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Now browsing: Hometown News > Community > Brevard County

Community notes - Melbourne
Rating: 2.08 / 5 (36 votes)  
Posted: 2012 Aug 24 - 00:26

Melbourne Community Orchestra accepting new members

The Melbourne Community Orchestra is seeking string and percussion players who wish to join the all-volunteer group.

The dynamic orchestra is comprised of 50-plus musicians ranging from student players to adult hobbyists and full-time professionals.

Named "Orchestra in Residence" for the city of Melbourne in 2008, the group performs seven sets of free concerts each season in the Melbourne Auditorium, 625 Hibiscus Blvd., Melbourne.

Call (321) 952-9949 for a rehearsal schedule or visit www.MCOrchestra.org for more information.

Humane Society seeks volunteers

The Central Brevard Humane Society is in need of dedicated individuals or groups who care about the welfare of animals.

Volunteering opportunities are available at the shelter, the Molly Mutt Thrift Shops in Historic Downtown Melbourne, Merritt Island, Palm Bay and Rockledge, the "low cost" spay/neuter and wellness clinic or as a "Society Ambassador" during community outreach (off-site) events.

Volunteer activities in dire need are dog walkers and cat socializers. They also need help with grooming animals and shelter beautification projects, as well as retail help at the thrift shops and assisting with community education and adoption events.

Individuals who volunteer as dog walkers provide daily exercise, affection and socialization to confined dogs, thus keeping them happy, healthy and adoptable - so they may find their new "forever" home with a loving and caring family (and as a side benefit you will get fit and trim).

For more information, contact Susan Rushin, volunteer coordinator with the Central Brevard Humane Society at (321) 636-3343, Ext. 207, or volunteer.coordinator@crittersavers.com.

New app tracks friends, family members and employees

Mobile Office Software Solutions Inc has unveiled an amazing new app, Trackster, for iPhones and Android phones, that allows users to track their friends, parents to track their children and employers to track their employees in real time, and do it inexpensively.

As a parent, wouldn't it be great if you knew where your kids were at all times? As a teen, how cool would it be if you knew where your best friends were hanging out? And employers, think how productivity could improve if you knew where your field employees were at all times during the workday? Trackster makes all that happen, and a lot more.

Trackster is a revolutionary and inexpensive GPS based application that works on iPhones and Android phones, utilizing Google Maps in real-time. Trackster allows you to track, find and follow your family, friends or employees who also download the Trackster app from either iTunes or Android Marketplace.

If you want to know where your family, friends, or employees are, find them instantly with Trackster.

Want to know where your kids are? www.phonetrackingkids.com

Want to know where your friends are? www.phonetrackingfriends.com

Want to know where your employees are? www.phonetrackingemployees.com.

Mobile Office Solutions Inc. is a software and application development company based in Vero Beach that specializes in mobile applications and solutions for businesses, and GPS tracking software for families, friends and employers.

Sheriff's Office commander receives Manager of the Year Award

Brevard County Sheriff's Office Cmdr. Doug Waller has been named the 2012 Brevard County Manager of the Year by the Florida Space Coast Council.

The annual award is designed to publicize the positive impact that leadership, integrity and management skills can have on organizations and the community.

Nominations are solicited from throughout Brevard County from organizations not affiliated with the council.

Cmdr. Waller is the Criminal Investigations Division commander and has been employed with the Brevard County Sheriff's Office for the past 25 years.

He has been instrumental in the implementation of such innovative programs as the Sexual Offender Registration and Tracking Unit and co-creator of the "GAMEOVER" (Gang And Major Epidemic Of Violence Enforcement Response) Task Force.

For more information, please contact Cmdr. Mike DeMorat at (321) 403-5755.

Humane Society's 'foster to adopt'

The Central Brevard Humane Society has launched a new "foster to adopt" program.

This is a program through which individuals or families provide temporary homes for animals who have been residents of the shelter for six months or longer.

During this time, the Humane Society will supply individuals with an "overnight bag" for their new houseguest containing a collar, flea comb and product, microchip, toys and staff support.

Once the foster period is over, you may decide to make the animal a permanent member of the family. If so, the adoption fee will be waived (must pay for rabies vaccine & county tag).

