a family seining activity. Visitors will get the chance to pull a seine net through Guana Lake, collecting species of fish, crabs and more, and then learn about the animals and their roles in the habitat. All necessary gear including waders and boots will be provided. The program is free with paid entrance and will take place at the Guana Dam Recreational Area; however, meet the Docents at the Environmental Education Center, 505 Guana River Rd, Ponte Vedra 32082. Call 904.823.4500.
Road and Interstate Construction:
Flagler County: County Road 305 between CR 2006 and Tangerine. IMPACTS: Closure in force 3/17/2015 for the 2nd box culvert replacement. Detours detour via CR 110 to CR 95 to CR 2006. Truck Detour via Bunnell (SR 100 – SR 11)
Palm Coast: Palm Coast Parkway between Cypress Point Parkway and Florida Park Drive. IMPACTS: Lane shifts and closures will occur and this may cause traffic congestion on this already busy roadway. Most construction work will occur between 9 p.m. and 7 a.m. though weather and unforeseen issues may adjust the schedules. This project will be complete by December 2015.
Volusia County I-4 Closure:There will be an eastbound road closure on Interstate 4 near Daytona Beach for the contractor to pour the bridge deck on Ramp A over eastbound I-4. This is part of the ongoing widening project. To accommodate the work, the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) and its contractor, The de Moya Group, scheduled overnight detours 9 p.m. to 5:30 a.m. Sunday, March 29. The I-4 eastbound lanes will be closed. The detour will route traffic onto US 92 east to Interstate 95 (I-95). Drivers can travel southbound on I-95 to reconnect with I-4. Times and dates could change based on weather conditions and other variables, updates will be provided if the schedule is modified. Message boards and detour signs will be in place throughout the work zone guiding drivers through the area. For the most up-to-date information on road and lane closures, go to www.cflroads.com and click on ‘Lane Closures.’ The Florida Department of Transportation urges motorists to drive carefully in construction zones.
- Palm Coast Parkway Project Website
- Florida Department of Transportation Road Project List
- County Road 304 Project Map and Description
In the Press:
Code enforcement: Does it work for you? The Palm Coast Observer’s Jonathan Simmons surveys the code enforcement landscape in the county, comparing Palm Coast’s staggeringly rigid regime to those elsewhere: “Palm Coast’s Code Enforcement Section enforces more restrictions, and does so more proactively, than the neighboring municipalities of Flagler Beach and Bunnell, or unincorporated Flagler County. Its code enforcement section has 13 employees to Bunnell’s one, the county’s two, and Flagler Beach’s one employee and a volunteer. And, unlike the county or other municipalities, Palm Coast’s code enforcement relies heavily on its officers making rounds, looking for violations: Each officer drives every street in the city at least twice per month, Grossman said, racking up 600-900 miles per month per city vehicle each. At the heart of the difference is a matter of philosophy that some residents love and others can’t stand. […] Palm Coast Mayor Jon Netts chose the city for its appearance, too. The story is one he tells often. His wife’s parents had retired to a Florida community — he won’t say where — in the ’70s, and he came down from his home state of New Jersey to visit them. He wasn’t impressed. […] “Netts served on the Code Enforcement Board after the city’s incorporation — ultimately becoming its chairman — before running successfully for City Council and later being elected mayor. “I guess I’m as guilty as the next guy in saying: ‘I like what’s here. Let’s keep it this way,’” he said.” […] Many residents commenting on Facebook on a Palm Coast Observer story about fence code changes called the codes too strict, and wrote letters to the editor calling the restrictions “unreal,” “ridiculous” and “onerous.” […] [A] charge against a first-time offender would likely be dismissed if it was resolved before the hearing date, and most hearings don’t lead to a fine. The board heard 561 cases last year but issued just 81 fines. (Those who appeared at the board still had to pay a $50-$70 administrative fee.) […] But most residents seem to be open to staying in compliance, and many like the city’s tight codes, Grossman said. In fact, about 60% of the cases come from neighbor complaints. Overgrown conditions and commercial vehicles in driveways are the top complaints.” The full story.
Florida has 6 of the nation’s fastest-growing metro areas: “New data released from the U.S. Census Bureau showed that The Villages, Florida, ranked as the nation’s fastest-growing metro area last year, with the city west of Orlando boasting a 5.4 percent increase in population between July 1, 2013, and July 1, 2014. This comes as Florida became the nation’s third most-populous state in December, taking over the spot once held by New York. […] The influx of new residents was enough to offset the fact that there were more deaths than births in about half of the state’s counties, the Census Bureau said. Florida averaged 803 new residents each day between July 1, 2013, and July 1, 2014, growing by 293,000 to reach 19.9 million during that time period, census data released in December showed. New York went up by 51,000 to 19.7 million during that same period. […] Harris County, Texas, leads the nation in population growth by person, with the county surrounding Houston adding 89,000 people between July 2013 and 2014, followed by Maricopa County, Arizona, with 74,000 and Los Angeles County with 63,000.” From PBS.
Public safety sacrificed on altar of NRA: From a Tampa Bay Times editorial: “It’s been a banner session in Tallahassee for gun zealots and the National Rifle Association and a terrible one for common sense and public safety. In the past weeks, the Senate passed a bill allowing gun owners to carry their weapons in public during a declared state of emergency. It also moved closer to allowing guns on college campuses. The House, meanwhile, killed a bill that would have barred backyard shooting ranges. With the state and the Tampa Bay area awash in gun violence, it was a stunning display of this Legislature’s blatant disregard for public safety. […] This Legislature continues to put the NRA and weapons before sanity and public safety, without any bounds for what constitutes responsible gun ownership. And lawmakers are all too content to dispense with the views of law enforcement when police raise valid concerns about balancing gun rights with law and order. The answer to more violence and disaster is not more guns, and gun rights are not absolute. This Legislature needs to recognize what a torrent of guns is doing to society, to the neighborhoods and to the state’s image, and start putting the interests of everyday Floridians ahead of politics and the gun lobby.” The full editorial.