south santa rosa utility system

State audit roils Gulf Breeze City Hall

State audit roils Gulf Breeze City Hall

State auditors who started a probe of Gulf Breeze finances and operations last April continue to ask more questions in an examination destined to extend into summer. “I have spoken with the city manager (Samantha Abell), who expressed her frustration about this,” said State Sen. Doug Broxson. Read the full article in the Jan. 31 […]

Gulf Breeze audit and legal pressures grow

Gulf Breeze audit and legal pressures grow

The state audit that City of Gulf Breeze officials tried to avoid is expanding at a time when the municipality just lost the latest round of a controversial and costly property rights case. City Manager Samantha Abell told the Navarre Press that the Florida Auditor General’s operational review, which began last April, is requiring her […]

Tiger Point residents to fight golf club selloff

Tiger Point residents to fight golf club selloff

Fearing traffic jams and drainage woes, some neighbors of Tiger Point Golf Club plan to take their case against the proposed sale of two parcels on the property by its owner, the City of Gulf Breeze, to Santa Rosa County officials. “We get it, the city owes a lot of money on the golf course […]

Sharp divides surface in Gulf Breeze mayor’s race

Sharp divides surface in Gulf Breeze mayor’s race

The long quiet political landscape in the City of Gulf Breeze is rumbling. For the first time since 2008, candidates for the mayor’s seat on the city council are putting out yard signs, knocking on doors and airing their differences in a political campaign of the sort many residents can’t recall witnessing before. Read the […]

Water board seeks substance amid squabbling

Water board seeks substance amid squabbling

While grappling with issues that could affect how much Holley Navarre Water System ratepayers are charged in the future, the volunteer board that supposedly reached harmony in a January election shake-up has become a familiar war zone with new combatants. “It’s a mess,” said James Calkins, the president who succeeded Bien May this year. Read […]

Holley Navarre wary of effluent spraying deal

Holley Navarre wary of effluent spraying deal

Once closely allied, Holley Navarre Water System and the City of Gulf Breeze are now at arm’s length. Not only is the revamped board of HNWS backing away from a proposed contract under which it would have paid an estimated $8 million dollars over two decades to spray treated wastewater on land that the city’s […]

City sees silver lining in Tiger Point land sale

City sees silver lining in Tiger Point land sale

The City of Gulf Breeze’s proposed sale of part of Tiger Point Golf Club to the Santa Rosa County School District may be a better deal for Superintendent Tim Wyrosdick’s organization than either side realized. In fact, the results of a new appraisal received by the City of Gulf Breeze this week indicates that the […]

State probe of Gulf Breeze may take months

State probe of Gulf Breeze may take months

  After three months of sifting through tips from would-be sources, state auditors are still trying to decide how far and deep their planned look into City of Gulf Breeze operations will be. The Florida Auditor General’s staff had planned to set up shop at Gulf Breeze City Hall by the end of March, but […]

Gulf Breeze amenities get top priority

Gulf Breeze amenities get top priority

As state auditors prepare to examine the books at the City of Gulf Breeze, officials there are outlining spending plans to showcase the municipality: from a new police station to a children’s park splashpad. Although funding isn’t yet available for all the myriad projects detailed in a new city report, officials say the money can […]

Fairpoint’s finances raise questions

Fairpoint’s finances raise questions

The concerns that prompted Gulf Breeze-based officials of Fairpoint Regional Utility System to press for a controversial debt restructuring last year have largely drowned in black ink. Also gone—at least for now—are fears that an increase in the price of water that Fairpoint sells to the collective’s members, such as Holley Navarre Water System, could […]

Fairpoint debt deal appears dead

Fairpoint debt deal appears dead

The controversial loan restructuring that would have raised the debt total of Fairpoint Regional Utility System by about 40 percent took a big hit last week when Holley Navarre Water System voted in a new board. Fairpoint needs the support of all three of the collective’s member utilities, and the likelihood of getting that from […]

Gulf Breeze questions audit petitions

Gulf Breeze questions audit petitions

Unable to fend off a state audit of his city’s operations, Gulf Breeze Mayor Matt Dannheisser is casting doubt on the number of petitioners who requested the review. In a letter to the Joint Legislative Audit Committee dated Dec. 7—obtained by a public records request—Dannheisser questioned a previous assertion by State Sen. Doug Broxson that […]

Scope of Gulf Breeze probe could widen

Scope of Gulf Breeze probe could widen

The planned inquiry by the Florida Auditor General’s Office into the City of Gulf Breeze’s finances will take several months and may extend to questions about controversial legal expenditures. Requested recently by State Sen. Doug Broxson, the audit will bring a Tallahassee-based team of accountants and other specialists to set up shop at Gulf Breeze […]

Sunshine Law cloudy for Fairpoint Regional

Sunshine Law cloudy for Fairpoint Regional

While a recent unannounced gathering of some Fairpoint Regional Utility Service directors may appear to have violated Florida’s Sunshine Law, some are questioning their obligation to meet in public. In fact, Holley Navarre Water’s president, Bien May—who is also a Fairpoint director–when asked by a reporter recently whether the Sunshine Law applies to the boards […]