For more information about this new program, contact the Central Brevard Humane Society at (321) 636-3343 or visit crittersavers.com.

The M.O.R.G.A.N. Project receives grant

The M.O.R.G.A.N. Project has announced it has received a $50,000 grant from The Wal-mart Foundation to support its quality-of-life support programs for medically fragile children with disabilities.

The M.O.R.G.A.N. Project is one of 15 nonprofit organizations in Florida to receive grants through The Wal-mart Foundation's State Giving Program, which was created to carry out the retailer's commitment to giving back to the communities in which it operates.

Since 2001, the M.O.R.G.A.N. Project has provided support and services to parents of children with physical disabilities all across the nation, regardless of their underlying disease or disorder.

In addition to providing gently used pediatric disability equipment, new specialized bath chairs and assisting parents in attending medical support group conferences, in early 2012 they opened the doors to Morgan's Place, located at 411 Ocean Ave., in Melbourne Beach.

Morgan's Place is available by appointment only. It has been designed to provide a safe environment for parents to bring their children with special health care needs and physical disabilities for hands-on therapeutic play.

For more information on The M.O.R.G.A.N. Project and Morgan's Place, visit www.themorganproject.org or contact Kristen Malfara, executive director at (321) 506-2707 or by email at morgansplace@themorganproject.org.

Let the Humane Society help you with the loss of your pet

While the Central Brevard Humane Society cannot take away the pain when a pet passes on, they understand the loving and unconditional relationship an individual shares with their pet and what it means to face losing that "special friend."

The passing of a pet is hard enough without having to worry about making final arrangements for them. The Humane Society provides prearranged euthanasia, cremation and chapel services to help ease the stress of a difficult moment in a person's life.

Its Rainbow Bridge Community Chapel is a private, peaceful and dignified place where someone can say their "final farewells" to their beloved animal companion. It is furnished with pew seating and soft music that provides a comforting environment for someone to remember their pet and the times they shared.

For more information about these services, contact the Central Brevard Humane Society at (321) 636-3343, Ext. 208 or visit www.crittersavers.com.

'Wounded Hero Voyage' books

The book, "Wounded Hero Voyage: I Smallest Powerboat Crossing the Atlantic," is out.

Part I features the Tampa to Greenland part of the 2-part voyage to Germany.

"Wounded Hero Voyage II" picks up where book one leaves off, arriving in Greenland.

Brothers Bob and Ralph travel past thousands of icebergs in the world's smallest powerboat to ever cross the Atlantic Ocean, and they are traveling the route which passes just south of the Arctic Circle.

They are traveling unescorted - without a cabin or a keel.

The book is loaded with 92 pictures showing incredible sites and hardships with an up-close view that lets the reader experience the drama as it unfolds.

The storms are rolling in as they motor in small windows of better weather, continuing to the Faroe Islands, Shetlands, Orkneys, Scotland, England, France, Holland, and finishing the 8,312-mile voyage in a boat with less than a foot of freeboard.

They are promoting Wounded Hero Foundations in memory of three marines, John Harvey, George Holmes and Dewey Johnson.

Videos and book information is available at www.RobertBrownBooks.com. Both books are available in paperback and Kindle.

Commercial human space transportation

The Federal Aviation Administration and NASA have signed a historic agreement to coordinate standards for commercial space travel of government and non-government astronauts to and from low-Earth orbit and the International Space Station.

The two agencies will collaborate to expand efforts that provide a stable framework for the U.S. space industry, avoid conflicting requirements and multiple sets of standards, and advance both public and crew safety.

The memorandum of understanding signed by the two agencies establishes policy for operational missions to the space station.

Commercial providers will be required to obtain a license from the FAA for public safety.

Crew safety and mission assurance will be NASA's responsibility.

This approach allows both agencies to incorporate experience and lessons learned as progress is made.

The FAA is responsible for regulating and licensing all U.S. private companies and individuals involved in commercial space transportation.

For details on FAA commercial space transportation responsibilities, visit www.faa.gov/news/fact_sheets/news_story.cfm?newsId=12179.

To view the agreement, visit http://go.nasa.gov/Lru8iQ .

For more information on NASA's Commercial Crew Program, visit http://www.nasa.gov/commercialcrew.

