After trailing 7-0 at halftime, the Madison County High Cowboys went on a tear in the second half and beat the Jefferson County High Tigers 42-7.
Archive for September 2011
By Lynette Norris
Greene Publishing, Inc.
Next Wednesday, Sept 12, it’s time to gather together with old and not-so-old friends, find out what they’ve been doing over the summer, make some new friends and enjoy lunch at the 55 Plus Club.
For their very first program of the 2011-2012 year, the special guest will be Sheriff Ben Stewart and one of his Drug Enforcement Team Dogs. Stewart has prepared a PowerPoint presentation on the drug problem in Madison County, how the K-9 force is helping abate it, and what happens to the drug cash seized in the process. Stewart will also talk about his department’s search-and-rescue team.
Lee United Methodist Church will host this first meeting and be in charge of the food, and the meeting will take place at the United Methodist Cooperative Ministries Community Center, about five miles north of Madison on Highway 145, on the corner of Dill Street and 145.
Anyone 55 and older is welcome to come and enjoy the food and the presentation. No reservation is necessary and there are no dues or fees.
For more information about the 55 Plus Club or any outreach ministry of United Methodist Church Ministries, call coordinator Deborah Brown at (850) 929-4938.
By Lynette Norris
Greene Publishing, Inc.
“Delay this until the economy turns around,” was the theme of one person after another regarding the new Fire and Solid Waste Assessments proposed for the next five years.
The Board of County Commissioners held a public hearing in the courtroom upstairs in the Madison County Courthouse to discuss the proposed new assessments for solid waste disposal and fire protection and consider comments from the public. Jerome Wyche, Director of the Solid Waste Program, said that the money the department received from the assessments had paid for many improvements to the waste collection and recycling system and enabled the department to apply for matching funds from the State. He also reminded everyone of the roadside dumps and other eyesores of years past. Marianne Green spoke in favor of the new assessments, also recalling the less than desirable waste disposal methods of the past, and said that the quality of service the county provided for the money was very good. George Blevins, Fire Chief of the Sirmans Volunteer Fire Department, spoke to the gathering about $4000-$5000 it took to outfit one firefighter according to state mandates and commended the volunteer fire departments that served and protected their local communities. The fire departments also had been able to secure grants and other matching funds because of the assessments, enabling them to purchase fire fighting trucks and other equipment. However, without the assessments, “we’ve basically got a $200,000 truck, but we can’t afford the diesel to take it to the fire.”
Of those gathered in the audience, however, the sentiment was one of overwhelming opposition to the new, higher rates. Many asked repeatedly that the Commission delay raising the assessments until the economy improved.
Citing the dismal economy, several also questioned why the Commission was choosing to update the assessments now. Commission Chair Renetta Parrish explained that in order to continue the assessments at all, they were required to review and update every five years.
Howard Pickels told the Board that he agreed with taxes as “a necessary evil…we all have to pay our fair share, but I disagree with the misuse of taxes.” Adding that Madison County was almost shut down as the result of the poor economy, he added, to a round of applause, “Until you five can create jobs in this county so people can pay taxes, leave taxes the way they are.”
Frank Rykard spoke of the need to keep spending in line with available funding. “If all I have is $100, I can’t go out and buy $125 worth of services.”
Cynthia Bonello spoke of people who were unable to attend the meeting because they were shut-ins or otherwise in dire circumstances, and therefore had no voice. “This is a Christian country and a Christian county,” she said. “If this could be pushed back until the economy turns around…I hope you will listen with your ears as well as with your hearts.”
At the end of the Commissioners discussed the matter briefly and agreed that there wasn’t a pressing enough need to raise the current assessments. They voted 5/0 in favor of keeping the fire protection and solid waste disposal assessment “as is” for the next five years.
Commission Chair Parrish then adjourned the meeting.
By Lynette Norris
Greene Publishing, Inc.
More than 60 parents and children crowded into the small school board meeting room. Extra chairs were pulled from tables and added to the front rows to accommodate the crowd, and a few still stood near the back of the room when there were no more seats left.
What drew the crowd to the usually sparsely-attended school board meetings was the “one issue of burning concern,” as School Board Chair VeEtta Hagan described it, as she skipped over several items on the agenda to deal with it first – the new bus routes designed to save the school money on transportation and fuel costs…an estimated saving of about $12,000 a month.
However, the parents gathered in the board room contended that the new routes were either putting their children in jeopardy or placing unrealistic hardships on very young children expected to walk to the new bus stops, some of which were more than two miles from their homes.
