Local News

  • Possible reprimand hangs over judge race

    The three candidates vying to defeat incumbent family law judge Sandy Kautz all agree on one thing: She must go.

    And the reason for their insistence is in black and white — last December, Kautz signed a stipulation before the Florida Judicial Qualifications Commission that was investigating allegations against the judge.

    The commission then recommended a public reprimand of Kautz. The matter is pending before the state Supreme Court.

  • CCHB: Tax rate is planning for future

    INVERNESS — The Citrus County Hospital Board is looking to maximize its final year of taxation by making sure it has enough money to oversee a 50-year lease with Hospital Corporation of America.

    The CCHB voted 3-0 Thursday night to set the tentative 2014-15 tax rate at 1.25 mills, enough to raise $9.8 million.

    Board chairwoman Debbie Ressler said, however, that the board’s intent is to drop that millage amount before the final tax rate is established in September.

  • Thorpe’s budget holds line on taxes

    INVERNESS — Brad Thorpe’s final budget as Citrus County administrator is dull, drab and offers little to get excited about.

    Just the way Thorpe wants it.

    Thorpe on Friday unveiled the proposed $230.7 million budget that cuts revenue and spending by 4 percent but also takes advantage of the Duke Energy settlement with the property appraiser.

  • Runners reach halfway point

    Editor’s Note: It’s Run for the Money Week, with runners taking turns covering the 180 miles between the Capitol in Tallahassee and the Key Training Center campus in Lecanto. While the grueling journey is to raise awareness about the developmentally disabled, it is especially significant in that it brings attention to the need for donations to cover the expenses of Key clients who don’t receive government support.

  • Television show features 1986 county murder

    The Investigative Discovery program “Swamp Murders” episode featuring Citrus County will be rebroadcast at 6 p.m. Saturday, July 19. 

    The program titled “The Wrong Turn” details the 1986 murder of Angela Crowley, a 21-year-old Lauderdale Lakes woman who was kidnapped after stopping at a Crystal River pay phone to call a friend in Yankeetown, where she was headed.

  • Family Dollar in Hernando to close

    The Family Dollar store in Hernando will close by the end of August as part of national corporate move to eliminate underperforming stores.

    The closing will leave Citrus County with six Family Dollar locations and follows this month’s closure of the Winn-Dixie store at Meadowcrest, near Crystal River.

  • Businesswoman questions Valerie Theatre design

    INVERNESS — As the city of Inverness gets set to break ground at 7 p.m. today for the construction on the Valerie Theatre, not everyone in town is on board with its art deco design.

    At the recent Inverness City Council meeting, local businesswoman Sophia Diaz-Fonseca, a member of the Citrus County Historical Society and owner of the Masonic Building, a National Register-listed historic building, addressed the council with her concerns about the city’s $1.9 million rebuilding project. 

  • Smith’s office moving to downtown Inverness

    INVERNESS — With Rep. Jimmie T. Smith’s recent unopposed re-

    election to the state House of Representatives comes a move from his storefront office on State Road 44 to downtown Inverness.

    Beginning Monday, Aug. 4, Smith and his staff will conduct business at the Inverness Government Center, 212 W. Main Street, Suite 208A.

  • Pearl Harbor survivor memorialized

    HOMOSASSA — Ted Archambault was a Marine.

    At his memorial service Thursday, two Citrus County Marine Corps League detachments, 819 and 1139, helped bid farewell to their fellow Marine brother.

    Ted R. Archambault died June 21. He was 95.

    Locally, Archambault was best known as a Pearl Harbor survivor, although he preferred to be called a Pearl Harbor “participant.” 

  • Malaysian plane shot down over Ukraine

    KIEV, Ukraine (AP) — A Ukrainian official said a passenger plane carrying 295 people was shot down Thursday over a town in the east of the country, and Malaysian Airlines tweeted that it lost contact with one of its flights over Ukrainian airspace.