Thursday, June 28, 2012

Belviq - Best Diet Drug Ever?

New Drug Approved For Obese And Overweight Americans

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved Belviq (lorcaserin hydrochloride), as an addition to a reduced-calorie diet and exercise, for chronic weight management.

The drug is approved for use in adults with a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or greater (obese), or adults with a BMI of 27 or greater (overweight) and who have at least one weight-related condition such as high blood pressure (hypertension), type 2 diabetes, or high cholesterol (dyslipidemia).

BMI, which measures body fat based on an individual’s weight and height, is used to define the obesity and overweight categories. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than one-third of adults in the United States are obese.

“Obesity threatens the overall well being of patients and is a major public health concern,” said Janet Woodcock, M.D., director of the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. “The approval of this drug, used responsibly in combination with a healthy diet and lifestyle, provides a treatment option for Americans who are obese or are overweight and have at least one weight-related comorbid condition.”

Belviq works by activating the serotonin 2C receptor in the brain. Activation of this receptor may help a person eat less and feel full after eating smaller amounts of food.

The safety and efficacy of Belviq were evaluated in three randomized, placebo-controlled trials that included nearly 8,000 obese and overweight patients, with and without type 2 diabetes, treated for 52 to 104 weeks. All participants received lifestyle modification that consisted of a reduced calorie diet and exercise counseling. Compared with placebo, treatment with Belviq for up to one year was associated with average weight loss ranging from 3 percent to 3.7 percent.

About 47 percent of patients without type 2 diabetes lost at least 5 percent of their body weight compared with about 23 percent of patients treated with placebo. In people with type 2 diabetes, about 38 percent of patients treated with Belviq and 16 percent treated with placebo lost at least 5 percent of their body weight. Belviq treatment was associated with favorable changes in glycemic control in those with type 2 diabetes. 

The approved labeling for Belviq recommends that the drug be discontinued in patients who fail to lose 5 percent of their body weight after 12 weeks of treatment, as these patients are unlikely to achieve clinically meaningful weight loss with continued treatment.

Belviq should not be used during pregnancy. Treatment with Belviq may cause serious side effects, including serotonin syndrome, particularly when taken with certain medicines that increase serotonin levels or activate serotonin receptors. These include, but are not limited to, drugs commonly used to treat depression and migraine. Belviq may also cause disturbances in attention or memory.

In 1997, the weight-loss drugs fenfluramine and dexfenfluramine were withdrawn from the market after evidence emerged that they caused heart valve damage. This effect is assumed to be related to activation of the serotonin 2B receptor on heart tissue. When used at the approved dose of 10 milligrams twice a day, Belviq does not appear to activate the serotonin 2B receptor.

Heart valve function was assessed by echocardiography in nearly 8,000 patients in the Belviq development program. There was no statistically significant difference in the development of FDA-defined valve abnormalities between Belviq and placebo-treated patients. Because preliminary data suggest that the number of serotonin 2B receptors may be increased in patients with congestive heart failure, Belviq should be used with caution in patients with this condition. Belviq has not been studied in patients with serious valvular heart disease.

The drug’s manufacturer will be required to conduct six postmarketing studies, including a long-term cardiovascular outcomes trial to assess the effect of Belviq on the risk for major adverse cardiac events such as heart attack and stroke.

The most common side effects of Belviq in non-diabetic patients are headache, dizziness, fatigue, nausea, dry mouth, and constipation, and in diabetic patients are low blood sugar (hypoglycemia), headache, back pain, cough, and fatigue.

Belviq is manufactured by Arena Pharmaceuticals GmbH of Zofingen, Switzerland, and distributed by Eisai Inc. of Woodcliff Lake, N.J.

Home Sales Slowing?

Only Four Homes Sold This Week 

LABELLE, FL. -- In what appears to be a slowing of home sales locally, only four homes were shown as sold this week, after only a handful in the several months.

The home sales this from June 19 to June 26 in the LaBelle area at an average price of $47,250 included:

1) $20,000 on Barbara St
2) $47,000 on Captain Hendry Dr
3) $15,000 on Mohawk Ave
4)$107,000 on Trader Rd

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Google Announces Nexus7/NexusQ

Spectacular Events At Google I/O 2012 Introduce New $199 Tablet And More

LABELLE, FL. -- Google announced today in San Francisco at the 2012 Google I/O event for Android developers it's new products including the $199 Google tablet called the Nexus 7 and a streaming device for the home, the Nexus Q selling at $299.

The new 7 inch tablet, designed to utilize Google 'Play' video, audio, and e-bool products works on wi-fi, and also can be used as a controller for the Nexus Q, a 25-watt amplifier internet device shaped like a small globe to stream video and audio by wi-fi to speakers and video monitors in the home. Friends with the new Google tablet device can share their video and music over the system seamlessly, making music and video sharing a "social" event, says Google.

Google introduced it's $1,500 wearable computer "Glass" through a spectacular live streaming Google Hangout On Air showing skydivers bailing out of a blimp above the Moscone Convention Center, wearing the computer eye glass device, filming the live video, landing on the roof.

The "Glass" device was handed off to stunt bicyclists who then delivered it to a rappeller team who then descended down the side of the convention center handing off to a bicyclist who sped through the convention center to deliver it to the presenter on stage.

The $1,500 "wearable computer" is being made available only to the developers at the convention, for delivery at the beginning of 2013.

The attendees at the convention were given free Android phones, the new Nexus 7 tablet and the Nexus Q device.

The entire even is being broadcast live from June 27-30. Click on the video above to see the live events, parties and concerts.

(Above: Google I/O 2012 live events as new announcements and events take place in San Francisco. Click 'Google I/O' in upper right of video screen to see the live events as they happen in San Francisco)

Bonnie Denning Arrested For Felony Fraud

Mug Photo

Two Felony Charges Against Denning

LABELLE, FL. -- Bonnie Michelle Denning, aka Bonnie Denning-Royal, 39 from LaBelle was arrested June 26, 2012 for allegedly embezzling nearly $800,000 reportedly from a Lehigh Acres company, Easy Picker Golf Products.

She is charged with 1st degree larceny and obtaining property by fraud or swindle. Bond was set at $30,000 on each charge and she was bonded out of the Lee County Jail within three hours of her 3:30 p.m. arrest Tuesday afternoon.

She has a current Certified Public Account license with the State of Florida, and a current but inactive real estate license. She has an expired, inactive real estate appraiser license.

Denning lives in Alva at 18120 Riverchase Court with Derik Royal. Bonnie was involved with a number of organizations in LaBelle over the years.

Update: The Lee County Sheriff's office has re-arrested Denning on June 28 on apparent additional charges of larceny and obtaining property by fraud or swindle. Bond is set at $30,00 on each charge and she remains in custody at the jail. A hearing is set for July 2 at 8:30 a.m.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Illegal Fireworks Turning Kids Into Zombies?

Be safe while celebrating the Fourth of July - Use legal products 

LABELLE, FL. -- The Fourth of July is a time for celebration across the country and fireworks are a crowd favorite each year.  While fireworks can be fun to watch, they can also be very dangerous when used illegally in home settings, and providing bad safety examples to children watching who may want to imitate the behavior of adults.

Every year an estimated 3,500 children ages 15 and under suffer injuries involving fireworks with most of these injuries occurring from the middle of June until the middle of July.  Children and teenagers are the most likely people to be injured as a result of consumer fireworks. Adults provide a poor example to their children when using illegal fireworks, as well as causing possible injury to their children and accidental fire dangers.

According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, approximately 40 percent of the people injured by fireworks were under the age of 15.  Each year in Florida, nearly 60 children ages 15 and under go to the hospital for injuries involving fireworks.

Everyone should remember that fireworks, including sparkers and flares, can cause serious burns as well as blast injuries that can permanently impair vision and hearing. Every year there are serious injuries to children playing with fireworks at home.

"The safest way to enjoy fireworks is to watch them at a community event where professionals handle them," says Pat Dobbins, Administrator for the Hendry and Glades County Health Departments. 

The United States Fire Administration reminds everyone that sparklers can reach 2,000° Fahrenheit- hot enough to melt some metals. Do not allow kids to pick up pieces of fireworks after an event. Some may still be ignited and can explode at any time.

Consumer Fireworks Are Illegal In Florida

Florida laws prohibit the use of fireworks by the public, except for sparklers. Using any device that explodes or shoots in the air is illegal.

Firework vendors selling exploding fireworks avoid being prosecuted by getting buyers to sign a statement that the fireworks are to be used for legal purposes. The signed statement makes buyers lie about the use of the products, making the purchaser liable for providing a false statement, but keeping the business out of trouble with law enforcement. Beware of signing a false statement to purchase exploding fireworks.

Consumers who purchase legal fireworks (none are legal in Florida) are urged to take these safety steps:

Never allow young children to play with or ignite fireworks.
Avoid buying fireworks that are packaged in brown paper because this is often a sign that the fireworks were made for professional displays and that they could pose a danger to consumers.
Always have an adult supervise fireworks activities. Parents don't realize that young children suffer injuries from sparklers. Sparklers burn at temperatures of about 2,000 degrees - hot enough to melt some metals.
Never place any part of your body directly over a fireworks device when lighting the fuse. Back up to a safe distance immediately after lighting fireworks.
Never try to re-light or pick up fireworks that have not ignited fully.
Never point or throw fireworks at another person.
Keep a bucket of water or a garden hose handy in case of fire or other mishap.
Light fireworks one at a time, then move back quickly.
Never carry fireworks in a pocket or shoot them off in metal or glass containers.
After fireworks complete their burning, douse the spent device with plenty of water from a bucket or hose before discarding it to prevent a trash fire.
Make sure fireworks are legal in your area before buying or using them (exploding or shooting products are not legal in Florida)

Never assume that a fireworks device is safe based on its size and never allow young children to play with or light fireworks. By knowing the dangers of all types of fireworks, consumers can prevent tragedies.