Reverend Barfield was the first to speak, and had to leave shortly afterward for a church service, saying that the community was up in a rage because they believed their children’s safety was being compromised. “I urge you to do everything possible…pretty please, let’s put our children’s safety first, and I know you will. I do trust that y’all will come up with something suitable.”
Ivan Johnson then took the podium to answer questions, hear the concerns parents had about particularly troublesome stops, and make notes of situations that needed to be changed. Several stops had already been changed, Johnson told the crowd, since the computer program that created the new routes didn’t take into account the sparsely populated, rural sections of the county where some of the children lived, the condition of roads, traffic situations, and the “human factor” – the fact that some of the children were so young that they were physically incapable of walking the distances allowed by the computer program, or that the new stops required them to walk past the homes of sex offenders or other dangerous places.
One after another, parents presented their cases, from the children who lived on the south side of I-10 and now had to pass two truck stops and go beneath an underpass to get to the north side, to the four-year-old whose new stop was 1.6 miles from home, on a deserted dirt road with no other houses around, to the account of suspicious men seen taking pictures of children at another stop.
Some of the bus stops didn’t even seem to make sense, as one parent pointed out. Instead of stopping at the usual corner from last year, where his child and several other children lived nearby, the new stop required all the children to hike their way to an empty lot where hardly any children or anyone else lived.
Some of the new stops were on narrow dirt roads that had no easement on the side where the children could stand, and where “there’s not even a ditch they can jump into” when cars sped by in excess of the posted speed limits. Some required walking through heavily wooded areas, where parents had to clear away brush to allow the children to pass through.
Johnson took notes of the cases that needed changing, jotting down names, addresses and telephone numbers where the parents could be reached.
Working parents were also concerned with having to leave children unattended at the new stops so far from their homes, especially those who had to work in other counties. One mother asked if she could drop off her children early at school, but Hagan advised against it, since the district could not require that teachers be there that early. Since the bus driver lived on the same street as the mother, and they were friends and neighbors, she agreed to a suggestion that she drop off her children at the bus driver’s house, if that was okay with everyone…the children would simply begin their bus route early instead of being dropped off at school early.
Other thorny questions remained and not all parents were happy with the outcomes. When someone asked why the routes couldn’t be put back the way they were before, Andy Barnes explained that the district had an $800,000 transportation budget shortfall, money that was having to be taken out of the classroom to make up the difference. School Board Member Kenny Hall added that when the 2.5 mils didn’t pass, another possible source of funding was out of the running as well, leaving only budget cuts to try to minimize the red ink.
A second item that caused nearly as much discussion as the bus routes was the activity bus, used by sports team, the band, cheerleaders and after school tutoring, as well as club activities like the Boys and Girls Clubs, which reimbursed the district for mileage and fuel. Although Hall supported keeping the activity bus, which he said he believed provided a valuable service to the students, he said he was putting it back on the agenda for reconsideration, because so many people had questioned the expense when so many other things were being cut.
Hagan opposed keeping the activity bus, saying that when the county was number one in sports and number 67 in education, cutting education while keeping the extracurricular, “that’s a problem with me.” Nevertheless the motion to cut the bus failed two to three.
After several other items on the agenda were voted on, Hagan adjourned the nearly two and a half hour meeting.
Greene Publishing, Inc.
Early Wednesday afternoon, at approximately 12:45 p.m., two vehicles collided on State Road 14 near the I-10 exit ramp.Investigators determined that Timothy Price of Greenville was traveling south in a silver 2008 Dodge pickup on State Road 14, when a red 2006 Honda convertible driven by Donna Sogegian was exiting I-10, heading east on the I-10 exit ramp when the accident occurred.
Trooper Gus Smyrnios, who investigated the accident, charged Sogegian with failure to yield right-of-way. She was later transported to Madison County Memorial Hospital by Madison County EMS. Assisting at the scene were the Madison County Sheriff’s Office and Madison Fire and Rescue.
By Lynette Norris
Greene Publishing, Inc.
Deloris Jones made her rounds of public gatherings this week to ask for donations of non-perishable food items for the Haitian relief effort. Tuesday night, she appeared at the School Board meeting, and in the midst of the swirling bus stop controversy, handed out flyers promoting the Oct. 7 event at the Madison Courthouse. She appeared again the following morning at the County Commission Meeting with more flyers.
