East Pasco land donated for fire station

The Pasco County Commission passed a resolution at its March 10 meeting recognizing Schikedanz Bros.-Hammock Pines Ltd., for its donation of 3.8 acres for a fire station to improve fire rescue services in East Pasco County. Scott Cassin, fire chief for Pasco County Fire Rescue, expressed appreciation for the gift. The site is just east of Fox Ridge Boulevard, on the south side of State Road … [Read more...]

Fire department merger talks continue

The Zephyrhills Fire Department soon could consolidate into Pasco County Fire Rescue, but myriad issues are still being negotiated. The Zephyrhills City Council held a March 2 workshop to review a county-drafted interlocal agreement that would provide fire suppression/first responder services for the municipality. Under the agreement, Pasco Fire Rescue would operate the city’s two fire … [Read more...]

Medical marijuana dispensaries allowed in Dade City

Medical marijuana treatment centers and dispensaries may now set up shop within certain areas of Dade City. Dade City Commissioners on Jan. 28 adopted an ordinance revising the city’s land development regulations to make the treatment facilities a permitted use in the city’s general commercial zoning district, and an allowed use in commercial and employment center planned development … [Read more...]

Zephyrhills is gearing up for big changes in 2020

As a new decade approaches, the City of Zephyrhills plans to open a much-anticipated tennis facility, plans to extend its airport runway, will be engaged in infrastructure improvements and could possibly end a 60-year tradition of operating its own fire department. Here’s a closer look for what’s on the horizon for 2020 and beyond: Sarah Vande Berg Tennis & Wellness Center The $4.9 … [Read more...]

Zephyrhills presents draft budget, appropriations requests

The City of Zephyrhills has unveiled its proposed budget for fiscal year 2019-20 — totaling more than $67 million. The $67,043,615 draft budget is based on a tentative tax rate of 6.35 mills previously approved by the Zephyrhills City Council. The draft budget was shared during an Aug. 12 council meeting. Based on the 6.35 millage rate, the total budget for the new fiscal year will be … [Read more...]

This guy ‘put out fires,’ literally

Mark Spudie, a former battalion chief for Pasco County Fire Rescue, dedicated 30 years of his life in the work of fighting fires. He hung up his gear on May 30 — walking the corridors of Wesley Chapel’s Fire Station 13 for the last time as part of the county’s team. “I wasn’t ready to go,” Spudie said. “I would have worked a few more years if I could have, and mainly because of the people … [Read more...]

Zephyrhills considers fire department merger

After nearly 60 years of operation and tradition, the Zephyrhills Fire Department may soon be absorbed by Pasco County Fire Rescue. As funding and staffing issues mount within the city’s fire department, the Zephyrhills City Council on July 1 unanimously directed city staff to begin formal negotiations to consolidate the local agency with Pasco County Fire Rescue. If the merger occurs, … [Read more...]

Pasco County hosts Disaster Expo to help residents

Pasco County marked the beginning of this year’s hurricane season with an expo aimed at helping residents better prepare for potential disasters. The county’s 2019 Disaster Expo, held at the Veterans Memorial Park in Hudson, gave those attending a chance to learn about myriad ways to better protect themselves, if a disaster should strike. Participants at the June 1 event included the … [Read more...]

Iconic Zephyrhills business lost to fire

A sadness looms over 5707 Gall Blvd., in Zephyrhills. Caution tape, and charred debris litter the empty, dirt parking lot. A pungent smell of burnt wood lingers in the air. Such is the aftermath of a May 2 two-alarm fire that destroyed the Crystal Bar and Package store, a Zephyrhills landmark, which has operated at the location since 1954. Zephyrhills Fire Rescue received a call … [Read more...]

Responders’ work praised in Dade City Business Center fire

Pasco County Commission Chairman Ron Oakley praised the work of emergency responders who converged on the Dade City Business Center, in Dade City, to put out a two-alarm fire, which began in the early afternoon on Jan. 18. It took about 18 hours to bring the fire under control, according to a report from Pasco County Fire Rescue. Pasco County Fire Rescue investigators attributed the … [Read more...]