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.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Walton County Tax Notice is on its Way

Walton county tax notices to be mailed Nov. 1
Taxpayers responsible for payment regardless of receipt of bill

Walton County tax bills will be mailed on Monday, Nov. 1. The Walton County Tax Collector’s Office urges property owners who haven’t received a bill to please contact the office at 850-892-8121 or through the contact us page at

Each year a substantial amount of tax bills are returned to the Walton County Tax Collector’s Office as undeliverable. While a tax bill may not have been deliverable to the taxpayer, the property owner is still responsible for paying their taxes by the March 31 deadline to avoid penalty.

“Undeliverable mail is an issue for every tax office in the State,” said Tax Collector Rhonda Skipper. “We are required by law to mail the bill to the address that is on the official tax roll. Property owners often change addresses and forget to notify the Property Appraiser’s Office of their new mailing address.”

Property owners who have not received a bill can visit and utilize the tax search feature to find out the amount owed or contact the office for another bill.

A four percent discount is extended to property owners who pay current year taxes by Nov. 30.
To make official address changes to the tax roll, taxpayers can contact the Property Appraiser’s Office at 850-892-8123 or download and submit a change of address form from

For information regarding property taxes or services provided by the Walton County Tax Collector’s Office, please contact us at 850-892-8121 or visit

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

County Commissioners Meeting October 26, 2010

The County Commissioner's Meeting was a short and quick one this evening. Those items discussed that had to deal with Grayton Beach were as follows:

1. Short Term Rental Ordinance ( A new ordinance will be drawn up and submitted within 60 days and then a public hearing will be held. You can contact the following two people with any comments or suggestions as they have been charged to draw up a new Short Term rental Ordinance and also tie it into our Land Use Business Ordinance.:

 Ms. Lynn Hoshihara
Phone: (850) 892-8110
Fax: (850) 892-8471

Office of the County Attorney
161 East Sloss Avenue
DeFuniak Springs, FL 32433


Gerry Demers
Director of Planning and Development Services

2. Driving on the Beach Permit  (public hearing Dec 14th, 2010 at South Walton Annex) The Commissioners wanted the new draft to look at:
a. Improvement of disability permits
b. Perhaps having a cap of 900 permits issued (at present there are 726 permits)
c. Having a lottery for new permits issued
(This would allow 174 permits in the lottery if the 900 cap number sticks)
d. Changing requirements for permits

Ms. Hoshihara was charged with drawing up a new Driving on the Beach Ordinance, so feel free to contact her with your suggestions or concerns.

Also for those of you with dogs, the local Bark Park will now join Alaqua Animal Refuge and fall under their supervision. For those of you who might not know, they were having some financial difficulties.

For my personal reactions to this meeting please visit my personal page:

Monday, October 25, 2010

Agenda for Commissioner Meeting on October 26th

Here is the link for the agenda for the County Commissioner's Meeting for October 26 at the Walton County Annex at 4PM.

There are a few items that are on the agenda that might be of interest to Grayton:

The Renter's Ordinance and Driving on the Beach Update.

I will report on the meeting tomorrow evening.

Friday, October 22, 2010

If your Grayton Beach Property has a Septic Tank

Septic Tank Inspection Legislation

A little more info update:

As of 1/11/2011, SB 550 will require that all septic tank owners in Florida have their tanks pumped and inspected every five years. The inspection requirement will be phased in over the following 5 years.
The Florida Department of Health is drafting rules to enforce compliance. This must be done whether the tanks have shown any problems or not. Inspection and pumping will probably cost in the neighborhood of $400 to $500. This rule will cost the state's 2,600,000 septic-using homeowners a grand total of approximately $1.3 billion dollars every 5 years for inspections alone.
If your tank fails the state inspection, it must be repaired or replaced and brought up to the new inspection standards. To completely replace some drain fields, the cost will be in the range of $3,000-9,000 or more, plus the inspection fees.
If you fail to have your tank inspected, the fine is $500 per day plus you may also be charged with a misdemeanor. If your septic does not pass and you can't afford to repair it, and cannot qualify for a grant, you may not be allowed to live in your house. The law provides for termination of electric service for those owners who have a non-compliant, non-government certified septic system.
At this time, some state legislators have made statements that they'd like to see this law repealed.