Clewiston Police Report DUIs Up

Clewiston Attacks Driving Under The Influence
CLEWISTON, FL. -- Clewiston Police Chief Don Gutshall reports DUI’s are trending up a bit once again and the chief say the department will refocus on overnight traffic again for "a few weeks to try and stem that problem."

Gutshall says "Despite the arrest of four suspects for burglary related offenses last week, we still had a couple more reported this week. CID and Patrol are working diligently on the issue."

Truck parking in the city has also been a recurring problem and Road  Patrol has responded by stepping up
it's truck parking enforcement.

A synopsis of the week’s Clewiston Law Enforcement activity:

922 Commercial / Residential Security Checks
478 Complaints Investigated
7 Criminal Arrests Made
42 Red Light Tickets Issued
17 Traffic Citations Issued
5 City Ordinance Violations issued
87 Merchant Escorts Provided
13 Alarms Responded To
4 Traffic Accidents Investigated

Monday, June 25, 2012

National HIV Testing Day

LABELLE, FL. -- The Hendry/Glades Health Department will be giving a free HIV test to anyone at all locations this week in LaBelle, Moore Haven, and Clewiston.

Gas Prices Low Enough?

LABELLE, FL. -- Average retail gasoline prices in Florida have fallen 6.7 cents per gallon in the past week, averaging $3.24/g yesterday. This compares with the national average that has fallen 7.9 cents per gallon in the last week to $3.45/g, according to gasoline price website

Prices were $3.45 in Hendry county on average, except at Circle K on South SR29 which was at $3.29. Lehigh's Citgo in Lee county is at $3.24.

Including the change in gas prices in Florida during the past week, prices yesterday were 27.8 cents per gallon lower than the same day one year ago and are 23.2 cents per gallon lower than a month ago. The national average has decreased 21.7 cents per gallon during the last month and stands 14.0 cents per gallon lower than this day one year ago.

"The national average has now dropped to its lowest level since February 4," said Senior Petroleum Analyst Patrick DeHaan. "Gasoline can be found as cheap as $2.73 per gallon today in Taylors, SC. While this certainly isn't going to be the price of every station, a majority of gasoline outlets are featuring prices that have come down significantly in the last month, similar to that of the sentiment of Chicago Cubs fans," DeHaan said.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Hendry-Glades Obituaries

Sandra Elaine Jones, age 73, of Franklin, NC passed away Thursday, June 21, 2012. Born in Hendry County, FL she was the daughter of the late Henry Cecil and Anna Mae Dupuis Jones. She was married to Wendell Jones for 52 years. She was a 1957 graduate of Clewiston High School; a secretary and bookkeeper for U.S. Sugar Company for 23 years, and worked for Hendry County Florida School System as a bus driver and teacher's assistant. She attended Prentiss Baptist Church.

In addition to her husband, Mrs. Jones is survived by one daughter, Julie Jones Follis of Maryville, TN, two sisters, Claire Vaughn and Cecile Watson, both of Highlands, NC, one brother, K. S. "Butch" Jones of Moore Haven, FL and two grandchildren, Jordan and Jayme Follis.
Funeral Services will be held Tuesday June 26, 2012 at 10:00 AM at Akin-Davis Funeral Home in Clewiston. The Family will recieve friends from 6:00 to 8:00 PM Monday June 25, 2012 at Akin-Davis Funeral Home. Pallbearers will be Mark Deitz, John Perry, Rick Jones, Rick Shearer, Marty Jones and Raymond Coots.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Mortgage Funding Help For Homeowners

Behind On Mortgage? Unemployed? Here's Help
LABELLE, FL. -- The federal government has allocated funding to help pay the mortgages of qualified homeowners who are unemployed or underemployed through no fault of their own. The Florida Hardest Hit (HHF) program aims to assist qualified Florida homeowners by providing mortgage assistance for up to 12 months (capped at $24,000), or until the homeowner finds adequate employment to resume paying the mortgage (whichever comes first) with up to $18,000 available to reinstate a delinquent first mortgage prior to payments being made. 

Additionally, for a homeowner who is recovering from unemployment/underemployment, up to $25,000 is available as a one-time payment to reinstate a delinquent first mortgage.

HHF assistance is paid directly to the loan servicer/lender for those homeowners deemed eligible to participate in the program. 

Okeechobee Non-Profit Housing Inc. is an approved agency and helps residents in the Lake Okeechobee region including Hendry county.

To find out if you qualify for assistance, please visit the HHF official website at to review eligibility criteria and to apply. Please use Referral Code 85087 when completing your application to ensure you are assigned to Okeechobee Non Profit Housing, Inc. After reviewing HHF program benefits/guidelines and eligibility criteria on the official HHF website, you may contact us for a pre-screening at (863) 467-5525 or by fax at (863) 467-5513 or send an email to

For further questions, contact the Hardest-Hit Toll-Free Information line at 1-(877) 863-5244, Monday-Friday, 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. or you may call our office. The HHF Program is scheduled to run for the next four years. ONPHI is approved to assist families in Okeechobee, Highlands, Hendry, Martin, Port St. Lucie, and Indian River Counties.

Friday, June 22, 2012

You Can Make A Difference - Healthy Habits

How To Choose Healthy Behaviors

LABELLE, FL. -- Each of us has a major role to play in the quality of our health. According to the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, your health outcomes are determined by the following:

10 percent medical care (which includes dental)
20 percent environment
20 percent genetic
50 percent based on healthy behaviors
Specifically, those healthy behaviors include:
Eating a healthy diet. Choose more fresh fruits, vegetables and whole grains.
Exercise. You don't need to be a long distance runner to get the healthy benefits. A good walk every day will do!
Don't use tobacco. The United States has reduced tobacco use by significant proportions, but death rates from the effects of tobacco use are still too high.
Limit your alcohol intake.
Avoid substance abuse in all forms! (Don’t drink, don’t use tobacco, don’t use illegal drugs, and don’t overuse prescription drugs)
Get enough rest. Too much rest or too little rest can often indicate other issues such as depression.
Avoid risky behaviors. (Always think safety!...Wear a seatbelt, use a condom during sex, wear a helmet while riding a bike)
Decrease your stress levels. (Take your pet for a walk, read a book, relax with a friend, do something that makes you feel happy!)
Make regular visits to your healthcare provider. Sometimes they can spot health issues before they become a major problem.

-From Hendry-Glades Health Department, Pat Dobbins, Administrator

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Got A Teen Driver? Here's How To Keep Them Safe

The CDC And American Academy of Pediatrics have published a "Parent-Teen Driving" agreement that might be useful for parents of teenage drivers.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Hendry-Glades Obituaries

Charles William Kuehne, age 80, of LaBellepassed away June 16, 2012 in Palmdale, Florida. He was born Jan. 1, 1932 in Rochester, NY, to the late Charles Alexander Kuehne and the late Rose Mae (Bence) Kuehne.

 Charles was a former, longtime resident of Silver Spring, MD. He was a veteran of the US Navy. After he served in the Navy, he graduated from Clarkson College, Pottsdam, NY with a degree in Physics and then worked as an engineer for the Naval Surface Weapons Center in Silver Spring, MD. He married Veronica Jane Honsinger Nov. 26, 1959. Charles was a private pilot and loved flying, boating and traveled throughout the United States.

Survivors include his wife of 53 years: Veronica Jane (Honsinger) Kuehne, sons: Charles Clayton Kuehne of Danville, GA and Mark William (Stacey) Kuehne of Mortons Gap, KY daughters: Jan Marie (Rockne) Osterhoudt of Billings, MT, Sue Ann (Claude Jr.) Ford of Waldorf, MD, brother: Robert Louis (Marie) Kuehne of Frederick, MD, sister in law, Betty Kuehne (Fred) of Albuquerque, NM, six grandchildren, four step grandchildren, 2 great grandchildren He was preceded in death by his brothers: William J. Kuehne (Kay) and Frederick Kuehne.

A celebration of life will be held Friday, June 22, 2012 at 3:00 pm at Akin-Davis Funeral Home, LaBelle with Robert Kuehne officiating. Cremation Arrangements by Akin-Davis Funeral Home.

Daytona Speedway Grandstand Now Smoke-Free

Daytona Goes "Smoke-Free" Thanks To SWAT Kids

DAYTONA, Fla. – Teens from across Northeast Florida came together today to recognize Daytona International Speedway for its bold move to make the speedway’s grandstands smoke-free. The teens from 21 surrounding counties are part of Students Working against Tobacco (SWAT). They also challenged other sporting and entertainment venues in the state to follow the example set by the speedway and protect more Floridians and visitors from secondhand smoke.

The SWAT members, along with NASCAR driver Jeffrey Earnhardt, the Volusia County Health Department, and representatives from Daytona International Speedway held a press conference outside of the Gate 8 Grandstand Entrance of the speedway on Tuesday, June 19 at 2 p.m.

“I’m proud that leading race organizations like Daytona are protecting our fans from tobacco smoke and are showing young fans that smoking is no longer acceptable,” said NASCAR driver and Tobacco Free Florida spokesperson Jeffrey Earnhardt. “Families see drivers and venues like Daytona as legendary and this sends a healthy message to race fans.”

The grandstands of Florida’s prestigious and historic sporting venue will officially be smoke-free starting with the Subway Jalapeño 250 Powered By Coca-Cola on Friday night, July 6.

Secondhand smoke contains a deadly mix of more than 7,000 chemicals, hundreds of which are toxic and 69 that can cause cancer.Each year, nearly 50,000 non-smoking Americans die from a disease primarily caused from exposure to secondhand smoke.

Secondhand smoke is especially harmful to children and adults who suffer from asthma as it can trigger a severe attack. In Florida, 1.47 million children and adults are diagnosed with asthma.

