Articles written by Gretchen Mcpherson


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  • Edwards says the school system is taking a step back

    Gretchen McPherson, Ledger Staff|Jul 18, 2024

    "I see the resignation of our director of primary education (Nicole Spottswood), and that greatly concerns me," is how Escambia County (Ala.) Board of Education's member Mike Edwards described his reaction to the boards approval of recommended personnel changes at its special meeting last Friday. "What this says to me is that this board is dismantling the efforts to move forward with the programs we established in the last two to three years, which we've spent millions of federal and state...

  • Century OKs $3.4 million bid for its sewer lift stations

    Gretchen McPherson, Ledger Staff|Jul 18, 2024

    Tuesday night, the Century Town Council approved to award the lowest bid of $3,365,175 to Talcon Group in repairing five of the 22 of the town’s sewer lift stations as part of Phase II Project. Phase II Project includes work at the wastewater treatment plant and rehabilitation of the town’s 22 lift stations, five of which were bid on by Municipal Engineering. Municipal Engineering’s Dale Long presented to the council for the $3 million estimated repairs of the lift stations: No. 1 at Century Cor...

  • Jay hires contractor to keep water in compliance

    Gretchen McPherson|Jul 4, 2024

    Jay Operations Manager Eric Seib told the council Monday night the town has hired an independent contractor for its water and wastewater services to remain in compliance following the death of former Water and Wastewater Superintendent ‘Rocky’ Witt June 19. “We’ve hired a part-time water and wastewater operations independent contractor to hold our licenses and do daily sampling until we can find a long-term solution,” said Seib. Seib said that the town has an inter-local agreement with eigh...

  • Pensacola Energy to help in Century

    Gretchen McPherson|Jul 4, 2024

    Tuesday night, the Century Council held open public hearings and unanimously approved the first reading of three ordinances that amend the town’s charter by putting them in the town’s policies and procedures for ease of operations. These ordinances will appear on the November 5 ballot because they are currently in the town’s charter. The town’s charter is about 40 years old and recent infrastructure necessities, such as emergency approval for well parts and repair, have prompted town personn...

  • Jay mourns the loss of fireman

    Gretchen McPherson|Jun 27, 2024

    The town of Jay is mourning the death of 27-year-old Clay Brown, who lost his life when the 2016 Ford F-150 he was driving struck a utility pole and drainage ditch last Saturday morning. According to an Alabama Law Enforcement Agency report, Brown was traveling southbound on State Road 87 around 2:35 a.m., approaching the intersection with County Road 87A when for unknown reasons, the vehicle left the roadway and collided with the ditch and pole. Brown, the driver and sole occupant of the...

  • Two die in separate crashes

    Gretchen McPherson, Ledger Staff|Jun 20, 2024

    A Castleberry woman was killed Monday and a Century man died from injuries suffered on June 10 in two separate vehicle crashes that occurred in Escambia County, Ala. and Santa Rosa County, Fla. Thelma Bradley, 82, of Castleberry was killed Monday when her vehicle was struck by a tractor trailer on Highway 87, a half mile south of the Alabama state line. John D. Woods, 68, of Century died June 13 from injuries he suffered in a June 10 crash in Brewton. Bradley According to a Florida Highway...

  • Century votes quicker service over price

    Gretchen McPherson, Ledger Staff|Jun 20, 2024

    The Century Town Council Tuesday night approved to accept one of two lower bids submitted by flooring retailers, with the deciding factor being the company that can start the job quicker. Three bids came in on replacing the flooring in part of town hall, one for $21,145.57 from Cannon Carpets, one from Home Depot for $12,926.44 and one from Shamar Carpet for $15,818. The install includes removal of existing tile in the kitchen and two employee bathrooms and carpet throughout and replacement with...

  • School board taps Ford as new SCFO

    Gretchen McPherson, Ledger Staff|Jun 6, 2024

    In a vote of 6 to 1, the Escambia County (Ala.) Board of Education approved candidate Avery Ford as the school system’s new CSFO (Chief School Financial Officer). Ford was one of two candidates who applied. The other was Carrie Moore, who currently works as Flomaton’s town clerk. Interviews were held with both candidates last Thursday afternoon at Flomaton High School auditorium. Board Attorney Brooks Garrett said the board members could vote by roll-call voice vote or by ballot and that he had...