South Walton Walmart Breaks Ground

Construction of the 78,290-square-foot building at the intersection of U.S. Highway 98 and West Hewett Road is expected to take less than eight months.


Grayton Beach Neighborhood Association GBNA
Meeting Minutes, October 5, 2010

The Meeting was called to order at the 30A Resorts Conference Room at 4:00 PM by Grant Blackwell, President. Board attendees in addition to Grant were Scott Provow, Ann Morrell, Larry Jackson, Kitty Taylor, and Billy Buzzett. Mike Valentine was absent. Shirley Sahlie also was present. Grant suggested the Board work this year to complete many of the past Old Business agenda items.

Minutes: Larry Jackson presented minutes for acceptance and posting of April 3 Annual Meeting Minutes and May 25th Minutes. Board concurred.

Membership: Ann Morrell reported 171 lots were under Association membership.

Financial Report: Ann Morrell presented an update of our GBNA Finances as of September 30, 2010

Checking Account Balance: .$3,467.24


$44.00 Mailbox yearly rental

$45 Blue Mountain Lawn Care


$50 (donations)

Savings Account Balance: $10,614.99

Logo: The Board has been exploring ideas for a Grayton Beach Logo. The Logo funding will be incorporated in the Historic Grayton Beach grant proposal described below.

Lake Accesses: The Board agreed to follow up with the County Public Works about any plans to survey the Western Lake accesses.

Kayak Rack: Volunteer effort was discussed to clean up the Boat Ramp/Dock Access east of Banfill Street. A boat/kayak rack was discussed to organize the day storage of boats and kayaks. The Board agreed to discuss with TDC and some of the vendors to see if they would contribute to the project.

Open Commercial Dumpsters: Neighbors near the dumpsters have reported problems with the odor and the feral animals. Shorty’s has added locks at our request. The Red Bar does not have locks but has improved closing the dumpsters when reminded of the issue. The board will follow-up with a letter to all Grayton businesses asking for their continued attention to this issue.

Zoning: The Board discussed the recent change of four lots from Residential to Neighborhood Commercial and what should be the Association policy about addressing zoning changes. The Board agreed to be neutral in the presenting information to the membership on our various means of communication. Association members should be aware of facts of the proposed zoning changes and decide for themselves. A new Comments Posting feature has been added to the Grayton Beach Neighborhood Association BLOG, , to provide a venue for members to post their comments on Grayton Beach topics.

Garbage pickup: Ann Morrell reported on the initiative by Richard Veldman to get Waste Management to schedule the extra pickup during the summer season. The Board discussed the need for an extra weekend pickup during the summer season. In Ann’s discussions with Public Works, they suggested options including changing dates, a fee for extra pickups or that the association work everybody in the community have adequate sealed garbage containers.

Annual Membership Meeting and Party: The Board approved the recommendation to conduct the GBNA Annual Membership Meeting on Saturday, April 23, 2011 over the Easter weekend.

Parking ordinance: The County is working to develop a Grayton Beach parking ordinance. Without the ordinance, the Sheriff Department cannot issue parking tickets unless there is safety issue or the parked vehicle is blocking access to and from private property.

Annual Membership Drive: The annual membership letter and the membership survey and dues application will be developed for an early January mailing. While mailing bulk rate saved the Association mailing costs, we didn’t get returns on letters with bad addresses. We had some complaints about not getting the notice for last year’s meeting. Ann Morrell and Larry Jackson will develop the procedures for this coming year. It was agreed we will use first class mail with stamped return envelopes. We also will survey the 2010 real-estate records to identify new property owners in Grayton.

