A courthouse by any other name ...

Published: Monday, January 20, 2003 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Sunday, January 19, 2003 at 11:42 p.m.

Where have all the courthouses gone?

In Alachua County, you can find one located on E. University Avenue and another not-yet-completed one on S. Main Street.

But it seems we're not calling them courthouses anymore.

The Alachua County Commission - with the support of the 8th Judicial Circuit judiciary - voted last week to expunge "courthouse" from the buildings' titles.

Beginning in January when it opens, the new courthouse is to be known as the "Alachua County Criminal Justice Center."

The existing courthouse is to be renamed the "Alachua County Family and Civil Justice Center."

"We wanted something appropriate for a judicial center," County Manager Randy Reid said. "We wanted to keep it serious with a focus on justice."

  • Cluttered corner: Gainesville recently paid big bucks to beautify NW 17th Street near the University of Florida campus with new lamp posts and benches.

    Too bad the vendors of some publications insist on chaining their racks to them.

    That's one of the reasons why the city is considering shelling out $12,000 for fancy, stackable bins to replace the rows of mismatched racks at the corner of NW 17th Avenue and W. University Avenue.

    At last count, there were 16 metal and plastic racks offering various news, advertisement and entertainment publications. They also clutter the newly widened sidewalks.

    "We've spent a lot of money to make that area pedestrian-friendly," said Karen Slevin, manager of Gainesville's Community Redevelopment Agency. "We are just trying to take that corner back."

  • Doughnuts on duty: Dunking doughnuts on duty isn't reserved only for cops.

    Recently, some Gainesville firefighters feasted on glazed treats from Krispy Kreme following a midnight house fire.

    Turns out there's a tradition behind the doughnut binge.

    Fire chiefs at Gainesville Fire Rescue occasionally reward their firefighters with a round of doughnuts after especially good work putting out a blaze.

    But it's not a regular thing, GFR spokesman Stuart Schwartz insisted.

    GFR has a dietitian who makes sure firefighters eat healthy meals, he said. Firefighters also work out for an hour every workday.

    "We try to avoid doughnuts and junk food," Schwartz said. "Typically, they're eating apples and oranges."

  • Quote of the week: "If it's going to be political, I'm out of it."

    - Gainesville City Commissioner Warren Nielsen said last week of an attempt - once again - to move forward with the merger of the city and county fire rescue departments.

    Janine Young Sikes can be reached at (352) 337-0327 or sikesj@gvillesun.com. Ashley Rowland can be reached at (352) 374-5095 or rowlana@ gvillesun.com.

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