On Oct. 7, beginning at 1 p.m. on the Courthouse lawn, Jones’s group will be on hand to receive donated boxes of Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix, instant cup of noodles soup, powdered juice, powdered milk and oatmeal, and packs of Ramen Noodle Soup.
Haiti is still recovering from the aftershocks of the January 2010 earthquake that caused so much devastation, said Jones, but “it could be you. You don’t know it, but you are blessed. You have never been hungry, I have never been hungry.”
Since her family doesn’t want her traveling to Haiti herself to work with the mission, she does what she can here to gather the needed relief supplies.
For more information about the mission project, contact Jones at (850) 973-2823, or Sister Ruth Anderson at (850) 973-4681.
By Kristin Finney
Greene Publishing, Inc.
When most people think of patriotism and honoring America, they think of the Liberty Bell, the White House, the Statue of Liberty, and many other time-honored places across the United States. In a recent edition of the St. Petersburg Times, one of the places that evoked that feeling of patriotism was Madison’s Four Freedoms Park.
The article was a feature about places to travel to in Florida during the Fourth of July to honor America. It ran in the July 3 edition of the paper. Other places featured included Kennedy Space Center, Liberty Bell Memorial Museum, the National Naval Aviation Museum and many others.
The article read, “The tiny North Florida town of Madison is home to the Four Freedoms Monument, a sculpture that, like Norman Rockwell’s series of paintings, embodies the four freedoms outlined by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1941. Walter Russell’s sculpture of angels representing Freedom of Speech, Freedom of Worship, Freedom from Want and Freedom from Fear was dedicated in Madison Square Garden in 1943 — so how did it wind up in Madison? It honors the town’s own Capt. Colin P. Kelly, a B-17 pilot who posthumously received the Distinguished Service Cross for a mission just days after the attack on Pearl Harbor, making him one of the country’s first decorated World War II heroes. The monument is in downtown Madison, just north of Interstate 10 about 50 miles east of Tallahassee; madisoncountyfl.com.”
A previous story highlighting the park ran in an edition of the Enterprise Recorder. The article depicts the history of the park as, “The Four Freedoms Park in Madison honors a rich historical time period and marks many different successes in not only Madison history, but also the history of the United States. The land that the Four Freedoms Park currently is located on, was once the blockhouse built to protect women, children and the elderly during the Second Seminole War. This war raged up and down the Florida peninsula from Tallahassee to Lake Okeechobee and all areas between. The land that the park now uses was also used as the informal courthouse until 1840.
“In 1840 the land was donated to the city of Madison to be built into a park. The Four Freedoms Park is named after the four freedoms outlined by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in his 1941 State of the Union address. These freedoms are the Freedom of speech and expression, freedom of worship, freedom from want and freedom from fear. There is a marker in the southwest corner of the park that honors these four freedoms as well.”
Kristin’s Folder Sept. 9, 2011
Funeral arrangements for the late Vickie Nicole Barnes-Jones will be held at Pineland Missionary Baptist Church in Madison, Florida on Saturday September 10, 2011 at 1 p.m.
Vickie Nicole Barnes-Jones was born January 7, 1973 in Madison Florida to the late Willie James Barnes and Dorothy Jean Akins. She departed this life on September 2, 2011 at Shands Hospital in Jacksonville, Florida. At an early age she was baptized and attended many churches throughout Jacksonville. She attended school in Madison County and FCCJ in Jacksonville. She was employed at ADT Security. She was the mother of two beautiful daughters.
The General Federation of Women’s’ Clubs of Greenville, have taken the initiative to help the Greenville Middle School teachers with supplies for this school year. Copy paper, pens and dry eraser markers were ear-marked especially for the teachers. President Chere Platt explained that almost half of the members were retired teachers and remembered the days when they would have appreciated some extras when beginning a new school year. Principal Davis Barclay said the teachers would put all the materials to good use. Presenting supplies to the Greenville Middle School: (left to right) Kathy Cruce, member, Chere Platt, President of the Greenville Womens Club, Barbara Dansey and Davis Barclay, Principal of Greenville Middle School.
By Fran Hunt
Special to Greene Publishing
For the second consecutive week, the Aucilla Christian Academy varsity Warriors football team blanked an opponent for a win. When the Warriors faced off against Bell last Friday evening, Aucilla scalped Bell for a 21-0 victory to now stand 2-0 on the season.
Bradley Holm was named the offensive player of the week with 117 rushing yards.
Trent Roberts passed for a gain of 209 yards.
