Cold weather shelters to open in Fort Pierce, Stuart



Forecast lows in the 40s and 30s have prompted the cold weather shelters to open.

The Image of Christ, at 707 North 7th St., Fort Pierce, will open Wednesday night for cold weather sheltering throughout the week, including the weekend.

Its hours are 5 p.m. to 7 a.m. daily. Call 772-461-7788 for more information.

In Stuart, the Gertrude Walden Daycare Center, at 601 S.E. Lake St., will be open from 7 p.m. Wednesday until 8 a.m. Thursday.

Visit our weather page for this week’s forecast.

Article source: http://www.tcpalm.com/weather/cold-weather-shelter-in-fort-pierce-to-open--2b5b5d24-68cb-321b-e053-0100007f6ee9-368207001.html

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Crash closes Florida Turnpike near Fort Pierce

A crash in St. Lucie County has closed all lanes of the Florida Turnpike south, near Fort Pierce, Wednesday night.

Traffic is being detoured at Exit 152.

Motorists are encouraged to seek an alternate route.

Article source: http://www.wpbf.com/news/crash-closes-florida-turnpike-near-fort-pierce/37934222

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The wastewater treatment plant in Fort Pierce is on the southeast side of the South Bridge. (FILE PHOTO)



This story has been updated manually. Linda Cox is the Fort Pierce city clerk.

FORT PIERCE — No one wants to live near it. But the Fort Pierce Utilities Authority wastewater treatment plant on Hutchinson Island has to go somewhere.

On Monday morning, the City Commission is to revisit the issue of moving the 57-year-old plant off 36 acres of waterfront property.

City staff wants the commission to create a seven-member committee to study the cost of a move, how to pay for it and — probably most important — where the plant should go.

The committee would consist of one member appointed by each of the four commissioners; and one each by the mayor, FPUA and St. Lucie County government, according to city records.

Moving the FPUA plant came out of a 2012 community workshop about how to best develop the property on the western peninsula of Fort Pierce beach.

Residents suggested building a hotel, marina, housing and stores.

“The lands on the western tip of Hutchinson Island … present an opportunity to strengthen the city as a destination and an economically prosper (sic) hub for its residents and the region as a whole,” according to city records.

FPUA estimates it will cost $108 million to relocate the plant to the western end of the city, said Jason Hoffman, FPUA spokesman.

The city has not determined how it would pay for the move, City Clerk Linda Cox said.

If FPUA has to pay for relocation without state or federal assistance, water rates would increase by 40 percent to 50 percent, Hoffman said.

“We do not want to pass this cost on to our customers,” Hoffman said.

The plant, which was built in 1959, serves the entire city. It processes 6 million gallons of waste water daily, about 40 percent of the plant’s capacity, Hoffman said.

The plant borders the western end of the proposed Causeway Cove Marina RV park. The 18-acre site would house a $2.9 million marina with almost 200 dock slips and 14 offshore mooring spaces.

Article source: http://www.tcpalm.com/news/shaping-our-future/growth/commission-eyes-relocating-fort-pierce-water-treatment-plant-2afac835-5124-578c-e053-0100007f33b4-367872841.html

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Fort Pierce considers wastewater treatment plant move

FORT PIERCE, Fla. – Fort Pierce commissioners favorably considered a proposal to form an ad-hoc committee charged with exploring the relocation of the city’s wastewater treatment plant; it sits on a 26-acre lot on Hutchinson Island.

The city’s planning director suggested a seven-member committee, one representative appointed by each commissioner and the mayor, plus a Fort Pierce Public Utilities Authority (FPUA) appointee and a county appointee.

Rebecca Grohall says the committee would study all aspects of the relocation including developing a cost estimate and exploring and pursuing different funding methods.

FPUA spokesman Jason Hoffman said the move estimated at $105 million would not be covered by the utility’s customers.

“It’s a great prime piece of property, Perfect for redevelopment of the city, perfect for economic development,” Hoffman said. “We would love to have a new plant out west, but the money is coming in to factor and again, we’re not passing that on to the customer.”

A meeting held in 2012 suggested the relocation could make way for a hotel, marina, stores and housing.

In a workshop Monday, commissioners said the owner of the 18-acre property adjacent to the plant is proposing a marina and RV park which could play an integral part in the development of the water front.

The landowner says most of the 18 acres will go undeveloped for now however, in hopes of eventually developing the privately owned land with the city’s once the plant is moved.

Harold “Buzz” Smyth, the builder working with the landowner, says teaming up with the city to develop a combined 30 acres of land could bring new life to Fort Pierce, creating an opportunity for a boom in tourism and a large number of new jobs.

Smyth says the wastewater treatment plant and the empty lot are in a spot with a lot of potential that could showcase Fort Pierce’s natural beauty if developed correctly.

