Burn bans in effect for Alachua and Marion counties
Alachua County is now under a mandatory burn ban beginning today and Marion County’s mandatory burn ban begins tonight at 7 p.m. This year’s Memorial Day got a little too hot for those in Dixie County, Florida, where a wildfire broke out on Highway 19 South, near Tennille and burned at least 35 acres. The fire is one of many that have broken out in the past few weeks during a particularly dry period of weather. Florida Division of Forestry’s Wildfire Mitigation Specialist, Chelsea Parker, says they are doing everything they can to keep the fires under control.
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The Alachua County Energy Management team will be upgrading lights in all county-owned building parking lots to light-emitting diode (LED). The county estimates the new update will save the county a total of $10,000 annually on electricity bills.
The Alachua County Sheriff’s Office came before the board of commissioners to request additional funds at the Alachua County Commission meeting Tuesday. The Sheriff’s Office asked for $970,000 for replacement vehicles and a 3 percent salary increase for servicemen and women. A motion to allocate $500,000 was passed 4-1.
The S Main Street northbound lane closed on Nov. 10 for construction at its intersection with Depot Avenue. The construction proved to be an inconvenience for motorists, business owners and residents alike.
Gainesville High School received a bomb threat and subsequently evacuated all students and staff to a nearby Planet Fitness parking lot on Wednesday. GHS received two additional, identical threats Thursday morning, but the school has not been evacuated.
Homeless individuals in Alachua County find ways to cope with the cold weather. Some choose to sleep inside at shelters like Grace Marketplace, while others prefer to stay outside with their possessions, rely on friendship to stay warm.