Rep. Bill Posey congratulates students bound for U.S. Service Academies

Congressman Bill Posey congratulates nine students from the 15th Congressional District on their appointments to the U.S. Service Academies.

The nation's service academies are the U.S. Military Academy, U.S. Naval Academy, U.S. Air Force Academy, U.S. Merchant Marine Academy and U.S. Coast Guard Academy.

The following students from District 15 received appointments:

. U.S. Military Academy:

Rachel Greer, Melbourne High School, Cody Rothschild, Palm Bay High School and U.S. Military Academy Preparatory School, Luis Vega, Palm Bay High School and USMAPS

. U.S. Naval Academy:

Rachel Griffin, Merritt Island High School, Siera Snapp, Sebastian River High School

. U.S. Air Force Academy: Vaughn Campbell, Osceola High School and U.S. Air Force Academy Preparatory School, Anthony Kochensparger, Sebastian River High School, Sean Ledfors, Sebastian River High School, Jacob Redito, West Shore Junior-Senior High School

For more information, call (202) 225-3671 or visit www.posey.house.gov.

SPCA urges pit bull 'parents' to prevent unwanted litters

With 8 million homeless pets entering U.S. shelters every year, the Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals of North Brevard is helping to solve the problem with its "Primp Your Pit (bull)" spay/neuter promotion sponsored by PetSmart Charities.

During the month of August, the SPCA will spay/neuter pit bulls for a special rate of $20.

Today, 35 percent of dogs and cats in U.S. households are not spayed or neutered, yet the procedure is one of the most effective ways to reduce the homeless pet population

Pit bulls, in particular, end up in shelters in large numbers because of myths and negative media that impact public perceptions associated with the breed.

The American Veterinary Medical Association endorses spaying and neutering puppies as young as 8-10 weeks old, and research shows that the procedure can improve the behavior and health of the pet, including reducing the risk of certain reproductive cancers and infections.

In an effort to prevent unwanted litters of pit bulls, this special rate during the "Primp Your Pit (bull)" event applies to all residents of Brevard.

The promotion is based on availability

Please visit www.spcanorthbrevard.com or call (321) 267-8221 for more information or to schedule an appointment.

NASA offers web, mobile links to follow space station and mission control

NASA is using the Internet and smart phones to provide the public with a new inside look at what happens aboard the International Space Station and in the Mission Control Center at the Johnson Space Center in Houston.

Log onto the agency's "Space Station Live!" web page or download the companion "ISSLive!" mobile application to get up-to-the-minute information.

Groundbreaking research and technology development work is going on every day in the microgravity environment of space, and Space Station Live! allows users to see what the expedition astronauts do minute by minute.

Space Station Live! includes a web experience and free mobile ISSLive! app for smart phones and tablet computers accessible on NASA's website. The app also is available through the Google Play and iTunes app stores.

Special features of the Space Station Live! web and mobile app experience include: live streaming data from various space station systems, live streaming data from actual crew and science timelines with social media links, descriptions and educational material that describe how the space station works, educational lessons using the live content, 3-D virtual mission control, 3-D virtual space station using live streaming data to correctly position the sun, Earth, moon and the station's solar arrays, 3-D model of the space station with labels and colored by the international partner contributions to its assembly and links to NASA's five international partner space agencies' mission information.

To use Space Station Live!, visit http://spacestationlive.nasa.gov.

To download ISSLive! and other NASA mobile apps, visit http://www.nasa.gov/connect/apps.html.

For information about the International Space Station, visit http://www.nasa.gov/station.

Health First Health Plans receives highest accreditation

Health First Health Plans has been awarded an accreditation status of "Excellent" - the highest possible level - from the National Committee for Quality Assurance.

Health First Health Plans has received this top rating for both its commercial and Medicare plans for the third consecutive three-year accreditation period.

The accreditation survey process includes on-site and off-site evaluations of more than 60 standards and selected performance measures conducted by a team of physicians and managed care experts.

Information from health plan records, consumer surveys, and interviews with health plan staff are collected.

A national oversight committee of physicians analyzes the team's findings and assigns an accreditation level based on the plan's performance.