“We want people to see what it’s like,” Smyth said. “We want them to come and enjoy it. We live in a little part of paradise.”

According to TCPalm, the plan for a marina and RV park at the privately owned property is up for final approval at the commissioner’s meeting on Feb. 16.

Article source: http://www.wptv.com/news/region-st-lucie-county/fort-pierce/fort-pierce-considers-wastewater-treatment-plant-move

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Fort Pierce Central’s Hahn, Treasure Coast’s Dyer medal at 2A state meet



After falling just short of reaching the state medal stand a year ago, senior girls weightlifters Emily Hahn, of Fort Pierce Central, and Sherika Dyer, of Treasure Coast, made the most of second chances Saturday.

Hahn finished third in at 139 pounds while Dyer was sixth at 199 in the Class 2A state meet at Kissimmee.

Hahn became Fort Pierce Central’s first medalist with a postseason-best 355-pound total — 180 bench press, 175 clean and jerk.

Dyer became Treasure Coast’s first medalist with a postseason-best 350-pound total — 160 bench, 190 clean and jerk.

Last season, Hahn finished seventh at 129 pounds in the single-class state meet with a 315-pound total, five pounds short of medaling. Dyer was ninth at 199 with a 325-pound total

Hahn had a 40-pound improvement over her 2015 state lifts, Dyer a 25-pound gain.

Both second-time state qualifiers, Hahn and Dyer were among the area’s best lifters all season, winning District 12-2A and Region 6-A titles.

They were among 13 area lifters who competed in Class 2A.

Port St. Lucie’s Natasha Gatling finished runner-up in the Class 1A, 169-pound division, giving the area three state medalists this season.

CLASS 2A TEAM SCORES

1. Navarre 37, 2. Charlotte 20, 3. Spruce Creek 17, 4. Wellington 14, 5. Colonial 13. Local: T17. Fort Pierce Central 4, T29. Treasure Coast 1.

WEIGHT CLASS RESULTS

Champion plus locals

101: 1. Payton Watson (Navarre) 260 (140-120), 14. Elizabeth Case (Vero Beach) 220 (95-125)

110: 1. Brittany Bentzoni (Spruce Creek) 315 (150-165), 16. Brooke Schoch (Jensen Beach) 230 (115-115)

119: 1. Savannah Diel (Navarre) 340 (165-175)

129: 1. Breanna Jacobs (Charlotte) 365 (190-175), 8. Natalia Bellinger (Martin County) 285 (135-150)

139: 1. Chloe Odom (Wellington) 380 (205-175), 3. Emily Hahn (Fort Pierce Central) 355 (180-175), 16. Elizabeth Brooks (Martin County) 295 (155-140)

154: 1. Judith Mandujano-Rodriguez (Lake Mary) 400 (195-205)

169: 1. Olivia Brahms (Navarre) 380 (200-180), 11. Lea Gunderson (Martin County) 305 (160-145)

183: 1. Brianna Anderson (Sunlake) 385 (165-220), 15. Matison Little (South Fork) 305 (145-160), 17. Hannah Boorman (Martin County) 285 (140-145)

199: 1. Victoria Jefferson (Ocoee) 435 (250-185), 6. Sherika Dyer (Treasure Coast) 350 (160-190), 7. Alexandra Little (South Fork) 330 (150-180)

UNL: 1. LeeAnn Hewitt (Wellington) 485 (255-230), 14. Jadis Thompkins (Vero Beach) 340 (170-170), 15. Tijah McGriff (Vero Beach) 340 (180-160), 18. Candice Lindo (Fort Pierce Central) 325 (180-145)

Article source: http://www.tcpalm.com/sports/high-school/weightlifting/fort-pierce-centrals-hahn-treasure-coasts-dyer-medal-at-2a-state-meet-2b475428-78b3-08f5-e053-010000-368099351.html

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Ft. Pierce utilities eyes land near turnpike for sewer plant



FORT PIERCE — The Fort Pierce Utilities Authority wastewater treatment plant could be moved from Hutchinson Island to the Treasure Coast Energy Center, between of Florida’s Turnpike and Selvitz Road, about 8 miles away.

FPUA officials estimate it will cost $108 million to relocate the plant.

The City Commission Monday took its first step to moving the 57-year old plant off the island by agreeing to form a seven-member committee. Among other tasks, the committee will recommend a timetable for relocating the plant.

“There is nothing wrong with the building, but it is considered unsightly structure on a beautiful piece of property,” Mayor Linda Hudson said.

The committee would consist of one member appointed by each of the four commissioners; and one each by the mayor, FPUA and St. Lucie County government according to city records. The committee could be appointed next month.

Moving the FPUA plant came out of a 2012 community workshop about how to best develop the property on the western peninsula of Fort Pierce beach.

The Energy Center is a 300-megawatt natural-gas power plant, run by FPUA, on 69 acres north of Midway Road and west of Selvitz Road.

