March 7th edition of:

Community Update
A Report on the Activities of Alachua County Government


This Issues Features:

2012 ACCESS Spring Class
New County Commissioner Winston Bradley
What's On "Alachua County Talks"
Rabies Alert
Foster Grandparents Chosen as Outstanding School Volunteers
March Extension Programs
Dallas Osborne Ride-A-Thon 4-H Fundraiser
Alachua County Youth Fair & Livestock Show
Commission Highlights

2012 ACCESS Spring Class

The public is invited to participate in the annual Alachua County Civic Education SerieS (ACCESS) classes, which begin April 9, 2012. Alachua County Government invites residents to learn about local government issues and gain access to County operations that most citizens never see. Each ACCESS graduating class will produce a group of citizens equipped to engage in ways that help Alachua County become more representative of its citizenry's needs.

County Manager Richard Drummond said of ACCESS, "Thomas Jefferson believed an informed citizenry was democracy's greatest safeguard and we agree. Where do you go if you want to make a difference in your community ... ACCESS is the key."

ACCESS runs for seven sessions, and is free, but space is limited. The registration deadline is March 30.

To view a complete schedule of classes and to register, visit the ACCESS website.

For more information, or to register call 352-374-5219.

Return to Top


New County Commissioner Winston Bradley

On Friday, February 17, 2012, Governor Rick Scott appointed Winston James Bradley to the Alachua County Board of County Commissioners. This appointment replaced the vacated seat of retired County Commissioner Rodney Long.

Commissioner Bradley has served his community as a past member and past chairman of the Gainesville Housing Authority Board (12 years), Santa Fe College Board of Trustees (13 years); the Santa Fe College Endowment Board (13 years). He is also a member of the East Gainesville Faith Based Initiative Board.

He has a long history of public service including military service, and teaching. He has also served as a pastor and business owner.

Click to view his biography, which is posted on the County website.

Commissioner Bradley will serve as County Commissioner until the November, 2012 election, when the citizens of the County will choose a candidate for this seat.

For more information, contact the Alachua County Board of County Commissioners office at 352-264-6900 or email Commissioner Bradley at

Return to Top


What's On "Alachua County Talks"

Click here to view this edition of "Alachua County Talks." it features an in-depth interview with FloridaWorks Business Services Director Joe Johnson. The interview focuses on FloridaWorks' Connect program which seeks to match professional-level job seekers with interested employers through weekly networking opportunities.

In speaking of the interview, host Mark Sexton said, "Mr. Johnson's considerable knowledge of the needs of job seekers and employers in today's employment market is both insightful and invaluable."

Check out the latest editions of Alachua County Talks on Community 12 TV by viewing the Channel 12 Show Schedule.

For more information, call the Alachua County Communications Office at 352-374-5204.

Return to Top


Rabies Alert

The Levy County Health Department and Alachua County Health Department have issued a rabies alert for the Forest Park and University Oaks area which is located in Levy County and near the Alachua County border in Archer. This is in response to a domestic dog that tested positive for rabies on February 23, 2012. Any citizens in this area that have had contact with a light brown American Bulldog or any stray domestic or wild animal are urged to contact the Health Department.

The rabies alert is for 60 days. The center of the rabies alert is in the University Oaks area and includes the following area boundaries in Levy and Alachua County:

An animal with rabies could infect other wild animals or domestic animals that have not been vaccinated against rabies. All domestic animals should be vaccinated against rabies and all wildlife contact should be avoided, particularly raccoons, bats, foxes, skunks, otters, bobcats and coyotes. Rabies is a disease of the nervous system and is fatal to warm blooded animals and humans. The only treatment for human exposure to rabies is rabies specific immune globulin and rabies immunization. Appropriate treatment started soon after the exposure, will protect an exposed person from the disease.

The following advice is issued:

For further information on rabies, go to the Florida Department of Health website:, or contact Levy County Health Department, Environmental Health office at 352-486-5301, or the Alachua County Health Department, Environmental Health office at 352-334-7930.

Return to Top


Foster Grandparents Chosen as Outstanding School Volunteers

The Alachua County Foster Grandparent Program (FGP) congratulates three Foster Grandparents, who were honored at the School Board's Annual Volunteer Luncheon. On February 16, 2012, Louise Turner, Marion McGruder, and Mable Crawford were chosen as Outstanding School Volunteers this year for their respective schools.