For more information, visit www.HealthFirstHealthPlans.org, call (321) 434-5665 or call toll-free at (800) 716-7737.

New law waiving fees for military veterans in effect

The Department of Business and Professional Regulation encourages military veterans, who have been honorably discharged within the past 24 months, to apply for a new licensure fee waiver available through the department.

The department now has the ability to waive initial licensure fees for military veterans under a new law that passed during the 2012 Legislative session. The waivers could save veterans anywhere from a few hundred dollars to more than a thousand dollars, depending on the license type.

Through House Bill No. 517, the initial license fee, initial application fee and initial unlicensed activity fee will be waived for veterans returning from service, provided the veteran applies for licensure within 24 months of being honorably discharged

The law will apply to new licenses granted for more than 20 professions under the department's jurisdiction, including construction, real estate, certified public accountants and cosmetologists.

The waiver can be downloaded from the department's military services webpage at www.myfloridalicense.com/dbpr/dbprmilitary.html and should be included in applications for professional licensure.

For more information, visit www.MyFloridaLicense.com.

Federal and Junior Duck Stamps help protect wetland habitats

The 2012-13 Federal Duck Stamp is on sale across the United States, giving hunters, stamp collectors and anyone with an interest in migratory birds and other wildlife an easy way to help conserve habitats.

Ninety-eight percent of proceeds from sales of the stamp are used to acquire and protect vital wetlands supports hundreds of species of migratory birds, wildlife and plants.

Fish and Wildlife Service director Dan Ashe joined representatives of the U.S. Postal Service, Bass Pro Shops and other conservation partners at the Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World retail store in Virginia recently to celebrate the first day of sale of both the $15 Federal Duck Stamp and $5 Junior Duck Stamp.

The new stamps are now available at thousands of post offices, Bass Pro Shops and other sporting goods stores and retail locations across the country, and can also be purchased online at www.duckstamp.com.

The electronic validation may be used to hunt or obtain free admission to a refuge immediately, while a physical stamp is mailed to each customer.

Learn more about the Federal Duck Stamp Program online at www.fws.gov/duckstamps, or on Facebook at USFWS_Federal Duck Stamp. Learn more about the Junior Duck Stamp at www.fws.gov/juniorduck, or on Facebook at Federal Junior Duck Stamp.

Brevard Rescue Mission awarded grant

Brevard Rescue Mission, which provides transitional housing and support services for homeless women with children, was recently awarded a $1,000 grant from the Boeing Employee Community Fund.

The "Transporting Families to Financial Independence Grant" will be used to support transportation service for the families to get to jobs, school and medical appointments.

Brevard Rescue Mission is privately funded by donations from individuals, civic organizations, foundations, churches and area businesses.

Donated funds provide housing, education, transportation, counseling, medical care, parent training, household budgeting, tutoring, job training, food and clothing and case-manager support services.

For more information, call (321) 480-9100 or visit www.BrevardRescueMission.org.

Schools continue to earn high marks

School grades have been announced, and out of Brevard's 69 elementary and middle schools that received their annual state grades, 64 percent received an A, with 94 percent of schools receiving an A or B (does not include charter schools).

According to data released by the Florida Department of Education, 38 Brevard public elementary schools received an A, 16 received a B, two received a C, and one received a D.

Six of BPS middle schools received an A, five received a B and one received a C.

Out of 1,811 elementary schools statewide, Brevard has three of the top 10 elementary schools based on points earned for the school grade: No. 2 is Freedom 7 Elementary School of International Studies; No. 8 is Robert Louis Stevenson School of the Arts and No. 10 is West Melbourne Elementary School for Science.

Every BPS Middle School increased in total accountability points.

For more information, call (321) 633-1000, Ext. 796.

Local school named to U.S. Top 100 by Newsweek

West Shore Junior/Senior High School in Melbourne was listed in a national report card among the top 100 public high schools in the United States.

Created by Newsweek, the America's Best High Schools 2012 report card ranks the 1,000 best public high schools in the nation - the ones that have demonstrated to be the most successful in turning out college-ready graduates.

Cocoa Beach Junior/Senior High and Rockledge High School were also named among the 69 Florida schools listed in the top 1,000.

For more information, call (321) 633-1000, Ext. 796.

