The Coastal Star's Blog – July 2020 Archive (34)

Boca Raton: Haynie trial to start no sooner than late October

By Mary Hladky

Former Boca Raton Mayor Susan Haynie’s trial on public corruption charges has been pushed back for the third time.

The new trial start date is Oct. 26, but there is no certainty it will begin then.

Palm Beach County Chief Judge Krista Marx in early July extended her suspension of all trials until further notice because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Circuit Judge Jeffrey…

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Added by The Coastal Star on July 22, 2020 at 9:16pm — 1 Comment

Along the Coast: Hospitals react to surge in coronavirus cases

Following a spike in COVID-19 cases in Florida reaching 100,217 cases reported as of June 21 and then doubling in two weeks to 203,376, local hospitals are adapting

Since the beginning of July, Bethesda Hospital-East, Bethesda Hospital-West and Boca Raton Regional Hospital are temporarily rescheduling elective procedures that require an overnight stay to ensure they have sufficient capacity to handle coronavirus patients. Hospital staff will communicate directly…

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Added by The Coastal Star on July 9, 2020 at 9:30am — No Comments

Boynton Beach: JFK Medical Center repositions Boynton staff

JFK Medical Center temporarily suspended services at its Freestanding Emergency Room in Boynton Beach as of July 7. Temporarily closing the facility at 10921 S. Jog Road will allow JFK Medical Center to move key clinical staff and physicians to its other facilities across Palm Beach County that are experiencing a greater volume of COVID-19 and suspected COVID-19 patients.

“As a leading health care…

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Added by The Coastal Star on July 7, 2020 at 11:43am — No Comments

Along the Coast: Staying safe to stay open

Seaside Deli cashier Audrey Bazil rings up a purchase by Andrew Estevez as others wait at an appropriate distance. The deli refuses to admit people without masks and limits the number of customers in the store, near Briny Breezes. Jerry Lower/The Coastal Star…

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Added by The Coastal Star on July 1, 2020 at 12:07pm — 1 Comment

Along the Coast: Sea turtle nesting season off to robust start

Turtle nest monitor Jim Jolley passes four marked nests on the beach in Ocean Ridge north of Beachway Drive. Jerry Lower/The Coastal Star

By Larry Keller



South Florida beach closures because of the coronavirus pandemic may have annoyed some…

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Added by The Coastal Star on July 1, 2020 at 12:00pm — 2 Comments

Delray Beach: Cost to fix reclaimed water system almost $1M and counting

Editor's Note: Delray commission owes taxpayers the truth

By Jane Smith

After five months of emergency repairs to the city’s botched reclaimed water system, 90% of the customers should have been back on line by June 30, the city…

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Added by The Coastal Star on July 1, 2020 at 12:00pm — 1 Comment

Editor's Note: Delray commission owes taxpayers the truth

On Feb. 4, the city of Delray Beach was told by the Florida Health Department that it must implement a citywide boil water order after receiving complaints that the city’s drinking water had become contaminated with reclaimed water.

The order was avoided only by an agreement to shut down the reclaimed water system while the problems were identified and repaired.

Move forward to late June. About 90% of customers are back on line, and the cost for fixing the system is nearing $1…

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Added by The Coastal Star on July 1, 2020 at 11:56am — 1 Comment

Boca Raton: Underperforming Boca Resort & Club aims to reclaim former glory

The proposed Mizner Ballroom will occupy 10,000 square feet and house conference and meeting facilities now in the resort’s Great Hall. Rendering provided

By Mary Hladky

The new owner of the Boca Raton Resort & Club is planning a massive makeover…

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Added by The Coastal Star on July 1, 2020 at 11:48am — No Comments

Boca Raton: Virus forces another delay for Haynie’s trial

By Mary Hladky

Former Boca Raton Mayor Susan Haynie’s trial on public corruption charges has been postponed until Sept. 21 due to disruptions caused by COVID-19.

Prosecutor Brian Fernandes and Bruce Zimet, Haynie’s criminal defense lawyer, agreed to cancel a scheduled July 20 trial and to set the new trial date because the pandemic…

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Added by The Coastal Star on July 1, 2020 at 11:45am — No Comments

Beaches closed for holiday weekend

By Charles Elmore 

An emergency order puts beaches out of bounds for the Fourth of July weekend across Palm Beach County.

The county’s order to temporarily close beaches joined similar decrees in Miami-Dade and Broward counties aimed at avoiding large gatherings during the three-day weekend to slow the spread of COVID-19.

Palm Beach County Mayor Dave Kerner told media outlets it would be “highly irresponsible” to keep beaches open and said the county’s…

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Added by The Coastal Star on July 1, 2020 at 11:37am — No Comments

Highland Beach: Commission balks at Delray plan to add four paramedics

By Rich Pollack

Highland Beach commissioners, faced with a 10.3% increase in how much they’re charged for fire service from Delray Beach, are questioning why they are being asked to pay for four additional firefighter/paramedics to be assigned to the station in town.

