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Health insurance increases 25 percent

The Baker County Commission will soon have to decide how to absorb a roughly half-a-million dollar hit to an already tight budget from rising health insurance costs.

The county is currently eyeing a 25 percent increase in health insurance premiums for the coming fiscal year, which begins October 1.

None of the county’s options are good, says County Manager C.J. Thompson, a former health insurance executive with Florida Blue, formerly Blue Cross Blue Shield of Florida. He’s been busy preparing for the commission’s budget workshop on July 16, when the board will get its first crack at the proposed spending plan for the 2013-14 fiscal year.

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Van strikes three other vehicles; two injured

The green van to the right of the logging truck above, driven by Tsuneko Kim, hit three other vehicles at the intersection of US 90 and Lowder Street about 9:30 the morning of June 25.

Cpl. Coty Crews of the sheriff’s department said Ms. Kim, the at-fault driver, and the van’s passenger, 12-year-old Katie Hodges, sustained minor injuries and were transported to the Fraser ER.

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Cocaine sale lands man 2 year sentence

Givens

Arlee Givens

A circuit court judge on June 18 sentenced two Baker County men to 24-month prison terms, one for sale of cocaine in north Sanderson and the other for stealing property from a shuttered dairy near Glen St. Mary and attempting to sell it for scrap.

Arlee Givens, 20, of Macclenny entered a no contest plea to sale and possession of crack to an undercover buyer working for the sheriff’s department in November, 2012. He gets credit for 107 days in county jail since his arrest and Judge Mark Moseley ordered him onto a two-year drug offender probation upon release.

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Mid-week end to water boiling

Macclenny utility workers repair a water main break on South 6th Street June 25.

City of Macclenny utility workers repair a water main break on South 6th Street June 25.

A water main break on South 6th Street interrupted water service to several hundred homes and businesses in southwest Macclenny this week and prompted city officials to issued a boil water notice about 1:30 pm on Monday.

The notice was rescinded late Wednesday afternoon after testing demonstrated the water was safe to drink.

More than 800 customers were affected by the break according to data from the city’s CodeRED system, which notified about 87 percent of the customers impacted about the need to boil water.

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