Tax dollars

Historic firetruck riddled by bullets

Historic firetruck riddled by bullets

Shooting of a storage shed in Holley last week has left a piece of Santa Rosa County’s history in rough shape. At the Holley Ball Fields off state road 87, there is a tan painted shed constructed of cinder blocks. Multiple light fixtures have been broken off or shattered. One light was completely stolen off […]

County officials’ travel expenses vary widely

County officials’ travel expenses vary widely

The work-related travel by certain Santa Rosa County officials at taxpayers’ expense more than doubled during the past year, while some others cut back on business trips. From a New York Times travel trade show in Manhattan to a National Association of Counties annual conference in Los Angeles, the receipts in county records total thousands […]

School Board seeks renewal of 20-year-old levy

School Board seeks renewal of 20-year-old levy

Residents throughout the county have begun receiving sample ballots in the mail for a special election March 28. The sole item on the ballot will be a request to renew the 20-year-old half-cent sales tax for Santa Rosa School District capital outlays. Read the full article in the March 23 issue of Navarre Press. Subscribe […]

House passes oversight bill for Visit Florida

House passes oversight bill for Visit Florida

In its first week of session the Florida House of Representatives passed two bills Friday that took aim economic programs eliminating Enterprise Florida, Inc. and restructuring Visit Florida. Read the full article in the March 16 issue of Navarre Press. Subscribe online at navarrepress.com for as little as $38 per year.

Oversight or hindsight?

Oversight or hindsight?

The county has published their proposed spending plan for an estimated $39 million in local option sales tax funds, and not surprisingly folks aren’t happy with the distribution. The projects listed are clearly important. The first responders’ radio tower that is listed at a price of $750,000 should have been built years ago. It is […]

Tourism Development Office wants more staff

Tourism Development Office wants more staff

After three months of research and a roughly $14,000 tab, a strategic plan presented to and approved by the Tourism Development Committee board Friday would request additional tourism staff be placed on the county’s payroll. Plan creator Bill Geist of Zeitgeist DMOproz said the focus of the plan is to make the TDC a “trusted […]

Visit Florida scrutinized for clandestine contracts

Visit Florida scrutinized for clandestine contracts

Florida’s contracted tourism agency Visit Florida came under fire just months before the legislature would meet to decide whether to approve a $76 million budget for the organization. The criticism has resulted in the resignation of the company’s President and CEO Will Seccombe. The drama centered on a supposedly privileged $1 million contract between Visit […]

Should I vote ‘yes’ or ‘no’?

Should I vote ‘yes’ or ‘no’?

At a recent presentation to the Navarre Beach Area Chamber of Commerce’s Economic Development and Government Affairs audience, Mary Blackwell president of The League of Women Voters (LWV) in Okaloosa County explained the four amendments voters should expect to see on the Nov. 8 ballot. Each of the amendments will need at least 60 percent […]

Williamson’s Facebook rant prompts response

Williamson’s Facebook rant prompts response

From Commissioner Williamson on his Facebook page: Good article in press gazette. The Navarre Press had 10 articles attacking Tough Mudder this year. The Navarre Press had 0 articles attacking Tough Mudder last year. That’s does not seem subjective, it’s personal. The sad part is, losing this event did not need to happen. In the […]

Grant money brings big entertainment to Santa Rosa for 2016-17

Grant money brings big entertainment to Santa Rosa for 2016-17

The Santa Rosa County Tourism Development Committee (TDC) approved $61,225 in grants Tuesday, June 7 to fund 18 events such as festivals, 5Ks, concerts, parades and even butterfly tagging in the county. The funds are part of the bed-tax budget for the 2016-2017 fiscal years. Bed taxes are collected on visitors to the county who […]

Residents deliver message on sales tax

Residents deliver message on sales tax

The residents of Santa Rosa County delivered the message Monday night to the Board of County Commissioners during the Local Option Sales Tax workshop that they would not support writing a blank check to the commissioners to do with as they please. The board is asking the voters of Santa Rosa County to support a […]

Beach restoration on hold

Beach restoration on hold

The already-delayed Navarre Beach restoration is now stalled until at least the end of April because of an equipment breakdown that has hit the dredge-and-fill contractor, Weeks Marine Inc. Uncertainty still surrounds exactly how much of the $17 million sand-moving effort will be footed by beach property owners. County Commissioners are discussing budget possibilities that […]

Property appraiser alerts BOCC to courthouse site bargain

Property appraiser alerts BOCC to courthouse site bargain

Nearly a month before Santa Rosa County Commissioners voted last Thursday to locate the planned new courthouse in downtown Milton, Property Appraiser Greg Brown tried to make them aware of a site he sees as a better value for taxpayers. Read the full article in the Mar. 3 issue of Navarre Press. Click HERE to […]

Tough Mudder eases lodging demands

Tough Mudder eases lodging demands

Tough Mudder Inc. blinked. Under questioning from a prospective lodging “partner” about the company’s recent financial demands in return for promoting Santa Rosa County overnight stays at its event scheduled here next April, a company executive now says its fees are negotiable. A month after sending out controversial contracts to area hotels and condominium managers […]

Pull back the curtains and let the light shine in

Pull back the curtains and let the light shine in

At the south end Tourist Development Council meeting on Dec. 1, Commissioner Rob Williamson’s mantra that he repeated over and over was, “Just because a recommendation is made (by this council) doesn’t mean we (the Board of Commissioners) have to follow it.” A couple of the council members were heard saying, “Then why do we […]

Some locales land Tough Mudder without taxpayer dollars

Some locales land Tough Mudder without taxpayer dollars

The $110,000 subsidy that Santa Rosa County officials have voted to pay for-profit Tough Mudder Inc. in return for staging its military style endurance event near Milton next April is far more taxpayer funding than the New York-based company often receives. “I hope they make a lot of money as long as we’re not going […]