Landscaping and mowing on DeFuniak Street:

Blue Mountain Landscaping continues to maintain the Triangle. At end of season, the Beauty Berry bushes will be trimmed down followed by the Dunes Sunflowers. Seasonal decorations will be placed around the sign.

The association continues to maintain the west side of DeFuniak Street and the shrubs around the Entry Sign. Grant Blackwell has been mowing the shoulders. The County said they would mow the area, however they have not followed through. The Board approved hiring a service to mow periodically from the Pine Street corner up to the pump station. It was suggested asking commercial business facing the mowing area to contribute to the cost of the mowing.

Drainage: The Board discussed the standing water drainage problem at the southwest corner of Hotz and Garfield. Grant will discuss with Public Works to see if they can improve drainage.

Street Signs: At request of a member to put street signs for a couple of our non-county maintained roads, Larry Jackson worked with County Roads Office to get blue and white street signs placed for Sandy Lane and Grayton Trail. Green and white street signs indicate a county maintained street.

Rent/Sale Signage: The Board discussed the defined signage program that the Gulf Trace Home Owners Association mandated for their residents compared to the various signs on Grayton Beach streets. Grant proposed to talk with some of the rental/real estate agents in Grayton. Gulf Trace also has a standardized look for their garbage bends.

Historical Grayton Beach Project: Billy Buzzett updated his work on the Historic Grayton Beach Project. State grants may be available to fund information pamphlets and other education materials. Billy is working a grant proposal with the Florida Secretary of State’s Office and has a November submission date.

Friends of Grayton Beach State Park: Larry Jackson reported he was talking to the Friends of Grayton Beach State Park to see what activities they are involved in and where we as an association might have an interest.

“Grayton”-Titled Developments: Shirley addressed concern about the use of “Grayton” or “Grayton Beach” in some area developments outside of Grayton Beach that leads to confusion with out-of-state renters and visitors. She suggested the Board look into ways to restrict the use of Grayton to the village and the State Park.

The meeting was adjourned at 5:45 PM.

Submitted by Larry Jackson, Secretary Upon approval, these minutes are posted on Grayton Beach Neighborhood Association BLOG at , The Minutes are cataloged at

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Do You Rent Your Grayton Beach Property?

If you rent your property in Grayton Beach you need to review this upcoming Ordinance that the County Commissioners will soon be reviewing and having a public hearing on. Ms. Gail Bradford who owns a resident on Defuniak Street which she rents emailed me with the following link.

As soon as a date is set for a public hearing I will post the date on the blog. If you have any questions the County Commissioners information is located on the right side of the blog.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Hidden Oil on the beaches?

Distrurbing article. Will post any follow-ups that come out.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Fair Time in Walton

Don't you just love those pigs at the fair?

October Nature Ideas for our Visitors

Link to a Sun article with more Nature Activities going on in Santa Rosa Beach.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Looking for Something To Do While in Grayton in October

Planning on a Grayton Beach Trip in October. Here is a link to all kinds of events and interesting happenings.

Grayton Enjoying that Cooler Air

With the weather getting cooler many Grayton Residents have opened up their windows to enjoy the cooler weather both in the day and the evening. There is nothing better than going to sleep with a little cooler air flowing in from the outside and if lucky enough hearing the waves.

Ann's Personal Opinion

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Approved 5-25-2010 GBNA Board Minutes

The May Meeting was called to order at 4:00 PM by Grant Blackwell, Outgoing 2009-2010 President at the 30A Resorts Conference Room. Attendees included all the 2010-2011 Board Members and Shirley Sahlie, Immediate Past Treasurer/Director.
First agenda item was the election of the 2010-2011 officers. The board nominated, seconded and approved the board leadership positions: The board positions are as follows:
Name (Board Term) 2010-2011 Position
Grant Blackwell (2010-2011) President
Scott Provow (2009-2011) Vice President
Larry Jackson (2010-2012) Secretary
Ann Morrell (2010-2012) Treasurer
Billy Buzzett (2010-2012) Director
Kitty Taylor (2009-2011) Director
Mike Valentine (2009-2011) Director

