News Update for 4/27/23

There was a traffic-related fatality outside Avon Park yesterday, however the details remain unclear. An eastbound van ran off Highway 17, into an orange grove, striking several trees.
It’s unknown if the driver, said to have been an elderly man, was killed by the impact – or might have had a medical episode prior to the crash.
Florida Highway Patrol officials have not yet released a report on the incident.

Another Blue-Green Algae alert for Highlands County. Local health officials say testing has discovered the toxic growth on the western shores of Lake Blue and at the Lake Apthorpe boat ramp.
Residents are cautioned not to use those waters for swimming, boating, or other sorts of recreational activities. They also advise to keep pets away from the area – and don’t drink it – or eat shellfish caught from those waters.

The city of Avon Park could be in line for a half-million dollar grant to repair the Lakeside Historical Cemetery. Hobe Sound consultant Matt Davis has been working on the project, but he says he’s hit a roadblock in finding out who owns the property.
Davis asked the city council for a quit claim deed, however, City Attorney Gerald Buhr balked – saying there’s no indication the city owns it – and they cannot give away somebody else’s land.
Buhr asked for a charter for the organization working on the project – in case the group dissolves.

Polk County is taking action after reporting an increase in mosquito-borne disease activity. The Florida Department of Health in Polk County announced this week that two horses tested positive for Eastern equine encephalitis, or Triple-E. This means the risk of transmission to people has increased.
Polk County Mosquito Control is spraying the area where the horses lived, and dozens of mosquito traps have been set.
Interim Manager Dr. Jackson Mosley said residents can help by eliminating breeding sites, like standing water, around their homes.

Florida is maintaining its position as the global leader in the new space economy. That’s what Governor DeSantis said yesterday during his visit to South Korea.
He signed a Memorandum of Understanding with a company called LowCarbon Hydrogen Corporation. The two will build a research hub in Polk County for clean hydrogen technology for aerospace and space industry launch applications.
DeSantis says this is a bold step toward promoting long-term development in the aerospace and space industry across the entire supply chain.