The Tampa Tribune from Tampa, Florida on October 7, 1992 · 125
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The Tampa Tribune from Tampa, Florida · 125

Tampa, Florida
Issue Date:
Wednesday, October 7, 1992
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;) Cirur Ut Sumttr I . Serving Sumter and Lake THE TAMPA TRIBUNE Wednesday, October 7, 1992 Graham removed from 8 cases THE RlVERWALKER Neil Johnson I You want w w wr v v owe ftere wto you need it Parents, coaches and players at Pasco's school football games won't have the comfort of seeing an ambulance sitting at an end zone. ' That protection isn't there because of cost. Obviously no one will know if this has any impact unless there Is an emergency. It's sort of like the only way to find out how well your car insurance company responds is to have an accident. Which no one wants to happen. . This doesn't mean injured Pasco football players won't receive treatment. It Just means that they'll have to wait for an ambulance to arrive. While Pasco's games don't have the on-site medical team, that precaution will continue for games in Hernando and Citrus. As you might guess, there is some concern about the lack of an ambulance, and some disagreement about the importance of having paramedics on hand. The association that governs high school athletics in Florida doesn't require an ambulance be at all games, but it does recommend it, which seems only prudent. Obviously some small counties would be strained to have ambulances present at every Friday night game. Even if the ambulances aren't at the Pasco games, each high school does have a team physician who can handle first aid for an injured player. No guarantee '." Athletic directors in Hernando and Citrus say even though ambulances are stationed at each varsity and junior varsity game, it's no guarantee one will be there if needed. ; Many ambulances at games are on duty and could be called away for some other emergency. That was the case in Pasco. And that's the situation in Hernando and Citrus now. ; Ernie Chapman, athletic director at Hernando High said a few years back the ambulance at a Leopard's game was called to a car wreck and a player was injured while it was gone. Fortunately it wasn't an injury that required immediate medical help. That is one calming factor. Luckily, not many injuries at high school games are life-threatening. And coaches are trained to recognize the ones that are serious, according to Vicki Overman, athletic director at Citrus High. She and Chapman said coaches now get training at college and also take courses after they leave school. The most serious injuries. Chapman says, would be those to the spine or head. With a doctor on hand and in charge of the situation, no one is going to be dragging some player off the field with a neck injury. Back in the Dark Ages when one columnist played football, coaches didn't have as much training. One of the frequent cures for an injury was to "walk it off, son." That doesn't happen today. Long minutes : While ambulances may be at the field on game nights, there are none on hand in any county during the daily football practices. Casey Kearse, director of student services in Citrus, said that was discussed but it was not practical. Games are once a week. Practices are every day. "If it's important to have one at a game, then it's important to have one at practice. But we found we couldn't afford that. It was almost impossible," Kearse said. Coaches said the practices aren't quite as dangerous as games since most coaches don't have a lot of full contact. Also some changes in coaching techniques, like how to tackle, have made the sport safer. ' Overman at Citrus feels an ambulance may never be used, but could be essential in that one instance it's needed. . "I can't stress the importance of having an ambulance there enough. It's not usually a life or death situation but that one time it might be," she said. : And that is the whole problem. Ambulances are at the games to handle emergencies, that one in 100 chance that a kid is seriously hurt and minutes count. ; Most of the time the medical personnel aren't even needed. And for some area schools, a hospital is only a few minutes away. For others, it's a longer wait. An injured player in Pasco three weeks ago waited 11 minutes for an ambulance. ; Those would be 11 terribly long minutes for the player's parents. But It comes down to a financial decision. , Unfortunately, it won't be the decisionmakers who pay if it's the wrong one. By KEITH MORELLI Tribune Staff Writer INVERNESS A circuit Judge Tuesday removed Citrus County Judge Gary Graham . from eight misdemeanor and traffic cases because four lawyers Involved are accusing the judge of secretly investigating them. Circuit Judge Raymond T. McNeal's ruling opens the door to similar requests by more than a dozen lawyers who say Graham pulled their driving records in August in an apparent attempt to prove favoritism in the judicial system. They say their clients fear they cannot get a fair trial In Graham's court. McNeal said he is "confident that Judge Graham would not let feelings about the Another challenge? Public Defender Howard "Skip" Babb may ask that Judge Graham be removed from his cases.Page 6 attorney affect the outcome of the litigant's case, but it is unreasonable to expect a litigant to have the same confidence." "Judge McNeal's ruling certainly creates the potential of taking away a lot of cases from Judge Graham," said Mark Yer-man, president of the Citrus County Bar Association. If all the lawyers targeted by Graham are granted writs of prohibition, It will mean a major shuffling of caseloads in Citrus County, said Circuit Judge William F. Edwards, who as administrative Judge in the county makes judicial assignments. Edwards and Circuit Judge John Thur-man initially will try to absorb the transfer of cases from county court, he said, but If the caseload grows, outside help will be needed. "We may have to apply to the chief Judge for help," Edwards said. "We will have to ask him to send us judges from outside the county." Graham is facing Judicial Qualifications Commission charges of abuse of power and misconduct. One of the charges says that Graham made baseless accusations from the bench alleging favoritism by judges and lawyers In Citrus County. McNeal said the feud between Graham and members of the Citrus County Bar Association is enough to make people appearing In his court question the judge's Impartiality. "This conflict was Intensified when Judge Graham personally obtained the driving records