Community development grants on the way?

Talks are underway in Zephyrhills to offer a greater variety of business grants within the city’s CRA (Community Redevelopment Agency) district. At last month’s CRA board meeting, Zephyrhills CRA director Gail Hamilton pushed for a wider range of incentives to help encourage new business investment in the 500-plus acre district. The district encompasses the center spine of the city, … [Read more...]

Dade City has location for downtown splash park

The Dade City Commission has approved a land purchase that may finally bring a splash park/bike hub to the city’s downtown area. The city has targeted a 2.23-acre parcel that borders the Hardy Trail on Eighth Street. The property, at 3772 Church St., is owned by local businessman Otto Weitzenkorn. The real estate’s 2018 appraised value is $1.168 million, but city officials say the … [Read more...]

Dade City approves budget, with some qualms

Dade City Commissioners adopted the city’s tentative budget for next fiscal year, but not without some disagreement. A first reading ordinance of the $19,296,935 budget passed by a 4-1 vote, with Commissioner Nicole Deese Newlon casting the lone dissenting vote during a Sept. 10 meeting. The 2019-2020 budget is based on an approved 7.14 millage rate. Newlon took umbrage with multiple … [Read more...]

Dade City to draw up ordinance allowing cannabis dispensaries

Medical marijuana treatment centers soon could be allowed within some areas of Dade City. At a Jan. 8 workshop, the Dade City Commission expressed consensus to have city staffers draft an ordinance that would permit cannabis dispensaries — but restrict their location to areas outside the boundaries of the city’s CRA (Community Redevelopment Agency) districts, generally encompassing the downtown … [Read more...]

Seeking to improve Zephyrhills’ code enforcement

The city of Zephyrhills is taking a hard look at its code enforcement policies — in an effort to maintain property values and make the community more desirable. According to City Manager Steve Spina, that starts with taking “a holistic view” on the issue. “When people come to visit, they need to drive through town and see a vibrant commercial business community, a vibrant downtown,” Spina … [Read more...]

Design is final for new Zephyrhills City Hall

When it comes to a new City Hall, the Zephyrhills City Council agreed that “bigger is better.” Council members unanimously approved the design for the new City Hall complex on Jan. 23. The design calls for a two-story building of 19,615 square feet. The $6.2 million price tag is about $300,000 greater than the alternative option, which called for a structure of 18,170. Alan Knight, the … [Read more...]

Cleaning up Zephyrhills’ neighborhoods

When Gail Hamilton was hired to lead the Zephyrhills Community Redevelopment Agency about a year ago, she noticed an unsettling trend while patrolling the older, traditional city neighborhoods. Scattered across several homeowners’ lawns were old appliances, rolled-up carpets, debris and fallen trees. “I think nobody had done anything in a long time,” Hamilton said, regarding the condition of … [Read more...]

Zephyrhills chamber names new director

Zephyrhills native Melonie Monson has been named as the new executive director for the Greater Zephyrhills Chamber of Commerce. She was appointed to the post on Feb. 16 and will begin work on Feb. 29. She replaces Rod Mayhew, who held the job about three months before stepping down in January. Monson, 54, spent the past year working as assistant city clerk for the city of … [Read more...]

Businesses create new beginnings at Zephyrhills chamber

As she read the long list of businesses and community leaders listed on a plaque in the main lobby of the Greater Zephyrhills Chamber of Commerce, Vonnie Mikkelsen had to smile. “Many of these people are still around, and they’re still thriving in the community,” said Mikkelsen, the chamber’s executive director. The plaque was erected nearly 15 years ago honoring those who helped move … [Read more...]