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Tampa Bay Rowdies in 1-1 draw against Saint Louis

Neill Collins thumped a header over the line in the 87th minute to give the Tampa Bay Rowdies a 1-1 draw Saturday night against Saint Louis FC at Al Lang Stadium.

Tampa Bay (6-3-3 (W-T-L), 21 points) trailed for much of the second half after Jose Angulo’s 59th-minute free kick goal, but Collins stepped up to rescue the Rowdies a point by burying a Michael Nanchoff corner kick at the near post.

It was a testy match that had very little flow. Thirty fouls were called and eight yellow cards were dished out in a tight battle.

“It was a little frustrating tonight,” Rowdies Head Coach Stuart Campbell said. “The guys showed great resilience. We conceded a goal against the run of play when I thought we were going to score. We were on top, dominating and looking dangerous and then they had a moment of brilliance from (Angulo.) We responded well because it would have been easy for the guys to feel sorry for themselves with some of the decisions that went against us. The guys didn’t. They kept going and got the goal they deserved.”

The Rowdies dominated for most of the first half with lots of possession in the Saint Louis (3-3-3, 12 points) 18-yard box, but the cutting edge wasn’t quite there.

Rowdies captain Joe Cole had the first great scoring chance of the night in the 13th minute, taking a free kick from deep that looked bound for goal before a well-timed palm from Saint Louis goalkeeper Adam Grinwis to push it over the crossbar.

Saint Louis could’ve scored two minutes later when Christian Volesky led a swift counterattack into the Rowdies’ 18, but the sliding efforts of Darnell King, Tamika Mkandawire and Matt Pickens were enough to stamp out the chance.

The match went into halftime without a goal.

Tampa Bay stepped on the accelerator in the second half, with Alex Morrell taking a left-footed shot in the 50th minute that was saved by Grinwis.

The Rowdies shouted for a penalty kick in the 53rd minute when Cole was clipped as he received a pass 13 yards from goal, but the appeal was unsuccessful.

Leo Fernandes was whistled for a foul just outside the box in the 58th minute. Initially, Saint Louis was granted the advantage, but when Angulo lost the ball after a sloppy touch, the free kick was given.

Angulo would lift it over the wall and beat Pickens on his left-hand side to put the visitors ahead.

Despite playing their fifth game in 15 days, compared to Saint Louis playing for the first time since May 17, the Rowdies looked like the stronger side down the stretch.

Tampa Bay pushed for an equalizer and looked to be running out of time until King won the Rowdies a corner kick with a low cross in the 86th minute. One minute later, Nanchoff’s cross found the forehead of Collins for the equalizer.

“I thought we deserved the goal,” Collins said. “After a really tough week, it’s not the worst point. We’ve got to give (Saint Louis) credit. They’re a hard-working side and they came here with a good game plan and well rested, so it’s not the worst point in the world.”

Tampa Bay dominated statistically with 12 goals (four on goal) compared to three for Saint Louis. The Rowdies had 27 crosses, 22 more than Saint Louis.

The Rowdies return to Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup play Wednesday night with a Third-Round match against the NASL’s Miami FC in South Florida. Tampa Bay’s next home game is June 10 the Rochester Rhinos.

Scoring Summary
Saint Louis – Jose Angulo – 58th minute
Rowdies – Neill Collins – 87th minute (Assisted by Michael Nanchoff)

Caution Summary
Rowdies: Leo Fernandes – 6th minute
Saint Louis: Wesley Charpie – 12th minute
Rowdies: Alex Morrell – 39th minute
Saint Louis: Emir Alihodzic – 41st minute
Saint Louis: Konrad Plewa – 55th minute
Rowdies: Darnell King -56th minute
Rowdies: Michael Nanchoff – 76th minute
Rowdies: Tamika Mkandawire – 82nd minute

