Approval recommended for TECO solar farm

Opponents are disappointed A proposed solar farm in northeast Pasco County cleared the first hurdle needed for approval — despite impassioned pleas and even tears from area residents who oppose it. The Pasco County Planning Commission recently voted 6-3 to recommend approval of the project to the Pasco County Commission, which has the final say. Tampa Electric Company, or TECO, needs a … [Read more...]

Club meetings planned, endorsements announced

Upcoming club meetings Land O’ Lakes Democrats The Land O' Lakes Democratic Club will host Stephen Perenich, who is running for U.S. Congress in Florida District 12, at the club’s April 4 meeting, which begins at 6:30 p.m. The club meets at Brick City Eatery, 16540 Pointe Village Drive in Lutz. Wesley Chapel Republican Club The Wesley Chapel Republican Club meets April 12 at 6:30 pm at … [Read more...]

Proposed solar farm sparks controversy

An open house to preview a proposed solar farm in northeast Pasco County drew an impassioned crowd of residents who mostly panned the project. Tampa Electric, known as TECO, is seeking a special exception permit to build the solar farm on about 350 acres, off Blanton Road in Dade City. The first public hearing for the project will be with the Pasco County Planning Commission at a future … [Read more...]

Pasco Sheriff’s Office unveils app to help stress

Pasco Sgt. Matt Rosenbloom has handled countless distressing calls throughout his 12 years in law enforcement. “I’ve seen things that people shouldn’t see out there,” he said. Sometimes it takes several days for him to get past a particular incident. Witnessing the death of a child, for instance, takes a heavy toll. It’s something many deputies aren’t mentally prepared for … [Read more...]

Legislative forum covers wide spectrum of issues

Dozens of speakers signed up to draw attention to topics they think are important at Pasco County’s annual legislative delegation meeting. The topics ranged from fracking to Medicaid; the opioid epidemic to immigration; medical marijuana to homelessness; and, scores of budget requests. Some requests were for items vetoed by Gov. Rick Scott last year. Pasco County Sheriff Chris Nocco, for … [Read more...]

A chance to talk with Pasco’s state legislators

Get ready to quiz members of the Pasco County legislative delegation, or make a plea for a favorite cause or program. Pasco legislators will have their annual pre-session public meeting on Sept. 18 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., at Sunlake High School Gymnasium, 3023 Sunlake Blvd., in Land O’ Lakes. The annual get-together is an opportunity for residents, elected officials, representatives of city … [Read more...]

Education is key issue at town hall

Education was a recurring theme during a recent town hall meeting that featured U.S. Rep. Gus Bilirakis, State Rep. Danny Burgess, and State Sens. Wilton Simpson and Tom Lee. About 100 residents gathered inside the Pasco Middle School Auditorium on Aug. 22 to voice their thoughts and concerns with their local representatives, via a question-and-answer-style town meeting that lasted more than … [Read more...]

Fleet of school buses to use alternative fuel

Pasco County Schools is making history with a new, fast-fill station and a fleet of buses that runs on alternative fuel. The school district, in partnership with Integral Energy and Clearwater Gas System, is the first in Florida to own and operate a compressed natural gas (CNG) station to fuel its growing fleet of CNG buses. By the end of the 2018 school year, school officials estimate … [Read more...]

Homestead exemption could increase

A property tax savings could be on its way to Florida homeowners, if a statewide referendum in 2018 boosts homestead exemptions to a total of $75,000. But, what could be tax relief to homeowners could pose financial challenges for local governments. If approved, homeowners can add another $25,000 to the existing standard of $50,000 (approved by voters in 2008) for homestead exemption on … [Read more...]

State funds sought for forensic training center

State legislators will try to secure about $4.3 million in state funds to build a forensic anthropology training center – also known as a body farm - next to the Land O’ Lakes Detention Center, off U.S. 41. A local campaign also aims to raise about $200,000 for a tactical training program on-site for Pasco’s K-9 unit. Those efforts will be spearheaded by the Rotary Club of Wesley … [Read more...]