BREAKING NEWS: Zoo NW Florida to temporarily close

Action aimed at saving money while Zoo awaits funding decisions by local governments

BREAKING NEWS: Zoo NW Florida to temporarily close     By Pam Brannon    The Zoo Northwest Florida is closing Monday for what the staff is hoping will be temporary.    The closing is scheduled for Aug. 17-20. But if The Zoo does not get a pledge for funding at a county Tourist Development Council (TDC) Thursday, Aug. 20, the […]

School Board rejects $2M option

Teachers' union representative argues money could have been used to fund step increases

The Santa Rosa School Board voted not to levy an additional, optional two-percent increase in local millage, even though the County School District presented a budget with very little cash reserves to the Board last week. Doug Dillon, Assistant Administrator of Finance for Santa Rosa schools, said the increased millage would have generated approximately $2 million. Legislators recently approved a […]

Tiger Point Park replaces playground equipment

Several parks are improved

Tiger Point Park’s playground reopened on Monday, Aug. 10 with a ribbon-cutting ceremony attended by local dignitaries, as well as families eager to enjoy the exciting new equipment. Amee Farley, a Crane Cove resident, and her two sons Joshua, 5, and Luke, 2, already were enjoying the improved playground that features rock climbing, tunnels, swings and, of course, slides. “I […]

Gonzalez Jr. indicted on 2 counts of murder

Alleged Billings triggerman, others could face death penalty

Two Gulf Breeze residents with alleged involvement in the July 9 murders of Escambia County residents Byrd and Melanie Billings were expected in court today, Aug. 13, after their previously scheduled arraignments were postponed last Thursday. State Attorney Bill Eddins requested the postponements to allow an Escambia County grand jury to decide precisely what charges Leonard Patrick Gonzalez Jr., 35, […]

‘Tea Carte’ building destined for demolition

¦ Wooden structure is in violation of Gulf Breeze city code

After efforts to work with the owners of the Benson Building complex failed, City of Gulf Breeze staff declared the old Tea Carte building unsafe and condemned it. Now owned by FogGB, the building originally was built as a Western Auto. It later became a Greenfields, then the popular Tea Carte gift shop. Prior to the sale of the Benson […]

Cram the Van school supplies drive still going strong


The countywide Cram the Van school supply drive completed its final weekend of storefront collections during the first weekend of August. The community is asked to continue to give through donations of school supplies at their local Walmarts and Office Depots up until Aug. 14. If you know someone who might need help with school supplies this year, please visit […]

UPA gets insight into U.S. 98

Jim De Vries of the Florida Department of Transportation and Nancy Model, Manager of Santa Rosa County Transportation, recently spoke to the United Peninsula Association about U.S. Highway 98 concerns. De Vries summarized U.S. 98’s historical long-range priority listing and subsequent drop from the Florida-Alabama Transportation Planning Organization (TPO) list two years ago in favor of some Escambia County projects. […]

Hospital Auxiliary plans Friday jewelry sale

The Gulf Breeze Hospital Auxiliary is sponsoring a Sterling Silver Jewelry Sale, tomorrow, Friday, Aug. 14, from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on the Hospital Campus in the Ciano Building. Everyone is invited! Over 15,000 pieces of jewelry will be available, and engraving will be provided free on site. As a special incentive, all non-engravable earrings will be 20 percent […]

Do your homework on college savings

For some, saving money for a child’s or grandchild’s college education seems nearly impossible. Before you give up the battle, however, consider this: A high school graduate will earn an average annual income of $26,416. A college graduate will earn an average annual income of $34,000 to $74,000. For someone who works 40 years, that can add up to an […]

County says ‘no’ to putting more funds into Zoo

The Santa Rosa County Commission will not be giving the $125,000 needed to help keep The Zoo Northwest Florida open past this week. But commissioners did vote Monday to recommend the Santa Rosa County Tourist Development Council (TDC) give The Zoo money, since the TDC has over $600,000 of unreserved funds sitting in the bank. Zoo Director Danyelle Lantz requested […]