Starting Lineups
Rowdies XI (4-2-3-1): GK Akira Fitzgerald; D Darnell King, Tamika Mkandawire, Neill Collins, Marcel Schäfer; M Michael Nanchoff, Keith Savage; M Alex Morrell (Darwin Jones 63′), Joe Cole (c), Leo Fernandes (Deshorn Brown 73′); F Martin Paterson (Georgi Hristov 67′)

Saint Louis XI (4-4-2): GK Adam Grinwis; D Wesley Charpie, Konrad Plewa, Aedan Stanley, Erick Cabalceta; M Sebastian Dalgard (Mats Bjurman 46′), Dragan Stojkov (c), Tony Walls, Emir Alihodzic; F Jose Angulo (Octavio Guzman 68′), Christian Volesky (Tyler David 62′)


Late homer spurs Twins to 5-3 win over Rays

Brian Dozier‘s tiebreaking two-run home run for Minnesota with two outs in the eighth inning followed a pitching change by Tampa Bay and spurred the Twins to a 5-3 victory Saturday afternoon over the Rays.

The Twins were 0 for 10 with runners in scoring position until Dozier stepped in against Tommy Hunter with a man on third. The 426-foot drive, Dozier’s seventh of the season, bounced off the ribbon videoboard between the upper and lower deck in right-center field.

Rays manager Kevin Cash swapped right-handed relievers, removing Danny Farquhar (2-2) so Hunter could face Dozier. The decision backfired, ending Farquhar’s streak of 16 consecutive scoreless appearances.

Dozier then made a diving stop on Rickie Weeks‘ sharp grounder to second in the ninth inning to support Brandon Kintzler‘s 13th save in 14 tries, despite a two-out home run by Colby Rasmus.

Eddie Rosario also homered for the Twins, who embarked Friday on a stretch of 45 games in 45 days. They needed rookie Adalberto Mejia to stick around and save some relievers.

Mejia wasn’t as effective as last weekend during the doubleheader against Kansas City when he earned his first career victory, but he struck out six batters and finished five innings with the game tied. Tyler Duffey pitched two scoreless innings and Taylor Rogers (2-1) followed with a perfect eighth inning for the win.

Mejia was a little lucky to escape the second with an RBI single by Norris the only run against him. With the bases loaded and one out, a wild pitch ricocheted off the limestone backstop to catcher Chris Gimenez, who slid to snag the ball and throw sidearm to Mejia at the plate for the tag on Steven Souza Jr.

Rays starter Jake Odorizzi had his share of trouble, too.

He threw a season-high 118 pitches while failing to finish six innings for only the second time not for injury this year. The Twins loaded the bases with none out in the second inning and managed to tie the game on Ehire Adrianza‘s sacrifice fly. Then Odorizzi lost the lead again on Rosario’s homer in the fourth inning.

Derek Norris drove in two runs for the Rays, who had won three in a row.


With the lineup front-loaded with right-handers against the lefty Mejia, leading hitter Corey Dickerson had the day off. Rickie Weeks, who reached each of his first three times at-bat, took his spot as the designated hitter.


Eduardo Escobar played third for the Twins so Miguel Sano could try to recharge. The only other game this season that Sano didn’t start was May 9 due to a Major League Baseball suspension. Sano pinch-hit in the seventh inning and struck out for the eighth straight at-bat.


Rays: RHP Alex Cobb (4-4, 3.82 ERA) will pitch the series finale, with seven-plus innings completed in each of his last two turns. Cobb hadn’t accomplished that since Sept. 5 and 11, 2014, having missed 2015 and much of 2016 recovering from elbow-ligament replacement surgery.

Twins: RHP Kyle Gibson (1-4, 8.62 ERA) will make his second start Sunday afternoon since being recalled from Triple-A. He recorded his first win of the season earlier this week, despite allowing six runs in five innings at Baltimore.

Republished with permission from the Associated Press.

What if U.S. quits climate deal? Doesn’t look good for Earth

Earth is likely to reach more dangerous levels of warming even sooner if the U.S. retreats from its pledge to cut carbon dioxide pollution, scientists said. That’s because America contributes so much to rising temperatures.

