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Tuesday Briefing: A Billboard to Find a Missing Man, Limiting School Testing, Shakespeare’s Death Methods

| January 5, 2016

george contos

George Contos went missing last May 7.

Today: high in upper 50s, lows in mid-50s. Details here.
Today’s fire danger is moderate. Flagler County’s Drought Index is at 369.
Today’s tides: at the beaches, at the Intracoastal Waterway.
Today’s document from the National Archives.
The OED’s Word of the Day: panegyric, n. and adj..
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.

A meeting of the Palm Coast City Council previously scheduled for today was cancelled.

George Cantos Disappearance: The Flagler County Sheriff’s Office and Crime Stoppers Northeast Florida plan a news conference at 2 p.m. to unveil a billboard asking for information about the disappearance of Bunnell resident George Contos. The location of the news conference is at the billboard site, 4368 North Ocean Shore Boulevard, 7.2 miles north of State Road 100 on A1A. Contos, also known as “Uncle Waldo,” was last seen May 7, 2015. See the story here.

flagler county schoolsThe Flagler County School Board is scheduled to meet in workshop at 5 p.m. and in a regular meeting at 6 p.m. in board chambers at the Government Services Building in Bunnell. The workshop will be devoted to discussing standardized testing and the state’s troubled accountability system, as well as a discussion of time spent on testing following a law passed last April that requires that “A school district may not schedule more than 5 percent of a student’s total school hours in a school year to administer statewide, standardized assessments and district-required local assessments.” (The law does not apply to testing for Advanced Placement, the International Baccalaureate or other student-elected courses.) Much of the regular meeting’s agenda is routine and unremarkable.

The Flagler Beach Planning and Architecture Review Board meets at 5:30 p.m., but not at City Hall, which continues to undergo repairs. The meeting takes place at the city’s fire station at 320 S Flagler Ave.

Closure Note: Temporary road closure planned Wednesday at Bird of Paradise-Birchwood intersection: Palm Coast will be performing a road repair that will necessitate the temporary closure of Bird of Paradise Drive from Birchwood Drive/Birchwood Place to Burroughs Drive on Wednesday, Jan. 6, from approximately 7:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Detours will be posted. Residents of the B Section will be able to access their houses, but may have to follow a detour. Because the work is being done near the canal at Bird of Paradise/Birchwood, motorists will not be able to travel the length of Bird of Paradise between Matanzas Woods Parkway and Belle Terre Parkway.

Local News Recap:

Firefighters and Deputies Rescue Man From Submerged Car After 2-Vehicle Wreck at SR100 Exit Ramp: Deputies were able to smash one or two of the submerged car’s windows. The driver, James Austin, 53, of Ormond Beach, was pulled out by Lt. Dusty Snyder of the Flagler Beach Fire Department, who’d just gone off duty and was driving home when, stopped at the traffic light on 100 and the northbound ramp to I-95, “I just happened to look to the south and see the car in the water,” Snyder said in an email. “It was truly a matter of being in the right place at the right time.”

Teens-In-Flight students excel academically: The non-profit Teens-In-Flight, which provides flight training and aviation maintenance scholarships to teens who have a parent who was either killed or injured in the conflicts since 2001, was created by Col. Jack Howell of Palm Coast. The News-Journal features Emma McClimans of Jupiter, 18, recently accepted at Texas Christian University. Her father, U.S. Army Major Josh McClimans, was killed in action in 2012 in Afghanistan. (Story paywall protected.)

Palm Coast Man Arrested for Firing Gun at a Dictionary During a Fight With Girlfriend: Arnold D. Boggs, 48, was arrested on four charges, including using a firearm while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

In State Government:

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

FPL’s Power Plant: The Florida Public Service Commission will take up a series of issues, including whether to approve a “determination of need” for a new Florida Power & Light plant in Okeechobee County. Such approvals are important regulatory steps for utility projects, but the FPL plan has drawn opposition from environmentalists and the state Office of Public Counsel, which represents consumers. (9:30 a.m.)

Ethics Reform: The group Integrity Florida will hold a news conference to discuss a report about ethics reforms in the state. (11 a.m., Florida Press Center, 336 East College Ave., Tallahassee.)