Brevard County Health Department honored

Heidar Heshmati, M.D., director of the Brevard County Health Department, was honored at the 2012 annual conference of the National Association of County and city health officials, a body of peers, for developing and implementing a program that demonstrates exemplary and replicable qualities in response to a local public health need.

The Sexual Assault Examination Response Program was one of 39 public health programs developed by a local health department selected from across the nation to receive the official's Model Practice Award.

The Sexual Assault Examination Response Program was implemented in partnership with the State's Attorney Office, Sexual Assault Victim Services, Salvation Army and Serene Harbour Domestic Violence Shelters, law enforcement agencies, and the Brevard County Health Department.

This award puts Brevard County Health Department into special company - a select group of health departments that exemplify a forward thinking, proactive attitude toward protecting and promoting the health of communities across the nation.

For more information about the Model Practice Awards and to view a list of other award winners, visit www.naccho.org.

'Free' prenatal classes in Rockledge, Cocoa Beach, Melbourne

Pediatrics in Brevard physicians Dr. Tara Forcier, and Dr. Jan Borowski are hosting "free" prenatal care classes for all Brevard County 'soon-to-be' moms.

Sessions are held at the Pediatrics in Brevard Rockledge office, 134 S. Woods Drive, and the Melbourne office, 1755 W. Hibiscus Blvd., on the first Tuesday of each month; sessions are held at the Cocoa Beach office (located in the Cape Canaveral Hospital Medical Plaza), 701 W. Cocoa Beach Causeway, on the third Thursday of each month. Monthly classes at both locations begin at 6 p.m.

All prospective parents and grandparents are welcome. Topics will include the importance of "well visits," the options of circumcision, breast feeding and immunizations, and more.

For more information on the monthly educational care classes for soon-to-be-moms, call (321) 636-3066, Ext. 206. For additional information about Pediatrics in Brevard, visit www.pedsinbrevard.com.

Sheriff's aviation unit wins international award

The Brevard County Sheriff's Office Aviation Unit was recently awarded third place in the Forward Looking Infra Red Vision Awards Ceremony, which was hosted at the 2012 Annual Airborne Law Enforcement Association Convention.

The FLIR Vision Awards are presented annually to airborne law enforcement teams with the best video of a rescue, chase, apprehension or surveillance mission. Only one video per team may be submitted for award consideration.

Cpl./pilot Chris Sands and deputy/tactical flight officer Joseph Barrera were among the top three finalists selected from video submissions from around the world. Cpl. Sands and deputy Barrera were recognized for demonstrating their outstanding coordination and quality of teamwork while assisting, tracking and apprehending a burglary suspect in the city of Cocoa in April 2012.

The Brevard County Sheriff's Office Aviation Unit has previously been awarded first-, second- and third-place and are the only airborne law enforcement unit in the world to be recognized as a finalist in six out of the last 11 years for this award.

As part of the award, a charitable donation on behalf of the Sheriff's Office, will be presented to The United Way of Brevard.

A copy of the video may be picked up at the Brevard County Sheriff's Office Aviation Unit, 910 Airport Road, Merritt Island.

Further information may be received by contacting chief pilot Coppola at (321) 455-1475.

Authors' group elects new leadership

The volunteer Space Coast Writers' Guild members recently elected author Donna Chesher as its president.

Ms. Chesher's previous nonprofit experience includes fundraising with the University of California.

The guild is dedicated to encouraging, instructing and developing writers, and the new leadership's goal for the guild is an emphasis on outreach.

More information on the guild is available at www.scwg.org, (321)254-8464 or dchesher@scwg.org.

NASA history now available on iTunes U

Marking the 43rd anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing, NASA has added an extensive collection of historical video, audio, photographs and documents to iTunes U.

iTunes U is a platform for making educational resources available to a wide audience through the iTunes Store.

NASA's History Program Office iTunes U site currently contains about 300 items that represent a broad sweep of NASA history-related to important moments, activities and figures in NASA history. The site's content is free to download.

The site includes Apollo program material with a collection of items for each of the Apollo missions, as well as a special Politics of Apollo collection of key documents related to the U.S. lunar program.

The site also features eBooks from the NASA History Series.

