Bob Cole

Election results for Santa Rosa County

Election results for Santa Rosa County

With a resounding voice at the polls, more than 57 percent of registered voters in Santa Rosa County cast their ballot in the 2018 mid-term election. In the U.S. Senate race, Rick Scott (Rep) received an overwhelming 74.5 percent of the vote over Bill Nelson (Dem), while in the state overall Scott had a slim […]

Commissioners approve fire MSBU increases

Commissioners approve fire MSBU increases

Santa Rosa Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) unanimously approved increases for several Municipal Service Benefit Units (MSBUs) for fire districts throughout the county, including Navarre Beach Fire Protection. The reevaluation of fire MSBU rates in the county began after Navarre Beach Fire approached the BOCC in February requesting to raise residential and commercial rates for […]

Holley Navarre Water System President James Calkins resigns

Holley Navarre Water System President James Calkins resigns

After his contentious appointment to the Santa Rosa County Zoning Board Thursday, James Calkins resigned as the President of the Holley Navarre Water System Board of Director in a letter emailed to fellow board members and water system staff Friday. In the letter Calkins wrote he would no longer be able to fulfill his duties […]

Update: Sanborn resigns from Tourist Development Council

Update: Sanborn resigns from Tourist Development Council

Update: Jack Sanborn submitted his letter of resignation from his position on the Tourist Development Council Thursday to the Board of County Commissioners. He resigned prior to a scheduled vote to by the BOCC to decide whether or not to remove Sanborn from the council following allegations of threats made on social media and an […]

County considering new tax for sheriff’s office

County considering new tax for sheriff’s office

While trying to reconcile the Santa Rosa Sheriff’s Office’s budget request to revenue realities, the Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) discussed the possibility Thursday of implementing a Municipal Service Taxing Unit (MSTU) for law enforcement services during the first of their annual budget workshops. Sheriff Bob Johnson told commissioners that he needs nearly every penny […]

Candidates air views on county’s development, economic growth

Candidates air views on county’s development, economic growth

Precinct 34, an initiative to improve voter turnout in the Navarre area, brought together more than a dozen candidates for a variety of offices to debate the issues April 17. The main event of the Precinct 34 Candidate Forum involved the County Commission race. Two of the board’s five seats are up for election, including […]

Whispering Pines developments nixed

Whispering Pines developments nixed

Both of the PUD developments proposed along Whispering Pines Boulevard were halted Thursday night, but development of at least one of the properties is still likely. The issue was up for vote before the Board of County Commissioners Thursday night durign their regular special rezoning meeting. The first and most contentious of the developments would […]

No property tax increase seen for courthouse

No property tax increase seen for courthouse

Santa Rosa residents won’t have to pay higher ad valorem taxes because they rejected the referendum to fund a new county courthouse in downtown Milton with a temporary sales tax increase. Although some commissioners had indicated before the election that higher property taxes seemed the only alternative to building the $35 million courthouse, three of […]

County to mute tourism watchdog group

County to mute tourism watchdog group

  We don’t need your advice quite so often. That’s what Santa Rosa County officials are saying to the volunteer panel of tourism industry leaders who advise them on strategies to grow the area economy’s largest segment. Members of the Tourist Development Council have been summoned one by one during the past month to meet […]

Navarre Beach Restoration to begin in March

Navarre Beach Restoration to begin in March

Weeks Marine won the bid for the Navarre Beach restoration project and operations are expected to commence in March with completion in mid-June. Weeks Marine is the same company that performed the Navarre Beach restoration in 2006 and was the low bidder coming in at $14,920,300 – $3 million less than the original estimate. The […]

Still no site picked for new courthouse

Still no site picked for new courthouse

Downtown Milton has emerged as the most likely site for the proposed new Santa Rosa County courthouse if the challenges of environmental permitting and stormwater control at the low-lying locale can be met. Although the county commissioners aren’t scheduled to vote on the location until early next year, three of the panel’s five members now […]

