Martin voters asked for two tax increases for schools

From WPTV: “Martin County Commissioners approved the ballot language for two tax proposals sought by the school district. If both proposals fail, School board chair Christia Li Roberts says the district may be able to get by for a year, then big cuts to things like arts, music and athletics could be coming … Click here to read more

Tuesday’s BCC: Ad valorem & sales tax hikes sought

From Ginny Sherlock, renowned local attorney, civic activist, and former Associated Press editor: “As Martin County Commissioners continue to approve millions of dollars in spending with no public discussion or explanation, Commissioners will be asked on Tuesday to put measures on the primary and general election ballots this year to authorize a property tax hike and a sales tax surcharge to make up for School District budget shortfalls … Click here to read more

Editorial: U.S. House should end sweet deal for Big Sugar

[UPDATE: Big Sugar wins again. A push to reform the sugar program was defeated in the House.] From The Tampa Bay Times: “Longstanding U.S. sugar policy pummels consumers and taxpayers in three ways: We subsidize growers, pay higher food prices and then pay even more for environmental damage sugar production causes in South Florida. The only winners are Big Sugar and the politicians who rake in its campaign cash.” To see who voted how … Click here to read more

Updates from Citizens Against Rail Expansion in Florida (CARE FL)

“Citizens Against Rail Expansion in Florida (CARE FL) has had an unprecedented two months of activity, working with our colleagues in Indian River County and Martin County as we continue to oppose the expansion of All Aboard Florida’s (AAF’s) Brightline passenger rail project into Phase II—the phase of the project that will run from West Palm Beach north to Orlando, resulting in trains speeding through our communities. … Click here to read more

Septic-sewer conversions costing residents up to $11,000 in Martin County

From WPTV: “How much is too much to pay to protect the environment? For homeowners on the Treasure Coast, $11,000 is the price they have to pay and some of them are not happy about it. Don Bartz, who lives at North River Shores in Stuart … Click here to read more

Brightline celebrates inaugural ride, announces launch date for service to MiamiCentral

Press release from Brightline: “Brightline, Florida’s new hospitality-focused express intercity passenger rail service, announces introductory service into MiamiCentral, the new 11-acre intermodal development in the heart of downtown Miami, will begin Saturday, May 19 … Click here to read more

Must-read: ‘Only in Florida: Battle over water, free speech pits billionaire vs. activist’

From The Tampa Bay Times: “This is a story about free speech, government secrecy and a fight over tens of millions in taxpayer funds. The players include a billionaire who once had a hit man kill his horse, two politicians charged with breaking the Sunshine Law and former U.S. Attorney General Janet Reno’s sister … Click here to read more

Costco looks into opening warehouse club in Stuart

From WPTV: “Costco is now looking at opening a store in Stuart, just a few miles away from where some people in Palm City protested a proposed Costco store last year … Click here to read more

Stuart City Manager David Ross resigns

From CBS12: David Ross, the city manager for the City of Stuart, has resigned. The letter of resignation … Click here to read more

Mark your calendar: Energy and environmental issues on Tuesday’s BCC agenda

From Ginny Sherlock, renowned local attorney, civic activist, and former Associated Press editor: “Energy and environmental issues dominate Tuesday’s Martin County Board of County Commissioners meeting agenda, with a presentation on the status of the coral reef tract, an ordinance to implement a Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) program, and proposed amendments to the Land Development Regulations … Click here to read more

Sarah Heard seeks dismissal of charges

From Ginny Sherlock, renowned local attorney, civic activist, and former Associated Press editor: “An important hearing, open to the public, will be held May 9, 2:00 p.m., at the Martin County Courthouse when attorneys for County Commissioner Sarah Heard will ask a judge to dismiss the charges filed against her in a grand jury indictment … Click here to read more