To view all of NASA's iTunes U sites and download material, visit www.nasa.gov/connect/itunesu.html.

Rehabilitation open house

The Melbourne Terrace Rehabilitation Center gave an open house recently and welcomed the community. It was a unified celebration for the facility's state of renewal that is meant to give back to the community.

An expansion included the renovation of common areas, including a fresh café and bistro.

With a novel ice cream parlor and a surround-sound movie theater, there will be more choices for residents and patients to enjoy friends and family.

Melbourne Terrace Rehabilitation Center offers comprehensive rehabilitative outpatient and inpatient services for short or long term care.

All residents have an individualized plan of care developed with the resident's family involvement and coordinated with all medical staffing.

It is located at 251 Florida Ave., Melbourne.

To schedule a private tour or to request more information, call (321) 725-3990.

FIT opens new building

Florida Institute of Technology recently opened its new Florida Tech Commons building at the intersection of University Boulevard and Babcock Street.

The three-story, 63,000-square foot facility is designed as the new "front door" to campus.

In addition to a first-floor Center for Student Success, the building also houses the College of Psychology and Liberal Arts on the second floor. The third floor features the Women's Business Center, Continuing Education and Career Services.

Given the building's location across busy Babcock Street, university staff has been working for months to proactively address pedestrian safety concerns with the city of Melbourne and the Florida Department of Transportation.

For more information, visit www.fit.edu.

Community service award from Florida Health Care Coalition

Brevard County's Board of County Commissioners, Brevard County Health Department and the Brevard County Medical Society were recently named recipients of the 2012 Community Service Award presented by the Florida Health Care Coalition.

The coalition recognized the three organizations for the Primary Access to Health Clinic partnership. The PATH Clinic was established to meet the needs of low-income, underinsured adult residents of Brevard County, who are without health care benefits, below 100 percent of the Federal Poverty Level.

The program has expanded services in central Brevard County, with outreach to north Brevard County, and established a new clinic at the Melbourne Health Department.

The Florida Health Care Coalition is a 28-year-old organization that represents nearly 2 million members of public and private sector employers. Its goal is to improve the quality of health care while reducing the rising rate of health care costs and educating consumers.

For more information, visit www.flhcc.org.

For more information on the Primary Access to Health program, visit www.doh.state.fl.us/chdbrevard/pers_hlth/path.htm.

'Blasting Off To Save More Lives'

The Central Brevard Humane Society is "Blasting Off to Save More Lives" during the 2012 ASPCA Rachael Ray $100K Challenge, which runs through Oct. 31.

The Humane Society will be trying to save at least 300 more lives, as its staff did the same time last year, for a chance at more than $500,000 in grant funding, including a grand prize of $100,000.

During the Humane Society's "Blasting Off" campaign, it will be offering special promotions, like 50 percent off adoption fees on all cats and dogs, and free microchipping, rabies vaccines and pet care products.

Individuals that adopt a new "fur kid" during the challenge will have an opportunity to spin the "Fuzzy Wheel of Fury" for a chance to "win" additional adoption savings!

The 2012 ASPCA Rachael Ray $100K Challenge is a nationwide competition for animal shelters aimed at getting more animals adopted or returned to their owners than ever before.

For more information, contact the Central Brevard Humane Society at (321) 636-3343 or visit www.crittersavers.com.

National Hurricane Center director visits NWS Melbourne

The Director of the National Hurricane Center, Dr. Richard Knabb, recently visited the Melbourne National Weather Service office.

Dr. Knabb and Melbourne forecasters discussed possible future enhancements to hurricane forecast and warning information, effective communication of a unified message and how detailed, local hazard information can most effectively complement NHC track and intensity forecasts. A special session was also held for emergency managers. Emergency Managers.

The National Weather Service is the primary source of weather data, forecasts and warnings for the United States and its territories.

For more information, visit www.nhc.noaa.gov/staff/knabb_2012.pdf or call (321) 255-0212.

American astronauts launching from U.S. soil

NASA has announced new agreements with three American commercial companies to design and develop the next generation of United States human space flight capabilities, enabling a launch of astronauts from U.S. soil in the next five years.