  • Flomaton woman arrested for drugs

    Gretchen McPherson, Ledger Staff|May 30, 2024

    A Flomaton woman, whose temporary residence was the subject of a search warrant, executed in Century, faces a felony drug charge when law enforcement discovered drugs and a weapon with an altered serial number inside the residence. Amy Nicole Lewis, 45, 230 Wade Lane, was served a search warrant at the residence of 9206 Academy St. in Century on Friday, May 3, where Lewis was detained upon exit, according to an Escambia County (Fla.) Sheriff's Office report. As an officer read the warrant to Lew...

  • Century woman shot and killed

    Gretchen McPherson, Ledger Staff|May 16, 2024

    Century resident Chiquita Ewing was one of three who died as a result of a shooting that left 18 people injured at a party last weekend in Baldwin County, according to news sources. Ewing was at a May Day party with at least 1,000 people in attendance near Stockton, Ala., about 30 miles northeast of Mobile. An argument took place which led to at least one subject shooting multiple rounds into the large crowd, according to Captain Andre Reid of the Baldwin County Sheriff's Office. Reid also said...

  • Storms pound the area

    Gretchen McPherson, Ledger Staff|May 16, 2024

    Storms that began just before this past weekend and swept across several counties in southwest Alabama and northwest Florida damaged trees and power lines outages in Century and Jay, leaving residents without power for more than a day as emergency management agencies scrambled to clean up and restore power through as late as Wednesday. Travis Tompkins, emergency manager for Escambia County (Fla.) said Escambia County and Santa Rosa County, although they were not declared an emergency, were put...

  • Students say guilty, not guilty

    Gretchen McPherson, Ledger Staff|May 9, 2024

    Last Thursday, Flomaton High School, Atmore Christian School, Escambia Academy, Escambia County High School and Homeschooled Kids & Company seniors attended this year's Law Day at the Escambia County (Ala.) Courthouse in Brewton and got to hear the guest speaker, Terri Lovell, executive director of the Alabama State Bar. Selected seniors from each class got to serve as sworn-in jurors and decide in the case of Tanner Weaver. Weaver had been arrested and charged with possession of a controlled...

  • DEP sets deadlines in Century

    Gretchen McPherson, Ledger Staff|May 2, 2024

    Following a meeting held between the town of Century personnel and the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Tuesday morning, sources said the town could face a lawsuit for not coming in compliance sooner. "The situation is we had a meeting with the DEP on April 10 and discussed a lot of issues we've been having with the water and wastewater," said Century Mayor Luis Gomez. "All I can tell you is we've addressed every issue from the DEP since I've taken this seat, as far a warning...

  • Jay Rodeo makes history

    Gretchen McPherson, Ledger Staff|May 2, 2024

    The 23rd Annual Jay Pro Rodeo last Friday and Saturday at the Ted May Arena in Jay saw the largest crowd and raised the most funds since the event's beginning. See Page 13 for more....

  • Schools will not allow cell phones

    Gretchen McPherson, Ledger Editor|Apr 25, 2024

    At its meeting last Thursday, although they took no action, the Escambia County (Ala.) Board of Education heard as Superintendent Michele Collier said this coming fall, the school system will crack down on its policy to not allow cell phones in the schools, citing the drop in discipline problems since Escambia County Middle School has recently led the way. "It has made a phenomenal difference," said one school official. "We were literally having to work two, three, four five situations a week...

  • Jay hopes to curb medical marijuana centers

    Gretchen McPherson, Ledger Staff|Apr 25, 2024

    At its Monday, April 15 meeting, the Jay Town Council unanimously approved the first reading of an ordinance that, if adopted, will prohibit medical marijuana centers from being located within 3,000 feet of an existing church, school or daycare inside the town limits of Jay. The state of Florida issued a moratorium that legalized the use of medical marijuana in 2016. That moratorium allowed municipalities to impose a temporary one-year moratorium on medical marijuana treatment centers and...