Aside from protecting race fans and speedway employees from the dangers of secondhand smoke, the smoking ban at the Daytona International Speedway is a monumental step against tobacco in the sport of racing. Stock car racing has a long and storied history with tobacco that includes years of sponsorships and the highly visible use of tobacco by drivers, their racing teams and fans alike.

Florida Rolls Out Free Guide For Seniors

Request Guide Through Resource Center
Florida has something new specifically designed for aging drivers. The Florida Guide for Aging Drivers is a handy book available at no cost to senior drivers, compliments of the Florida Safe Mobility for Life Coalition. The Coalition, a group comprised of professionals from 28 organizations, created the guide to give aging drivers a comprehensive resource with the most up-to-date information available.

Users will find safe driving tips, licensing information, lists of resources, and community contacts for every county in the state. Basically, the guide offers just about everything an aging driver needs to be more proactive about staying safe on the road. This book compliments the website and is just the right size for the car’s glove box and available through the:

Safe Mobility for Life Resource Center, 636 West Call Street, Tallahassee, FL 32306

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

K2 And Spice Synthetic Drugs Banned


The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) today commended House and Senate negotiators for agreeing on legislation to control 26 synthetic drugs under the Controlled Substances Act. These drugs include those commonly found in products marketed as “K2” and “Spice.”

The addition of these chemicals to Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act will be included as part of S. 3187, the Food and Drug Administration Safety and Innovation Act. Schedule I substances are those with a high potential for abuse; have no medical use in treatment in the United States; and lack an accepted safety for use of the drug.

In addition to scheduling the 26 drugs, the new law would double the length of time a substance may be temporarily placed in schedule I (from 18 to 36 months). In addition to explicitly naming 26 substances, the legislation creates a new definition for “cannabamimetic agents,” creating criteria by which similar chemical compounds are controlled.

In recent years, a growing number of dangerous products have been introduced into the U.S. marketplace. Products labeled as “herbal incense” have become especially popular, especially among teens and young adults. These products consist of plant material laced with synthetic cannabinoids which, when smoked, mimic the delirious effects of THC, the psychoactive ingredient of marijuana. According to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, more than 100 such substances have been synthesized and identified to date. DEA has used its emergency scheduling authority to place in schedule I several of these harmful chemicals.

Newly developed drugs, particularly from the “2C family” (dimethoxyphenethylamines), are generally referred to as synthetic psychedelic/hallucinogens. 2C-E caused the recent death of a 19 year-old in Minnesota.

The substances added to Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act also include 9 different 2C chemicals, and 15 different synthetic cannabanoids.

The American Association of Poison Control Centers reported that they received 6,959 calls related to synthetic marijuana in 2011, up from 2,906 in 2010.

Mail Problems In Fort Denaud?

Is It 'LaBelle' Or 'Fort Denaud' - Residents Ask

LABELLE, FL. -- Robin A. McLean E-911 Coordinator for Hendry county, Florida says she has received numerous requests from residents since 2006 for an explanation of why the mailing address changed from LaBelle to Fort Denaud for homes in the historical area west of LaBelle.

McLean explains Fort Denaud, a neighborhood west of the city of LaBelle is not an incorporated area but has been recognized as an historical area, and in 2006 a group of residents petitioned to have a Zip Code assigned to the historical area of Fort Denaud.

Fort Denaud could not be assigned a new Zip Code because it was not fiscally responsible to build another Post Office. USPS has sought to reduce rather to enlarge the number of post offices.

McLean explains the only purpose of a Zip Code system is to facilitate the efficient and orderly delivery of the mail. However the Zip Code is also used by non-delivery entities as a geographic locator that are unrelated to the delivery of mail. Zip Codes are not based on political jurisdiction boundaries. Zip Codes are based on the location of the delivery post office.

However, a compromise solution was sought. USPS did allow the alternate city name of Fort Denaud to be used in the last line of the address while not changing the Zip Code. USPS sorting only pays attention to the last two lines of an address; Full street address, City, State and Zip.

Either way, USPS will deliver to the street address regardless if Fort Denaud or LaBelle is used in the city name, says McLean.

Help For Veterans - Education Stipends

Veteran Training Benefits

There is still time to apply for the Veterans Retraining Assistance Program (VRAP), but don't delay. Almost 20,000 of the 45,000 slots for this fiscal year have already been applied for.

The VRAP program is a joint effort by the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Department of Labor to offer additional educational and/or training benefits to unemployed Veterans 35 to 60 years old that do not have any remaining GI Bill benefits. If qualified, you may be eligible to receive up to 12 months of Montgomery GI benefits ($1,473/mo) leading to an Associates Degree or certification for a high demand occupation.

Apply online before all the openings are gone! Visit VOW to learn more about the program and to apply now. To complete the application you will need to know your direct deposit information (bank routing number and account number), the name and location of your school, the program you wish to pursue, and the high demand occupation you are training towards.

If you have further questions please visit our Customer Help page where you can read our FAQs about the VRAP program or submit a question to the customer service staff.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Hendry Two Truck Crash

Truck Hood Pops Open

CLEWISTON, FL. -- Norbeto Rene Diaz, 60 of Hollywood, Fl driving a 2011 Chevy 3500 truck and Shawn Leroy Parrish, 37 of Arcadia, Florida driving a Ford F250 truck collided about 1:20 p.m. Monday on US27 near County Road 720 in Hendry County.

Diaz was traveling east on US 27 in the outside lane while Parrish was traveling east on US 27 in the outside lane. According to a witness, Diaz changed lanes to the inside lane and began to pass Parrish.

Diaz's hood popped up obstructing his view and he failed to pull over and lost control and as a result struck Parrish's vehicle rear left side with the front right side causing Parrish to lose control and rotate counter clockwise through the eastbound lanes into the grassy median.

After entering the median, Parrish's vehicle overturned and traveled through the median coming to final rest upside down on it's roof partially occupying the westbound inside lane and grassy median facing northwest.

Diaz's vehicle was driven to a controlled stop in the eastbound inside lane facing northeast.

Parrish was taken to Hendry Regional Hospital with minor injuries.

Governor Plays Cowboy For Day

Rick Scott Puts On Cowboy Duds

Okeechobee, Fla. – Continuing his focus on job creation and promoting Florida’s agriculture industry, Governor Rick Scott spent his tenth ‘Let’s Get to Work’ Day as a ranch hand with the Williamson Cattle Company in Okeechobee. 

Saddling his horse around 7 a.m., Governor Scott began the day rounding up cattle from some of the operation’s roughly 10,000 acres and herding them into cow pens. He helped select cattle to be sold at market later in the day, as well as weighed and administered de-worming medicine to calves. Before breaking for a lunch of barbecued beef brisket, the Governor assisted with building and mending fences.

During the afternoon, Governor Scott helped take the selected cattle to the Okeechobee Livestock Market, which has been owned and operated by the Clemons family for three generations. While at the largest livestock market in Florida, the Governor observed the auction and sale of cattle while meeting other ranchers from the area.

Later, back at the Williamson ranch, he spent the afternoon assisting with disking pastureland with equipment pulled by a tractor and learning about center-pivot irrigation. He also hauled and unloaded mineral nutrients for cattle and rotated cattle from one pasture to another.

According to the Florida Cattlemen’s Association, Florida's cattle industry is the 11th largest in the United States with just over one million beef cows. The cattle industry supports a vast network of associated businesses, including feed companies, heavy machinery corporations and fertilizer manufacturers. 

The Williamson Cattle Company received environmental leadership awards from the Florida Department of Agriculture in 2003 and from the National Cattlemen's Beef Association in 2004.

About Florida Ranching

(Source: Florida Cattlemen’s Association)

· Florida is in the top 11 states for beef cows, and cattle ranching has a $4-billion economic impact on the state’s economy.

· Florida has approximately a dozen of the largest cattle ranches, in terms of the number of cows, in the country. They are primarily cow-calf operations that produce 750,000 to 800,000 head of feeder calves a year.

· These calves are shipped via truck, primarily to Texas, Kansas, Nebraska, Colorado, Oklahoma and Iowa.

· Florida’s ranching industry consists of approximately 16,000 family-owned farms that have been in business for many generations. The first cattle in the United States arrived in Florida in 1521.

· At the present time, Florida has approximately 1.7 million head of beef cattle grazing on approximately 6.5 million acres throughout the state.

Hendry Sheriff Candidates' Surprising Backgrounds

Six Candidates Have 'Clean Records' To 'Not So Much'

LABELLE, FL. -- The six candidates for Hendry Sheriff have one thing in common, a desire to get the top county law enforcement job at the November elections. But a check of the law enforcement work history for each shows some interesting differences among the six candidates for Hendry Sheriff.

Mark R. Chamberlain, 47 has been with the Palm Beach Sheriff's office since November 1, 1985, according to FDLE and Sheriff's office records.

Matthew A. Beatty, 46 was a Hendry County auxiliary deputy from September 25, 1982 to November 2, 1988 then began work as a Policeman with the Clewiston Police Department July 7, 2010.

Hendry Sheriff Steven H. Whidden, 40, youngest of the candidates, began service with the Hendry Sheriff's office November 8, 1999 and left on March 11, 2005. He joined the Clewiston Police March 17, 2005 and left there September 8, 2008. He came back to the Hendry Sheriff's office January 6, 2009.

Raymond A. Van Houten, 50 was with the Lake Worth Police Department from October 19, 1987 to July 16, 1988. He went to the Seminole Police Department in Pinellas county November 27, 1991 and left January 7, 1996. On March 1, 1997 he went to the Cape Coral Police Department retiring from there August 29, 2002. He quickly joined the Glades County Sheriff's office September 1, 2002 and left on March 17, 2003 on an "extended leave of absence" and rejoined October 27, 2003 and left again October 6, 2005. He joined the Lee County Sheriff's office October 10, 2005.

