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Stew Lilker’s

Columbia County Observer

Real news for working families.  An online news service

Columbia County News
Beginning in 2013 County & County Commission News will be here. Earlier
years will be found in either County News or County Commission indexes
2020-2019
Index of Stories • 2018-20172016-201520142013 2012-2009

 
County News 2020 (scroll down)
 

Rum Island Park: Additional Handicapped Parking on the Way, Along With More Security & Cameras

 

Senate President Bill Galvano at the opening day of M-CORESM-CORES Coming to Columbia County. Hotel Mogul Worried About Economic Impact to Local Economy

 

One Civil War Battle of Olustee Monument – Two Views – Back to Square One for Lake City

 

Commissioner Rocky Ford on the bank of the Santa Fe River and Rum Island ParkAfter a Year, Rum Island Park Finally Re-Opens: Handicapped Parking an Afterthought & an Issue

 

Robby Hollingsworth and Bucky Nash campaignColumbia County:  Primary Day for Some - Election Day for Others

 

Photo of Commissioner Tim Murphy with copy: are  public records about the record or the person requesting them?Columbia County a Model of Public Record Access Commissioner Tim Murphy Has a Problem

 

Columbia County's Rum Island Park: Rules & Fees on Center Stage in Fort White

 

CRC: The Douglas Amendment – Controlling County Surplus Funds With Incomprehensible Language

 

Charlie Keith speaks with a future voter.Charlie Keith Officially Launches Race for Bucky Nash's 'County 5' District 3 Seat

 

Coronavirus Spiking: 100,207 Pos, Deaths 3,173 Anyone Can Get It, DOH free testing in Fort White

 

Columbia County 5 Say "No" to 2021 Residential Trash Assessment: saving residents $4,000,000

 

Lake City Hotel Mogul Nick Patel Optimistic Despite 80% Drop In Occupancy Due to the Coronavirus

 

CRC: Peeler Stands His Ground for At-Large Voting, But the Tide Turned, Measure Fails

 

The Columbia County 5: Wearing Masks and Social Distancing Is Not Their Style

 

CRC: At-Large vs. Single-Dist. Cnty Commissioners - Since 2002 the Legal Issues Were Clear

 

CRC: OPS Com Meeting - Will the County Attorney Be Paid as Much as a County Court Judge?

 

Columbia County Government Offices to Reopen Monday, With Restrictions

 

CRC: Half of Coup Duo Gone: Pulling Documents Out of Air Nothing New for Commissioner DuPree

 

CRC Chairman Robert "Rambo" Lane's Coup Fails: CRC Attorney Foreman Stays

 

Columbia County, Florida & COVID-19: Do the County Fathers Have the Firefighters' Backs?

 

Columbia County Firefighter Tests Positive for Coronavirus: Deep Issues Raised

 

COVID-19: FL 3rd In Adults at Risk Due to Age, 1st in Uninsured out of Top 25 States – Columbia Cnty at Risk

 

Columbia County Closes Government Offices To Public Beginning Tomorrow, March 26

 

After Receiving Criticism From Far & Wide, The County 5 Finally Wakes Up, Closes Parks etc.

 

County Special Coronavirus Emergency Meeting Ignores Health Risks to County 5, Staff, & Public

 

Photo of Rum Island Spring with copy that reads, "Our first responsibility is the natural resourse," Com. Tim MurphyColumbia County's Rum Island Park: Finally, the Politicians Are Paying Attention

 

County Econ Dev Advisory Board Nixes Residential Housing Incentives, 'Again'

 

CRC 2020: 20 Year Old Republican Party Chairman, Hunter Peeler, Has Trouble With First Amendment

 

RiverFest 10th Anniversary Celebrates-Educates about the Santa Fe River & Environment

 

Glenel BowdenCRC 2020:  Call From Sheriff Hunter?  Bowden Tells the County 5, "I don't carry nobody('s) water."

 

CRC, Feb. 13, Part III: Chairman Robert "Rambo" Lane Refuses to Answer – Ethics Confusion

 

CRC, Feb. 13,  Part II: Overstepping Its Bounds, Working Without Legal Authority

 

The Columbia County Charter Review CommissionColumbia County Charter Review, February 13 – Part I: A Past of Openness & Inclusion Discarded

 

Columbia County Florida - 2nd Amendment Sanctuary on a background of gunsColumbia County Joins 2nd Amdt. Sanctuaries - Sheriff Hunter Silent on Raising Arms Against Feds

 

CRC Careening Out of Control: Running on Rumors, Bad Management, & Refusing to Answer Questions

 

Amy OverstreetAmy Overstreet: Looking To Fill the Top Spot at the Tax Collector's Office

 

The Columbia County 5: williams,Ford, Nash, Witt, MurphyCzar Power 2020: County 5 Chairman, Toby Witt, Announces Commissioner Appointments

 
County News 2019 (scroll down)
 

Graphic with dogs and cats in a line with the heading: James Montgomery Animal Wellness Center, open to all regardless of height, fur, color, or sex.Community Generosity Fuels Humane Society James Montgomery Animal Wellness Center

 

Fort White Town CouncilFort White Backs Off Vote In Opposition of Seven Springs - Nestle Permit Renewal

 

Fort White Town Hall - standing room onySeven Springs – Nestle – Environmentalists: Does Everyone Want the Same Thing for the Santa Fe?

