Deputies responding to reports of a trespassing in Marathon charged a man with possessing a felony amount of marijuana and introduction of contraband to a jail facility.
The victim called the Sheriff’s Office on Saturday morning after her ex-boyfriend, Jeff Pollock, refused to leave her home on Camino Real in Marathon. She told Deputy Bradford Colen she let him stay the night, but in the morning when she told him to leave he refused and laughed at her.
Pollack told Deputy Colen he lived at the apartment. Deputy Colen reminded Pollack that he had been one of the officers who’d helped Pollack move out of the residence a few months earlier. In addition, the victim had a copy of Pollack’s current lease showing he lived somewhere else. A check on Sheriff’s Office records also showed a trespass warning given to Pollack for the residence at an earlier date.
Because Pollack had already been warned, Deputy Colen placed him under arrest for trespass after warning and put him in the back of his patrol car for transport to jail.
Prior to leaving, Pollack told the deputy he had a briefcase in the residence with a lot of cash inside and he would like to take it with him. The deputy retrieved the briefcase. When Deputy Colen asked Pollack to give him the code to open it, Pollack refused. Both Pollack and the briefcase were transported to jail.
Once there, the deputy asked Pollack again for the code to open the briefcase and Pollack finally agreed. Inside, Deputy Colen found $9,480 in cash and 27 grams of marijuana. Pollack was charged with possession of marijuana and introduction of marijuana to a detention facility. He was booked into jail.
The cash was seized for possible forfeiture.
This month the Monroe Board of County Commissioners will get their first official look at options to aid in avoiding potentially tens of millions in land takings cases.
Current estimates have Monroe County running out of allowable building allocations in 10 years.
Opponents of large-scale use of grinder pumps in the Cudjoe Regional Wastewater System don’t plan to stop asking anytime soon that the plan be scrapped and extra money be spent upfront to convert as many areas as possible to gravity pipes.
But the Monroe Board of County Commissioners last month agreed that grinder pump use was acceptable and didn’t agree to delay anymore construction on the $140 million system while the issue underwent an independent third-party engineering review.
Local energy consultant Walt Drabinski issued a rather scathing report about the long-term costs associated with the use of so many grinder pumps on such a large system, but the warnings went unheeded.
When completed, the Cudjoe Regional will initially serve about 8,800 equivalent dwelling units, an EDU being the average water flow from a typical single-family home. At its peak, the system is expected to serve 10,000 EDUs. The Cudjoe Regional will service Lower Sugarloaf Key to Big Pine Key.
Of that total, designers estimate that just over 2,800 units will be served by low-pressure grinder pumps installed on individual lots.
And that’s just too many, said Drabinski in his report.
He claims that the pumps aren’t historically tested, but that anecdotal evidence from other areas reveals that the pumps need to be replaced every five to six years.
This week Sheriff’s Special Investigations detectives, executed a search warrant at a Stock Island residence.
The warrant was served at 6336 2nd Street, Apt 6. Inside, detectives located 31 year old Keyonbie Humphrey and other friends and family inside the residence. The search turned up several large pieces of crack cocaine totaling 4.3 grams. A total of $4,000 in suspected drug proceeds were seized.
Humphrey was charged with an outstanding warrant for failure to appear in court reference possession of cocaine. Charges from the search warrant are pending.
It doesn’t appear as though a favorite on-the-water locals gathering spot will be affected by coming additional regulations from the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary.
Next month, the sanctuary advisory council will hear presentations from three working groups that have been formed to update sanctuary regulations in regards to shallow water preservation, ecological systems preservation and coral reef preservation.
What is being billed as the “Greatest Show on Big Pine” kicks off Thursday at 5 p.m.
The annual Independence Day celebration for the Lower Keys will be held this year at the Big Pine Key Community Park at the north end of Sands Rd.
It will be the first time in the 20-plus year history of the event that it has been held at the park on Big Pine Key, with the show grounds in the open field at the park between the tennis courts and the ball field.
Officials at the Florida Keys Aqueduct Authority expect final system designs to be completed sometime in the next three weeks for the outer islands wastewater collection portion of the Cudjoe Regional system.
“We have been told by our contractor that they will be breaking ground on Lower Sugarloaf Key about July 17, so we would assume final designs by that time,” said Kirk Zuelch, executive director at FKAA.
He said the contractor expects to be breaking ground on the Ramrod Key collection lines about six weeks later.
Zuelch said FKAA isn’t yet sure exactly how many homes will be hooked into what has become a controversial low-pressure grinder pump system and won’t until they see the final designs.
The number of those pumps has been estimated at about 2,800 throughout the Cudjoe Regional, with most in the outer islands collection basins of Lower Sugarloaf and Ramrod through Big Pine Key.
And even though some residents have balked at the high use of grinder pumps in the system, both FKAA and the Monroe Board of County Commissioners last week decided to continue with their use.
Zuelch said the contractor for the treatment plant, located at the landfill site on Blimp Road in Cudjoe Key, has finished with the piping to the plant location.
County Engineer Kevin Wilson said last week that the actual treatment plant should begin to rise from the ground in about a week.
Sewer assessment raises questions
Officials at St. Peter Church on Big Pine Key were just a little taken aback this week when they received their notice from Monroe County on the amount of their system development fee for the planned wastewater project.
And Father Tony, a community figure for about three decades, hopes that someone made a simple mistake that can be easily rectified.
The bill to the church for its sewer assessment was just over $132,000.
It appears as though the old swimming hole at the western entrance to Big Pine Key may finally be on a path to re-open for public use.
The Monroe Board of County Commissioners Tuesday agreed to authorize up to $1 million from future capital funds to develop a passive park on the site that has been closed to public use for nearly a decade. The land is owned by the state Department of Environmental Protection.
At Wednesday’s meeting, the BOCC agreed to pursue a lease from that state agency for the site, clearing the way for actual design work to begin at the location.
The Monroe Board of County Commissioners Wednesday decided that it wasn’t interested in asking the Florida Keys Aqueduct Authority to again study potential costs associated with the development of the Cudjoe Regional Wastewater System.
After more than two hours of discussion, the commissioners were told that under the terms of the Inter-Local Agreement with the FKAA where the county pays for the construction and FKAA builds, operates and maintains the system, any changes to the already-bid projects would have to be agreed to by the FKAA board anyway.
The discussion arose following a scathing report two weeks ago from Walt Drabinsky, an energy consultant who lives in Cudjoe Gardens and owns Pirate Wellness Center on Cudjoe Key.
In that report, Drabinsky opined that the development study for the Cudjoe Regional done in 2009 had some fatal flaws and that the hybrid system currently under construction would actually cost users up to $30 million more over the next 20 years.
Drabinsky said that the number of grinder pumps intended for the system was excessive, and that the life cycle costs for those pumps would be significantly higher than the life cycle costs should the FKAA go with an all-gravity system, other than areas where low density dictated low-pressure system usage.