83.8 F
The Villages
Wednesday, April 8, 2020
Wednesday, April 8, 2020
83.8 F
The Villages

Top Story

Frustrated Villagers want answers about COVID-19 testing site at the polo fields

Consternation boiled over this week as exasperated Villagers sought answers about the UF Health Coronavirus drive-through testing site at the polo fields.

Letters

Bicyclists should stay to the right

In a Letter to the Editor, a Village of Fenney resident offers his ideas on bicyclists and safety.

I didn’t bargain for loss of community feel in The Villages

A Village of Belvedere defends points made - and roundly criticized - in a Letter to the Editor earlier this week.

Around Florida

DeSantis vows fixes to online system overwhelmed by unemployment claims

Gov. Ron DeSantis has announced plans to rapidly repair the online system Floridians are using to file for unemployment benefits during the COVID-19 crisis.

Obituaries

Richard B. Dodge

As the City of St. Petersburg (FL) administrator, Rick Dodge led the efforts to attract the Salvador Dali Museum, a major league baseball park, and win an expansion franchise, the Tampa Bay Rays.

Health

Singer-songwriter David Olney died onstage of heart attack

The death of singer-songwriter David Olney, who suffered a heart attack and died while performing onstage, reminds us of the value of knowing CPR. Dr. Gabe Mirkin offers his thoughts.

Business

Wal-Mart limiting number of customers inside stores amid COVID-19 outbreak

A major chain store with locations in and around The Villages has made a sweeping change that will impact customers amid the Coronavirus outbreak.

Sumter County commissioners vote to extend emergency status due to COVID-19

Sumter County commissioners voted Tuesday night to extend the county’s state of emergency status due to the coronavirus for another seven days.

Meeting at Everglades Recreation Center, they tried to achieve social distancing with two commissioners at the meeting and two connecting by phone. About 20 people attended but were spaced widely apart in the large room.

While some county meetings have been canceled, the board of commissioners will continue to meet, but may transition to virtual meetings held remotely, said Chairman Steve Printz.

He said Gov. Ron DeSantis recently relaxed the rule that physical presence is required for a quorum.

“This is unprecedented to have the governor waive some of the public hearing requirements,” Printz said.

The state of emergency declaration, first enacted a week ago, allows the county to act quickly if needed. State law requires that the declaration cannot last more than a week without a vote to extend it.

Printz said everyone should practice social distancing to help impede the virus.

“We trying to be as diligent as we can to reduce the spread of COVID-19,” he said. “I do encourage all citizens to heed the governor’s recommendations and also the CDC.”

Linked to the meeting by phone, Commissioner Doug Gilpin agreed.

“We’re all in a tight fix,” he said. “We need to stick together and follow social distancing practices.”

County Administrator Bradley Arnold said many county meetings and activities have been canceled due to the virus. Among them is the annual Household Electronics Amnesty Day, planned for next month, when people can get rid of unwanted electronic items.

Arnold said the current conditions have caused uncertainty for local government and businesses, especially because there is no indication of an end date.

He said the county’s economic development staff remains at work and is assisting two businesses in getting bridge loans offered by the state.

Printz said the hard work of fire and emergency medical service workers, police officers and those stocking grocery stores should not be forgotten.

“I would encourage people, if you have an opportunity, to express your appreciation,” he said.

LIVE: Coronavirus Updates

Latest Posts

Bicyclists should stay to the right

In a Letter to the Editor, a Village of Fenney resident offers his ideas on bicyclists and safety.

I didn’t bargain for loss of community feel in The Villages

A Village of Belvedere defends points made - and roundly criticized - in a Letter to the Editor earlier this week.

Joe Diffie and many other musicians have died from COVID-19

Dr. Gabe Mirkin looks at the death of country performer Joe Diffie from COVID-19 and attempts to determine if musicians are somehow more at risk of the Coronavirus.

Richard B. Dodge

As the City of St. Petersburg (FL) administrator, Rick Dodge led the efforts to attract the Salvador Dali Museum, a major league baseball park, and win an expansion franchise, the Tampa Bay Rays.

More Headlines

Fenney food truck to re-open weeks after numerous violations

A food truck is returning to serve residents of the Village of Fenney after an inspection last month turned up several health code violations.

No tee times after 4 p.m. at any golf course in The Villages

Starting Wednesday, April 8, all Championship and Executive Golf Courses will close at 4 p.m. following the last tee time.

Photos

Opinions

Joe Diffie and many other musicians have died from COVID-19

Dr. Gabe Mirkin looks at the death of country performer Joe Diffie from COVID-19 and attempts to determine if musicians are somehow more at risk of the Coronavirus.

Crime

Wildwood police seeking help in locating stolen older-model Chevy pickup

Wildwood police officers are searching for a pickup truck that was stolen in the city recently.

Belleview man popped on multiple drug charges after ramming deputy’s patrol vehicle

A Belleview man was arrested Monday night after fleeing from Marion County sheriff’s deputies and then ramming into a patrol vehicle.