Retail complex tops agenda

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Developer Hardy Huntley, fresh from victory last month from getting a positive recommendation from planning and zoning members, will seek final approval Tuesday from county commissioners before moving forward with a planned shopping center on 20 acres at the southwest corner of State Road 50 and Mariner Boulevard.

Peter Creighton of Hardy Huntley Properties Inc. told Hernando Today the site would be home to a commercial shopping development and likely comprise several different retailers.

The anchor retail store would be 160,000 square feet and the outparcels 40,000 square feet.

What makes the location desirable is the access off two main roads: Mariner and SR 50. Patrons could go in one entrance and exit the other, avoiding the traffic light at the main intersection.

Creighton did not disclose the names of any tenants. Huntley is one of the largest landowners in Hernando County.

County commissioners will consider the matter at their business meeting which begins at 9 a.m. Tuesday at the Hernando County Government Center, 20 North Main St. in downtown Brooksville.

Also Tuesday:

Commissioners will consider the creation of special taxing units to provide funding for various county services, including economic development, law enforcement, fire/rescue, libraries, parks and recreation and mosquito control.

Ordinances also will be considered to create an unincorporated services municipal services taxing unit and a one-cent discretionary sales tax to fund emergency medical and fire services.

Commissioners could go with any or all of these taxing units as options for providing alternative funding sources for the 2013-4 fiscal year.

The decision to implement the ordinances will be made during budget talks this summer when the millage rates will be established.

Two public hearings will be held in September to adopt the budget, including any new taxing units.

Board members will discuss adding five hours of service to THE Bus route, which would cost an additional $225-per-operating day in contracted costs.

Fuel expenses would increase approximately $50 per operating day for the extra loops. The total estimated annual operating expense for all changes would be about $68,500. Fifty percent ($34,250) of that would be reimbursed with federal grant funding, 25 percent ($17,125) with state grant funding, and the remaining 25 percent ($17,125) is a required local match funded by the transportation trust fund.

The county expects to offset expenses with revenue created by fares.

To view the entire agenda, visit

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