Mrs. Turner is a new foster grandparent who serves at Stephen Foster Elementary. Mrs. McGruder has served in the Loften High School ACCEPT Program's on-campus child care center for two years. Mrs. Crawford, who serves at Newberry Elementary School, was also named Outstanding Senior School Volunteer for the entire district. She has been a foster grandparent for six years.

The purpose of the Foster Grandparent Program is to provide volunteer assignment for low-income citizens 55 years of age or older to special needs children. Foster Grandparents devote 15-40 hours per week to the service of children who have developmental, emotional, physical, social or medical challenges.

For more information, contact FGP Program Coordinator, Norma Berger at 352-264-6757 or

Return to Top


March Extension Programs

Environmental Horticulture Programs

Wendy Wilber, Environmental Horticulture Agent, is offering these programs. All of these programs are held at the Extension Office (2800 NE 39th Avenue, Gainesville).

Creating an Edible Landscape – March 13, from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

This class describes incorporating fruits and vegetables that grow well in an Alachua County landscape.

Make your Landscape Florida-Friendly™ – March 15, from 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.

This class describes plant selection, appropriate maintenance, and creating a drought tolerant and more sustainable landscape.

Ground Covers & Turf Alternatives: Getting Started – March 29, from 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.

This class teaches selection, installation and ground cover establishment.

There is no cost for these classes. Seating is limited, pre-registration is recommended by calling 352-337-6209 (voicemail).

Commercial Horticulture Programs

Aparna Gazula, Commercial Horticulture Agent, offers these programs. All of these programs are held at the Extension Office (2800 NE 39th Avenue, Gainesville).

Becoming a Hobby Beekeeper Short Course – March 17 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

This course will allow the participants to receive a complete perspective of the process and expense involved with keeping honey bees as a hobby or alternative farm enterprise

Cost $10 includes lunch.

Green Industries Best Management Practices – March 22 from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.

This workshop is designed to provide training in Best Management Practices for anyone working in the lawn, landscape, pest control, or municipal grounds areas. This is a required training class for all commercial and institutional fertilizer applicators in Alachua County according to the Alachua County Fertilizer Standards and Management Practices Code.

Cost $25.00 includes materials and lunch.

Register for these classes by calling 352-337-6209 (voicemail).

Family & Consumer Sciences Programs

Dr. Brenda Williams, Family & Consumer Sciences Agent, is offering these programs. All of these programs are held at the Extension Office (2800 NE 39th Avenue, Gainesville).

Before You Tie the Knot – March 12 & 19, from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Before You Tie the Knot is a premarital preparation course.

Completion of this course is required to receive a $32.50 reduction of marriage license. Attendees will receive a certificate of completion and a copy for the Clerk of the Court.

There is no cost to attend this two evening class. Pre-register by March 8 by calling 352-337-6209.

Building Your Financial Future (A personal financial management program - for those filing bankruptcy only) – March 13, from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Attendees will learn 4 basic concepts that will aid in handling financial resources responsibly and building a financially secure future. This program has been approved to issue certificates evidencing completion of a personal financial management instructional course in compliance with the Bankruptcy Code. Attendees must bring a case number to class.

Cost to attend this class is $10.00 (cash only) for course materials. Pre-register by March 6 by calling 352-955-2402.

Food Safety and Quality Program (ServSafe®) – March 14, 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

This program is dedicated to providing training, which enables food managers and staff to offer Florida consumers food that is prepared in a clean and safe environment. For further information, and to register, please visit, or call toll-free at 1-888-232-8723.

For more information about these programs call 352-955-2402. Visit for additional programs offered by the Extension Office.

Return to Top


Dallas Osborne Ride-A-Thon 4-H Fundraiser

The UF/IFAS Alachua County Extension office is pleased to announce the Dallas Osborne Ride-A-Thon. Matt Benge, Alachua County Youth Development Agent, offers this event.

The Dallas Osborne Ride-A-Thon is a fundraising trail ride for the Alachua County 4-H Program. The trail ride will take place at the ranch of a 4-H family on March 24, beginning at 8 a.m.

For more information contact Matt Benge at or call 352-955-2402.