President Donald Trump, who once proclaimed global warming a Chinese hoax, said in a tweet Saturday that he would make his “final decision” next week on whether the United States stays in or leaves the 2015 Paris climate change accord in which nearly every nation agreed to curb its greenhouse gas emissions.

Global leaders, at a summit in Sicily, have urged him to stay. Earlier in the week, Pope Francis made that case with a gift of his papal encyclical on the environment when Trump visited the Vatican.

In an attempt to understand what could happen to the planet if the U.S. pulls out of Paris, The Associated Press consulted with more than two dozen climate scientists and analyzed a special computer model scenario designed to calculate potential effects.

Scientists said it would worsen an already bad problem and make it far more difficult to prevent crossing a dangerous global temperature threshold.

Calculations suggest it could result in emissions of up to 3 billion tons of additional carbon dioxide in the air a year. When it adds up year after year, scientists said that is enough to melt ice sheets faster, raise seas higher and trigger more extreme weather.

“If we lag, the noose tightens,” said Princeton University climate scientist Michael Oppenheimer, co-editor of the peer-reviewed journal Climatic Change.

AP/Nicky Forster

One expert group ran a worst-case computer simulation of what would happen if the U.S. does not curb emissions, but other nations do meet their targets. It found that America would add as much as half a degree of warming (0.3 degrees Celsius) to the globe by the end of century.

Scientists are split on how reasonable and likely that scenario is.

Many said because of cheap natural gas that displaces coal and growing adoption of renewable energy sources, it is unlikely that the U.S. would stop reducing its carbon pollution even if it abandoned the accord, so the effect would likely be smaller.

Others say it could be worse because other countries might follow a U.S. exit, leading to more emissions from both the U.S. and the rest.

Another computer simulation team put the effect of the U.S. pulling out somewhere between 0.1 to 0.2 degrees Celsius (0.18 to 0.36 degrees Fahrenheit).

While scientists may disagree on the computer simulations they overwhelmingly agreed that the warming the planet is undergoing now would be faster and more intense.

The world without U.S. efforts would have a far more difficult time avoiding a dangerous threshold: keeping the planet from warming more than 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) above pre-industrial levels.

The world has already warmed by just over half that amount — with about one-fifth of the past heat-trapping carbon dioxide emissions coming from the United States, usually from the burning of coal, oil and gas.

So the efforts are really about preventing another 1.6 degrees Fahrenheit (0.9 degrees Celsius) from now.

“Developed nations — particularly the U.S. and Europe — are responsible for the lion’s share of past emissions, with China now playing a major role,” said Rutgers University climate scientist Jennifer Francis. “This means Americans have caused a large fraction of the warming.”

Even with the U.S. doing what it promised under the Paris agreement, the world is likely to pass that 2 degree mark, many scientists said.

But the fractions of additional degrees that the U.S. would contribute could mean passing the threshold faster, which could in turn mean “ecosystems being out of whack with the climate, trouble farming current crops and increasing shortages of food and water,” said the National Center for Atmospheric Research’s Kevin Trenberth.

Climate Interactive, a team of scientists and computer modelers who track global emissions and pledges, simulated global emissions if every country but the U.S. reaches their individualized goals to curb carbon pollution. Then they calculated what that would mean in global temperature, sea level rise and ocean acidification using scientifically-accepted computer models.

By 2030, it would mean an extra 3 billion tons of carbon dioxide in the air a year, according to the Climate Interactive models, and by the end of the century 0.3 degrees Celsius of warming.

“The U.S. matters a great deal,” said Climate Interactive co-director Andrew Jones. “That amount could make the difference between meeting the Paris limit of two degrees and missing it.”

Climate Action Tracker, a competing computer simulation team, put the effect of the U.S. pulling out somewhere between 0.1 to 0.2 degrees Celsius (0.18 to 0.36 Fahrenheit) by 2100. It uses a scenario where U.S. emissions flatten through the century, while Climate Interactive has them rising.