Advances made by these companies, under newly-signed Space Act agreements, through the agency's Commercial Crew Integrated Capability initiative, are intended to ultimately lead to the availability of commercial human space flight services for government and commercial customers.

While NASA works with U.S. industry partners to develop commercial space flight capabilities to low Earth orbit, the agency also is developing the Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle and the Space

Launch System, a crew capsule and heavy-lift rocket to provide an entirely new capability for human exploration.

Designed to be flexible for launching spacecraft for crew and cargo missions, SLS and Orion MPCV will expand human presence beyond low Earth orbit and enable new missions of exploration across the solar system.

For more information about NASA's Commercial Crew Program, visit www.nasa.gov/commercialcrew.

Brevard Federated Republican Women win contest

The Brevard Federated Republican Women were the winners of a contest sponsored by the Florida Federated of Republican Women.

The local club registered more new Republican voters than any other Florida Federation Club in the state of Florida during the contest period.

The Brevard Federated Republican Women meet the first Wednesday of each month and provide education and information about local and state issues.

All Republicans are invited to attend the meetings.

For more information, visit www.brevardfederatedrepublicanwomen.org.

Diagnostic center receives accreditation for scanning

The Health First Diagnostic Center at the Viera Hospital Medical Plaza has been awarded its first three-year term of Accreditation in Positron Emission Tomography Scanning by the American College of Radiology.

The ACR Gold Seal of Accreditation represents the highest level of image quality and patient safety and is awarded only to facilities meeting ACR practice guidelines and technical standards after a peer-review evaluation by board-certified physicians and medical physicists who are experts in the field.

Image quality, personnel qualifications, adequacy of facility equipment, quality control procedures and quality assurance programs are assessed.

The ACR is a national professional organization serving more than 34,000 diagnostic/interventional radiologists, radiation oncologists, nuclear medicine physicians and medical physicists with programs focusing on the practice of medical imaging and radiation oncology and the delivery of comprehensive healthcare services.

For more information, call (321) 434-4333 or email jackie.oconnell@health-first.org.

Grant received to advance adult literacy

Brevard Adult Literacy Volunteers, an organization that teaches adults in Brevard County to read, has been selected to receive a $4,000 grant as part of the inaugural Restaurant Community Grant Program from the Darden Foundation, the charitable arm of Darden Restaurants Inc.

The Restaurant Community Grant Program is a local grants program intended to help support nonprofit organizations in the hundreds of communities Darden and its restaurant brands serve.

The donation will enable Brevard Adult Literacy Volunteers to replace outdated tutoring materials used to teach literacy skills to adults at libraries in Brevard County, so they may reach their full potential in their families, jobs and communities.

Restaurants within the Darden family - Red Lobster, Olive Garden, LongHorn Steakhouse, The Capital Grille, Bahama Breeze and Seasons 52 - are helping to award more than $1.7 million in local grants to nearly 900 exceptional nonprofit organizations nationwide.

Nonprofits receiving grants support one of Darden's three key focus areas: access to postsecondary education, preservation of natural resources and hunger.

For more information about the Darden Foundation, visit www.darden.com/commitment/community.asp. For additional information about Brevard Adult Literacy Volunteers, visit www.BrevardLiteracy.org, call (321) 917-8952 or email brevardliteracy@gmail.com.

Medical Practitioners For Affordable Care LLC

Medical Practitioners For Affordable Care has been selected to participate in the Medicare Shared Savings Program Accountable Care Organization, a multifaceted new emerging model of care sponsored by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and intended to ensure high quality care while addressing healthcare costs and problems created by existing fragmented care delivery.

Medical Practitioners For Affordable Care, based in Melbourne and comprised of 145 participating local physicians, is the only Brevard County Accountable Care Organization.

For more information, call (321) 323-4460.

NASA selects contract for employee relocation services

NASA has selected Franconia Real Estate Services of Woodbridge, Va., for agency-wide employee relocation services, effective Oct. 1.

The firm-fixed price Blanket Purchase Agreement with delivery/task orders includes a one-year base period with four, one-year options.

The maximum value of the Blanket Purchase Agreement (base plus options) is approximately $35 million.

The contractor also will provide home marketing assistance, counseling, destination area services and property management for NASA employees who are relocating.

Relocation services are available at all NASA centers and associated facilities.

