Teen’s health struggle makes her a national voice

When Mark and Kelly Dees of Land O’ Lakes decided to name their unborn daughter Hope, it was a sign of their unwavering optimism despite devastating news. What was supposed to be an exciting reveal of their baby’s gender, soon became a moment of sadness after Hope was diagnosed with congenital heart defects. “We were told by the first doctor that she wouldn’t live to see her first … [Read more...]

Bicycle association honors Kathryn Starkey’s tenacity, service

Becky Afonso, executive director of the Florida Bicycle Association, recently honored Pasco County Commissioner Kathryn Starkey as its 2018 Elected Official Champion of the Year. Afonso highlighted Starkey’s tenacity and public service during the Pasco County Commission’s April 23 meeting. The association executive reminded commissioners that the Tri-County Trail connection won the 2014 … [Read more...]

Construction begins to link recreational trails

Pasco County’s engineering services had an event on Oct. 30 to celebrate the construction of the new Starkey Gap Bicycle and Pedestrian Trail that will link the Starkey and Suncoast Trails in Pasco County to the Pinellas Trail. Construction of the new multi-use 2.4 mile-trail is expected to be completed in the summer of 2019. Once the segment is finished, it will provide connectivity to a … [Read more...]

Commissioners make connections at White House

Pasco County commissioners Kathryn Starkey and Jack Mariano attended a special White House conference to promote communications between the state’s county commissions and federal agencies. The Florida County Commissioners’ White House Conference met on July 27, and included about 120 county commissioners and staff from all over the state. It was the second in what is planned as a series of … [Read more...]

Park expansion signifies big day for Land O’ Lakes

Passersby on U.S. 41 likely didn’t notice the event taking place under a covered pavilion at the Land O’ Lakes Community Park on Aug. 14. After all, there were no marching bands or fireworks. But the ribbon cutting for the Land O’ Lakes Community Park project marked a big day in the community’s history. The $2.3 million park improvement project includes the installation of a Bermuda … [Read more...]

Democrat first to try eliminating nuclear cost recovery this session

A Tallahassee lawmaker is taking on one major campaign issue from the state's mid-term elections right away, proposing a bill that would eliminate the ability of utility companies like Duke Energy Corp. to collect money for its failed nuclear plant projects. State Rep. Michelle Rehwinkel Vasilinda, D-Tallahassee, filed H.B. 4001 last Friday. If passed, it would repeal the nuclear cost recovery … [Read more...]

Incumbents keeping seats on Hillsborough commission

Charlie Crist may not have been a winner in Florida, but another unrelated Crist will stay in elected office in Hillsborough County as Victor Crist won re-election to the county commission. Crist defeated Democrat Elizabeth Belcher 56 percent to 44 percent to get another four years in Hillsborough. However, the race was a lot closer for Crist's colleague, Al Higginbotham, who defeated Democrat … [Read more...]

Burgess heads to Tallahassee, Moore wins commission race

Mike Moore raised a lot of money in his quest to become a member of the Pasco County Commission, but even he knew with Pasco's history of upsets in commission races, there never was a guarantee. Yet, Moore's fundraising and campaign both paid off, as he won the last open seat on the commission, and will keep retiring Pat Mulieri's seat in Republican hands. With 97 percent of precincts … [Read more...]

Election 2014: What voters are saying

Pasco County elections supervisor Brian Corley is considering the mid-term election a success, as more than 150,000 voters made their way to the polls locally, and exceeded the dismal 47 percent turnout the county had in 2010. As election workers get ready to tabulate votes, people are still going to the polls — they are open until 7 p.m. Here are some of the things those voters are saying as … [Read more...]

Election Day is here! And so is everything you need to know

Today is Election Day where Florida will elect a governor, an attorney general, a chief financial officer and an agriculture commissioner among others. Locally, however, voters will have to decide on representatives in Tallahassee, as well as who will represent their interests on the county commission. In last week's print edition of The Laker/Lutz News, we offered an election primer, which you … [Read more...]