Grayton has lots of underground utilities including TV/internet cables, gas lines, phone lines, and electrical lines. Before you DIG please call 811 annd the companies will come out and mark where the lines are. There is no cost for this service.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Planning Board Willing to Meet

One good thing that came out of the Commissioner's Meeting on August 30th is the willingness of the Planning Committee with our Commissioner's encouragement to meet with us on the wording that has many folks upset.

There will be a meeting for those that are interested in changes to the proposed language in the "Neighborhood Commercial" Future Land Use Category.
Date: September 7, 2010
Time: 1:00 p.m.
Location: South Walton Annex on U.S. Hwy 331 in Santa Rosa Beach

We welcome your ideas and participation,
Gerry A. Demers, CBO Director Planning and Development Division Walton County, Florida Phone: (850) 267-1955 FAX: (850) 622-9133

If you are planning on attending please let Mr. Demers know. If you have suggestions but are unable to attend the meeting please let him know. This is our chance to at least have a say in the wording.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Interesting Reading

Check out this post on Sowal by Grayton Girl:

August 30th Special Meeting

Tonight's meeting with the County Commissioners was the first hearing with them. They viewed the maps, heard from the public, but didn't do any final voting. They did take notice of our concern as to what could go on a residential commercial lot. They asked that the planning department hold a meeting with those citizens who were interested and to work together to come up with a more detailed plan as to what could go on a residential commercial lot. At present the way the proposed plan reads (see the following post)
It is very vague, and allows outside music, outside dining, etc. It even allows for a 25 room hotel.

The next County Commissioner's Meeting will be held on September 28th. If you are concerned about Grayton and what four commercial lots side by side on Defuniak could mean for Grayton, and how it could change our neighborhood... I encourage you to write each County Commissioner and voice your concern. If at all possible plan to attend the meeting and speak out.Their (email/fax)is located on the right side of the blog. Our letters and our voices do make a difference!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Round 1 LOST

Sorry to report that the vote at the Planning Commission was 4 to 2 tonight. We had 6 speakers and there were 7 letters written. The next step in the process is the special County Commissioner's Meeting that will be held on August 30th at 5 PM at the Courthouse Annex. If you haven't sent copies of your letter to all of the Commissioners, I suggest that if you are still concerned that you do so before the Monday Meeting. You can find the Commissioner's email address/ faxes on the right side of the blog. I suggest you write all of them and let them know of your concerns about the 4 lots on Defuniak. The lot that has the Magnolia House was removed by Mr. Veldman earlier so the Rivard Office and the two vacant lots were the only ones approved. I left before the other lot by Kitty's office came up because it was a sure thing that it too would be approved. I was disappointed but will again attend and speak to the County Commissioners. Will be posting Monday Evening.

If you are curious about my personal take on this meeting email me at:

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Defuniak Lots Update

At the County Commissioner's meeting held tonight at the Defuniak Courthouse the Planning Map Discussion was removed from the agenda and will be discussed at a Special County Commissioner's hearing to be held on August 30th at 5PM. This is on a Monday. It will be held at the South Walton Annex. This meeting will give the public the chance to speak about their concerns about the proposed changes. The process started with Planning Commission Board (Aug 17th and August 25th meetings) and then proceeds to County Commissioners on August 30th.

The meeting of the Planning Commission is still on for August 25th at 5PM at the South Walton Annex. I was also told that the Old Magnolia House lot had been pulled and was not up for a change anymore. At present it is listed as Infill and is no longer acting as a gift shop it is now an annual rental and is still has a For Sale Sign. infill is a catch all zoning term for a lot that is "filling in" between platted properties.

If you have concerns about any of the proposed changes for Defuniak St in Grayton please contact ALL of the county Commissioners with your concerns. Their contact info is located on the right side of blog or you can use this link:

Storm Causes Fire in Grayton

Read article about fire in Grayton.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Crist's Statement on Federal waters

“As the Deepwater Horizon spill is being capped and the flow of oil into the Gulf of Mexico reduced, I have been working with NOAA to re-open closed fishing waters. Last week, federal waters off the coast of Pensacola were re-opened and the announcement today further lifts the fishing restrictions. The federal waters off beautiful Northwest Florida are once again open for fishing, and Florida’s commercial and recreational fishermen are eager to get back to work. I join them in celebrating this much-needed boost to our economy and quality of life. We invite traveling Floridians, as well as visitors from around the nation and the world, to come and fish, explore our beautiful beaches and enjoy Florida’s delicious seafood. ”

FLORIDA FISH AND WILDLIFE CONSERVATION COMMISSION CHAIRMAN RODNEY BARRETO Regarding the Reopening of Additional Federal Waters to Fishing “The re-opening of these federal waters comes as great news to Florida anglers and coastal communities impacted by the Deepwater oil spill. This action by our federal partners is one more step forward in helping our fishing communities recover from this unprecedented event,” said Rodney Barreto, Chairman of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. “Both the water and fish have been thoroughly tested and Florida’s seafood is certified good to eat and great tasting.”