The property is owned by the Florida Municipal Power Agency, a group of 15 cities, including Vero Beach and Fort Pierce, which own and share power resources.

The wastewater-treatment plant, which was built in 1959, serves the entire city. It processes 6 million gallons of waste water daily, about 40 percent of the plant’s capacity.

The new plant will be able to process 15 million gallons with room to expand to 25 million gallons, said FPUA spokesman Jason Hoffman.

The current plant borders the western end of the proposed Causeway Cove Marina RV park. The 18-acre site would house a $2.9 million marina with almost 200 dock slips and 14 offshore mooring spaces.

Residents at the 2012 community workshop suggested building a hotel, marina, housing and stores on the current site off the Indian River Lagoon.

 

Article source: http://www.tcpalm.com/news/shaping-our-future/growth/ft-pierce-utilities-eyes-land-near-turnpike-for-sewer-plant-2b0dd6cd-4796-1ca9-e053-0100007f6c41-368097851.html

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Fort Pierce man accused of robbing no-sex escort



Who: Safouane Aboussad, 35, who lives in a hotel in the 7000 block of Okeechobee Road in Fort Pierce

Charges: Robbery with a weapon

Crime: On Jan. 26, Aboussad met a woman who had advertised on an escort service website. Her ad specified no sex, but Aboussad demanded his $80 back when she declined to have sex, according to an arrest affidavit. The woman pulled a pocket knife from her sock, but Aboussad got it away from her and demanded her money. He took $100 from the woman, who had called the front desk for help, and left after employees of the hotel in the 10000 block of South U.S. 1 in Port St. Lucie arrived, an arrest affidavit states.

What’s next: Aboussad will be release from the St. Lucie County Jail if he posts a $40,000 bond.

Agency: Port St. Lucie Police Department

Quote: The hotel manager got a tag number from the car in which Aboussad left, which allowed police to identify him, the affidavit states.

Article source: http://www.tcpalm.com/news/crime/st-lucie-county/fort-pierce-man-accused-of-robbing-no-sex-escort-2b5cc227-ae09-3f88-e053-0100007fa581-368211021.html

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Ma’Keila Burkes: Family of Fort Pierce girl killed in shooting renews plea for help solving case

FORT PIERCE, Fla. — It was a case Fort Pierce Police Chief, Diane Hobley-Burney, called a priority to solve when she took office.

Ma’Keila Burkes was just 2-years-old when she was shot and killed by a drive-by shooter in Fort Pierce last April.

Friday would have been her 3rd birthday.

Her family is now renewing their plea to the community to come forward with information to help police close the case.

Family and friends of Ma’ Keila celebrated her birthday at Jetty Park in Fort Pierce Friday night. It was a celebration complete with cake, balloons and party favors. The only thing missing was the birthday girl.

“I miss you so much Ma’Keila. I miss you,” cried the girl’s grandmother. “When she died, it took everything from me. Everything.”

Ma’Keila’s Aunt, Tiffany Clark, recalled being in the home on Avenue E the night it was riddled with bullets, one that hit Ma’Keila. “I was actually there when it happened. You can’t describe it. It’s no words.”

The months have been full of anything but celebrating, but mainly grief, anger and desperation to find Ma’Keila’s killer.

“I hope police officers are out there still looking. I hope they didn’t sweep this case under the rug,” Clark said.

Police are still looking for Ma’Keila’s killer. Family fears the reason no one has come forward with information is a community-wide fear of retaliation.

“I just want to ask the person, ‘why’? Like, she was only two,” Clark said.

For Ma’Keila’s birthday, family tried to celebrate as if she were still alive. “She’d be dancing, getting cake in her face.”

“It would have been everything to her,” Clark said.

They’re still hopeful for a gift of answers, and a shooter behind bars.

There is still a reward of up to $10,000 for anyone who comes forward with information that leads to an arrest.

You can anonymously call Treasure Coast Crime Stoppers at 1-800-273-TIPS(8477).

Copyright 2015 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Article source: http://www.wflx.com/story/31165321/makeila-burkes-family-of-fort-pierce-girl-killed-in-shooting-renews-plea-for-help-solving-case

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GIRLS WEIGHTLIFTING: STATE MEET: 2 area lifters medal in Class 2A



After falling just short of reaching the state medal stand a year ago, senior girls weightlifters Emily Hahn, of Fort Pierce Central, and Sherika Dyer, of Treasure Coast, made the most of second chances Saturday.

Hahn finished third in at 139 pounds while Dyer was sixth at 199 in the Class 2A state meet at Kissimmee.

Hahn became Fort Pierce Central’s first medalist with a postseason-best 355-pound total — 180 bench press, 175 clean and jerk.

Dyer became Treasure Coast’s first medalist with a postseason-best 350-pound total — 160 bench, 190 clean and jerk.

