Local News

  • Let's go to band camp!

    As the first day of school approaches, local high school band students are enduring the grueling heat and long hours of the annual intense training known as band camp.

    From incoming freshmen to veteran juniors and seniors, the common denominator is learning to play an instrument while marching in formation and doing some fancy footwork while not crashing into the people next to you.

  • Teen drowns while dive-fishing with friends

    A Hernando teen and 2014 Citrus High School graduate is believed to have drowned Tuesday afternoon following an apparent spear-fishing diving accident.

    According to the Citrus County Sheriff’s Office, Cody Bilbrey-Nickless, 17, of East Olive Lane, went diving with friends approximately 17 miles off the coast of Hernando County.

    Bilbrey-Nickless reportedly dove into the gulf waters, but failed to resurface. 

  • Adams associate backs ads targeting Webb, Kenney

    Charlie Strange wants Winn Webb and John “JJ” Kenney to get out of town.

    He said so in TV and radio ads, plus mail pieces sent to Citrus County voters.

    The ads paint Webb and Kenney as darlings of development who support higher taxes and wasteful government spending.

  • Thorpe presents final budget to commission

    INVERNESS — Submitting his final county budget on Wednesday, County Administrator Brad Thorpe looked back on building teamwork and surviving last year’s budget storm. 

    “This year was a turnaround for Citrus County,” Thorpe said. “The worst is over. We now have a predictable base from which to forecast our budget.”

  • Stay safe on the water

    With the scallop season in full swing and summer recreational boating at its peak, Citrus County boaters are being cautioned about how to make their experiences safe and injury free.

    On July 14 alone, two boating mishaps occurred within hours of each other in county waterways.

    At 1:08 p.m. that day, Citrus County Sheriff’s Office deputies responded to the scene of a boating accident at Shell Island in Crystal River, according to a Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission report.

  • Plenty of fun events to fill your weekend

    A summer splashing fun weekend and clowning around is sure to keep you in a good mood when Monday morning rolls around.

    - The 2014 Citrus County Library System will have its final celebration for summer readers from 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Friday. Families are invited to The Franzini Family Science Circus at Curtis Peterson Auditorium, 3810 W. Educational Path, Lecanto. Admission is free.

  • First port project: Boat ramp

    INVERNESS — In his final days as port director, Brad Thorpe steered a concept to start developing Port Citrus, if just a small step.

    Meeting Tuesday with the Citrus County Port Authority, Thorpe, whose resignation becomes effective Aug. 1, asked the board for three actions:

    * Authorize an invitation to negotiate for the barge canal boat ramp and marina development.

  • Rogers tapped as interim chief

    County Administrator Brad Thorpe handed back his reins of authority to the board near the end of Tuesday's meeting of the Citrus County Board of County Commissioners, and the board unanimously agreed to appoint Public Works Director Jeff Rogers to the role of managing county business for the short term until a new county administrator is hired.

    Thorpe, who officially will retire Aug. 1, will conduct the budget hearing today. (Wednesday).

  • BOCC backs sales tax vote

    INVERNESS — Citrus County voters will decide in November whether to approve a penny-on-the-dollar sales tax that, over 20 years, would fund the resurfacing of every local county public road.

    Commissioners voted 4-1 Tuesday to add the 1 percent sales tax to the November ballot.

    If approved, it would provide $11.6 million to a trust fund for resurfacing of local, neighborhood roads. Resurfacing major roads or building new roads would come from gasoline tax revenue.

  • Teens top anglers

    It’s not every day that Citrus County produces world champions. This past weekend, two were crowned.

    Brandon Branch, 18, and Hunter McPherson, 17, representing the Eagle High 4-H Club, returned home with the title of 2014 High School Fishing World Finals champions. The two survived four days of bass-fishing competition against other top high school teams, ultimately coming out on top during the event, held July 16 through 19.