of the attorneys in these cases for personal reasons," said McNeal, chairman of the panel that hears appeals from county courts in the 5th Judicial Circuit. "The personal nature of the conflict has created an intolerable adversary relation-See LAWYERS, Page I Tricks of the trade 3 - ."I A I ; 71 3 v- cj'4 ,v V , f -A 1 -1 s. David Liik of the Floral City Fire Department has some fun with pupils at Floral City Elementary while showing firefighting techniques used in smoky rooms. The fire department and a Dalmatian (actually a Citrus County 4-H Tribune photograph by BOBBY PEACOCK club member in costume) visited the school Tuesday in observance of National Fire Prevention Week. Youngsters were shown how to avoid starting fires and what to do in the event of one. Citrus teachers agree to mediation Teachers wanted the school board to settle the contract dispute, but the administration said no. By ANNMARIE SARSFIELD Tribune Staff Writer INVERNESS The Citrus County Education Association Monday agreed to allow stalled teacher-contract negotiations to go to a mediator. After an impasse is called, both sides must agree before moving to mediation. The teachers association, which called an im passe Sept 18, asked the administration to bypass mediation and a hearing before a special master, and take the contract dispute directly to the school board. Administrators said no and insisted the impasse be taken to a mediator. Closed hearings with a mediator appointed by the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service in Tampa begin Thursday at 10 a.m. Carl Harner, the association's executive director, said teachers wanted to bypass the two procedural steps because they felt there was little room for compromise. "Our original impression is that we are both at our final and bottom line," Harner said. "But we'll give it a try to see if there's any wiggle room in the administration's proposal." The key contract issue remains teacher salaries. Teachers are asking for 6 percent pay increases for teachers at the highest salary step. All other teachers, currently receiving salary step increases, would receive 3 percent raises under the teachers' proposal. The administration has offered 2 percent increases for teachers at the highest salary step and .5 percent for others. However, except for $200 of the 2 percent increase, the raises would not be added to the salary schedule and would be considered a one-time bonus. County to fight mining lawsuit By GEORGE WILKENS Tribune Staff Writer INVERNESS - Residents of Heatherwood applauded Citrus County commissioners Tuesday for their decision to fight a lawsuit brought last .week by a company wanting to mine in the rural subdivision. . Commissioners unanimously backed County Attorney Larry Haag's recommendation to seek dismissal of the lawsuit filed Oct. Sept. 30 by Florida Rock Industries. The lawsuit claims the county's ban on mining in the Heatherwood area is illegal because the planning and zoning staff violated the Florida Government in the Sunshine Law. It claims that when commissioners asked the planning staff to amend the land-use map to change the zoning for the 720 acres Florida Rock wanted to mine, they delegated their decision-making authority. The staff became an ad hoc committee subject tojhe law requiring meetings be advertised and held in public, the lawsuit claims. Haag said the lawsuit has no merit. "It has been discussed, in my opinion, as much in the sunshine as could be," Haag said. Commissioners discussed the issue at public meetings, in front of a television camera, the press and hundreds of residents, Haag said. "The board never created a committee," Haag said. "In this case, it was purely staff doing their job as they do every day of the week," he said. Haag characterized the lawsuit as "a last-moment attempt to try to stall the adoption process" of the zoning change. However, Haag said the lawsuit might assist him In obtaining a copy of the lease Florida Rock has for the 720 acres known as Storey Mine. The company has provided the county with only the first and last pages of the lease. "What is in between is anybody's guess," said Haag. "Until I have a copy of the See COUNTY, Page 3 2-headed baby turtle finally eats By DEAN SOLOV Tribune Staff Writer HOMOSASSA SPRINGS A two-headed baby turtle at Homosas-sa Springs State Wildlife Park continues to fare well and was seen eating for the first time since it was brought to the park, an official said Tuesday. As the left head of the Florida Cooter turtle ate hydrilla about 5:10 p.m. Monday, "the right head looked around and kept guard," said J.P, Garner, assistant park manager. "The left one got hungry." Garner and Mark Lowe, a veterinarian who examined the turtle, had expressed concern earlier Monday because no one had seen the turtle eat since Riverhaven resident Gene Pazian brought the reptile to the park Sunday. In addition to receiving food, the turtle is becoming a celebrity of sorts. Garner said the park has received calls from news organiza- See TURTLE'S, Page 3 , Y Tribune photograph by ANDY JONES Catch of the day Andy Behrens, 6, uses a pole net Tuesday to catch dragonflies and small fish to use as bait in Crystal River. He planned to use the bait to fish for sunfish and what he thought were grouper, but actually were mullet. 'Unsolved Mysteries' to feature 71 slaying Authorities hope to at least identify "Little Miss Panasoffkee." By STEVE ORLANDO Tribune Staff Writer BUSHNELL A network television show featuring a 1971 Sumter County slaying will air one week from today. The Oct 14 broadcast of NBC-TVs "Unsolved Mysteries" will include an eight-minute segment on the strangulation death of a woman known only as Little Miss Panasoffkee, said Stacy Schneider, who produced the segment. The woman's body was found floating under the Lake Panasoffkee bridge on Interstate 75. A man's belt was looped around her neck. She has never been identified and no arrests have been made in the case. Sumter County sheriffs Capt. Bill Farmer, who has worked on the case since 1981, said he and Capt Ed Galvin will be at the program's national telephone bank in Los Angeles the night the program is shown. Sheriff Jamie Adams also may be present to field calls. Farmer said the program is an all-or-nothing effort "We're hoping this will be the final break in this case. This is our only hope, the national exposure," Farmer said. The primary goal is to identify the woman, whose body was badly decomposed when it was spotted by two See NETWORK, Page S

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