The contract will be managed by the NASA Shared Services Center, located near Bay St. Louis, Miss.

For information about NASA and agency programs, visit http://www.nasa.gov

American Correctional Association recognizes jail supervisors

Fifteen Brevard County Jail supervisors recently took up the challenge to exceed standards by further testing and demonstrating their level of professionalism and expertise in the field of corrections.

By preparing for this certification testing in management, it required an enormous amount of dedication and commitment by each participant to achieve this level.

. ACA certified corrections executives are Maj. Gregory Robertson and Maj. Darrell Hibbs

. ACA Certified Corrections Managers are Lt. George Fayson, Lt. Ronald Tomblin and Lt. James Dodson

. ACA Certified Corrections Supervisors are Sgt. Beldon Ferguson, Sgt. Clifford Ferguson, Lt. Kelly Haman, Sgt. Darryl McCullough, Sgt. Edward, Ostrom, Sgt. Alan Rainey, Sgt. Rodney Richter, Sgt. Michelle Patrick, Sgt. Robbie Stokes and Sgt. Brian Seeley

Certification by the American Correctional Association improves staff training and development and establishes measurable criteria for upgrading operations, morale and professionalism.

These standards provide a safer environment for staff as well as those who are in the custody of the sheriff.

For more information, visit www.BrevardSheriff.com.

Partners in Crisis leader to serve

Gail Cordial, executive director of Florida Partners in Crisis, will serve another two years on a substance abuse and mental health task force reporting to the state Supreme Court.

The group was created in 2010 and recently was extended until 2014 by order of Chief Justice Ricky Polston.

Among the tasks Justice Polston assigned the group, relating to people with substance abuse or mental health issues are:

. Develop a resource guide for judges and others for helping veterans.

. Help develop recommendations on training for judges.

. Offer guidance on the continuation of the expansion of the "post-adjudication drug court."

. Study how to best focus programs and resources.

. Promote recommendations from the "Transforming Florida's Mental Health System" report.

More than two dozen people are serving on the task force, including judges, law enforcement and experts statewide in mental health and substance abuse treatment and veterans issues.

For more information, call Belinda Stewart at (321) 750-3547 or email bstewart@flpic.org.

Humane Society in need of donated items

The Central Brevard Humane Society is in desperate need of Purina Kitten & Puppy Chow, canned food (kittens, puppies, cats and dogs), dish soap, blankets, comforters, sheets, towels, dog toys, laundry soap, paper towels, rubbing alcohol and Clorox bleach.

All donated items can be brought to the Humane Society, 1020 Cox Road, Cocoa, during regular business hours (open seven days a week at 11 a.m. daily).

For more information, contact the Central Brevard Humane Society at (321) 636-3343 or visit www.crittersavers.com.

Kennedy Space Center Safety and Mission Support Services

NASA has selected A-P-T Research Inc. of Huntsville, Ala., to provide mission assurance, engineering and risk assessment services at the agency's Kennedy Space Center.

The maximum potential value for the four-year, cost-plus-award-fee Safety and Mission Support Services II contract is $36 million.

A-P-T Research Inc. will perform the mission assurance, engineering and risk assessment services in the disciplines of safety, reliability and quality at Kennedy and all Kennedy-assigned facilities at sites that include Vandenberg Air Force Base and NASA's Dryden Flight Research Center in California.

For more information about NASA programs and missions, visit www.nasa.gov.

International avionics firm opens on Space Coast

The Titusville-Cocoa Airport Authority announced that SCOTTY Group SE has established a new U.S. headquarters and systems integration facility on the AirScan C4ISR Campus at Space Coast Regional Airport.

The new subsidiary, named SCOTTY Satcom Technologies Inc., specializes in computer communications systems that securely transmit video, high-definition images, data, voice, internet and fax communications from personal, commercial, and government aircraft in-flight.

SSTI also serves the military aviation community with innovative Command, Control, Communications and Computers for Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance systems and their related engineering, for both manned and unmanned aircraft.

With SCOTTY's partner AirScan Inc., SSTI will be responsible for all sales and support for the Americas.

For more information, call (321) 267-8780 or visit www.scottygroup.com.

- For Hometown News




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