Stew Lilker’s

Columbia County Observer

Real news for working families.  An online news service

Lake City News
Index of stories 2013-14
Go to 2009-2010Go to 2011-2012

 Lake City News 2014 (scroll down)

The Blanche: Johnson & Decker want inclusion "Anybody that wants a seat will have one"

Lake City's Blanche Hotel: $15,000,000 Renovation Discussion Off & Running

LAKE CITY/COLUMBIA COUNTY, FL – Yesterday's 8:30 a.m. discussion by the handpicked "Grassroots Blanche Stakeholder Committee" went off on time as City Manager Wendell Johnson led the discussion of the proposed $15,000,000 renovation of the downtown landmark. Ninety minutes after a bit of a shaky start, the committee seemed to have found itself heading for a community project in which the pro and con sides are going to have to come together to make this successful for Columbia County/Lake City and put its historic downtown back on the map.

Vice Mayor Moses High on Downtown Lake City: "There is a new energy downtown"

Renovation of Blanche Hotel on the Launching Pad:  Will everyone have a chance to participate?

Posted December 4, 2014  01:55 pm

COLUMBIA COUNTY, FL – The renovation and revitalization of downtown Lake City's deteriorating Blanche Hotel was on the docket at yesterday morning's Economic Development Advisory Board (EDAB or Board) meeting. City Manager and EDAB member, Wendell Johnson, gave the committee an update. He announced that a committee was formed and Chamber of Commerce Director Dennille Decker had taken "a leadership role in putting the stakeholders committee together."

Removal of Citizen Representation
City Manager Johnson Questioned

CM Johnson: "A lot more conversation than we probably need."

Mayor Steve WittLake City Impact Fee Suspension: Mayor Witt Tells the Committee, "We're getting killed..."

Lake City Utility Advisory Committee Tonight:
Impact Fees, County Participation Nixed

City Manager Wendell Johnson Recommending Lifting Utility Impact Fee Moratorium – Tonight

City Manager Johnson: Working on a Plan to Raise the Blanche Hotel From the Dead

Lake City Branded: "Gateway to Florida" Changed
Committee Approves Logos & Signage

North Florida Broadband Authority: Lake City Manager Wendell Johnson Recommends 'Abandon Ship'

Lake City Looking For a Brand: 3 Years After the Completion of its Downtown Redevelopment Plan

Lake City Approves $63,446,535 Budget: Also, Double Taxation & Hidden Trash "Kickback"

LCPD Labor Day: Drink - Drive - Under Arrest

Lake City Upbeat About the Future of Downtown

Lake City's Dave Clanton, A Man Who Put the Servant in Public Servant, Died Last Night

City Council Hires Special Magistrate: City Manager Says, "Everybody has to start somewhere."

Lake City Code Enforcement Special Magistrate: Springfield Law Gets the Unanimous Nod, Almost

City Approves One-Time Façade Grant Program: A $2,000 Per Business Giveaway Without the Details

Lake City Monday Night: Awards, Presentations, Advice, a Boost In City Garbage Rates On the Way

Lake City to Name New Pavilion In Honor of Legendary City Attorney Herbert F. Darby

City Manager Johnson Looks for Council Approval to Anoint Code Enforcement Special Magistrate

Better Late Than Never: City Manager's Due Diligence Saves Lake City Taxpayers Almost $9k

In Last Minute of Day Armed Driver Shot and Killed at DUI Checkpoint

Fire Study Approval Tabled; Anderson Columbia Negotiating Gas; United Way Gets $158,000

Lake City Utility Customers May Be Purchasing Affordable Insurance For Ancient Utility Hookups

Lake City Contributes $25,000 to County Run Southside Sports Complex

Council Overlooks City Manager Wendell Johnson's Slight of All County Residents

Lake City Downtown: New Restaurant On The Way

 Lake City News 2013 (scroll down)

Lake City Applebee's Unveils New Kids Menu with More Healthy Meals
Sunday Family Day: all kids LiveWell meals are $1.99

Lake City, City Manager Recommends Another 12 Month Impact Fee Suspension

Previous suspension cost City "well over $300,000" – CM Johnson

City Manager Removes Photo Ban From Proposed Rules, Iron Fisted Police Power Remains

Breakfast With LCPD's Chief Gilmore:
A packed house and informative

Residents learn about the 911 ring down

City Breezes Through Council Meeting: CM Johnson's meeting rules make brief appearance

City Manager Johnson's Proposed Rules Reviewed:
Photo ban & police power to remove citizens without warning stay

City Manager Rewrites City Rules of Procedure: Proposes photo ban; police power to remove citizens without warning

Lake City's $18,000,000 New Wastewater Plant on Hold: It's Back to the Drawing Board

Final Lake City Budget Hearing Yields No Surprises: City in good financial shape

Columbia County / Lake City Combined Communications War Continues: The people lose

City Manager Johnson Veers From Master Plan Concept, Unveils His Lakeside Pavilion

City Council Falls Into Line: Joins County 5 In Gift of Public Funds to Chamber for Retail Study

Girl Scouts: Cadette Troop 525Girl Scouts Save the Day In a Day of Bad News: Come to City Hall to promote children's literacy

Downtown scrap/junk yard, Lake CityDowntown Lake City Redevelopment: City Manager says standards are "counterproductive"

Lake City City Clerk Audrey SikesLake City's City Clerk Audrey Skies Voted Florida's Clerk of the Year: This is a big deal

Columbia County/Lake City Combined Communications: Down for the Count

Columbia County 911 Communications Broken: Where are the elected public officials?

Columbia County/Lake City Combined 911 Communications Center: Going the way of the Titanic?

Clickit or Ticket graphicLCPD Click It or Ticket: Reminds citizens to buckle up

Downtown scrap/junk yard, Lake CityBeautifying Downtown Lake City? Council chooses chain link fence to beautify downtown entrance

City Council on tap to approve Columbia County Commissioner DePratter $28,000 sole source bid

Special redistricting meetingLake City Redistricting: “If you don’t affect folks in their pocket book, they don’t show up,” City Manager Wendell Johnson

City Redistricting MapLake City:  Redistricting On Tap Monday Night

With the City Council's laptops lined up like soldiers, Mayor Steven Witt gets ready to bring Lake City into the electronic age.City Council Goes Green With Laptops: Mayor Steven Witt, "We're in the 21st century now."

LCPD Arrest Suspect In Home Invasion Robbery: Suspect flees after hearing the name of Jesus

Lake City's City Manager Wendell Johnson Backs Art Gallery For Downtown Lake City

Lake City FL Man Shot In Face With Flare Gun

 • Meeting Calendar