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Pensacola, US
November 18, 2018
Local News

Thursday Headlines

SIDEWALKS FOR SCHOOLS

Escambia County wants some grant money to build sidewalks and other improvements along the road outside 10 schools, including Ransom Middle and Kingsfield Elementary.

The Safe Routes To School Grant was created to increase the number of children who walk or bicycle to school. North Escambia dot com says if approved by the Escambia County Commission tonight, the county will apply for grants for Ransom Middle, Kingsfield Elementary, Longleaf Elementary, Pine Forest High, West Florida High, Warrington Elementary, Ensley Elementary, C. A. Weis Elementary, Holm Elementary and Workman Middle

GULF POWER ESTIMATES MICHAEL COST COULD REACH $400 MILLION

Gulf Power expects a final tab of hundreds of millions of dollars from Hurricane Michael, but it remains to be seen if the costs will be passed on to customers. In a Securities and Exchange Commission filing Wednesday by the utility’s parent company, Gulf estimated that costs of repairing transmission and distribution lines and “uninsured facilities” will total $350 million to $400 million.

ESCAMBIA COUNTY SCHOOL CHOICE EXPO TONIGHT

Happening tonight….The Escambia County School District’ School Choice Expo.  Parents and students will have the chance to learn about the numerous academies offered in middle and high schools throughout the county.  The Escambia County School District will offer 68 academies next year. Currently, two-thirds of middle and high school students are enrolled in an academy. The School Choice Expo starts at 6 at Washington High School.

SHERIFF ARRESTS 7 IN PROSTITUTION STING

Seven people are arrested in a prostitution sting.  The Escambia County Sheriff’s Office says the Tuesday operation involved undercover deputies targeting prostitution in the Brownsville area.  The seven suspects are all being held in Escambia County Jail on bonds ranging from 1-thousand to 55-hundred dollars.

MILTON LOOKS AT TERM LIMITS FOR ELECTED OFFICIALS

A pair of Milton city ordinances passed on Tuesday that mean change for city government.  The first creates term limits for elected officials. The mayor and City Council members can only serve three consecutive terms, and then have to have a "break in service" of two years before seeking reelection.  If a person serves both on the City Council and as the mayor, that person can serve four consecutive terms before taking the required two-year break. The second ordinance amends the city’s charter to extend the City Council’s deadline from 30 to 60 days when filling a seat vacancy.

PACE YMCA FACILITY INCHES FORWARD

For the past 10 years, Santa Rosa County Commissioners have been looking at getting a YMCA facility in Pace.  This week, commissioners got an update from the YMCA about the benefits it could bring.  Commissioner Sam Parker says an engineering firm is working on a design right now for the facility to be centrally located in Benny Russell Park.  Parker says the number one benefit would be a pool which is important to teens on a swim team, but also for senior citizens and families who can’t afford to have a pool at home.  Parker says there are still several steps including securing funding which could take a few more years.

FLORIDA ACLU CONCERNS ABOUT AMENDMENT 6

The American Civil Liberties Union of Florida is critical of one of the constitutional amendments passed by voters yesterday. Amendment 6, also called Marsy’s Law, requires crime victims be informed of their rights, be kept up to date on their cases and be allowed to speak in court.  The ACLU says similar protections are already in place and the amendment could create unintended consequences, such as convicting innocent people.  In a statement, the civil rights group says it is confident the amendment will ultimately be struck down by the courts.

GAETZ TAPPED FOR DeSANTIS TRANSITION TEAM

Congressman Matt Gaetz will co-chair Governor-elect Ron DeSantis’ transition team.  Gaetz who cruised to re-election on Tuesday, had campaigned heavily with DeSantis.  Three others will co-chair the transition team- House Speaker Richard Corcoran, former U.S. Senator George LeMieux and former Lieutenant Governor Toni Jennings.

EMBEZZLEMENT LEADS TO 5 YEAR STATE PRISON SENTENCE

A former bookkeeper accused of stealing from a Pensacola business is being sentenced to prison.  Heather Delorme pleaded no contest to charges of stealing more than 70-thousand dollars from Duggins Services over an 18-month period.  Prosecutors say Delorme’s elaborate scheme was discovered when another business called Duggins Services to confirm the use of a credit card for Delorme’s purchase of a rental car.  Delorme will spend the next 5 years in state prison followed by 15 year of probation.

CRAZY TRAFFIC STOP

A wild traffic stop in Pensacola lands a woman in jail.  FHP says on Tuesday afternoon, a Ford Mustang driven by 25-year old Christopher Urbaniak was stopped.  The driver was immediately arrested for being a habitual traffic offender.  A passenger, 30-year old Shaela Ruiz-Salinas, was told to get out of the vehicle because she had an outstanding warrant.  FHP says she took a swing at a trooper and was promptly arrested.  While being handcuffed, she reportedly used racial slurs and profanity and while ordered to remain seated tried to run away but was quickly captured.  Ruiz-Salinas faces drug related charges, resisting arrest and contempt of court.  She’s being held without bond.

BAY COUNTY SCHOOLS REOPEN

School officials in the county hardest hit by Hurricane Michael say 90 percent of teachers and staff reported for work, but they won’t know how many students returned until the end of the week. Bay District Schools spokeswoman Sharon Michalik says this week that many schools are still without Internet on the first day of classes since the Category 4 hurricane hit more than three weeks ago.  The storm destroyed several schools.  Michalik says school officials won’t know how many of Bay County’s 28,000 public school students returned to classes because school officials have to do a paper-based attendance count.

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