 

Part II: The Hunter-Hilton (proposed County Jail) $40,000,000 for 200 detainees was just too much

 

The Columbia County 5 listen to a presentation by County Manager Ben ScottPart I: The Hunter-Hilton (proposed County Jail) Goes Down for the Count

 

County 5 Pledge $15,000 for an Anti Panhandler Marketing Campaign Without Seeing a Plan

 

Proposed Columbia County, Florida County Jail.Sheriff Hunter's New Jail (Hunter-Hilton):  $10 Mil Over Budget Before Leaving the Drawing Board

 

Panhandlers: Councilwoman Moses & Com. Witt Want to Throw Tens of Thousands $ Without Data

 

Downtown Lake City Revitalization Hot Topic at City/County Meet - LSHA: the Gorilla in the Room

 

Tomi Brown registering votersTomi S. "Stinson" Brown Running for Columbia Cnty Supervisor of Elections

 

Commissioner Rocky Ford (left) and Mayor Ronnie Frazier in front of one of the at the end of their life water storage tanks in Fort White.Fort White Water Woes: A Municipal Water System That Is a Disaster Waiting To Happen

 

Developer Tim Williams (standing) makes his presentation. Seated: (left to right) Asst. Cnty Manager David Kraus, Chairman Murphy, Econ Dev Dir Glenn Hunter, Cnty Attorney Joel Foreman.Part II: Columbia Cnty Econ Dev Tim Murphy Style Taking Care of His Friends – Ignoring the Rules

 

Pt. I:   Columbia County Econ Dev – Wanted – Public Tax Dollar Incentive for Private Condos

 

Senator Rob Bradley and Representative Chuck Brannon during a light moment at the legislative delegationColumbia Cnty's Legislative Delegation Hears From Its Elected/Appointed Officials and Citizens

 

Suncoast Extension Arrives at TDC: Chamber Director Looking for 'Money' for Study – Sort Of

 

Jay SwisherJames "Jay" Swisher Running for Columbia County Clerk of the Court

 

County 5 Honor Florida State Trooper George A. "Andy" Brown, III: Killed in the Line of Duty

 

Dorian: Columbia Cnty, the State, FHP, Lake City, etc. – Prepared for the Worst – A Sigh of Relief

 

Charter Review: CRC Spinning Its Wheels - Turmoil & Interrogation - No Review of the Charter, 'Yet'

 

Governor Declares State of Emergency, Urges Floridians to Prepare for Hurricane Dorian

 

Lead graphic: Hepatitis A is serious busines. Blackboard written over and over again, "I must wash my hands."Hepatitis A: FL Dept of Health Elevates Hep-A from an Advisory to Public Health Emergency

 

Clear the Shelter Day at the Lake City Humane Society: Kittens & Cats - Free - Plus More

 

Charter Review: Com. Murphy Interfering Where He Has No Business; X-Com DuPree Shifts Gears

 

Columbia County Schools – Teachers With Guns – Not Now

 

Columbia County Charter Review Commission 2020Charter Review 2020: CRC Meets – Revving Up to Get Something Done – Looking at Rules

 

Photo of an iron fist with Commissioner Tim Murphy's face in the fistNo Questions Allowed: Commissioner Tim Murphy Suspends Rules for Florida Gateway College Brass

 

Tips: Preparing Youngsters for School

 

Combined graphic showing Jennifer Anchors, Ron Williams, Jr., homeless personCounty's United Way Is the Homeless Coalition: "The problem is getting worse," Ron Williams, Jr.