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Possible Change Coming to Defuniak

The county is considering, due to the owners requests, a change in 5 residential lots to be changed to commercial lots. All five lots are located on Defunial Street. Four of them are side by side (Rivard building, two empty lots, and the old Magnolia house which if developed or sold by their owner offers a rather large commercial spot right on Defuniak Street. The other lot up for change is on the right side of Kitty Taylor's Real Estate Office. All of the lots are surrounded and back up to already established residential housing.(Grayton Trail, Defuniak and Pine Street)

The hearing to consider if this change will move forward to our County Commissioners will be held August 25th at 5PM at the Courthouse Annex on 331.

What a change from residential to commercial can mean to our Grayton Neighborhood:
Commercial Definition
The purpose
of this land use category is to designate small areas in proximity to residential areas that will allow for a limited group of commercial uses to serve the needs of those residential areas. All neighborhood commercial uses must be designed in use, scale, character, and intensity to be compatible with, and to protect, the abutting and surrounding residential areas.
Uses Allowed : offices, professional services, storefront retail shopping, neighborhood grocery stores, limited lodging not to exceed twenty-five (25) rooms, banks, bakeries, cafés, and restaurants without drive-thru facilities.
Prohibited uses: Gas stations and convenience stores with or without fuel, bars, and auto repair services, and the like. However, this provision does not preclude restaurants, or other similar allowed uses, from alcohol sales/services during course of business. Outdoor storage , outdoor broadcasting or music, display of goods, or outdoor seating for cafés and restaurants may be permitted, subject to a case-by-case determination of its impact on the abutting neighborhood and where it does not conflict with the Scenic Corridor Guidelines

If you have concerns please feel free to make and speak at the meeting on August 25th if at all possible, and if not here is a contact source for a letter/email/ or a Fax.

Melissa Ward~ Project Manager Planning & Development Services
Phone: (850)267-1955
Fax: (850) 622-9133


She has assured me that her staff makes copies of all letters/faxes,and emails received and gives them to the Commissioners for their consideration. They also put map id#s and agenda item #s at the top of each correspondence. So if you are unable to attend in person to speak at the meetingon the 25th then please write a letter/email or a fax if you are concerned about the changes and how it might effect the future of Grayton.


Tar Balls have been cleaned up from storm. Article in paper was not very accurate. It read as if there were massive tarballs.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Storm Pushes OIL into Grayton

OIL UPDATE: Storm brings oil to Walton beaches; County may reconsider pulling warning signs
August 16, 2010 10:47 AM
Florida Freedom Newspapers

Recent weather conditions continue to wash oil from Deepwater Horizon ashore on Walton County beaches from Topsail Hill Preserve to Seaside.
According to, various tar covered items and tar patties were found within Topsail Hill Preserve State Park. Tar balls and tar patties as large as seven inches were discovered along with tar covered wood and plastic debris.
Tar patties, balls and oil covered product in various forms from weathered to melting were reported in Santa Rosa, Grayton and Seaside beaches. No “clean beach” reports for Walton County were filed.

More oil expected as storms continue
WALTON COUNTY — Less than two days after removing oil warning notifications in Walton County, officials are working on cleanup for tar balls and tar patties that washed ashore over the weekend.
Miles of Topsail Hill Preserve to Seaside Beach were covered in the remnants of April’s Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Reports of tar patties as large as seven inches were discovered Sunday along with tar-covered wood and plastic debris.
“As long as the weather continues to bring in storm surges we’ll see more oil,” said Cortnee Ferguson, spokeswoman for Deepwater Horizon Joint Information Center. “This is a good thing. The more oil that washes ashore the more we can clean up and dispose of it properly.”
Crews were dispatched to beaches Monday morning to finish clean up halted Sunday because of weather.
Lt. Joe Preston with the Walton County Sheriff’s Department said the concentrated areas for clean up will be Topsail Hill Preserve and Grayton Beach.
Officials announced Friday that because no significant oil presence had been seen since July 3, the signs on oil safety and oil warnings would be removed from the beaches. Preston said Walton County officials will be meeting to see if the move was too soon and to discuss if the signs will be placed back on the beaches.
For now, he said they are watching where storms surges will be heading.
“We’re meeting soon to discuss the appropriate response to this,” Preston said. “We’re keeping an eye on the weather and that will dictate our response. Now, it’s too early to tell."

Friday, August 13, 2010

Good News

Oil Notices To Go Away

Those oil warning notices on the beaches can go away now that the Health Department has changed how it will consider the situation. Effective immediately, the Walton County Health Department, in coordination with Walton County Officials, is rescinding all Oil Impact Notices posted on all Walton County beaches.The removal of the signs is based on no significant beach oiling events being reported and chemicals that were consistently found in samples have dropped below benchmarks. The FDEP also conducted a study of visibly clean sand and sediment on Northwest Florida’s white sandy beaches and demonstrated that oil and its associated chemicals of concern tend to settle within a layer below the surface, and that they can be easily seen when exposed.

Monday, August 2, 2010

2010 Driving on Beach Permits down by 337


I had requested the Driving on the Beach Permit numbers for 2009 and also for 2010. As of August 1st there will be no more permits issued this year. I got the numbers this morning:

2009- 1063 permits issued
71 boat launch permits
11 charter permits

2010 726 permits issued
71 boat launch permits
11 charter permits

A lost of 337 permits from 2009 - 2010.

I was unable to get any multiple permit information. There are no County records available of multiple permits issued to folks who own more than one property with a home located on the lot as they don't keep that information. computer not set up for that. It is something they plan to do in the future.