Steven Maldonado, 48 joined the Riviera Beach Police Department January 24, 1994 working part-time, and then full-time on November 6, 1994. He left February 9, 1997. He went to the Pahokee Police Department December 13, 2000 part-time and left after three weeks on January 4, 2001. He worked for the Hendry Sheriff beginning January 3, 2001 until December 31, 2004.

Note: An error appeared in the previous story, which it appears a different "Steven Maldonado" from Hendry county was located. We apologize for the error.

Maldonado had been accused of using excess force as a police officer in Hendry county during a shooting, with a case opened February 28, 2005. The case was cleared and charges dismissed April 13, 2006 with no discipline imposed. On October 17, 1996 he was accused of assault and later the charge was dismissed and the case closed June 27, 1997 with a "letter of guidance" issued and no disciplinary action taken.

Eliberto Carmona, 59 and the oldest of the candidates, began with the Hendry Sheriff June 10, 1982 as an auxiliary deputy and then became a full-time correctional officer December 6, 1982 but failed to complete basic recruit training and left January 19, 1983. He was re-hired June 21, 1983 as a correctional officer and on October 8, 1984 as a part-time deputy and became a full-time deputy January 22, 1986. He left January 2, 2001. He joined the Pahokee Police Department April 16, 2001 and left five weeks later on May 25, 2001.

Carmona was arrested in Hendry county on February 16, 1998 for battery. The case was dropped two weeks later. A temporary injunction was filed against him by his wife February 19, 1998 and dismissed a week later. Court records show he was divorced April 16, 2001 the same day he started work at the Pahokee Police Department.

Court records show a suggestion of bankruptcy was filed at the Hendry courthouse July 2005.

He started back with the Hendry Sheriff February 14, 2005 and left January 6, 2009. He joined the Okeechobee Sheriff's Office February 1, 2009.

Gas Price Falls 1% Per Week

Price Still Falling - Hendry/Glades Still High

LABELLE, FL, -- Average retail gasoline prices in Florida have fallen 3.8 cents per gallon in the past week, averaging $3.30/g yesterday. This compares with the national average that has fallen 3.2 cents per gallon in the last week to $3.53/g, according to gasoline price website

Prices in Hendry/Glades counties still remain well above Florida averages at $3.48 yesterday.

Including the change in gas prices in Florida during the past week, prices yesterday were 27.3 cents per gallon lower than the same day one year ago and are 24.3 cents per gallon lower than a month ago. The national average has decreased 17.6 cents per gallon during the last month and stands 12.6 cents per gallon lower than this day one year ago.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Dad Was Not A Captain Of Industry

by T.W. Bill Neville

My Father would have been one hundred and twelve years old in November of 2012, but he only made it to age 74, passing on in 1974. Although that is 38 years ago, it seems like he has never left me and my two brothers, now down to one since my next oldest died in 2008.

My Dad was not a captain of industry, or a world traveler, or a "bon vivant", he was a devoted husband and Father who got up every day and went out and punched a clock in order to provide for his family. I now know we were poor, but everybody we knew was poor, so it never was an issue, since he put food in our bellies, clothes on our backs, and a roof over our heads. Not once did I ever hear him speak of envy, regret or hopelessness and "going" on the County dole.

Strange as it may seem, he drew deep inner strength from of all people Mahatma Gandhi's writings and professed philosophies of life. I still have one of his most treasured teachings from Gandhi, and with your indulgence I would like to present it here in memory of my Father, Thomas F. Neville(1900/1974.)

GANDHI'S "Seven Dangers to Virtue": !. "Wealth without work." 2. "Pleasure without conscience." 3. "Knowledge without character." 4. "Business without ethics." 5. "Science without ethics." 6. "Religion without sacrifice." 7. "Politics without principle."

And as my Dad would have said, "Bill, you will find that these dangers, as simply put as they are, can and will, if exercised, define you as a person your entire life." I Iike to think that I have not disappointed him as I remember him again on this Fathers Day, 2012.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Hendry-Glades Obituaries

Rafaela Garcia, age 94, of LaBelle passed away June 9, 2012 in LaBelle. Rafaela was born June 12, 1917 in Mexico, the daughter of the late Francisco Galvan and the late Maria Hernandez.

She is survived by sons: Ricardo, Pedro, Gustavo, and Salvador, daughters: Rosa, Elvita and Concepcion, brothers: Ruben and Wilfredo sister: Consueslo, thirty-four grandchildren, many great-grandchildren and many great-great grandchildren. 

The funeral service was held 4:00 pm, Wed. June 13, 2012 at Akin-Davis Funeral Home in LaBelle with Ben McGowan officiating. Interment followed at Fort Denaud Cemetery in LaBelle.

American Legion Celebrates Flag Day

 Flag End Of Life Ceremony Tonight
Untitled-1.gifLABELLE, FL. -- The LaBelle American Legion will celebrate Flag Day, June 14th with ceremonies at the Legion Post at 6 p.m. The Legion invites everyone to bring worn, torn or tattered flags to the ceremony, to be honored and given the official "End of Life" ceremony.

Flag Day falls within National Flag Week. The flag of the United States represents freedom. Americans also reaffirm their belief in liberty and justice, and observe the nation’s unity.

Many people in the United States honor this day by displaying the American flag at homes and public buildings. Organizations such as The National Flag Day Foundation are actively involved in coordinating activities centered on the event and keeping the flag’s traditions alive. Following Flag Day is Honor America Days, a 21-day period through to Independence Day (July 4) to honor America. During this period, people hold public gatherings & activities to celebrate and honor the nation.

On June 14, 1777, the Continental Congress replaced the British symbols of the Grand Union flag with a new design featuring 13 white stars in a circle on a field of blue and 13 red and white stripes – one for each state. Although it is not certain, this flag may have been made by the Philadelphia seamstress Betsy Ross, who was an official flag maker for the Pennsylvania Navy. The number of stars increased as the new states entered the Union, but the number of stripes stopped at 15 & was later returned to 13.

In June 1886 Bernard Cigrand made his first public proposal for the annual observance of the birth of the flag when he wrote an article titled “The Fourteenth of June” in the old Chicago Argus newspaper. Cigrand’s effort to ensure national observance of Flag Day finally came when President Woodrow Wilson issued a proclamation calling for a nationwide observance of the event on June 14, 1916. However, Flag Day did not become official until August 1949, when President Harry Truman signed the legislation and proclaimed June 14 as Flag Day. In 1966, Congress also requested that the President issue annually a proclamation designating the week in which June 14 occurs as National Flag Week.

The President is requested to issue a proclamation each year to: call on government officials in the USA to display the flag of the United States on all government buildings on Flag Day; and to urge US residents to observe Flag Day as the anniversary of the adoption on June 14, 1777, by the Continental Congress of the Stars and Stripes as the official flag of the United States.

The American flag, also nicknamed as “Old Glory” or “star-spangled banner”, has changed designs over the centuries. It consists of 13 equal horizontal stripes of red (top and bottom) alternating with white, with a blue rectangle in the canton bearing 50 small, white, five-pointed stars. Each of the 50 stars represent the 50 states in the United States and the 13 stripes represent the original 13 colonies that became the first states in the Union.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Feds Sue Florida Over Voter Lists

Justice Department Files Lawsuit Against Florida Alleging Violations of the National Voter Registration Act
WASHINGTON – The Department of Justice announced today that it has filed a lawsuit against the state of Florida and the Florida Secretary of State in his official capacity alleging that the state has violated its obligations under Section 8 of the National Voter Registration Act of 1993 (NVRA).

The complaint, filed today in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida, alleges that Florida has violated the NVRA by conducting a systematic program to purge voters from its voter registration rolls within the 90-day quiet period before an election for federal office established by the law. In addition, the complaint alleges that Florida’s use of inaccurate and unreliable voter verification procedures violates the requirement in Section 8 of the NVRA that any such program be uniform and nondiscriminatory.

“The Department of Justice has an overriding interest in protecting the rights of eligible citizens to register and vote free from unlawful burdens, while at the same time ensuring that ineligible persons do not register and vote in federal elections in violation of the law,” said Thomas E. Perez, Assistant Attorney General for the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division. “The department is committed to enforcing the National Voter Registration Act so that these objectives are met.”

The lawsuit seeks a court order declaring that the defendants have failed to comply with the requirements of Section 8 of the NVRA, and enjoining Florida from taking any further steps in connection with this list purge program.

“Congress enacted the NVRA against a historical backdrop in this country in which purge programs initiated close to elections prevented and deterred eligible citizens from casting ballots,” said Assistant Attorney General Perez. “The 90-day quiet period in the NVRA protects eligible voters from being dropped from the rolls right before an election. It appears that Florida has undertaken a new program for voter removal within this 90-day period that has critical imperfections, which lead to errors that harm and confuse eligible voters.”

Rezoning Fails For Armboz Race Facility In Glades

Applicant's Application For Land Use Change Fails

MOORE HAVEN, FL. -- An application to change the land use of a proposed Glades County "automobile club" that would include race track facilities for sports cars was put in the slow lane Tuesday in Moore Haven.

Armboz, Inc., owner of the proposed Driving Club of Port LaBelle has filed numerous applications to change the use of the now agricultural land on the Hendry and Glades county border.

The Motion to Approve the land owner's application failed to pass by a 2 to 3 vote.

After the Tuesday morning meeting of the Glades Commissioners, county commissioner Donna Storter Long said "After considerable discussion of the reasons for the filing of this application to change the future land use of 74 acres in Port LaBelle from Open Use Agriculture to Residential, Commissioner Echols moved to approve with second by Commissioner Beck.

"Addressing the Board supporting the application were the County’s Community Development Director Larry Hilton and Southland Vice President of Development Gerard Ripo.

