News Update for 2/3/22

A traffic stop and a Highlands County K-9 officer added up to be bad news for a local man. After Highlands County Sherrif’a deputies stopped a car in Avon Park, k-9 Drax alerted to the presence of drugs in the vehicle.
Inside they found methamphetamine, Xanax, cocaine, oxycodone pills, plastic baggies and a digital scale. Also located was a handgun and ammunition. Arrested was 30-year-old Houston Windell Keen. The Avon Park man was hit with multiple drug counts as well as a charge of possession of a weapon by a convicted felon.
He was booked into the Highlands County jail.

Hot on the heels of a report that the Highlands County School Board has netted $30 million dollars from the half-cent sales tax over the past five years. Highlands County commissioners have learned that the tax dollars are flowing into their coffers as well.
Highlands County Office of Management and Budget manager David Nitz reported that Highlands County is ahead of last year’s collections in all categories except landfill tipping fees.
Most notable are collections in building permits, which are up 27-percent, and tourism development taxes, which are up more than 20-percent.

Highlands County school board members are getting ready for some strategic planning by surveying employees, elected officials, parents, residents and other so-called "stakeholders."
The six question poll – produced through "Survey Monkey" – asks about strengths and weaknesses of the system – plus solicits advice on how to solve perceived problems.
The survey may be found on the Highlands County School Board’s Facebook page.

Sometimes thieves steal vehicles, but apparently, sometimes they only take the parts they need. Apparently, a person – or persons – hit Central Florida Auto and took the tailgate and the front grill off a Ford F-250 then ran-off into the night.
According to photos – the tailgate should be a white one. A reward is being offered. Anyone with information as to the crime is asked to call the Highlands County Sheriff’s office.