Ann Morrell presented the April Financial Statement.
Checking  Starting Balance: $9,052.06
Savings Balance $10,435.74
Deposits: +$550.00
Interest +$0.69
Checks Written : -$ 5,698.74
Ending Balance $3,904.01
Ending Balance Checking and Savings Accounts $ 14,339.75

Checks written in April:
Scott Provow. $579.25, Annual Meeting Tent Rental
Scott Provow $552.68, Annual Meeting Food and Beverage
Grant Blackwell 4003.35, Radar Traffic Sign
Butch Phillips $349.26, Annual Meeting Support
Blue Mountain Lawn $170.00, Entry Triangle Landscaping
Larry Jackson $89.69, Spring Decorations, Triangle
Ann Morrell, $125.08, Mailing Expenses

Ann Morrell reported that membership dues collections for 2010-2011 as of May 1st included170 paid lots for $4,750.  

The board discussed the budgeted fixed expenses and capital expenditures i.e. Radar Sign, and other future projects. The board reviewed additional revenue options including affiliate memberships for Grayton Beach businesses, increasing annual dues, GBNA BLOG sponsorships.

During the Annual Meeting Review, the board noted the attendees enjoyed the setting with special thanks to Shirley Sahlie for use of her yard. Seventy-nine members and families and forty-one guests attended. The tent, tables and chairs proved to a great setting for members and guests to socialize. Highlights included the food prepared by the Provows, member discussions at the business meeting and the Historic Grayton Beach presentation by Billy Buzzett coupled with stories of the early years by our long-term residents. Party picture pictures are posted at

The board reviewed upcoming activities and responsibilities.
Larry Jackson, Secretary, was assigned the task to collect, document and store past records, data, minutes, and financials reports currently stored by Shirley Sahlie.

The board approved placing appropriate flags and decorations for the upcoming Memorial Day weekend.

Landscaping reports were presented by Larry Jackson, Entry Triangle, and Grant Blackwell, entry road mowing and plants on west side, Hwy 293 – DeFuniak Springs.

Larry Jackson reported the Radar Sign battery connection has been adjusted to cover evening periods.

The Board discussed status of downtown parking and concern to maintain two-way traffic. County Deputies are supposed to be out enforcing the proper parking areas.

The County moved contingency Oil Spill materials to an off beach location.

The Beach Permits for vehicles and commercial fisherman period is now open.

The Board discussed the Fourth of July Parade and the post parade party sponsored by Coastal Realty. Ann Morrell and Grant Blackwell discussed the change of the Rags to Riches Sailing Regalia from July 4th to July 3rd, 11 AM.  the traffic congestion with the Parade and positioning of Regalia boats would not work. The Regalia sponsors agreed to the change.
See Regalia Information at

The Board discussed implementation procedures resulting from Annual Meeting proposal to amend the GBNA By-Laws to allow Board to represent the Association at governmental bodies when there is not sufficient time to poll the entire membership. A member of the Board may represent the association based upon a unanimous approval by the entire Board. A review will be completed to complete the amendment to the By-Laws. See proposed change at

Billy Buzzett reported his work on the Historic Grayton Beach Project. His presentation on YouTube has attracted a lot of attention. Working with the Florida Secretary of State’s Office, Billy has found resources and ideas for enriching the uniqueness of Historic Grayton Beach. State grants may be available to fund information pamphlets and other education materials. Coordination with Walton TDC is underway.

The Board reviewed annual expenses and revenues and procedures for reimbursement for GBNA related expenses. As a general rule, directors can submit expenses for up to $500 with original receipts. Board members should seek approval from the board for expenses above the limit. 

The meeting was adjourned at 6:00 PM.

Upon approval, these minutes are posted on Grayton Beach Neighborhood Association BLOG at

The Minutes are cataloged at

Submitted by Larry Jackson, Secretary