News Update for 10/11/18

Without much comment, Avon Park city council members have booted Cyrus Wyche off the South Side Community Redevelopment Agency Board. Wyche has been charged with a number of criminal counts to which he has pleaded “not guilty.”
An ensuing discussion with resident Aljoe Hinson revealed that between December of 2016 and December of 2017 there had been no meetings of the South Side CRA Advisory Board. In a social media post, city council candidate Maria Sutherland charges that Hinson actually sits on that advisory board.

Motorists driving around Highlands County may see some equipment mounted atop the traffic lights at a number of intersections. County officials say these are not “Red Light Cameras,” but instead are sensors that the county’s Engineering Department is testing.
The sensors – which are mounted on high poles – are designed to detect when vehicles approach the intersection allowing the signal to change – much like the existing wire loops do that are placed under the asphalt.

Fires were still burning in the early morning darkness the day after massive Hurricane Michael slammed into a Florida Gulf Coast beach town with a 10-foot storm surge and 155 mph winds that were just shy of a Category 5. A reporter and photojournalist from the Tampa Bay Times made their way into Mexico Beach early Thursday, finding the town of about 1,000 almost impassable.

Activist groups have lost the latest battle in a decadeslong fight to free an orca named Lolita from the Miami Seaquarium. The Miami Herald reports a federal appeals court on Tuesday rejected a petition to reopen a lawsuit over Seaquarium’s treatment of Lolita. Lolita lives in the country’s smallest orca aquarium, and has been Seaquarium’s star attraction since she was captured off the Puget Sound in 1970.