Public school enrollment: The Education Estimating Conference will look at enrollment numbers in pre-kindergarten through 12th grade. (2 p.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:

  • Jan. 7: Romeo & Juliet, Performed by The State Ballet Theatre of Russia, at the Flagler Auditorium, 7:30 p.m. Founded by legendary dancer and former principal dancer of The Bolshoi Theatre Ballet, Maya Plisetskaya, The State Ballet Theatre of Russia – now under the direction of award-winning dancer and Moiseyev Dance Company soloist Nikolay Anokhin – presents the most passionate romantic tragedy every told. This full-scale production is choreographed by Bolshoi Theatre Ballet Choreographer Michael Lavrovsky, and based on William Shakespeare’s timeless tale of tragic love. The State Ballet Theatre of Russia presents 55 of Russia’s brightest ballet stars to bring this celebration of true love onto our stage and into our hearts.
  • Jan. 8: Celebrate the Flagler County Public Library’s 16th birthday at 2 p.m. Music will be provided by well know musician and resident of Flagler Beach, Capt’n Nick. Dancing encouraged. Cake will be served. Sponsored by the Friends of the Library. Any questions, call 386-446-6763.
  • Jan. 9: Palm Coast’s Christmas Tree Recycling Event.
  • Jan. 13: Mayor Jon Netts will be the featured speaker at the Indian Trails II Neighborhood Watch meeting at the Flagler County Public Library, 6 p.m.
  • Jan. 30: The City of Palm Coast’s Town Center Park will host the Color Vibe 5K – the first-ever “colorful” walk-run in Palm Coast. The Palm Coast Color Vibe 5K will be held Saturday, Jan. 30, at Central Park in Town Center, 975 Central Ave.

PR Releases:

Click on the link for more details.

Winners of 2015 Starlight Parade announced: The City of Palm Coast is proud to announce the results of the judging for the 2015 Starlight Parade, which was held Dec. 12. The winners, selected from more than 200 entries, are:
Best of Parade – City of Palm Coast float (featuring new City Hall and the Birds of a Feather Fest)
Best Marching Unit – Flagler Palm Coast High School Band
Best Float – Oceans Fence and Railing
Best Decorated Vehicle – Bath Fitter

In the Press, In the News:



Fact-Checking the Knaves:

Palm Coast Construction and Development Progress Reports

The following is an update of ongoing construction and development projects in Palm Coast, through Dec. 15:

Christ the King Evangelical Lutheran Church and School, 1 percent done: Located at 5625 North US Highway 1, the school received a Development Order for a new 13,794 sq. ft. early learning center to be located on the south side of their 8.6-acre site. The architecture of the new one-story building will be very similar to the existing church and school facilities that are located just north of the proposed new building.

Holland Park, 48 percent done: Grading and installation of perimeter sidewalk continues. Electrical conduits being installed to new restroom. Restroom plot has been cleared and graded. Water service has been installed at restroom site. Surveying for basketball court and roadway has begun..

County’s I-95 Interchange Matanzas Woods Reclaim Water, 76 percent done: Retention ponds are being excavated and fill continues for the ramps. (Not in the Dec. 15 update.)

Palm Harbor Parkway Roadway Extension, 38 percent done: The headwall for the double barrel stormwater pipe has been installed and tied in. The water main and reuse main have been extended towards Forest Grove Drive waiting on the
closure of the road next week to make the road crossing.

Colechester Bridge, 93 percent done: Seawall has been completed on the east side, slope pavement has begun.

North Old Kings Road Extension to Matanzas Woods Parkway, 19 percent done: Asphalt was installed on the new section of roadway adjacent to the old roadway at the intersection of Old Kings Road and Forest Grove. (Not in the Dec. 4 update.)

Old Kings Road Force Main 83 percent done:: Contractor has completed the Force main up to the pig launch points and restored the site and trail. The area for the pig flush was completed and flushing has started. (Not in the Dec. 15 update.)

Road and Interstate Construction:

Forest Grove Drive connection to Palm Harbor Parkway to be closed starting Dec. 18: Effective Friday, Dec. 18, the City of Palm Coast will be closing the Forest Grove Drive connection to Palm Harbor Parkway. This road closure is required as part of construction operations for the Palm Harbor Parkway extension, which is currently under construction. Palm Harbor is being realigned and extended to connect directly with Matanzas Woods Parkway where it intersects with Old Kings Road. Message boards will be placed to advise motorists and other travelers of the upcoming change, and a public meeting has already been held for residents living in that area. Both the Palm Harbor extension and a separate extension of Old Kings Road are being built in preparation for the new Interstate 95 interchange to open next June at Matanzas Woods Parkway. As part of the projects, traffic patterns around Matanzas High School will be changing. One goal is to turn Forest Grove Drive back into a residential street as it was originally intended to be. The upcoming road closure of the Forest Grove Drive connection to Palm Harbor Parkway is part of that project. Forest Grove will be turned into a cul de sac on that end. Once the separate Old Kings Road extension is completed, in June 2016, the Forest Grove Drive access to the high school will be closed because it will no longer be needed. Instead, motorists and other travelers will get to Matanzas High School via the new signalized intersection at Matanzas Woods, Palm Harbor and Old Kings. For more information, please contact Palm Coast Communications Manager Cindi Lane at 386-986-3708 or

Cultural Coda:

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