  • Century clerk taking a leave

    Gretchen McPherson, Ledger Staff|Apr 18, 2024

    At Century's council meeting Tuesday night, the council approved the town's mayor to retain the temporary services of the town clerk for a period not to exceed six months to be paid out of American Rescue Plan Act funds, since Town Clerk Leslie Howington has stepped away due to medical reasons. "There is a lot of work because we have these new city managers and we have a lot of moving parts and it is getting a little bit overwhelming for Leslie and it's getting overwhelming for the office...

  • Century to pay $240k for help

    Gretchen McPherson, Ledger Staff|Apr 18, 2024

    Recent warning letters sent to the town of Century from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP) concerning the town's on-going non-compliance and numerous violations in its water and wastewater treatment system and the recent resignation of its water superintendent prompted the council Tuesday night to approve hiring a company with personnel who will bring the system into compliance and manage it for one year at a cost of almost $240,000. Gomez said there was a meeting with...

  • GECA play opens April 25

    Gretchen McPherson, Ledger Editor|Apr 18, 2024

  • Search back on for new SCFO

    Gretchen McPherson, Ledger Staff|Apr 11, 2024

    At Monday's meeting, the Escambia County (Ala.) Board of Education voted approval to continue its search through the Alabama Association of School Boards (AASB) for a Chief School Financial Officer (SCFO) after Kristal Wardrop turned down the contract following a 4-2-1 vote of approval to name her new CSFO last month. Board Members Sherry Digmon, Kevin Hoomesm Loumeek White and Cindy Jackson voted for Wardrop. Board Members Danny Benjamin and Coleman Wallace voted for Charles Bass. Board Member...

  • Tornado slams into Coastal's Atmore campus

    Gretchen McPherson, Ledger Staff|Apr 11, 2024

    Last Friday, Coastal Alabama Community College in Atmore held a mass casualty incident training that involved community partners and departments within the college. The simulated incident was a tornado that touched down at night, leaving behind damage and injuries. The event is aimed at streamlining emergency agency response protocols with the campus's nursing student body to show how working together can help those dealing with the aftermath of real-world situations run smoother. After a 9...

  • Jay man arrested after fleeing

    Gretchen McPherson, Ledger Staff|Apr 4, 2024

    A Jay man being served a search warrant on March 27 who was not at home arrived and fired two shots from his vehicle and then fled the scene, leading deputies on a 14-mile chase and the later discovery of $200,000 worth of drugs in his residence, according to a Santa Rosa County Sheriff's Office report. Travis Paul Sterback, 27, 4994 Dobson Road, was the suspect named when memebrs of the Santa Rosa and Escambia County Sheriff's Offices were on scene serving a residential search warrant at 4994...

  • Bats, butterflies, snakes and more

    Gretchen McPherson, Ledger Staff|Apr 4, 2024

    This Saturday, April 6, Turtle Environmental Science Center in Flomaton will host its Spring Open House from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. The event is free and open to the public. There will a couple of presentations, including Jimmy Stiles, who will be there with a Reptile Show at 10:15 to 11:15 and will feature live reptiles. Turtle Point Director Sierra Stiles said this is the busy time of year, getting habitats cleaned and ready for spring events. Stiles said events like this introduce people to...

  • Brewton man jailed on cocaine charge

    Gretchen McPherson, Ledger Staff|Mar 28, 2024

    A Brewton man who was pulled over by law enforcement in Pensacola for a missing headlight now faces a felony drug charge after cocaine was discovered in his pocket. Roshell Michael Benson, 34, 100 Harrison Ave., was traveling east on New Warrington Road and Jackson Street in Pensacola on March 13 with a missing passenger headlight and was spotted by a sheriff's deputy, according to an Escambia County (Fla.) Sheriff's Office report. The officer conducted a traffic stop at the Super 8 Motel on...

  • Century addressing its water problems

    Gretchen McPherson, Ledger Staff|Mar 28, 2024

    “The Town of Century and Heath Burkett came to an agreement that it was best for the town for him to resign….and the recommendation is to approve the separation agreement, retroactive to March 7, 2024,” said Century Mayor Luis Gomez at Century’s March 19 council meeting. Councilwoman Alicia Johnson made a motion to approve the separation agreement, which was seconded by Councilman Henry Cunningham and the motion carried unanimously. Council member Sandra McMurray Jackson was absent. The agreemen...

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