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Monday, November 29, 2021

Belleview mayor discusses new housing developments, black bear sighting in letter to residents

The mayor of Belleview recently addressed residents in a letter to highlight the city’s growth and warn of a bear sighting near the Diamond Ridge subdivision.

Christine Dobkowski says that the latest census numbers show that Belleview has reached a new milestone of 5,591 residents. To accommodate this growth, Dobkowski pointed to two new housing developments that are under construction: Autumn Glen, located off of Highway C25, and Bennah Oaks, which will be located near the library on Highway 484.

Mayor Christine Dobkowski

Several businesses have petitioned to make their way into Belleview. Vin Mar motel, which was damaged in a massive fire in December 2020, is currently performing repairs and renovations. The motel is in the process of annexing into the city.

The Mi Pueblo Flea Market, formerly Grumpy Jerry’s, is located on South Highway 441. The flea market has new owners and offers American and Latin American goods and cuisine. They are currently going through the annexation process.

Citizen’s First Bank has also begun clearing land for their new building, which will be located at the site of the former Lassie’s Restaurant.

In response to the new growth, Dobkowski stated that the city is currently hiring a police officer, maintenance technician, park services worker, and utility services technician.

Dobkowski also took time to note the success of the second annual Truck or Treat event that was held at Lake Lillian on Saturday, October 30. The event featured children’s activities, vendors, and candy. Over 5,000 people were in attendance, making it one of the city’s biggest annual events.

Light Up Lake Lillian will be held on December 4 from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m. The event will include Christmas-themed activities, food, vendors, and the lighting of the Christmas lights.

Belleview’s 2021 Christmas Parade was cancelled last month due to a shortage of staff and volunteers.

Dobkowski ended her letter by informing residents to be on the lookout for a black bear that was spotted near the Diamond Ridge subdivision on Halloween night. The Florida Wildlife Commission warns residents to not feed the bear, to make sure that trash cans are inaccessible, and to keep outdoor grills as clean as possible.

Any resident that sees the bear should neither run away or approach it. Instead, residents should make themselves appear to look as big as possible while making as much noise as possible.

The next regular Belleview city commission meeting will be held on Tuesday, November 16 at 6 p.m. at Belleview City Hall.