Local News

  • State funding coast-to-coast trail connection

    Just over a year ago, W. Dale Allen, president of the Florida Greenways and Trails Foundation, made a presentation to Citrus County tourism leaders about the potential benefit of linking 275 miles of state bike trails to form a coast-to-coast connector. 

    One of longest gaps was the 30-mile stretch between the Withlacoochee State Trail and the Van Fleet State Trail in Sumter County. The project had strong regional support, but languished last year for a lack of state funding.

  • Inverness council gets look at proposed budget

    INVERNESS — Accompanied by music from the '80s band Tears for Fears, the proposed 2015 budget was presented to the Inverness City Council earlier this week.

    Some of the highlights included:

    * Total revenue — $21,198,441, which includes a $130,689 increase from property tax revenue.

  • County pushes forward with 'branding' effort

    The initial phases of efforts to start the process of branding Citrus County are wrapping up.

    Thursday was the county’s deadline for proposals to develop and execute a strategy and marketing campaign to create growth for the county by expanding tourism.

    The proposal description states the county destination brand must capture its diversity and establish a position in the marketplace for leisure visitors, convention planners and sports organizations.

  • 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.”

  • 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.

  • 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. 

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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.