Jared Jackson had 83 receiving yards and one touchdown.
Tres Copland had 94 receiving yards and one touchdown.
On the defensive side of the field, Trent Roberts was named the defensive player of the week for five quarterback sacks and two forced turnovers.
Jarrod Turner had a whopping 20 tackles.
Gus Smyrnios had 18 tackles and one pass interception.
Corey Burrus had 12 tackles Cole Schwab had one pass interception returned for a touchdown.
The Warriors face off against Oak Hall at 7 p.m., Friday, at home.
By Nell Dobbs
Romans 1:16 “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ. For it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.”
As we think of many things, “our mission is to be under submission” – quoting someone – to God’s will and way for us and to tell of His mercy, truth and grace to everyone so that none can say of the children of men, nobody ever the story has told.”
Preacher’s message from Ezra 10:1-6, “Be of good courage, and do it!” Don’t just talk about what needs to be done, just do it. We‘re taught by the wise man Solomon, that whatever our hands find to do, do it with our might, for we shall not pass this way again. He also read a timely poem about “Friends,” but the friend never ever told him about Jesus, the Greatest Friend. May we not be guilty…Amen!
All week I continued thinking about Preacher’s message last week about our church and how we need to be in much prayer as to how to reach out and bring people back and to bring new people in! Amen! Help us to do that so that no one feels that no one cares for his soul.
Gorgeous arrangement was placed in church Sunday for Buck’s 76th birthday (not 70th) by Betty Driggers and family. God has been gracious to both Buck and Betty for better health and healing! Amen!
Teasing, of course, but Jim could barely do his job for holding “the prettiest granddaughter in the world.”
“Not so!” came a comment from the crowd.
Beth and he were so excited to have her here, along with her mother and dad. Bern Smith gave a very moving offertory prayer, and Worship Choir sang “Be Still and Know.”
Remember the Season of Prayer and the Maguire State mission Offering all month. Senior Adult Choir resumed their ministry to one nursing home on Tuesday.
Senior Adult Ministry began Wednesday with a cover dish lunch/meeting with Robin Hill, guest speaker. May God bless her especially in her new position – Principal at Lee!
AWANA began Wednesday Night with a Kickoff party at 5:30 p.m. Earnest prayer for this ministry, all who work, all children as they learn the Bible. I read an announcement wrong and Li’l Jess enjoyed Fellowship’s Kickoff Wednesday night.
We pray for the youth and all involved as they attend “Rock the Universe” in Orlando Sept. 9-11.
Death has come among us again – to the young and the old and we’re sad, but may those “left behind” seek comfort from the One who knows all about us. There are many ill among us! We’re very thankful Roger McCollum’s trouble wasn’t so bad and that they’ll truly be blessed living a long good life in their new home! Amen!
Bless Suzanne Peavey, still in Madison Hospital; for Juanita Ragans who had been there; for Elma Waldrep, who had also been there; for Julia Waldrep, with a long recovery road ahead; for Jimmy and Princess Roebuck (and their Teresa) that their strength will be sufficient for their days; for the Gene Coleman’s and his recovery (and for their wonderful neighbor Jeannette Mitchell, and friend, and to all of us who know her – a good friend); for Tommy Greene and his new problems; for George and Estelle Osborne and the love from their family – had a very good talk with Edward Sapp about many things. Oad and he are special friends and have been a long time; for Caron Holton, bad hurt and cannot work for some weeks; Louise Strickland, much improved, and all others!
May the Lord bless us one and all! Amen.
By Lynette Norris
Greene Publishing, Inc.
Just past Kelley’s Body Shop and just before the bend in the Colin Kelly Highway that turns north out of town, a bright marigold yellow Madison Dollar Store sign up on a pole catches the attention, with its cheerful little Monopoly guy in his top hat as he clutches a fistful of cash.
He’s probably going to do some shopping in the town’s newest Dollar Store, owned by Steve Fongeallaz of Madison Glass. The store has been up and running in the brick-and plate-glass building, with the pretty teal-blue floors and the crisp white shelves, at 633 Colin Kelly Highway for “about a month or two,” said Annie Bailey, who works at the store full time, along with her daughter Lachelle Ghent. They work with two other part-time girls, keeping the store open from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday through Saturday. The store is closed on Sundays.
Inside, with the exception of some of the food and drink items, everything really is one dollar, and the big glass windows mean it is bright and cheerfully lit with both indoor and outdoor light.
