Keeping safe, when a hurricane threatens

Hurricane Season 2017 is underway, and the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office has shored up its ability to respond to the potential for deadly storms. Within the past few months, Sheriff Chris Nocco has created an Emergency Management Division and has appointed two seasoned war veterans to top leadership positions. Nocco named George McDonald as chief of the Joint Operations Bureau of the Pasco … [Read more...]

Massive sinkhole swallows two homes

Recovery efforts expected to take months Efforts are beginning in a recovery process to address impacts from a massive sinkhole that swallowed two homes in the Lake Padgett community of Land O’ Lakes. Kevin Guthrie, Pasco County’s assistant county administrator for public safety, said authorities received a 911 call at 7:21 a.m., on July 14, reporting a depression forming under a … [Read more...]

More construction pops up on State Road 56

Until recently the south side of State Road 56, by the Interstate 75 interchange, created the most commercial buzz. Tampa Premium Outlets and a slew of restaurants turned grassland into a shopping and dining mecca. More is on the way. Starbucks is the latest opening on the south side of the highway. It’s next to Culver’s. But, now it’s the north side of the state road that’s … [Read more...]

Activists bring new life to Moore-Mickens

The Pasco County School District handed over the keys to the new tenants of the Moore-Mickens Education Center effective July 1. The lease is for 30 years at $10 a year. So, now the school’s future is in the hands of a coalition of community activists who founded the nonprofit Moore-Mickens Education Center and Vocational Center Inc. Its legacy already is in place. Moore-Mickens is … [Read more...]

Festivities planned to celebrate the nation’s independence

Independence Day — a day that represents the Declaration of Independence and the birth of the United States of America — gives people a chance to celebrate the Fourth of July. There are many events planned across the Tampa Bay region, and here are a few of the choices. Connerton’s annual Nation Celebration, in Land O’ Lakes, will take place July 1 from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m., with a neighborhood … [Read more...]

Dog flu hits Florida — and it’s contagious

It’s called the dog flu, and it has hit the Sunshine State. The first confirmed case of the new H3N2 strain was reported in Deland over Memorial Day weekend. According to the University of Florida, the strain entered the state from dogs and people who have attended a dog show. Now, more than 30 cases of canine influenza have been reported across the state, mainly in northeast and … [Read more...]

Local gymnast reaches ‘elite’ status

Hard work is paying off for Kristen Ng. The 17-year-old, who will be a senior at Wiregrass Ranch High School, can lay claim to being one of the nation’s premier rhythmic gymnasts. Last month she earned Level 10 Elite status — the highest level possible — at the USA Gymnastics Rhythmic National Qualifier in Lake Placid, New York. Only the top 20 senior finishers in the qualifier earn … [Read more...]

Pasco County projects axed by Gov. Scott

Gov. Rick Scott signed an $83 billion budget for 2018 and used his veto pen to slash nearly $22 million earmarked for Pasco County projects. In total Scott struck out nearly $410 million from local projects across Florida. Pasco lost about $15 million for a new interchange to connect Overpass Road with Interstate 75, and $4.3 million for the Thomas Varnadoe Forensic Center for Education … [Read more...]

2017 graduates given second chance with new program

Graduating from high school typically is a special day for members of the graduating class, and their families. But, there’s a group in Wesley Chapel High’s Class of 2017 for whom graduation on May 26 at the University of South Florida Sun Dome was particularly meaningful. That’s because these students — among the approximately 380 graduates from the school —were offered a second chance, … [Read more...]

Pasco students showcase their talents

The talent was endless. The applause was, too. Special needs students from seven Pasco County schools displayed their unique skills on May 17 before more than 100 parents, peers and school faculty. The eighth annual Showcase for Exceptional Talent was held at the Wesley Chapel High School Center for the Arts auditorium. From dancing and singing/duets, to lip-syncing and comedy … [Read more...]