This news bulletin is brought to you in conjunction with NATKIM Radio. Listen to WPLK (800 AM), WIYD (1260 AM) and WPLK FM (98.3 FM).
Traffic was backed up following a crash at U.S. 17 and State Road 207 this morning in East Palatka. Florida Highway Patrol is working the wreck that included injuries. Reports say a pedestrian was struck and lifeflighted. Southbound lanes were blocked on 17 following the accident that happened around 10 a.m.
Flagler County commissioners are meeting today with their choice for an interim county manager – Jerry Cameron — to ratify a contract that pays $160,000 yearly salary as part of a total compensation package of $237,000 total package. The contract is for a year but officials hope to have a permanent county manager before then. Cameron is a former assistant county manager from St. Johns County.
Funky happenings at the riverfront in Palatka tonight as the Agile Rascal Bicycle Touring Theatre offers an original play and a workshop. The group will be doing a musical they created in the Everglades National Park where they were artists-in-residence. It focuses on the environmental issues currently affecting Florida. As part of the project the actors are bicycling some 1,000 miles, performing their play in more than a dozen Florida towns. A workshop is set for 4 p.m., the play is at 8 p.m. Revitalize Historic Palatka is the local supporting group.
The bridge at Crescent Beach is back in service after a long Sunday of delays. The bridge opening and closing mechanism got stuck Sunday causing detours for people using State Road 206. St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office worked the traffic and the state Department of Transportation oversaw getting repair personnel to the site. While the bridge is now open to vehicular traffic the drawbridge portion is not operating and marine traffic won’t be able to pass.
Today may be your last chance to see what remains of the old town hall in Hastings. The two-story front entry is about all that’s still standing of the building that was completed in the mid 1930s as one of the federal Works Project Administration programs. Since Hastings residents voted to dissolve the town last year, St. Johns County is in charge and county commissioners gave the go-ahead to tear down the vacant facility.
Flagler County Sheriff Rick Staly is firing the private health care provider for the jail. Armor Correctional Health was hired last year as a private provider. The decision to terminate the contract comes after a 23-year-old inmate died. Questions have been raised about the care he was given before being sent to the hospital.
St. Augustine City Commission may or may not rescind purchase of two lots on Coquina Avenue in Davis Shores during their meeting at 5 p.m. tonight. Mayor Nancy Shaver, who voted for the $459,000 purchase, now says the lots aren’t needed. City Manager John Regan proposed the purchase noting the marsh front land can become a park and help with flood control. Coquina Avenue is in the area hard hit with flooding during Hurricanes Matthew and Irma.
A sour note at this year’s Cathedral Festival in St. Augustine. On Friday law enforcement arrested a 15-year-old for having a concealed weapon at the festival at the Nombre de Dios Mission grounds in St. Augustine. Also on Friday they investigated a social media post that someone was coming up from Miami to engage in a shooting at the carnival. The youth who posted the information was found but could not give details on who the shooters were or where he heard the info. Security was stepped up for the festival which is a fund-raiser for Cathedral Parish School.
In Crescent City the long awaited new dock at Sunrise Park is in place thanks to grant money and a push by the Crescent City Commission and the city manager. The park is now known as the Margary Neal Nelson Sunrise Park. It’s a deserved salute to the late Margary Neal Nelson who was the longtime historian for South Putnam County.
This is Marcia Lane, roving reporter.