Videos: Surprise phosphate mining discussion at Bradford County, FL BOCC 2017-07-20

The regular attendees said there would be no fireworks this time. Yet it was a very interesting meeting, especially once the County Attorney asked for scheduling a date to select the consulting engineer about the phosphate mine. The Commissioners and staff discussed August 8 in the morning or August 17 in the evening. Public comment preferred the latter. The County Attorney strongly advised they go ahead and decide when so there will be plenty of time to advertise it. The decision: Thursday evening, August 17, 2017.

Below are links to each WWALS video, followed by a video playlist. See also the agenda.

News coverage of charges dropped against Sabal Trail protesters

From Martin County, FL to Charlotte, NC, news stories related to the WWALS PR of 16 July 2017. Some protesters still have court cases pending; more on that later.

Bruce Ritchie, Politico, 17 July 2017,

Charges dropped against some North Florida gas pipeline protesters,

On Monday, the State Attorney’s Office in Gainesville said charges had been dropped against 11 and that one case remained pending while two others entered pleas of no contest. The charges were dropped because of insufficient evidence to sustain a conviction, said Jeanne M. Singer, chief assistant state attorney.

The WWALS Watershed Coalition, which opposed the pipeline, issued a news release announcing that the charges had been dropped and criticizing police for the arrests.

“These exaggerated charges were intended to Continue reading

Bradford Co. decided when to hire consultant about HPSS II phosphate mine

At the Bradford County, FL BOCC meeting, they’re deciding when to decide on hiring a consultant. August 8 morning or August 17 evening. Public comment preferred the latter. County attorney strongly advised they decide when tonight so there will be plenty of time to advertise it. That’s how this came up: it was not on tonight’s agenda.

The decision: Thursday evening, August 17, 2017.

Video to come.

 -jsq, John S. Quarterman, Suwannee RIVERKEEPER®

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Dunnellon Compressor Station leak Monday 2017-07-16

What was that strong gas smell on FL 200 Sunday? Several people reported seeing multiple emergency vehicles at the Sabal Trail Dunnellon Compressor Station just west of FL 200, near the Citrus County line, which is the Withlacoochee (South) River.

Dunnellon Compressor Station, 13544 SW State Rd 200, Dunnellon, FL 34432,
Dunnellon Compressor Station, 13544 SW State Rd 200, Dunnellon, FL 34432,

After some time calling various numbers in Marion County (emergency management, Sheriff, Fire, dispatch), the answer is: Continue reading

Florida Drops All Charges Against the 14 Gilchrist County Sabal Trail Protesters

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Florida Drops All Charges Against the 14 Gilchrist County Sabal Trail Protesters

Valdosta, July 17, 2017 — Eight months after she and a dozen other people were unnecessarily arrested for holding signs on a public road, WWALS member Cindy Noel reports:

“All charges against those who protested the Sabal Trail Pipeline in Gilchrist County, Florida, on November, 12, 2016, have now been dropped, except for those who were intimidated into accepting plea bargains. Karrie Ford, Jodi Wheeler, Panagioti Tsolkas, Cindy Noel, Allie McDaniel, Alayna Erhard, Felicia Sobieski, Jordan Lacie, Josh Weber, and Nicole Williams were all facing Felony Trespassing on a Construction Site and Disorderly Conduct charges for speaking out against the Sabal Trail Pipeline. The reason cited by the State of Florida when it filed its NOLLE PROSEQUI action was “Insufficient Evidence to Sustain a Prosecution.”

Standing protesters and water truck
Photo: Cindy Noel. Left to right: David Hensley, Josh Birmingham, Michael Roth (not arrested, left early), Jodi Wheeler, Alayna Erhard, Stephan Barron, Karrie Ford, Felicia Sobieski, Allie McDaniel, Josh Weber, Jordan Lacie, Nicole Williams

“These exaggerated charges were intended to Continue reading