Commission meeting

Citrus County commissioners will meet Tuesday, Feb. 23, inside the Citrus County Courthouse to discuss several key issues impacting county residents, including the Crystal River runway extension, impact fees and emergency management operations.

The Crystal River Airport runway extension will once again be a topic of conversation when county commissioners meet Tuesday.

Commissioner Holly Davis included the item and the board will discuss voting on a resolution in support of the extension. That resolution will be sent to state legislators and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

The airport contributes an estimated $5.37 million to the Crystal River economy, according to Florida Department of Transportation data.

In addition, extending the runway will increase safety.

The existing landing strip is about 644 feet too short for many corporate jets to comfortably use it. Ideally, a 5,000-foot runway is needed to provide an adequate safety margin for the aircraft to take off and land. 

Also at Tuesday’s meeting:

• Commission Chairman Scott Carnahan has carved out time to talk about the direction the county wants to take on emergency management operations.

Carnahan said he met with Sheriff Mike Prendergast a couple of weeks ago regarding department operations. Carnahan said it was a productive discussion and he will update the board Tuesday.

Prendergast is also expected to attend.

The sheriff’s contract to operate the emergency management department expires Oct. 1, 2021.

• Commissioners will consider approving a bond resolution — not to exceed $3.5 million — to finance water service improvements from Turkey Oak Drive to the Duke Energy complex on U.S. 19.

The water improvements are needed to coincide with sewer being installed along the route.

The bond would be paid back through special assessments on the properties that benefit from the water improvements. 

The county commission meeting starts at 1 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 23, at the Citrus County Courthouse, 110 N. Apopka Ave., Inverness.

Contact Chronicle reporter Michael D. Bates at 352-563-3205 or mbates@chronicleonline.com. To see more of his stories, visit  tinyurl.com/y6kb23vv.