Under a 20-year agreement signed in 2016, Highland Beach pays for the salaries of 22.5 firefighter/paramedics assigned to the station next to Town Hall — a staffing level that includes two personnel…

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Added by The Coastal Star on July 1, 2020 at 11:36am — 1 Comment

Along the Coast: Municipal grants help small businesses smacked by virus

By Mary Hladky and Jane Smith

As small-business owners reeled from shutdowns mandated to stop the spread of COVID-19, South County cities pitched in to help them offset calamitous revenue losses.

Responding to Greater Boca Raton Chamber of Commerce pleas, the City Council on May 27 authorized spending $500,000 in city money on a Small Business Recovery Relief Grant program that would provide $5,000 grants to small businesses with at least three employees and no…

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Added by The Coastal Star on July 1, 2020 at 11:35am — No Comments

Boca Raton: Navy calls up deputy mayor for overseas mission

By Mary Hladky

Deputy Mayor Jeremy Rodgers, a lieutenant in the U.S. Navy Reserve, will deploy in August to Qatar in support of NATO operations in Afghanistan.

Rodgers, who announced his deployment at the June 23 City Council meeting, said he wants to complete his term of office by attending city meetings remotely.

If that…

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Added by The Coastal Star on July 1, 2020 at 11:32am — No Comments

Boynton Beach: Riverwalk has finished parking lot, most landscaping

By Jane Smith

Within a week of receiving Boynton Beach City Commission approval in mid-June, Riverwalk Plaza had finished landscaping the parking lot and entrances off Woolbright Road.

“The easternmost entrance had a weird S-curve shape,” said Luke Therien, who reopened his family’s Prime Catch restaurant on June 24. “Now you can drive south to Jo-Ann Fabric and Crafts store or turn left to Prime Catch.”

Therien closed his restaurant in mid-March when all…

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Added by The Coastal Star on July 1, 2020 at 11:30am — No Comments

Coastal Star: Special-needs clients find friend in Best Buddies chairman

Bobby Kane of Ocean Ridge with his wife, Lynsey; son, Bobby, 3; and daughter, Ellie, 20 months. Tim Stepien/The Coastal Star

By Charles Elmore

Isolation. Loneliness. Underemployment or no job at all.

Millions are grappling with that reality in…

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Added by The Coastal Star on July 1, 2020 at 11:30am — No Comments

Delray Beach: City manager’s sudden suspension stirs controversy

By Jane Smith

During an often contentious meeting, a divided Delray Beach City Commission voted 3-2 on June 24 to oust City Manager George Gretsas from his $265,000 position without seeing a final report of the bullying accusations made against him.

Gretsas had been less than six months on the job and was the fifth full-time city…

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Added by The Coastal Star on July 1, 2020 at 11:30am — 1 Comment

Ocean Ridge: Aug. 18 ballot issue to affect decision on future of police

By Dan Moffett



Ocean Ridge commissioners want to make it a lot more difficult for the town to merge its Police Department with another law enforcement agency.

With a unanimous vote on June 12, the commission gave final approval to a charter amendment proposal that requires voters to pass a ballot referendum before any police merger can move forward. Beyond the consent of voters, the proposal would mandate a four-vote supermajority from the Town Commission just…

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Added by The Coastal Star on July 1, 2020 at 11:28am — 1 Comment

Ocean Ridge: Septic-to-sewer study funds take backseat to budget woes

By Rich Pollack

With the town’s budget still in flux, Ocean Ridge’s septic-to-sewer citizens advisory committee has agreed to hold off on requesting funds for a cost analysis from an outside firm.

Voting unanimously, the five-member committee, charged with studying the feasibility of replacing septic systems with a sewer system, agreed that it would be premature to request funding for a study to be conducted by Raftelis Financial Consultants.

The committee…

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Added by The Coastal Star on July 1, 2020 at 11:26am — No Comments

Gulf Stream: Town agrees to sue AT&T to finish underground work

Plastic netting surrounds the historic Australian pine trees that line A1A in Gulf Stream to ensure that workers installing a water main do not damage the roots. Jerry Lower/The Coastal Star

By Steve Plunkett



The town will ask a federal judge to…

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Added by The Coastal Star on July 1, 2020 at 11:25am — No Comments

Along the Coast: Peaceful rallies show support for justice, police

DELRAY BEACH: A group of about 100 gathered May 31 at Veterans Park to peacefully protest the killing of George Floyd, an unarmed Black man, while he was in the custody of a white Minneapolis police officer. By the end of June the protests had largely stopped in South County. They were peaceful, according to police.…

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Added by The Coastal Star on July 1, 2020 at 11:22am — No Comments

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