The amount and variety of merchandise has been steadily growing since the store’s opening, filling more and more shelves with neatly arranged rows of snack foods, school supplies, party supplies, pretty gift wrapping supplies, greeting cards, sunglasses, colorful plastic baskets, household cleaning supplies/items and general merchandise items. Displayed along the walls above the shelves are the choices of Mylar balloons the store offers.
In a couple of weeks, said Lachelle, the store will also receive a shipment of hair items – ponytail holders, barrettes, headbands, brushes and combs.
The building houses a few other small businesses in addition to the dollar store. Customers who want to take their time shopping can, in the meantime, have their car washed at a little car-wash business just around the corner on the east side of the building.
If Lachelle were telling her friends about the store, “I’d tell them to come on by and check us out,” she said. They are close to downtown and have plenty of parking. If you stop in for a visit, you might be surprised at what all a dollar can still buy.
For more information about the store and what’s available, call 253 – 0026.
By Jacob Bembry
“You don’t leave a dead dog in the road; it just stinks.” — Bobby Bembry
My daddy’s right. If you leave a dead dog in the road, it will stink. You know how if you leave something that stinks alone, the smell will go away. That won’t work with a dead dog in the road. A car will eventually come along and run over it. The dog starts stinking again.
What do you do?
Well, you can leave the dog in the road until the buzzards come along and pick its carcass. The smell will go away like that.
Another way to get rid of the dog’s smell is to remove the dog from the road and take a shovel and bury the dog.
My daddy said what he did about the dead dog in the road in a Sunday School class to make a point. His point was, if you sin, it’s the same thing as leaving a dead dog in the road. It just stinks. The more sins you indulge in, the more you will stink.
How do you get rid of the stench of sin? Well, you could just keep doing it until one day, the buzzards (Satan’s demons) come and carry you off to Hell, or you can get rid of it forever by asking God’s forgiveness. You don’t even have to bury it. It will be just like it never happened.
After you’ve asked God’s forgiveness, though, you don’t keep leaving dead dogs in the road (sinning) or else you may end up stinking all over again.
By Mark Buescher, C.P.A.
With college football season now in full swing, last week I attended the kick-off dinner for the Madison County Seminole Boosters Club. I sat at a table with a Madison couple with two beautiful, well mannered daughters, ages 15 and 13.
Of course, being at a college boosters club dinner, the conversation quickly turned to a discussion of schools the two young ladies might be interested in attending. Naturally, Florida State University was discussed. But also, two other contenders were mentioned – the University of Florida and the University of Georgia. When Georgia was mentioned, my first thoughts were “ouch – out of state tuition.” I could already feel the financial pain by the look on the dad’s face.
With tuition costs climbing and out-of-state tuition a real possibility, setting aside funds for college can be a formidable task. Here’s a quick review on the various programs and the tax breaks you can use to lessen the financial burden of college.
The first program that comes to mind is Coverdell education savings accounts. These accounts offer several advantages over other college savings plans. First, there’s flexibility. Like an IRA, you can choose from a wide variety of investments to meet your individual needs. Also, funds in the account can be withdrawn tax-free if used for qualified education expenses such as tuition, room, and board, books, even a computer. Unlike other programs, qualified expenses include costs of elementary and secondary school.
However, the maximum annual contribution for a beneficiary is $2,000 – from all sources. Also, funds must be used by age 30. If the funds are not spent on college by the time the beneficiary is 30 years old, the unspent money must be withdrawn (subject to income tax and a 10% penalty) or rolled over into another family member’s education savings account.
Another great college savings investment vehicle is a Section 529 plan. If you want to put a large lump sum into a college savings account, a Section 529 plan may be your best option. In this type of account, there are no phase-out limits for high earners, and plan sponsors set maximum allowable contributions.
Established by all 50 states, these plans provide a way to set aside after-tax dollars in an account that can grow tax-free until the child needs money for post-secondary education. Funds can then be withdrawn tax-free to pay for qualified expenses, such as tuition and books.
But what happens to the account if your child receives a substantial college scholarship, or decides to skip college and step straight into the workforce? Such contingencies are no problem for a 529 plan, because you can re-direct the beneficiary to another child, family member, or even yourself.
Another consideration for college savings accounts is a custodial account. With custodial accounts (Uniform Transfers to Minors Act or UTMA), you can generally invest in a wider variety of investments than with a 529 plan. The proceeds can be taken out penalty-free – even if used for something other than education. The biggest potential disadvantage is that you gift the funds irrevocably to the child. At a certain age, your child controls the account and could spend the funds on a sports car instead of college.