 

Commissioner Ronald Williams (left) - Mayor Steve Witt (right)Columbia Cnty – Lake City Homeless/Panhandlers:  "Too Big of a Problem – We Need a Joint Effort"

 

Columbia County Sheriff's Office Joins Other Florida Police Agencies in Accreditation

 

Lake City resident and appointment to the Columbia County Charter Review CommissionMore County Charter Review Commission Drama - Ozell Graham Drops Out – Glenel Bowden In

 

Image of charter in background. Photos of Audrey Bullard and Sandra SmithCharter Review Commission Drama: Veteran of Two Cycles, Audrey Bullard Resigns

 

Photos of the five Columbia County Commissioners: Williams, Ford, Nash, Witt, MurphyCharter Review Commission Appointments Tonight No, County Outreach or At-Large Members

 

FGC President Lawrence Barrett eats in the cateteria off clean plates, but doesn't think the kitchen help should earn a living wage. Neither does the governor's board. Addittional copy reads: No raises for these folks. Food service: dishwasher $8.25, chashier $9.00, cook $10.50FGC $22 mil Budget Presentation a Bust: Staff Gets Raises - Kitchen Workers Get 'Zero-Zip-Nada'

 

Florida Gateway College Mystery. Who is in chargeFlorida Gateway College President Off to Alaska – Who Is In Charge? Nobody's Talking

 

Lake City Reporter: Lake City's Mainstream Media Runs Fake News HeadlineFL Supremes Nix 15 Words in Cnty Charter, Rest of Charter OK - Elections Are Going to Change

 

Photo of board workshopFGC Budget Prelude: May 14 Workshop Was In Good Measure Unintelligible, Budget: $21,805,664

 

Gas Tax Redux: Lake City Reporter Bails Out Nash, Blames Williams for Talk of Gas Tax Increase

 

Com's. Nash & Williams Looking to Raise the Gas Tax, Com. Witt "I will not support a raise in taxes"

 

Super Columbia Cnty Success on Saturday Night -- Truck Stop 75 Sponsored Humane Society Benefit

 

Lake City Humane Society Fundraiser: Moving Forward Toward a No Kill Shelter & Veterinary Care

 

"Distracted Driving Can Kill You," Sergeant Clint Dicks, Columbia County Sheriff's Office

 

Lead Graphic: County 5 Drops the Ball on ResidencyColumbia County Residency Requirement: County's No. 2 Caught in County 5 Dysfunctional Web

 

Rum Island to Remain Open: Com Ford Has Change of Heart at Kirby Called Impromptu Meeting

 

Our Santa Fe Riverfest 2019 – Sunday March 31

 

Pt II: The County 5 Meets Animal Control – Lake City Reporter Not Creditable

 

Pt I: Lake City Reporter: Ginning Up False Animal Control News - Bridges Defends "hometown' Paper

 

Graphic showing a Werner "We Keep America Moving" tractor-trailerEcon Dev: Werner Enterprises, a Billion Dollar Co. Coming to I-10 – US441 with New Facility

 

Columbia County, trial horse for FSA's percent based budgeting scheme exterminated. Sheriff Mark Hunter gave it his best shot.Sheriff Mark Hunter's Percent Based Budgeting Deal with the County 5 – Officially Exterminated

 

Tim Murphy sitting at table, gesturingCounty Economic Development Advisory Board  Murphy Looking for Regional Summit

 

Some 2017 Congressional Art Competition winners2019 Congressional High School Art Competition Entries Accepted Through April 29

 

Marathon County 5 Meeting: Building Relationships With City - Reigning in the Sheriff

 

Confederate soldiers with headline: Funding Battle Continued at FGCOlustee Battle Festival: Funding Battle Continued at FGC – Next Action Unclear

 

Denisha Moody and Atterria CrayFlorida Gateway College Celebrates Black History Month

 

I-75 U.S. 90 interchangeHotel Owners Complain About Homeless Under the I-75 at U.S. 90 – FDOT to Step In

 

Lake City Mayor Steve Witt Proclaims February Black History Month

 

Battle of Olustee Festival:  Revisionist History Where Black Lives Didn't & Still Don't Matter

 

North Florida leaders agree to find a solution to pollutionNorth FL Leaders To Reach Out to Valdosta to Find a Solution to Raw Sewage Spills Floating Into N FL

 

The Lake City Reporter: Keeping the Olustee Myth Alive – A New Twist on Letters to the Editor

 

Cnty 5: At $80k Each & Dealing With a Diminishing Public, The 5 Digs in With Insulting Behavior

 

Sen Bradley & Rep Brannan Came to Columbia Cnty, Everyday Citizens Voiced Their Concerns

 

Columbia County Legislative Delegation Hearing Today at 1PM: You can make your voice heard

 

Melissa Olin: The 3d Circuit's Newest Judge
A Woman Who is Ready for the Hard Work Ahead

 

FL Gateway Col Bd Unanimously Votes to End Support for Olustee Battle Festival

 

Dist 10's Brannon Sworn In -  Dist Sec Hartley Appears Before the Cnty 5

 

County IT Policy Had Gov's $10.2mil Waste Water Treatment Plant Grant Stuck in Cyberspace

 
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