"Citizens voicing objections included Growth Management Specialist Julianne Thomas of Conservancy of Southwest Florida, environmental scientist Dr. Roger Myers, adjacent property owners Don Carter (by Jack Zorn), Elaine Young, Merlin Briner, and Jack Zorn."

Conservancy Of Southwest Florida Cuts Holes In Applicant's Plan

Ms. Thomas of the Conservancy had delivered to Glades Commission Chairman K.S. "Butch" Jones a letter explaining her objections saying Armboz' "application, as currently written, does not provide the necessary, accurate or complete information which is needed to approve an amendment to the comprehensive plan."

"The applicant is attempting to support this amendment by referencing a future change to the Port LaBelle area.  However, this is incorrect from a procedural standpoint.  A comprehensive plan change cannot be predicated upon a future zoning amendment, but must be supported and found consistent with the comprehensive plan based upon its own merit, regardless of what development may be proposed on the site in the future."

She continued, "Under the existing FLU designation of AG/Open, the maximum development that can occur
on the 74 acres is 4 single family homes (1 DU/20 acres).  Under the proposed FLU designation of RES, the maximum development that can occur on the 74 acres is 518 single family homes (7 DU/’acre).

"By adopting this FLU designation, you are agreeing that it is appropriate to build up to 518 single family homes on these 74 acres.  The applicant has not provided any data or analysis that it is appropriate or even possible for Glades County to provide services for these potential 518 single family homes, or that it would be in Glades County’s best interest to allow an additional 518 single family homes."

Thomas continues with more inconsistencies in the Amboz application: "Page 4 of the application is supposed to address facility capacity analysis.  This application does not do this.  Under the “number of homes added to the water system as a result of this application”, the information provided is “The zoning request approval for 300 units.  There are 375 lots platted within the property boundary and 1,158 allowed based on the Future Land Use Map.”

"This answer doesn’t make any sense.  Based on the maximum density for RES, approval of this amendment means approving 518 single family homes.  Under the current FLU designation, AG/Open, 4 single family homes are allowed.  This means that approval of this map amendment would add 514 homes to the water system.

"The applicant does not acknowledge this addition, nor does the applicant provide data that an additional 514 single family homes can be supported by the Port LaBelle Utility Service (PLUS) for water and sewer."

Thomas added, "Approving the addition of 514 single family home sites in Port LaBelle, an area already
underdeveloped and with excessive platted vacant residential home sites is not development consistent with the capacity of the natural, physical and human resources of the Glades County."  

A change in zoning from single family residential to planned development for the 234 acres property with 222 acres in Glades county is scheduled for a public hearing before the planning and zoning board at the Glades Courthouse on July 10 at 5:05 p.m. and their recommendation will be forwarded to the county commission for a public hearing August 14th at 9 a.m.

Hendry Road Out For Bids - $2.5M A Mile

Want To Build A Road? - Florida Wants Your Bid

LABELLE, FL. -- The Florida Department of Transportation is soliciting bids for the expansion of State Road 80 from the current two lanes to four.  The work is from Birchwood Parkway east about five miles to Dalton Lane.

SR80 is now four lanes from Birchwood Parkway west into Lee County. Eventually the main road through Hendry County will be four lanes to Clewiston. From US27 east to the county line is now four lanes, with only US27 west to Birchwood still two lanes.

It's expected to take 700 days to complete the 5 mile stretch once begun. The state estimates the cost should be $13,520,246.

Presidents Don't Make Laws

Letter To The Editor
This year the candidates for President will spend hundreds of millions of dollars on advertising. One telling us of the heroic things he has done and the other telling us of the miraculous things he will do. Almost everything President Obama takes credit for had to be passed by Congress. The promises made by candidate Romney must be made law by Congress to be fulfilled. The President can only veto a law; he can not pass one.

Congress has the power to address the nation’s problems but Congress may be the nation’s most serious problem. Contact your Representative and Senators and ask them what they are doing about the issues that concern you. Don’t accept promises of future action. If they have not done anything since the last election why should you believe they will take action now? Don’t allow them to continue to fail by voting for them again.

Irving B. Welchons III
Charlotte, NC 28270

Hendry County Arrests 7 In Drug Cases


CLEWISTON, FL. -- The Hendry County Sheriff’s Office Narcotics Unit arrested seven people on drug charges this past week.

Francisco Ramirez, 30 years of age, of Fox Briar Mobile Home Lot 40, Clewiston, Florida was arrested on June 6, 2012 and again on June 7, 2012. Hendry County Narcotic Investigators purchased marijuana from Ramirez.

In addition, Ramirez agreed to purchase 100 Percocet pills from the Undercover Narcotic Investigator for the amount of $200.00. On June 6, 2012 undercover officers met with Ramirez at the Marathon Gas Station located at the Tropical Mart. After Ramirez completed the transaction, Hendry County Deputies arrived on scene and placed Ramirez under arrest.

Ramirez is charged with Delivery of Drugs, Possession of Marijuana, Sale of Marijuana, Sale of Drugs, and Drug Trafficking. He is currently being held in the Hendry County Jail on $190,000.00 bond.

On June 7, Hendry County Deputy Thomas initiated a traffic stop in the area of Georgia Ave. Kaniah Jim, 32 years of age and Angelica Maldonado, 27 years of age both of Clewiston, were placed under arrest after they were found to be in possession of drugs. Jim was charged with Possession of Controlled Substance Without a Prescription and released on $3,500.00 bond. Maldonado was charged with Operating a Motor Vehicle Without a Valid License and Possession of Marijuana. Maldonado was later released on $1,500.00 bond.

On June 4, 2012, Hendry County Deputy M. Thomas stopped Genell Roberts, 32, of 30929 Endas Path, Clewiston. Deputy Thomas had knowledge that Roberts’ driver’s license was for Business Purposes Only. She was charged with Violation of Restriction on Driver’s License. She was later found to be in possession of a Controlled Substance and was charged with Possession of New Legend Drug Without a Prescription, and Introducing Contraband into a Detention Facility. She was later released on $4,500.00 bond.

While conducting undercover patrol on June 4, 19 year old Derrell Odom was arrested on charges of Possession of Marijuana over 20 grams, and Tampering with Evidence. Undercover Investigators witnessed 26 year old Terrence McCray place a plastic bag on the ground behind a parked vehicle in what appeared to be an attempt to conceal it from law enforcement officers. 

After McCray placed it on the ground Investigators then witnessed Odom pick it up. When Odom saw law enforcement, he dropped it back on the ground. Odom later admitted to Narcotic Investigators that he had found it and was going to return it to whomever it belonged to. Odom is currently being held in the Hendry County Jail on $5,000.00 bond. McCray was also arrested and charged with Possession of Marijuana over 20 grams. McCray was later released on $3,500.00 bond.

On June 4, 2012, Hendry County Narcotic Investigators and members of the Hendry County Sheriff’s Office conducted a search warrant at the home of 36 year old Rogelio Villalobo. Investigators arrived at the residence located at 715 Corona Street, Clewiston, Florida and located four individuals inside the residence to include one juvenile.

During the search Investigators and Deputies seized a clear plastic baggie containing eight smaller baggies of suspected cocaine, an additional baggie containing 27 more smaller baggies of suspected cocaine, clear baggie containing a partial brick of cocaine, and miscellaneous drug paraphernalia; numerous firearms, one which was reported stolen from Collier County, an ATV reported stolen from Seminole P.D., and $1,200.00 cash.

Villalobos was arrested and charged with Dealing Stolen Property, Trafficking Cocaine, and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia. Villalobos was released on $76,000.00 bond.

31st Year For LaBelle Free Films

Free Films Once Again For Kids And Adults Each Tuesday

LABELLE, FL. -- It is that time once again in Hendry county. Free movies for the next five weeks. Every summer for the last 31 years the LaBelle Free Film Festival has been giving families the opportunity to enjoy free, good and clean movies.

Every Tuesday two different movies will be shown. Movies at 1:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. are for families with younger children, usually an animated Disney film. The second movie shown at 6:00 p.m. is typically more action oriented targeting families with young teens. Adults are welcome to all movies.

This Tuesday is "Hop" at 1:00 p.m., 3:00 p.m., then at 6:00 p.m. is "John Carter." Others movies being scheduled for coming Tuesdays are: "Happy Feet 2", "Mr. Popper’s Penguins", "Mission- Impossible Ghost Protocol", "Premonition", "Source Code" and "Courageous".

The free film festival is sponsored by community minded businesses and citizens. The film festival is open to one and all. Be sure to come on Tuesday to 123 Fraser Ave, across from Upthegrove Elementary School in LaBelle at LaBelle Assembly of God. The entire church is converted to a movie theater. For more information contact Clifford Avery at 863-675-0900.

New Wildlife Officers Assigned To Glades

New Graduates Assigned To Glades And Okeechobee Counties

MOORE HAVEN, FL. -- The motto for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission’s (FWC) Division of Law Enforcement was on the minds of 22 new officers Friday when they graduated as the FWC’s 18th officer class; "Patrol, Protect, Preserve"

New officers assigned to the Lake Okeechobee region were  Justin W. Miller and Taylor Tison to Glades county, and Jeremy Deweese to Okeechobee county 

At a ceremony at the Florida Public Safety Institute, near Tallahassee, they pledged their efforts to patrol Florida’s lands and waters and protect and preserve its people and resources.

Col. Jim Brown, director of the FWC’s Division of Law Enforcement, mentioned how FWC officers are the first point of contact most people have with the agency.

“This privilege carries great responsibility,” Brown said. “As they interact with the public, I know these new officers will uphold our values: integrity, professionalism, dedication and adaptability.”

