News Update for 4/16/19

Highlands County commissioners got some good news today from the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Nearly $7 million dollars is a step closer to arriving. The $6.945,000 is re-imbursement for monies spent in recovery from Hurricane Irma.
Signing the so-called “sub-grant agreements” means the cash could be in hand in as few as four week. Commissioners noted there still are some $6-million dollars in reimbursement payments that still are outstanding.
In other action, the county moved to hire a new full-time Legislative Affairs Grant Coordinator for the county.

The Depot Museum in Avon Park is slated for some much needed repair. Avon Park city council members instructed City Manager David Flowers to get with the Historical Society to determine what needs to be done and what it will take to accomplish the task.
Historical Society president Jean Jordan told the council that there are leaks in the place and they need ADA-compliant bathroom facilities to replace the closet-like space they now have.
Council also voted to pick up the tab for utilities services to the building.

A federal judge has denied bail to a Chinese woman charged with lying to briefly gain admission into President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago club.
Federal Magistrate Judge William Matthewman refused to set bail for 33-year-old Yujing Zhang during a hearing Monday, saying there is an “extreme risk of flight” if she were released. The U.S. doesn’t have an extradition treaty with China.
Matthewman also remarked that “it appears to the court that Ms. Zhang was up to something nefarious” – a reference to the various electronics she was found to be carrying and that she left in her hotel room.
Zhang was arrested March 30 after Secret Service agents say she gained admission to Mar-a-Lago by falsely telling a checkpoint guard she was a member.
The agents say she told a clerk inside she was there for a nonexistent Chinese American event.
A Friday indictment charged her with lying to federal agents and illegal entering.

President Trump says he will present Tiger Woods with the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
Woods won his fifth Masters title Sunday, overcoming personal and professional adversity to once more claim the green jacket.
Trump tweeted Monday that he spoke to Woods and congratulated him on “the great victory” and “to inform him that because of his incredible Success & Comeback in Sports (Golf) and, more importantly, LIFE, I will be presenting him with the PRESIDENTIAL MEDAL OF FREEDOM!”
Trump didn’t say when a ceremony will be held. The medal is the nation’s highest honor for a civilian.
The president is an avid golfer who played a round with Woods at Trump’s golf club in Jupiter, Florida, in February. He watched the Masters from his Virginia golf club on Sunday.