Lynchard gets gavel as chairman

Lynchard gets gavel as chairman

Santa Rosa County officials have discussed building a new courthouse for more than two decades. Last week, they agreed waiting another month to decide the fate of a proposed site wouldn’t hurt. Commissioners are divided on a recent proposal to build the judicial center, estimated to cost between $30 – $40 million, in a low-lying […]

Rains, drains and pains

Rains, drains and pains

In the past two weekends, Navarre has seen more than a foot of rain. When the remnants of Hurricane Patricia swept through Oct. 25 – 26, nearly 7 inches of rain fell. The rain totals of Halloween weekend were nearly that at 6.41 inches with some areas receiving 7 inches. Rewind to Sept. 28 and […]

Stalled train blocks access to jail

Stalled train blocks access to jail

Santa Rosa County Commissioner Bob Cole March 26 added a discussion to the board’s agenda after a stalled train blocked access to Santa Rosa County Jail for six hours the night before. Santa Rosa Sheriff’s Office Capt. Bob Johnson told commissioners a CSX train broke down at about 11:30 p.m., blocking access to East Milton […]

Dabney denied appointment to zoning board

Dabney denied appointment to zoning board

District 2 Commissioner Bob Cole Jan. 20 made a last-minute addition to the county commission meeting agenda – the appointment of one of his campaign contributors to the zoning board. But Cole’s motion to appoint Navarre businessman James Dabney was rejected in a 3-2 vote. Cole’s motion also angered residents, who accused him of intentionally […]

Milton City Councilman accuses Cole of violating Sunshine Law

Milton City Councilman accuses Cole of violating Sunshine Law

Santa Rosa County Commissioner Bob Cole is once again facing a Sunshine Law violation accusation after Milton City Councilman Jimmy Messick Jan. 15 publicly questioned the actions of Cole and fellow Downtown Redevelopment Advisory Board (DRAB) member Elba Robertson. Messick said prior to the meeting he observed the two DRAB members discussing the nomination of Milton resident Kim Macarthy to the […]

Williamson suggests more staff

Williamson suggests more staff

Santa Rosa County Jan. 15 began accepting applications for the first allocation of local RESTORE Act funding – roughly $4.3 million. District 4 County Commissioner Rob Williamson suggested adding county staff to help manage up to $75 million anticipated for 2010 Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill recovery. In a Dec. 30 email, Williamson asked County Administrator […]

The road to impropriety

The road to impropriety

Although the Santa Rosa Board of County Commissioners has a code of ethics, after Monday’s meeting, we thought perhaps a refresher course was in order. Commissioner Bob Cole isn’t new to local government, so we were surprised when he not only made a motion to approve resurfacing five roads, including his own and two entrance […]

No recount in Cole/Melvin race

No recount in Cole/Melvin race

Santa Rosa County Supervisor of Elections Tappie Villane and members of the county canvassing board reviewed 11 provisional ballots this morning. The results from those ballots provided enough votes to eliminate the need for a recount for the District 2 Board of County Commission race between incumbents Bob Cole and Jim Melvin. Unofficial results now show Cole […]

District 2 candidates focus on beach

District 2 candidates focus on beach

The primary election race for Santa Rosa County Commission District 2 is a bit of an oddity. Two current Santa Rosa County Commissioners — Bob Cole and Jim Melvin — are squaring off in the Republican primary. The winner will face Independent candidate Wallis Mahute in the general election. All three candidates spent nearly an hour […]

Sixth candidate enters commission race

Sixth candidate enters commission race

Etta Lawlor filed papers March 7 with the Santa Rosa County Supervisor of Elections Office and is now the sixth candidate vying for commissioner in District 4. Lawler filed as a Libertarian Party of Florida candidate. The other five candidates — James Broxson, Ruth Esser, Yvonne Harper, Andrea McDermott and Rob Williamson — all filed […]

Candidates debut in first debate

Candidates debut in first debate

Nearly 50 people attended a Feb. 6 debate hosted by the Central Republican Club for the Santa Rosa County Commission District 4 seat, which represents the greater Navarre area. Currently five candidates are in that race – all of whom are Republican. The event gave commission hopefuls the opportunity to introduce themselves. Michael Sallmen, president […]