As FWC officers, they will patrol Florida’s lands – nearly 54,000 square miles of it – as well as more than 12,000 square miles of water. Due to their jurisdiction and specialized training and equipment, they are often the first to be able to respond to boating accidents, missing boaters and lost campers, hikers and hunters. In 2011, FWC officers saved nearly 900 people during search-and-rescue missions.

“These officers will be protecting the ‘Fishing Capital of the World’ and one of the largest public hunting systems in the country,” said FWC Chairman Kathy Barco, the guest speaker at the ceremony.

The new officers began their training in December. The beginning part of each FWC academy teaches recruits basic law enforcement techniques and skills.

“During the final eight weeks of each academy, we focus on the unique information and skills it takes to be an FWC officer,” Brown said.

The specialized training involves firearms proficiency, wildlife identification, vessel operation, defensive tactics, all-terrain vehicle operation, detection for boating and driving under the influence and a focus on state and federal wildlife, fisheries and environmental laws.

The new officers will spend the next three months with a field-training officer.

Fruits-Vegetables Help Smokers Quit

University Study Says Eat More Fruits And Vegetables
If you're trying to quit smoking, eating more fruits and vegetables may help you quit and stay tobacco-free for longer, according to a new study published online by University at Buffalo public health researchers.

The paper, in the journal Nicotine and Tobacco Research, is the first longitudinal study on the relationship between fruit and vegetable consumption and smoking cessation.

The authors, from UB's School of Public Health and Health Professions, surveyed 1,000 smokers aged 25 and older from around the country, using random-digit dialing telephone interviews. They followed up with the respondents fourteen months later, asking them if they had abstained from tobacco use during the previous month.

"Other studies have taken a snapshot approach, asking smokers and nonsmokers about their diets," says Gary A. Giovino, PhD, chair of the Department of Community Health and Health Behavior at UB. "We knew from our previous work that people who were abstinent from cigarettes for less than six months consumed more fruits and vegetables than those who still smoked. What we didn't know was whether recent quitters increased their fruit and vegetable consumption or if smokers who ate more fruits and vegetables were more likely to quit."

The UB study found that smokers who consumed the most fruit and vegetables were three times more likely to be tobacco-free for at least 30 days at follow-up 14 months later than those consuming the lowest amount of fruits and vegetables. These findings persisted even when adjustments were made to take into account age, gender, race/ethnicity, education, household income and health orientation.

They also found that smokers with higher fruit and vegetable consumption smoked fewer cigarettes per day, waited longer to smoke their first cigarette of the day and scored lower on a common test of nicotine dependence.

"We may have identified a new tool that can help people quit smoking," says Jeffrey P. Haibach, MPH, first author on the paper and graduate research assistant in the UB Department of Community Health and Health Behavior. "Granted, this is just an observational study, but improving one's diet may facilitate quitting."

Several explanations are possible, such as less nicotine dependence for people who consume a lot of fruits and vegetables or the fact that higher fiber consumption from fruits and vegetables make people feel fuller.

"It is also possible that fruits and vegetables give people more of a feeling of satiety or fullness so that they feel less of a need to smoke, since smokers sometimes confuse hunger with an urge to smoke," explains Haibach.

Smokers Like Meats, Caffeinated Drinks, And Alcohol
And unlike some foods which are known to enhance the taste of tobacco, such as meats, caffeinated beverages and alcohol, fruits and vegetables do not enhance the taste of tobacco.

"Foods like fruit and vegetables may actually worsen the taste of cigarettes," says Haibach.

While smoking rates in the U.S. continue to decline, Giovino notes, the rate of that decline has slowed during the past decade or so. "Nineteen percent of Americans still smoke cigarettes, but most of them want to quit," he says.

Haibach adds: "It's possible that an improved diet could be an important item to add to the list of measures to help smokers quit. We certainly need to continue efforts to encourage people to quit and help them succeed, including proven approaches like quitlines, policies such as tobacco tax increases and smoke-free laws, and effective media campaigns."

The UB researchers caution that more research is needed to determine if these findings replicate and if they do, to identify the mechanisms that explain how fruit and vegetable consumption may help smokers quit. They also see a need for research on other dietary components and smoking cessation.

Gregory G. Homish, PhD, assistant professor in the UB Department of Community Health and Health Behavior, is the study's co-author. Funding for the study was provided by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and Legacy®.

Monday, June 11, 2012

NCL Cruise Scam Says 'Final Notice'

Vacation Travel Club Offers 'Complimentary' 8 Day Cruise

LABELLE, FL. -- Letters by the tens of thousands are circulating through the mail offering what appears to be a free "8 day/7 night cruise for 2 adults." Final Notice, Ticket Voucher Enclosed, says the cover of the mailing.

A cruise "boarding pass" is included for what is promised as a cruise with "room, meals, snacks, activities, and entertainment" all included while on board.

Needless to say, if it seems too good to be true, it probably is.

The mailing includes a phone number of 1-877-290-0034 and tracking number. Calling within 48 hours gives you a "gas rebate voucher."  The fine print says 90 days advance notice are required for the cruise, which is not sponsored by Norwegian Cruise Lines.

A 90-minute sales presentation is required where you will be asked to buy into a travel club. You will be responsible for a "fuel supplement" and other charges, air travel, and fees including the infamous "agency fees."

Consumers report the fees required in the offer, more than offset any "complimentary" aspect of this scam. Note that missing on the mailing is any indication of a company name or address. The Postal Permit #3950 is from West Palm Beach, Florida, the only indication of where the company operates.

Recommendation: Any offer you receive where a company name and address is lacking is a warning to beware of a high pressure sales pitch for a very expensive product. Don't fall for mailings that promise a lot, but don't reveal who's offering the deal. and at what cost.

Glades County Candidates Line Up For Election

Unopposed - Judge, Tax Collector, School Board 3, Elections Supervisor

MOORE HAVEN, FL. -- The Glades County Supervisor of Elections has published the final list of candidates for the 2012 elections. Where no opposition is noted the candidate is automatically the winner of that office. The qualifying period for candidates to enter their name ended Friday, June 8.

Listed are phone numbers and email addresses for each candidate. In the past we have seen many candidates fail to answer emails, and even phone calls. You may want to test your politician's credibility and responsiveness.

Final 2012 Glades County Candidates:

Ahern, Robbie NOP School Bd #2 936-117-3173
Allen, Jenny NOP Incumbent School Bd #2 227-6354

Wilson, Geraldine NOP Incumbent School Bd #3 Unopposed 634-6056

Bass, Scott DEM School Superintendent 233-4795
Brown, Janice DEM School Superintendent 946-2585

Jones, K. S. "Butch" DEM Incumbent County Comm #1 946-1616
Griffin, Dennis DEM County Comm #1 946-2980
Pryor, Weston DEM County Comm #1 673-0117

Beck, Paul DEM Incumbent County Comm #3 946-0455
Eley, Cannon REP County Comm #3 228-6981

Giesler, Bob DEM Incumbent County Comm #5 763-3983
Stanley, Tim DEM County Comm #5 763-4383

Brown, Sandra DEM Clerk 946-1279
Humphries, George DEM Clerk 946-0201

Brunetto, Michelle DEM Prop Appraiser 612-0030
McLean, Robin Knight REP Prop Appraiser 239-633-8599
Ward, Lorie DEM Prop Appraiser 946-0213

Jones, Gail DEM Incumbent Tax Collector Unopposed 946-0647

Lundy, Jack NOP Incumbent County Judge Unopposed 946-1699

Whiddon, Holly DEM Incumbent Sup. Of Elections Unopposed 946-6005

Whiddon, Stuart DEM Incumbent Sheriff 946-1366
Wilson, Robert REP Sheriff 227-0315

Free Meals For Kids This Summer

LABELLE, FL. -- Community locations for free breakfasts and lunches for Hendry county children this summer include:

Clewiston High School 
6/11-7/13 7:30-8:00 11:30-12:00

Clewiston Middle School 
6/11-6/29 7:30-8:00 12:00-12:30

Eastside/Westside Cafeteria 
6/11-8/3 7:30-8:15 11:45-12:30

LaBelle High School 
6/11-6/29 7:30-8:00 11:15-11:45

Country Oaks Elementary 
6/11-8/3 7:30-8:00 11:45-12:15

LaBelle Middle School 
6/11-6/29 7:30-8:00 11:15-12:15

Edward Upthegrove Elementary
6/11/-8/3 8:00-8:30 11:00-12:15

Big Smiles Child Care & Early Learning Center
6/11-8/3 8:15-8:45 11:45-12:15

Florida Gas Prices Sliding

Average retail gasoline prices in Florida have fallen in the past week, averaging $3.35/g yesterday. This compares with the national average that has fallen in the last week to $3.56/g, according to gasoline price website

Including the change in gas prices in Florida during the past week, prices yesterday were lower than the same day one year ago and are 27.3 cents per gallon lower than a month ago. The national average has decreased during the last month and stands lower than this day one year ago.

"While price decreases have heated up on the West Coast, such decreases are drying up in other areas- such as the Great Lakes," said Senior Petroleum Analyst Patrick DeHaan. "While current factors still point to some falling gasoline prices in some areas, mainly the West Coast, oil prices haven't continued to shed as much value in the past week. Prices in the past few years have bottomed out in June, we could see a similar situation play out this year," DeHaan said.

Hendry-Glades Obituaries

Harlan Randel Hatfield, age 66, of Clewiston passed away Thursday, June 7, 2012 in Atlantis, FL. Harlan was born March 20, 1946 in Louisiana, MO. He is the son of the late Clyde Woodrow and the late Mary Elizabeth (Akers) Hatfield.

He served in the Air Force from 04/13/1965 to 10/11/1968.

He is survived by son; Randy Hatfield, daughter; Raschell Hatfield-Taunton, brother; Dwight (Janet) Hatfield, grandchildren; Chyanne Wilkerson, Cody Hatfield, Brianna Taunton, Colton Williams, Ely Hatfield and Cordel Hatfield.

