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Week in review

A look back at the week's top stories:

By Times staff writer
© St. Petersburg Times
published June 30, 2002

HALLS RIVER RETREAT: A key state agency announced it is withdrawing its support for the Halls River Retreat project, echoing opponents' concerns that the time share complex would bring "intensive boat use" to an essential manatee habitat. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission said the developer's plans for an 18-slip marina appear to be inconsistent with the county's Manatee Protection Plan, which advises against new or expanding commercial boating facilities along the Homosassa River.

PLEDGE RULING: Upset by a controversial federal court ruling, VFW posts in Citrus and nationwide paused at 11 a.m. Friday to recite the pledge at their flagpoles. Separately, the Citrus County Democratic Executive Committee held a rally Friday evening in downtown Inverness.

HEART PROGRAM: Citrus Memorial Hospital announced it had cleared the final legal hurdle and would begin construction on its new heart surgery unit in September.

SCALLOPS: On the eve of scallop season, state officials announced the latest census bears some potentially troubling news: The Homosassa area now has 52 scallops per 600 square meters, far fewer than it had during other counts.

BAT CAVE: A colony of 6,000 bats, mostly females and their babies, was sealed inside a Withlacoochee State Forest cave by heavy silt pushed by heavy rains. Volunteers helped free the mosquito-eating bats.

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