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Digest

Restrictions on lawn watering in place

By TIMES STAFF
Published April 30, 2007


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CLEARWATER

The city of Clearwater has restricted lawn watering to one day a week for most residents.

The limit comes as a result of the announcement of a severe water shortage by the Southwest Florida Water Management District.

Officials said the one-day-per-week restriction applies to the use of water from public and private water utilities, all wells and surface water sources such as ponds and rivers. The city's reclaimed water customers are not affected by this restriction and can water on any day of the week. Users of potable water will remain on their usual one-day-per-week schedule. Residents who use water from private wells or surface water sources can water one day per week on the following schedule:

- Addresses ending in even numbers or the letters A through M can water only on Tuesdays.

- Addresses ending in odd numbers or the letters N through Z can water only on Sundays.

COUNTYWIDE

Guardians ad litem needed for children

More than 1, 000 children in Pinellas County need someone to be their voice in the courtroom, and the county's guardian ad litem program hopes that could be you.

You can learn about becoming a guardian ad litem by attending a one-hour orientation held each week on Thursdays. The time of the orientation is varied to accommodate the schedule of prospective volunteers.

Guardians ad litem speak on behalf of abused, abandoned or neglected children in Pinellas County courts. As a child's advocate, a guardian ad litem becomes familiar with the child and case and makes recommendations to the court to help ensure the child has a safe, caring and stable environment. Guardians ad litem receive training and ongoing supervision to help them make a positive difference in the lives of children.

Call 727 464-6528 to sign up for an orientation. Go to www.guardianadlitem6.org.

Teen volunteer guide available

To promote youth volunteerism and help students complete service projects, the Volunteer Action Center and 2-1-1 Tampa Bay Cares has published the Pinellas County Teen Guide to Service Learning.

The guide lists 26 agencies in Pinellas that have volunteer opportunities for teens who need to complete 75 hours for the Bright Futures scholarship or for other programs.

For a free copy, call 211 or visit www.211tampabay.org. The 211 information line has information on health and human services in Pinellas, Hernando and Citrus counties. To reach the information line from a phone that's blocked from making three-digit calls, call 210-4211.

Hearing-impaired program expanded

The Deaf and Hearing Connection for Tampa Bay has expanded its no-cost telephone loan services, which include amplified telephone and equipment usage, at the following locations: Largo Library, Clearwater Library, Palm Harbor Library, Dunedin Senior Center, Safety Harbor Library, the Upper Tampa Bay Library, St. Petersburg Sunshine Center, Gulfport Senior Center and the Gulf Beaches Library. Call (727) 399-9983 for dates and times.

Small business program upgraded

Pinellas County has revised and renamed what used to be known as the Small Business Assistance Program.

Under its new name, the Small Business Enterprise Program allows qualified vendors to bid for county purchases from $2, 000 to $10, 000.

The program is designed to benefit all small businesses principally located in Pinellas County, regardless of the gender or race of their owners, with sales and staffing below established limits. Employers with fewer than 50 full-time employees and annual gross revenue of less than $2-million are eligible.

To learn more, call 464-3148 or e-mail businesshelp@pced.org An online application is available at www.pinellascounty.org/ purchase/sbap1.htm.

Sign up to help collect for Tampa Bay Harvest

Tampa Bay Harvest is an all-volunteer organization that collects food from restaurants, supermarkets and other sources to donate to food pantries and other local organizations that help feed the hungry. Volunteers are needed to transport food, help with coordinating and record-keeping, and assist with food-collecting events. Call 538-7777, ext. 1.

Pay for misdemeanors, infractions at kiosks

Pinellas County Clerk of the Circuit Court Ken Burke has introduced payment kiosks for fines in misdemeanor and felony cases, municipal and county ordinances, and boating and traffic citations.

The kiosks are at the clerk's North County and Tyrone branches at 29582 U.S. 19 N in Clearwater and 1800 66th St. N, St. Petersburg. You can pay fines, plus a 3.5 percent service charge, with a debit or credit card or by using a checking account number to pay by electronic check.

You also can pay fines by calling (727) 464-4846 or visiting http://www.pinellasclerk.org and clicking on the "Make a Payment" link.

To learn more, call the branches at 464-8700 in Clearwater, 582-7681 in St. Petersburg or the clerk's office at (727) 464-7000.

Health Department offering free flu shots

The Pinellas County Health Department is offering free flu shots to anyone unable to pay the $25 fee. The shots will be available until the vaccine supply runs out at any of the department's five health centers:

-Clearwater, 310 N Myrtle Ave., 469-5800.

-Largo, 12420 130th Ave. N, 588-4040.

-Tarpon Springs, 301 S Disston Ave., 942-5457.

-Pinellas Park, 6350 76th Ave. N, 547-7780.

-St. Petersburg, 205 Dr. Martin Luther King St. N, 824-6900.

Public health officials say vaccinations are important for everyone, including children over 6 months old. Those particularly at high risk include people age 50 and older, pregnant women, people with chronic illnesses, health care workers and caregivers of high-risk people.

No insurance? Free care is available

The Pinellas County Human Services Department provides free medical care on evenings and weekends to residents of Pinellas County who don't have medical insurance.

Services are provided on the county's Mobile Medical Unit at different sites throughout the county. Evening hours are 4 to 7:30 p.m.

Services available to uninsured residents during evening visits include basic primary care, lab services and prescriptions. The staff can also provide referrals to dental, mental health and substance abuse treatment.

Emergency services are not provided.

Care is provided regardless of income or citizenship status.

For locations and times, call (727) 582-7595.

Bothered by litter? Call this number

Keep Pinellas Beautiful has a new 24-hour litter reporting hotline residents can use to report litter problems: (727) 210-4663.

The litter hotline is designed for large-scale litter problems or those that pose a public safety hazard, such as cases where items could create traffic problems. Examples include:

- Road or environmental hazards.

- Illegal dumping.

- Areas with major litter problems, such as storm drains with shopping carts or bulky items in them, or places like businesses with widespread litter problems.

The hotline is not for reporting code enforcement problems such as overgrown lawns or minor instances of littering.

Action to remove the trash/litter is taken by Keep Pinellas Beautiful Staff or coordination with the appropriate city or county department.

Callers will need to provide a street address or intersection, description of the litter problem and a contact phone number. Keep Pinellas Beautiful will coordinate with the appropriate city or county departments to address litter reports.

Call (727) 210-4663 during regular business hours or visit the Web site at www.keep pinellasbeautiful.org.

[Last modified April 30, 2007, 06:25:26]


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