The funeral service will be held 11:00 a.m. on Tuesday, June 12, 2012 at Community Presbyterian Church, 407 North Royal Palm Avenue, Clewiston, FL with Rev. Tom Slager officiating. Interment will be in Ridgelawn Cemetery.

Visitation hours will be Monday, June 11 from 06:00-08:00pm at Akin-Davis Funeral Home, 438 E. Sugarland Hwy., Clewiston, FL.

Jorge E. Soto, Sr., age 93, of Clewiston passed away Friday, June 8, 2012 in Lakeland, FL. Jorge was born June 28, 1918 in Bayamo, Cuba. He is the son of the late Francisco and the late Eugenia (Figueredo) Soto.

He came to this country in 1962 escaping Communism to provide a free life for his family. He worked in the sugar industry at Moore Haven Mill and Okeelanta Mill until his retirement at the age of 72. He graduated from the School of Commerce in Bayamo, Cuba with a degree in Accounting.

He was a proud member of the Hendry County Republican Party and assisted in numerous campaigns for many Republicans in the area. He was an avid fan of the Miami Dolphins and his beloved N.Y. Yankees.

He is survived by his wife; Maria J. Soto, six children;Jorge Jr., Maria E., Esperanza, Juan, Mali and Maria J.; sister, Luciola Soto Landrove of Elizabeth, N.J. He leaves behind fourteen grandchildren and eleven great-grandchildren in which he imbued a legacy of life, freedom and love of family.

The family mourns his peaceful passing and rejoices in the sure knowledge that he is in a better place. He led a full life and with his wife of 64 years, raised a strong and loving family, and they invite all to join them in celebrating his life Tuesday, June 12, 2012 at Akin-Davis Funeral Home - Clewiston from 4:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. for the visitation and Wednesday June 13, 2012 at 11:00 a.m. at St. Margaret's Catholic Church for Funeral Mass and burial will follow in the Ridgelawn Cemetery.

Saturday, June 09, 2012

Hendry 2012 Political Candidates

Six Sheriff Candidates Ready Campaigns
Final Qualifying - Scramble For Position 

LABELLE, FL. -- Candidates for Hendry County's local political positions are lining up for the coming November elections now as the final qualifying period ended Friday, June 8.  As usual, the Sheriff and School Board Superintendent offices seem to have the most interest with more than average candidates qualifying.

Six candidates have qualified to run for Sheriff including incumbent Steve Whidden. Four candidates are running for school superintendent, including incumbent Rick Murphy and four for Election Supervisor as Lucretia Strickland retires after many years in the position.

The County Commission seat of Karson Turner is unopposed as is the School Board seat of Dwayne Brown and Sally Berg's seat, so they are automatic winners. No attorney was willing to challenge long time County Judge James Sloan, so he's in again for another term.

Some seats for water districts, hospital board, and Port LaBelle Development district had only one qualifier so those people will automatically win their respective seats as well.

The following Offices will be up for election and as of June 8, the last day for qualifying, have qualified with the Hendry County, Florida Supervisor of Elections.

Included are phone numbers and email addresses as listed by each candidate with the elections office. (In the past we have noted the majority, if not all candidates, don't seem to respond to emails, or return phone calls. Voters might wish to test each candidate's willingness to respond to voter's inquiries.)

Clerk of Circuit Court
*(Dem) Barbara Cox Butler, P O Box 44, Clewiston, FL  33440
Phone: 863-673-0209  email:
(Rep) Larry Wilcoxson, 100 South Hall Street, Ste. A, LaBelle, FL  33935
Phone: 863-812-0962  email:

(Rep) E. Carmona, 1079 Luckey St., LaBelle, FL 33935 phone: 863-673-6029 email:
(Rep) Mark R. Chamberlain, P O Box 1180, Clewiston, FL 33440 phone: 863-983-7844 email:
(Rep) Raymond A. Van Houten, 590 Brittany Lane, LaBelle, FL 33935 email: phone: 863-944-3996
(Dem) Matthew A. Beatty, 410 E. Osceola Ave., Clewiston, FL 33440 email: phone 863-983-5959
(Dem) Steven Maldonado, P O Box 273, LaBelle, FL 33975 phone:863-673-1971
*(Dem) Steve Whidden, 2100 Scott Rd., LaBelle, FL 33935 phone:863-612-0678

Property Appraiser
*(Dem) Phillip L. Pelletier, 1601 Fort Denaud Rd., LaBelle, FL 33935 email: phone: 863-673-3280
(Rep) Kristina A. Kulpa, 1000 G. Road, LaBelle, FL  33935
Phone: 863-675-3302  e-mail:

Tax Collector
*(Dem) Peggy S. Hampton ,P.O. Box 1019, LaBelle, FL  33975
Phone: 239-250-4032  email:
(Rep) Tom Corbitt, 199 Caloosa Estates Dr., LaBelle, FL 33935 Phone: 863-612-0868

Superintendent of Schools
(Rep) Paul Puletti, 110 Hardee St., LaBelle, FL 33935 phone: 863-675-5921
(Rep) Joel Williamson, 140 Evans Rd., LaBelle, FL 33935 phone: 863-675-4098 email:
*(Dem) Richard A. Rick Murphy, 1832 Red Rd., Clewiston, FL 33440 phone: 561-248-8100 email:

Supervisor of Elections
(Rep) Kevin Drummond, 4717 Sandlewood Ln., LaBelle, FL 33935
Phone: 863-234-3480 email:
(Dem) Kim Harris-White, P O Box 661, Felda, FL 33930-0661 phone:863-257-0070 email:
(Dem) Brenda Hoots, 580 N. Hacienda St., Clewiston, FL 33440 Phone: 863-885-1756 email:
(NPA) Rose Raulerson-Mason, 469 Maple Dr., LaBelle, FL 33935
Phone: 863-234-6401 email:

County Judge (Non-partisan)
James D. Sloan, P O Box 1695, LaBelle, FL 33975

County Commission District #1
*(Dem) Janet B. Taylor, P O Box 764, Clewiston, FL  33440
Phone: 863-228-0612  email:
(Dem) Pamela B. Jackson, P O Box 1201, Clewiston, FL 33440
Phone: 863-228-3278 email:

County Commission District #3
*(Rep) Tristan G. Chapman, 405 Live Oak Ln., LaBelle, FL 33935
(Dem) Don Davis, 93 S. Hall St., LaBelle, FL  33935, Phone:  863-234-1581

County Commission District #5
*(Dem)  Karson C. Turner, P.O. Box 1688, Clewiston, FL  33440
Phone: 863-983-4101. email:

School Board District #1 (Non-partisan)
*Dwayne E. Brown P O Box 684, Clewiston, FL  33440

School Board District #2
*Sally Berg, 125 Wilson Rd, LaBelle, FL  33935
Phone (863) 675-2604

School Board District #4 (Nonpartisan)
Stephanie Busin, 429 Royal Palm Ave., Clewiston, FL  33440
Phone 239- 229-6985 email:
John Perry, 105 Myrtle Lane, Clewiston, FL  33440
Phone 863- 677-1333 email:
Cynthia Luevano Potter, 708 W. Avenida del Rio, Clewiston, FL 33440
Phone 863-228-3322  email:

Hendry Hospital Authority District #1
Victor P. Blandford, 333 W. Aztec Ave., Clewiston, FL  33440
Hendry Hospital Authority District #3
John Benkert, 5263 River Blossom Ln., LaBelle, FL  Phone: 863-675-4535
Hendry Hospital Authority District #5
Hugh Dyol Turner, P O Box 1688, Clewiston, FL

Hendry Soil and Water Conservation District Seat #2
James Mabry McCray, 928 Sawgrass St., Clewiston, FL  Phone: 863-902-0037

Hendry Soil and Water Conservation District Seat #4
Robert E. McDaniel, Jr., 33465 CR 833, Clewiston, FL  Phone: 863-202-5473

Port LaBelle Community Development District Seat #2
Port LaBelle Community Development District Seat #4
*Jennifer Daniels Derleth, 7009 Alfa Circle, LaBelle, FL  33935 Phone: 863-673-4934

East County Water Control District Seat #1
*Michael J. Welch, 1923 Golfside Village Dr., Lehigh Acres, FL  33936 Phone: 239-565-8450

East County Water Control District Seat #3
Joseph L. Whalen, 1402 4th St. E, Lehigh Acres, FL 33936 phone: 239-633-9423

East County Water Control District Seat #5
Edward T. Weiner, 20048 Lake Vista Cir., Lehigh Acres, FL 33936 phone: 954-648-5458

Central County Water Control District Seat #2
Miguel A. Solar, 303 Camino Real Blvd, Clewiston, FL 33440 Phone: 954-471-6888
*Jessie Necolettos, Jr., 680 S. Arboleda Street, Clewiston, FL  33440 Phone: 983-6864

Central County Water Control District Seat #4
Billy Haithcock, 545 N. Isora St., Clewiston, FL  863-233-2437
*Charles Bamburg 830 N. Utopia St, Clewiston, FL  33440

City of Clewiston, 3 Seats
Phillip D. Roland, 340 W. Ventura Ave., Clewiston, FL  33440 Phone: 863- 228-3427
Donald W. Hughes, 219 W. Avendia Del Rio, Clewiston, FL  33440 Phone 863- 228-1554 email:
Julio Rodriguez, 602 W. Avenida Del Rio, Clewiston, FL  33440 Phone 863- 228-0687 email:
Jerry Cochrane, 219 Ridgewood Avenue, Clewiston, FL  33440 Phone 863- 983-2650 email:
M. “Mali”  Soto Gardner, 1015 Ponce de Leon Ave., Clewiston, FL 33440 Phone: 863-902-7050  email:
James Bret Nesbitt, 104 Ridgewood Ave., Clewiston, FL  33440 Phone (941) 902-2709 ( Nesbitt has dropped out of the race)

* Incumbent

Friday, June 08, 2012

Glades County Offering Free Meals For Kids

Summer Meals For Kids In Glades
MOORE HAVEN, FL -- Kids in Glades county can join sites across the county for a fun activity and a nutritionally balanced meal every Monday through Thursday all summer long. Meals will be provided to all children regardless of race, color, sex, disability, age or national origin during summer vacation when school breakfasts and lunches are not available. All children 18 years old and younger are eligible for meals and activities at no charge.