Although not a savings plan, one of the best tax breaks for education expenses is the American Opportunity Credit. With this credit, you reduce your taxes dollar for dollar for education expenses incurred during four years of college. The credit has an annual limit of $2,500 per student.
Another tax break for education expenses is the Lifetime Learning Credit. The limit for this credit is $2,000 per tax return, and qualified expenses include tuition, fees, and books for both undergraduate and graduate programs. You’re limited to using only one credit (American opportunity or lifetime learning) per student.
There are other options as well. Roth IRAs and U.S. savings bonds are additional options worth considering. You may also qualify for an interest deduction on education loans.
Obviously, there are many options and choices for savings for college. But with the right planning and proper investment vehicles, the financial burden can be substantially reduced.
Mark Buescher, CPA is owner and principal of Buescher and Ruff, LLC, a local full service accounting firm in Madison, specializing in tax preparation, business consulting and tax planning. Tax laws contain varying effective dates and numerous limitations and exemptions that cannot be summarized easily. For details and guidance for your specific situation, contact your tax advisor
By Diann Douglas
Each year, there is an estimated 76 million cases of foodborne illness in the United States, with approximately 325,000 people being hospitalized. These statistics are the reason USDA and the Partnership for Food Safety Education designate September as National Food Safety Education Month.
As an educator, I can tell you, it is hard to get people concerned about food safety. Since you can’t see or taste bacteria that cause food borne illness, it’s not considerate a possibility — out of sight, out of mind. Often, people mistake food illness for a 24 hour stomach virus or the flu. It is only the large outbreaks making headlines that might arouse some concern. The truth is; you are more at risk in your own home due to common practices that may put you and your family in jeopardy.
During National Food Safety Month, follow the four steps of food preparation to prevent foodborne illness in your home. First step is to clean everything! Cleanliness is a major factor in preventing foodborne illness. Anything that touches food should be clean. Wash your hands, often; before you prepare food and after you contact raw meat, poultry, seafood and eggs. If you answer the phone, help your child with homework or pet the dog, wash your hands before you resume cooking. Make sure countertops, utensils, and all food preparation surfaces are frequently cleaned.
Second practice you need to implement is to keep foods separate. The concern here is cross-contamination. Harmful bacteria from raw meats poultry and fish can be left on cutting boards and utensils then transferred to other foods. For example, you cut up raw poultry and then slice vegetables for a salad without washing the cutting board. You have contaminated the salad with bacteria that can cause illness.
Third practice; use a food thermometer when cooking. You can’t tell food is cooked safely by a visual check. A food thermometer allows you to determine the internal temperature of a food which will determine if the food is completely cooked. Harmful bacteria; like Salmonella or E coli are destroyed at certain temperatures and there are different recommended temperature for different food. USDA recommends steaks and roasts and fish be cooked to an internal temperature of 145°F, pork and ground beef and egg dishes to 160°F, chicken breast to 170°F and whole poultry to 180°F.
Fourth practice you need to implement is to properly chill leftovers within two hours of cooking. Leaving food on the counter until it reaches room temperature is not a recommended practice. Most people are under the false impression that food needs to be at room temperature before it is put into the refrigerator, but that is not the case. The Danger Zone — temperatures between 40° and 140° F, is unsafe because harmful bacteria growth is rapid. Consider 40° is just above refrigerator temperatures and 140° is fairly warm to the touch, you have a broad range for bacteria to multiple. So, when you leave food to cool on the countertop, it is in this temperature range for a long time!
For large quantities of food like soup or a casserole, place leftovers in several smaller containers and place in different areas of the refrigerator to promote rapid cooling. Placing a large container of hot food or stacking several smaller containers on top of each other in the refrigerator will slow the cooling process. This also keeps food in the danger zone for an extended period of time, increasing the growth of bacteria.
Following the four recommendations offered by the National Food Safety Education Partnership will help you keep your food safe to eat and drastically reduce your family’s risk of foodborne illnesses.For more information on food safety, go to www.foodsafety.gov for charts on storing different foods. If you have questions, call us at the Madison County Extension Service.
The University of Florida Extension/IFAS – Madison County is an Equal Employment Opportunity Affirmative Action Employer authorized to provide research, educational information and other services only to individuals and institutions that function without regard to race, color, sex, age, handicap or national origin.