Havana approved an amendment to its water facilities plan / Drinking Water System due to issues with Well #4 at last Tuesday’s meeting. About six remedies were considered, with the last, Alternative 6, which was to replace the town’s existing Well #4 with a new well location east of town, chosen.
One advantage of this alternative was that the town currently owned the property and it would not necessitate the town to acquire any additional land. Also, the NW Florida Water Management District (NWFWMD) indicated that this site is a preferred site and will distribute the potential drawdown impact over a larger area. The council approved the amendment.
Downtown Improvement Committee (DIC) chairman Bob Lauther came before the council to request a drawdown of some of DIC’s balance to allow the committee to purchase additional holiday and Christmas decorations to be distributed throughout its district downtown. DIC is a part of the larger Havana Community Redevelopment Agency that deals only with beautification projects within the three-block commercial shopping district and is funded through a portion of those buildings’ property taxes.
Last year, the committee purchased a lighted train and two drummer soldiers. To be added to those at several locations throughout town and at Havana’s police department and Magnolia Café property along US 27 are a sleigh and animated elves, and a life-sized Santa with packages. The council approved the drawdown.
An ordinance was approved on first reading to make many Havana streets able to be utilized during daylight hours only by golf carts driven by licensed 16-year-olds and older on any street that has a speed limit of 25 mph or lower. There are two exceptions: 5th Avenue from US 27 to town limits and 9th Avenue West from US 27 to town limits because both are state roads.
The vehicle and driver would need to go to HPD to verify age and safety conditions of the vehicle. No children would be allowed to drive golf carts under any conditions. If they are seen, they’ll be stopped and given a stern warning on the first occasion. If stopped a second time, they’d be given a citation. “We’re not going to have any unlicensed kids driving golf carts, period,” said Chief Tracy Smith.
An ordinance dealing with alcoholic beverages was also approved on first reading. Ordinance #360 was amended for additional restrictions on the Alcohol and Beverages Ordinance that no such seller or vendor shall offer for sale any alcohol, beer or wine if it is within 1,000 feet of an established church, 1,000 feet of a school or publicly-owned playground, 500 feet away from city hall, 1,500 feet away from a licensed package store or any location not on US 27 or State Highway 12 (9th Avenue West).
Councilman Matt Thro said that the Havana Health & Wellness Center next to Dr. Newberry’s office on 5th Avenue East is being underutilized. “They’re open 5 days a week, and anybody can go regardless of ability to pay. Everything they offer, we have here in Havana and it’s much more accessible,” said Thro.