The following sites will be participating in the Summer Food Service Program:

Lakeport Community Center
Palmdale Baptist Church
Ortona Community Park – Children’s Building
St. Joseph’s – Moore Haven
St. Theresa’s – Buckhead Ridge
First Missionary Baptist Church – Washington Park
Moore Haven Elem. Cafeteria
West Glades School
***No meals will be served on July 4, 2012 in observance of the Holiday. Sites are open Monday through Thursday.

Hendry-Glades Obituaries

Wanda L. Aumend, age 72, of Clewiston passed away Wednesday, June 6, 2012 in Clewiston, FL. Wanda was born January 7, 1940 in Hi Hat, KY. She is the daughter of the late Arthur Lee and the late Myrtle (Tackett) Cole.

Wanda spent may years working in a nursery working with plants and flowers.

She is survived by her husband; David E. Aumend, brothers; Frank Cole and James Cole and sister; Pearl.

Cremation Arrangements by Akin-Davis Funeral Home - Clewiston

Thursday, June 07, 2012

Governor Visits Hendry-Glades Today

Governor's 'Roundtable' Stops Around The Lake

LABELLE, FL. -- Florida Governor Rick Scott will be making the round today visiting South Florida and the Lake Okeechobee region, including a trip to the Glades County Courthouse in Moore Haven and Roland's Marina in Clewiston.  He's also making stops in Okeechobee and Highlands county. Scott is calling the visits to each county a "Roundtable."

His schedule for today (Thursday, June 7)

Location: Okeechobee County Historic Courthouse
Address: 304 Northwest 2nd Street
Okeechobee, FL

Location: Heartland National Bank
Address: 600 U.S. Highway 27 North
Lake Placid, Florida

Location: Glades County Historic Courthouse
Address: 500 Avenue J Southwest
Moore Haven, FL

Location: Roland and Mary Ann Martin Marina
Address: 920 East Del Monte Avenue
Clewiston, FL

Wednesday, June 06, 2012

Locks Closing On Okeechobee Waterway

Corps to temporarily close locks on Okeechobee Waterway
MOORE HAVEN, FL. -- The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Jacksonville District has announced it will temporarily close two locks along the Okeechobee Waterway in south Florida for repairs.

The Moore Haven Lock will close starting on June 11 to complete installation of the Manatee Protection System (MPS). The MPS is intended to protect endangered manatees that might be swimming in the vicinity of the lock gates. The lock is expected to be closed for about two months while installation is completed.

Concurrently, the Corps also plans to close the St Lucie lock beginning June 18 to undertake emergency repairs on the gates. A recent inspection reve aled the gates at that lock weren’t closing completely due to damage on a seal. The lock is expected to be closed for about two weeks.

The Moore Haven Lock is located on the west side of Lake Okeechobee at the junction of the Caloosahatchee River. It was constructed in 1935 for navigation and flood control purposes. 

The St. Lucie Lock is located along the St. Lucie Canal, about 15 miles upstream from the intersection of the St. Lucie River and the Intracoastal Waterway. It was constructed in 1941 for navigation and flood control purposes. 

The Moore Haven and St Lucie Locks are two of five locks located in the 154-mile Okeechobee Waterway, which allows safe passage of vessels from the Atlantic Ocean near Stuart to the Gulf of Mexico at Fort Myers.

Notices to Navigation have been issued for both closures. An additional Notice to Navigation has also been issued advising boaters of construction activity taking place east of Moore Haven along the Herbert Hoover Dike, which surrounds the lake.

Hit And Run Fatality In Glades County

Driver Sought After Motorcyclist Was Killed

MOORE HAVEN, FL. -- Albert Castro, 27 of Fort Lauderdale, riding a 2004 Honda motorcycle was traveling southbound on State Road 78, about 4:57 a.m. Wednesday, crossing over the Indian River Bridge about 7 miles south of Buckhead Ridge, Florida when on the south side of the bridge, he came upon a deer on the road.

The front center portion of the bike collided with the deer, causing it to overturn onto the roadway.
The deer was propelled toward the southeast where it collided with the guardrail. The motorcycle slid on its side coming to final rest within the center of the southbound lane.  Castro separated from the vehicle and slid across the center lane divider, into the center of the northbound lane.  

A second vehicle, an unidentified dark-colored pick-up truck, was traveling northbound on SR 78.  The front portion of it collided with Castro, propelling him into the outside edge of the northbound lane, resulting in his death.   The truck continued past Castro.  The truck was witnessed turning around in the vicinity of the Indian River Bridge then returning to the scene.  It stopped,  turned around and fled northbound from the scene.  

A third vehicle, a 2005 Toyota white pick-up truck driven by Calvin Grinslade, 60 of Okeechobee, was traveling  southbound on SR 78 prior to the crash and had been passed earlier by the motorcycle.  Grinslade traveled over the Indian River Bridge after Castro struck the deer. The front center portion of the Toyota (and front undercarriage) collided with the motorcycle in the southbound lane of SR 78 and dragged the bike through the center of the southbound lane to final rest.
The unknown second vehicle was described as an unknown year, dark colored pickup truck (possibly black) with dark tinted windows and an American Flag hanging on the antenna. It fled the scene traveling northbound on SR 78.  

The Florida Highway Patrol requests that anybody having information regarding this traffic crash contact Corporal Jeff Rongish at 239-344-1730 Ex. 1192 or CRIMESTOPPERS to remain anonymous.  

Drummond For Hendry Supervisor Of Elections

“Hard worker”, “dedicated”, and “caring of his community” are some of the statements you can hear about Kevin Drummond around Hendry County.

Kevin is currently a candidate for Supervisor of Elections. The Hendry County native cares about the opinions of the county’s residents and wants to hear what you have to say.

Kevin states, “In Hendry County, there are approximately 40,000 residents. Not even half of these residents are registered to vote. I feel that this is unacceptable, and I encourage all residents to become active voting citizens.

I promise to work with our community encouraging all residents to register and cast their votes when the polls begin”. As he makes his way through the area, please feel free to stop and talk to him expressing any possible concerns about voter participation in Hendry County.

Kevin took the initiative to create a new Third Party Organization Campaign entitled “Get Out and Vote”. The movement is a non-partisan organization intended to promot residents to register, cast ballots, and become contributors to the election process.

The “Get Out and Vote” Campaign will be conducted throughout the county at various locations working with local businesses to register residents. Kevin invites Hendry County residents to contact him by phone or email at anytime. He can be reached by phone at: 863-234-3480 and by email at:

He also encourages the public to view his website for updates and information as the election approaches. Kevin reminds us, “Together we can grow. God Bless”.

Paid and approved by Kevin Drummond, Republican Candidate for Supervisor of Elections.

Vote By Mail For Hendry Citizens

How To Sign Up To Vote By Mail
LABELLE, FL. -- With Hendry County consolidating its twenty-three precincts into ten for coming elections this year, there is even more reason for Hendry County voters to sign up for Vote By Mail. 

Precinct 1 in Clewiston already has over 3,000 registered voters, and LaBelle’s Precincts 2 and 3 are fast approaching that number. The wait in line to vote will become longer and longer depending on the number of candidates and issues on the ballot, particularly in hotly contested elections.

The advantages of signing up to Vote By Mail already include saving gas with no driving to a polling place that could be miles out of the way and not having to hunt for a parking spot once there. Voting at home means the voter can leisurely sit at the kitchen table and go over the ballot without feeling rushed or use a computer to research issues and candidates with the ballot in hand if there are unanswered questions. The voter does not have to rush to the polls after a long day at work to make certain he is in line by the time the polls close.

Vote By Mail means never having to miss an election, the voter will get a ballot weeks before Election Day. If the voter decides to actually go to Early Voting or to vote on Election Day, all that needs to be done is take the mail ballot to the polls and surrender it with no questions asked.

Vote By Mail means no questions asked about your name, address, or having the proper photo ID. However, if handwriting has changed for any reason it is always a good idea to re-register to have a current signature on file since signatures are checked. Those annoying political campaign phone calls will stop within a day or two of the Vote By Mail ballot being received at the Elections Office.

There is no better way to make certain your vote is counted than Vote By Mail. All Hendry County voters need to do is call the Elections Office 863-675- 5230 in LaBelle or 863-983-1592 from Clewiston, tell whoever answers they want to sign up for Vote By Mail, and answer a few simple questions.

Tuesday, June 05, 2012

Scammers Claiming Utility Credits To Bills

Multi-State Scam Targets Utility Customers
The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services is warning consumers to be aware of a multi-state scam targeting utility customers. The scam claims that President Obama is providing credits or applying payments to utility bills. 

The scammers contact consumers through posted flyers, social media, texting and or visiting consumers in person. The scammers ask for the consumer’s social security number and then provide a phony federal reserve bank routing number to use to receive the credit or bill payment. 

The routing number is fake and no payments are posted to the consumer’s bill.

Consumers are warned not to provide personal information to strangers who come to your door or in response to unsolicited emails or social media posts. Question anyone who presents themselves as a representative of a utility company and ask for identification before allowing anyone inside your home or onto your property.

For additional information, contact the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services or by calling 1-800-HELP-FLA (435-7352) within Florida, 1-800-FL-AYUDA (352-9832) enEspañol or (850) 410-3800 from outside of Florida.