One of the few scientists who plays down the harm of the U.S. possibly leaving the agreement is John Schellnhuber, the director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research and the scientist credited with coming up with the 2 degree goal.

“Ten years ago (a U.S. exit) would have shocked the planet,” Schellnhuber said. “Today if the U.S. really chooses to leave the Paris agreement, the world will move on with building a clean and secure future.”

Not so, said Texas Tech climate scientist Katharine Hayhoe: “There will be ripple effects from the United States’ choices across the world.”

Republished with permission of The Associated Press.

Vern Buchanan honors Memorial Day by laying wreath at Tomb of Unknown Soldier

In honor of Memorial Day, Vern Buchanan laid a wreath Friday at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery.

Joining the Sarasota Republican, who represents Florida’s 16th Congressional District, was his wife Sandy.

“America must never forget those who made the ultimate sacrifice in defense of their country,’’ Buchanan said. “Our nation owes a debt of gratitude that can never be repaid to the brave men and women of our armed forces.”

Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia is the final resting place for more than 400,000 active duty service members, veterans and their families.

The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, on a hill overlooking Washington D.C., was created in 1921 as a monument to American service members whose remains were never identified.

Soldiers from the 3rd U.S. Infantry Regiment, known as “The Old Guard,” guard the tomb 24 hours a day.

“The United States stands strong today because of those who answered our nation’s call generation after generation,” Buchanan said. “We must never forget those who gave all. This Memorial Day, we honor all American veterans killed in action, from the sands of Normandy to the mountains of Afghanistan.”


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‘Bad neighbor’ unplugs bounce house at girl’s birthday party

A Florida woman wants to know why someone unplugged a bounce house, causing it to deflate with nearly a dozen young children inside during her daughter’s first birthday party.

CBS 12  reports two children suffered minor injuries after they were briefly trapped under the heavy plastic during the May 21 party in the backyard of a home in Port St. Lucie, about 114 miles north of Miami.

The home’s surveillance video shows an older man briefly standing at the fence looking at the partygoers before unplugging a cord from an electric outlet on the side of the home as he walked toward the street.

Police canvassed the area but couldn’t identify the man in the video. The video has been posted online under the heading Bad Neighbor.

Republished with permission of The Associated Press.

Saturday college sports action features high stakes matchups

Plenty of Florida college sports is on tap throughout the Memorial Day weekend. Many of the games come with high stakes.

The Florida Gators will play in the SEC semi-finals on Saturday against Arkansas. The top-seeded Gators will face the fourth-seeded Razorbacks in the second game of the day in Hoover, Ala. Second seed LSU meets 11th-seeded South Carolina in the first game at 1:00 p.m.

Florida reached the semi-finals after an incredible rally against Mississippi State. The Gators trailed 3-0 entering the eighth inning, but exploded for 11 runs on the way to a 12-3 win over the Bulldogs.

In the ACC, both Florida State and Miami are playing in the semi-finals in Louisville, Ky. FSU plays at noon in the day’s first game against 9th-seeded Duke in front of what will be a dramatically reduced crowd at Louisville Slugger Field. The Seminoles upended top-seeded and fifth ranked Louisville 6-2 on Friday to advance.

Miami is the tournament’s fifth seed and they will take on North Carolina following the FSU vs. Duke game. The Hurricanes rallied to get by Wake Forest on Friday to move on. They are on the tournament bubble and may need a spot in the championship game to improve their chances.

The Central Florida Knights are playing for a spot in the American Athletic Conference (AAC) semi-finals on Saturday, but they must win two games to get there.

UCF, the tournament’s top seed, must defeat 8th-seeded East Carolina in the first game Saturday afternoon, then beat them again in another game that would immediately follow the first. The Knights are in that predicament following their 14-3 loss to the Pirates in the opening game. UCF blasted the USF Bulls 12-0 to reach the semi-finals.

The Florida Atlantic Owls are also trying to reach a conference final. They face the Rice Owls on Saturday for a spot in the Conference-USA finals in Biloxi, Miss.

