PALM HARBOR - The Palm Harbor Community Services Agency approved holiday bonuses for the employees of the four entities it oversees Nov. 18.
The extra compensation will not be uniform for the staff of the library and recreation agencies, a fact that prompted some debate among the members of the PHCSA board. The board unanimously approved the bonus packages, but agreed to discuss the issue in detail ahead of next year.
“I think if we’re going to give holiday bonuses, then it ought to be standard across all of our lines of coverage,” said board member Tom McKone.
OLDSMAR - The Oldsmar City Council authorized City Manager Bruce Haddock to negotiate an agreement with Empower Adventure Operations for a zip line Nov. 17.
The vote for the “outdoor adventure concession” at Mobbly Bayou Wilderness Preserve was unanimous. However, before passing all other items on the docket, Council Member Eric Seidel asked to pull the zip line vote for discussion.
“We received a letter expressing concerns about putting a zip line in the preserved area,” Seidel said.
PALM HARBOR - The Greater Palm Harbor Chamber of Commerce named Jordan Myers, real estate agent and a past chamber chairman, as the 2015 Don Valk Citizen of the Year during the annual awards dinner Oct. 29.
“This award is given to someone who has not only served our chamber but served our community,” chamber President Connie Davis said.
But before she could announce the winner, Davis’ phone rang on stage, not once, but several times. She called up Meyers, who used to work for T-Mobile Palm Harbor, to the stage to assist her.
EAST LAKE - Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority’s decision to discontinue the East Lake Connector flex route bus service will save the agency more than $400,000 in annual operation costs.
However, “the East Lake neighborhood of Pinellas County is now the largest neighborhood in the county without any public transportation service,” states a report from PSTA CEO Brad Miller to the board of directors.
PSTA’s staff is currently working on a plan to help restore that service.
OLDSMAR - Oldsmar City Council approved an agreement approving the law firm of Weiss Serota Helfman Cole and Bierman to represent the city in Trinh red light camera appeal, voting 4-1 during the Nov. 3 city council meeting.
American Traffic Solutions, or ATS, the Arizona-based company that ran the red light camera program in Oldsmar, for up to $30,000 in attorney’s fees, will pay for the appeal. Anything passed that point will prompt the council to either pay for the additional expenses or discontinue the appeal.
“It’s really a mediation we will be going to,” said City Attorney Tom Trask. “We’ve done appeals before, and they usually don’t cost $30,000, but we don’t know what this law firm is going to bring.”
EAST LAKE - The recycling site at the East Lake Community Library, 4125 East Lake Road S., will be removed at the beginning of 2016, the first step in creating much needed parking spaces for the library.
To accommodate the eventual removal at the library, Pinellas County will temporarily close the recycling site at John Chesnut Sr. Park, at 2200 East Lake Road S., starting Monday, Nov. 16, for a site expansion. The project at Chesnut Park is expected to take six to eight weeks, according to a county release.
Chesnut Park is only 2.5 miles south of the East Lake library, making it an ideal substitute for those who have been dropping off their recycling at the library. Further, many East Lake residents have curbside recycling in their neighborhoods, said the library director Lois Eannel.
PALM HARBOR - Astronaut Nicole Stott spoke to the Caladesi chapter of the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution, or NSDAR, Oct. 19 at East Lake Woodlands Country Club.
During the meeting, Stott received the DAR Medal for the Women in American History.
Stott is a 1980 graduate of Clearwater High School. She earned her bachelor’s of science in aeronautical engineering from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in 1987 and a master’s degree in engineering management from the University of Central Florida in 1992.
OLDSMAR - After Jim Walter Home in Tampa decided to exit the housing market, Ron McCaslin, who had served as president from November 2006 until 2009, decided to pursue his own business. Ron and his wife Dona started SpeedPro Imaging at 4025 Tampa Road Suite 1104 in Oldsmar in January 2010.
The McCaslins recently sold their franchise location to DelBrocco Inc., a corporation owned by Pat and Charmane DelBrocco.
OLDSMAR -- The city of Oldsmar was officially named a Purple Heart Community Oct. 20.
Richard Hunt, commander of the Department of Florida Military Order of the Purple Heart, presented a Purple Heart flag to Mayor Doug Bevis and the city council members during the commission meeting Oct. 20.