Monday June 21, 2021

Governor Ron DeSantis joined members of the Florida Legislature and Florida’s law enforcement community, to support law enforcement canines injured in the line of duty, by signing Senate Bill 388. The Bill strengthens Florida’s commitment to protecting law enforcement, including, canine members of the force. When a law enforcement canine is injured while safeguarding our communities, this bill authorizes emergency service vehicles to transport police canines to a veterinary clinic, if there is no person requiring medical attention or transport at that time. The bill also allows EMTs and paramedics to provide emergency medical care to an injured police canine at the scene of an emergency, or while the canine is being transported.

The federal district court in Tampa delivered a victory for Governor Ron DeSantis against the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention regarding it’s No Sail Orders. A Judge concluded that the CDC’s restrictions are likely unconstitutional and overstepping their legal authority. So, beginning July 18, the CDC’s orders will become “guidance,” and cruise ships will hit the open waters once again. You can find the full ruling here

Two people are dead and 2 are in critical condition following a 3-car crash in Okeechobee over the weekend. On Saturday, a 21-year-old resident and his female passenger were traveling north on NW 192nd Ave. Vehicles 2 and 3 were travelling on same road in the opposite direction. The 21-year-old hit the left side of the second vehicles’ trailer. The vehicle contained 4 passengers who were unhurt. Sadly, the 21-year-old then continued into the path of the 3rd vehicle, killing the 27-year-old driver and his 7-year-old passenger on the scene. This case is pending investigation.

The Moore Haven Lock and Dam facility was renamed to honor fallen Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Officer, Julian Keen Jr. The Lock will now be called “Julian Keen Jr. Lock and Dam” in his memory. Several speakers attended as well as Officer Keen’s family and FWC law enforcement leadership. Hendry County Sheriff Steve Whidden, Captain Sean Reed, and Lieutenant Matthew Beatty of HCSO were also at the ceremony. Officer Keen was shot and killed in LaBelle in June of 2020 after trying to stop a hit-and-run suspect. He served more than six years with FWC.

Hendry County gives notice that the burn ban on unregulated outdoor fires in Hendry County has been lifted. And the precautionary boil water notice in effect for the Port LaBelle Utility System service area, has been lifted. Residents may discontinue boiling their water.

The Hendry County Board of County Commissioners will hold a special meeting on June 25, 2021, at 9:00 a.m., at the Hendry County Courthouse, to discuss grant agreements from the Florida Department of Transportation, Florida Commission for the Transportation Disadvantaged and the Federal Aviation Administration, as well as an agreement with the Agency for Health Care Administration. The meeting is open to the public.

The Florida Department of Health and the Florida Division of Emergency Management have partnered to offer a mobile vaccination unit in LaBelle at the Azteca Market, in LaBelle on Friday, June 25th from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. The community can choose from the Johnson & Johnson Vaccine or the Pfizer Vaccine. Children ages 12 to 17 are able to take the Pfizer vaccine. Parents must be present and must sign a consent form. Walk-ins are welcomed and no appointment is required.

The Harlem community celebrated Juneteenth, now an official federal holiday, with a kickball tournament yesterday, and Father’s Day gifts for the first 100 dads. The observances began with a parade Saturday morning, led by the Clewiston Fire Department. Participants included the DIME Dancers, Hendry County Sheriffs Office, Masonic Lodge Chapter 548, Ross Dynasty, local pastors and churches, Clewiston High School Principal and Administrative Staff and so many more. After the parade, there were programs and presentations which included honoring local hero Mr. Johnny Summers. The evening ended with awards, contests and scholarship presentations. Congratulations to Bri’Ana George, who received the US Sugar Juneteenth Scholarship in the amount of $15,000. Former Commissioner and community advocate Janet Taylor took to her Facebook page to thank some of the supporters including Mayor Kristine Petersen, The CHS Public Safety Academy, U. S. Sugar, Walmart, Commissioner Karson Turner, Harlem Ministerial Alliance and all other sponsors. The Senate unanimously passed a resolution last Tuesday establishing June 19 as Juneteenth National Independence Day, a US holiday commemorating the end of slavery in the United States.