Return to Top


Florida State Association of Supervisors of Elections Scholarship

Pam Carpenter, Alachua County Supervisor of Elections announces the opportunity for local college or university students to apply for a $1,200 scholarship through the Florida State Association of Supervisors of Elections (FSASE).
FSASE will award one $1,200 scholarship. The deadline to submit applications to the Alachua County Supervisor of Elections is March 19, 2012.

The scholarships will be awarded to full-time students attending an accredited Florida university or college.

Applicants must be enrolled or accepted as a junior or senior and be either a Political Science major, a Public or Business Administration major or a Journalism/Mass Communications major. 

Applicants must:

Applications may be obtained online at or from the Alachua County Supervisor of Elections Office at 111 SE 1st Avenue, Gainesville.  Completed applications and letters of recommendation must be submitted to the Supervisor of Election of the County in which you are registered to vote.

All Alachua County applications will be reviewed by the Supervisor of Elections Office and one finalist will be forwarded to the FSASE Scholarship Committee to represent Alachua County.  The FSASE Scholarship Committee will select one winner ($1,200 scholarship) from the finalists submitted from Supervisors of Elections throughout the State of Florida.

The scholarship is awarded in June; therefore applicants must be a student post-June of the award year.

For additional information contact the Alachua County Supervisor of Elections at 352-374-5252.

Return to Top


Commission Highlights

Oral Health Initiative
The Board heard a presentation on an Oral Health Initiative from the Alachua County Health Department and the UF College of Dentistry.

Suwannee River Water Management District
The Board heard the presentation on Water Supply by the Suwannee River Water Management District (SRWMD) Executive Director David Still and St. Johns River Water Management District (SJWMD) Executive Director Hans Tanzler.

Neighborhood Stabilization Program
The Board approved the Neighborhood Stabilization Program Real Estate contract for 2211 NE 12th Terrace, Gainesville and approved the form of the deed.
Residental Sale 2211 NE 12th Terrace Final.pdf

County Manager’s Report
Accept County Manager’s Report

The Combined Communications Center leaking roofing issues to be brought back to BoCC when design completed

Medicaid Cost Shift Amendments. Legislative Affairs Director, Rick Mills to provide a list of those on the conference committee so the BoCC can get info to key palyers, Pinkoson wants the Medicaid bill that has been screened. Send memo to the BoCC on details

World Spay Day
The Board proclaimed February 28, 2012 as “World Spay Day” in Alachua County, Florida.
World Spay Day 2012.pdf

Annie Whittaker Pais
The Board proclaimed Annie Whittaker Pais in Alachua County, Florida
 CAB_ Pais_2011.pdf

Margaret Ross Tolbert
The Board presented a proclamation honoring Margaret Ross Tolbert in Alachua County, Florida.
CAB_Tolbert_ 2011.pdf

Yopp! Incorporated
The Board presented a proclamation honoring Yopp! Incorporated in Alachua County, Florida.

Unified Land Development Code

The Board conducted a Presentation and Public Workshop of the Proposed Updates to the Unified Land Development Code and provided policy recommendations on the draft language.

Attachment: Highlights_of_Changes_in_Chapter_407.pdf
ULDC_Chapter 401_Development_Review_Bodies_20120228.pdf
ULDC_Chapter 408_Nonconformities_20120228.pdf

Pine Woods Addition
The Board approved the Replat of Lot 6 for Pine Woods Addition reducing the front and rear yard’s setback.
PineWoods DRC Chair Report.pdf
Pine Woods GM Staff Report.pdf
PlatsPineWoods Power Point.pdf

Oakwood Planned Development
The Board approved the Replat of Lot 6 of the Oakwood Planned Development
oakwd11plat 2012 Layout1.pdf
Oakwood GM Staff Report.pdf
oakwdLOT11 Boundary.pdf
PlatsOakwood Lot11 ppt.pdf
Oakwood DRC Chair Report.pdf

Return to Top

Alachua County Advisory Boards

The Alachua County Commission is committed to citizen involvement on its advisory boards and is soliciting applications for the following vacancies:

Get Involved - Click here for an application:

Applications are also available at the County Manager’s Office on the Second Floor of the County Administration Building, 12 SE 1st St., Gainesville. For more information, call (352) 264-6904.

Return to Top


Thank you for your continued interest in County Government!

Community Update is produced by the County Manager's Communications Office.