Water board under Sunshine Law scrutiny

Water board under Sunshine Law scrutiny

Allegations that three of Fairpoint Regional Utility’s seven board members violated Florida’s Sunshine Law by meeting in private last month are under review by the State Attorney’s Office in Pensacola. “The only thing I can say at this time is I can confirm that we have received a copy of the complaint regarding the Sunshine […]

Water board faces outside political pressure

Water board faces outside political pressure

Do it our way. That’s the message from City of Gulf Breeze officials to the Holley Navarre Water System board about a controversial proposal to refinance $9.8 million in debt held by the collective from which the utility buys most of its water. A majority of HNWS directors recently rebuffed the inperson pitch by Fairpoint […]

Winds of change buffet water board

Winds of change buffet water board

The fractious fraternity that makes up the seven-member board of Holley Navarre Water System is becoming more strident with almost every monthly meeting and the delicate balance of voting power may be in for a shake-up. That’s partly because the utility’s board elections scheduled for January could bring the return of Daryl Lynchard, the board […]

Water utilities to gamble on more debt

Water utilities to gamble on more debt

Failing to set aside funds for emergencies has previously meant a financing scramble for the utility collective that provides water to south Santa Rosa, and now officials think they see a solution: take on about $4 million in long-term debt. Though perhaps unlikely at first glance, the strategy of Holley Navarre Water System and the […]

Utility seeks fix to Hidden Creek Golf flooding

Utility seeks fix to Hidden Creek Golf flooding

The plight of Holley-Navarre Water System and the Hidden Creek Golf Club it owns have been similar in recent weeks: too much water and nowhere to put much of it. Heavy rains from June through August have forced the club to close on some days, making water hazards out of some of its sand traps, […]

Tiger Point golf neighbors wary of development

Tiger Point golf neighbors wary of development

The owners of homes near the defunct west course of Tiger Point Golf Club are expressing concern they may have new neighbors—either a public school or a sizable housing development. The former course, now vacant, is being studied as a possible school site while its owner—the City of Gulf Breeze—awaits prospective bids on the 47-acre […]

HNWS vows crack down on culprits for effluent overage

HNWS vows crack down on culprits for effluent overage

HNWS vows crack down on culprits for effluent overage The failure of Holley-Navarre Water System to stay within its state-approved standard for disposing of treated wastewater is partly the fault of some homeowners who are improperly channeling stormwater  into sewers, according to the utility board’s president, Bien May. In a letter responding to a Navarre […]

Tiger Point Golf could get new name

Tiger Point Golf could get new name

The new and improved image that’s being planned for money-losing Tiger Point Golf Club could include a name change. Owned by the City of Gulf Breeze, the club got new management April 1 and some city council members say shedding the old name might help too. Read the full article in the April 6 issue […]

Funds lacking to convert south county septic tanks

Funds lacking to convert south county septic tanks

The goal of converting the thousands of residential septic tanks in south Santa Rosa to more environmentally friendly sewer systems is widely embraced by elected officials, water utilities directors and the Florida Department of Health. Read the full article in the Feb. 9 issue of Navarre Press. Subscribe online at navarrepress.com for as little as […]

Gulf Breeze City Hall shifts gears

Gulf Breeze City Hall shifts gears

Gulf Breeze leadership will soon take on a new look when longtime City Manager Edwin “Buz” Eddy steps aside into a part-time advisory role and a successor is named to lead the 6,000-resident municipality. Saying it’s time to “turn the page,” Eddy last week followed through with the retirement he has recently hinted at. Read […]

New direction sought for Tiger Point Golf

New direction sought for Tiger Point Golf

The City of Gulf Breeze plans to terminate its deal with an Orlando management company to operate the clubhouse restaurant at its Tiger Point Golf Club and to press it for a long-overdue plan to make capital improvements elsewhere at the 365-acre facility. Read the full article in the Jan. 5 issue of Navarre Press. […]

The conspicuous councilman bows out

The conspicuous councilman bows out

Joe Henderson has marched to his own drum as a City of Gulf Breeze council member for the past six years, and he never seemed to mind if he fell a bit out of step. Sometimes referred by his critics–and affectionately by his fans– as “Councilman No,” Henderson could usually be counted on to ask […]

Gulf Breeze seeks septic tank elimination

Gulf Breeze seeks septic tank elimination

The 1,000 or so septic tanks on residential properties in the City of Gulf Breeze are potential environmental hazards, and the municipality is proposing a massive switch to its sewer system. “We would like to start making this happen, especially in areas near Santa Rosa Sound, to protect it from potential contamination,” said Mayor Matt […]

Tiger Point Golf management company vows improvements

Tiger Point Golf management company vows improvements

Repairs of the irrigation system for the parched fairways and greens of Tiger Point Golf Club are underway by a new subcontractor as questions remain about the performance of the consulting firm that leased the facility last October. Orlando-based Integrity Golf has responded to recent complaints about the course by golfers and nearby homeowners by […]

State Attorney rejects tourist-tax allegations against Gulf Breeze

State Attorney rejects tourist-tax allegations against Gulf Breeze

The falling out between Santa Rosa County and the City of Gulf Breeze over sharing tourism tax money worsened into a criminal complaint filed by Clerk of the Court Don Spencer in December. Read the full article in the Feb. 25 issue of Navarre Press. Click HERE to subscribe for as little as $38 per […]