County clear Florence kids to recreate near old school

The project to replace windows at the Marion County Courthouse was well underway last week with scaffolding covering the entire back side of the structure.
The project to replace windows at the Marion County Courthouse was well underway last week with scaffolding covering the entire back side of the structure.
Florence kids will be able to continue to use what was once the high school home economics building as a church-sanctioned recreation building.

Marion County Board of Commissioners agreed Monday to put up chain-link fencing, or other fencing barrier, between the building and the collapsing old high school building.

Trayce Warner, Florence City Council member, and John Branson, pastor of the Christian Church in town, said the two are “cooperating 100 percent” to give Florence kids a place to hang out instead of just roaming the streets.

The commissioners agreed that the county’s road and bridge department most likely will put up the fence, and that the bridge materials will be selected according to cost and flexibility.

A 30-foot by 300-foot airfield mowed short for model airplanes was approved by the commissioners for the south side of Marion County Lake.

Steve Hudson, lake superintendent, said the Academy of Model Aeronautics members who will operate the airport are highly qualified model fliers who will not in any way interfere with the large airfield north of the lake.

He confirmed the model field offers the county a big bonus in available activities at little cost.

Westar Electric representatives received approval from the commissioners to purchase 40 acres at 120th and Timber for immediate construction of a transformer, then two more transformers in the next few years.

Emma Tajchman, planning and zoning director, said Westar’s construction is an economic boost to the county.

Sheriff Rob Craft confirmed for the commissioners that an officer he is hiring will be a full deputy rather than only a court security officer because the sheriff’s office is short-handed.

The commissioners met a second time with Transfer Station Director Bud Druse to select guaranteed specifications for a skid loader at the transfer station.

Emergency Medical Services Director Ed Debesis reported 124 ambulance runs for July: 29 from Peabody, 13 from Florence, 25 from Marion, 44 from Hillsboro and 13 from Tampa.

They included 24 transfers, three cardiac, 33 medical emergency, 12 standby, six motor vehicle accidents, eight falls, 30 no-transfers, seven 10-22 and one other.

The commissioners and Debesis met for 10 minutes in executive session for personnel; no action was taken when the public session resumed.