Last season, Hahn finished seventh at 129 pounds in the single-class state meet with a 315-pound total, five pounds short of medaling. Dyer was ninth at 199 with a 325-pound total

Hahn had a 40-pound improvement over her 2015 state lifts, Dyer a 25-pound gain.

Both second-time state qualifiers, Hahn and Dyer were among the area’s best lifters all season, winning District 12-2A and Region 6-A titles.

They were among 13 area lifters who competed in Class 2A.

Port St. Lucie’s Natasha Gatling finished runner-up in the Class 1A, 169-pound division, giving the area three state medalists this season.

CLASS 2A TEAM SCORES

1. Navarre 37, 2. Charlotte 20, 3. Spruce Creek 17, 4. Wellington 14, 5. Colonial 13. Local: T17. Fort Pierce Central 4, T29. Treasure Coast 1.

WEIGHT CLASS RESULTS

Champion plus locals

101: 1. Payton Watson (Navarre) 260 (140-120), 14. Elizabeth Case (Vero Beach) 220 (95-125)

110: 1. Brittany Bentzoni (Spruce Creek) 315 (150-165), 16. Brooke Schoch (Jensen Beach) 230 (115-115)

119: 1. Savannah Diel (Navarre) 340 (165-175)

129: 1. Breanna Jacobs (Charlotte) 365 (190-175), 8. Natalia Bellinger (Martin County) 285 (135-150)

139: 1. Chloe Odom (Wellington) 380 (205-175), 3. Emily Hahn (Fort Pierce Central) 355 (180-175), 16. Elizabeth Brooks (Martin County) 295 (155-140)

154: 1. Judith Mandujano-Rodriguez (Lake Mary) 400 (195-205)

169: 1. Olivia Brahms (Navarre) 380 (200-180), 11. Lea Gunderson (Martin County) 305 (160-145)

183: 1. Brianna Anderson (Sunlake) 385 (165-220), 15. Matison Little (South Fork) 305 (145-160), 17. Hannah Boorman (Martin County) 285 (140-145)

199: 1. Victoria Jefferson (Ocoee) 435 (250-185), 6. Sherika Dyer (Treasure Coast) 350 (160-190), 7. Alexandra Little (South Fork) 330 (150-180)

UNL: 1. LeeAnn Hewitt (Wellington) 485 (255-230), 14. Jadis Thompkins (Vero Beach) 340 (170-170), 15. Tijah McGriff (Vero Beach) 340 (180-160), 18. Candice Lindo (Fort Pierce Central) 325 (180-145)

Article source: http://www.tcpalm.com/sports/high-school/weightlifting/fort-pierce-centrals-hahn-treasure-coasts-dyer-medal-at-2a-state-meet-2b475428-78b3-08f5-e053-010000-368099351.html

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Ft. Pierce sewer plant to find new home near turnpike



FORT PIERCE — The Fort Pierce Utilities Authority wastewater treatment plant could be moved from Hutchinson Island to the Treasure Coast Energy Center, between of Florida’s Turnpike and Selvitz Road, about 8 miles away.

FPUA officials estimate it will cost $108 million to relocate the plant.

The City Commission Monday took its first step to moving the 57-year old plant off the island by agreeing to form a seven-member committee. Among other tasks, the committee will recommend a timetable for relocating the plant.

“There is nothing wrong with the building, but it is considered unsightly structure on a beautiful piece of property,” Mayor Linda Hudson said.

The committee would consist of one member appointed by each of the four commissioners; and one each by the mayor, FPUA and St. Lucie County government according to city records. The committee could be appointed next month.

Moving the FPUA plant came out of a 2012 community workshop about how to best develop the property on the western peninsula of Fort Pierce beach.

The Energy Center is a 300-megawatt natural-gas power plant, run by FPUA, on 69 acres north of Midway Road and west of Selvitz Road.

The property is owned by the Florida Municipal Power Agency, a group of 15 cities, including Vero Beach and Fort Pierce, which own and share power resources.

The wastewater-treatment plant, which was built in 1959, serves the entire city. It processes 6 million gallons of waste water daily, about 40 percent of the plant’s capacity.

The new plant will be able to process 15 million gallons with room to expand to 25 million gallons, said FPUA spokesman Jason Hoffman.

The current plant borders the western end of the proposed Causeway Cove Marina RV park. The 18-acre site would house a $2.9 million marina with almost 200 dock slips and 14 offshore mooring spaces.

Residents at the 2012 community workshop suggested building a hotel, marina, housing and stores on the current site off the Indian River Lagoon.

Article source: http://www.tcpalm.com/news/shaping-our-future/growth/ft-pierce-utilities-eyes-land-near-turnpike-for-sewer-plant-2b0dd6cd-4796-1ca9-e053-0100007f6c41-368097851.html

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