In softball, both Florida and Florida State can reach the College World Series with wins today.

The Gators kept their hopes alive on Friday when they shut out conference foe Alabama 2-0 to even their best-of-three Super Regional series in Gainesville. FSU took the opener of the Tallahassee Super Regional with a 3-1 win over the LSU Tigers.

ESPN is showing both games. The FSU vs. LSU contest is scheduled for 3:00 p.m. while Florida vs. Alabama is set to begin at 5:00 p.m.

Memorial Day Weekend brought to you by these lobbyists and associations

Summertime is here — well, almost.

While Memorial Day commemorates the men and women who died while serving in the country’s armed forces, the holiday also marks the unofficial start to summer. And for many people, that means it’s time to start thinking about summer vacation.

More than 39.9 million Americans are expected to travel more than 50 miles away from home this Memorial Day, making one of the highest volume of travel since 2005, according to AAA – The Auto Club Group. A record number of Floridians are also expected to travel this weekend, with more than 2 million expected to take to the road, sky and water for a weekend getaway.

Planning a last-minute getaway? Maybe AAA’s in-house government affairs team of Kevin Bakewell and Karen Morgan can help you get a TripTik to help plan your trip and make sure your membership is up-to-date before you hit the road this weekend.

But AAA is about more than just roadside assistance. It has a huge advocacy program, reaching out to lawmakers to make sure the roads are safe for travelers. In Florida, that means enlisting the help of Chris Dudley, Paul Mitchell, and Monte Stevens with Southern Strategy Group; and Jennifer Wilson with Adams and Reese.

If air travel is more your thing, you aren’t alone. More than 2.9 million Americans are expected to travel by air this weekend, up 5.5 percent from last Memorial Day, according to a recent AAA report.

With millions of people flying into (and out of) the Sunshine State on a regular basis, Airline for America, the trade organization representing the principle U.S. airlines, has tapped Fred Baggett, Gus Corbella, Hayden Dempsey, Leslie Dughi and Fred Karlinsky with Greenberg Traurig to represent its interests before the Florida Legislature.

Once you get to your destination, you’ll need a place to stay. With hotels across the state, chances are there’s a Marriott brand wherever you’re headed this weekend. If you want some tips about where to stay, you might want to check with the company’s legislative lobby team of Slater Bayliss, Al Cardenas and Stephen Shiver with The Advocacy Group at Cardenas Partners; and Pete Dunbar, Martha Edenfield, Brittany Finkbeiner, and Cari Roth with Dean Mead.

If you’re looking for a place with a homier feel, then perhaps a vacation rental is more your style. State lawmakers tried to deregulate vacation rentals this year, but couldn’t get the measure across the finish line. Need some help finding a vacation rental this summer? Tom Martinelli and Viviana Jordan with Airbnb might be able to offer you some advice. When Martinelli and Jordan need a hand, they turn to Brian Bautista with Impact GR; and William Rubin, Amy Biscgelia, Christopher Finkbeiner, Matthew Sacco, and Heather Turnbull with The Rubin Group.

Vacationers can also head to HomeAway to the perfect rental for a weekend trip. If you’re looking for booking tips, maybe the company’s legislative lobby team of Jennifer Green, Melanie Bostick and Timothy Parson with Liberty Partners of Tallahassee, and Ron Pierce and Natalie King with RSA Consulting can offer up some suggestions.

If you want to spend the long weekend planning a getaway where everything is taken care of, then maybe cruising is for you. According to a recent report from the Florida Ports Council, Florida is home to the top three cruise ports in the world, with 62 percent of all U.S. cruisers sailing through a Florida port. The report found Florida seaports handled 15.5 million passengers in 2016.

Since the industry has such a big economic impact on the Sunshine State, it’s no wonder Cruise Lines International Association, the world’s largest cruise industry trade association, tapped Brian Ballard, Carol Bracy, David Browning, Bradley Burleson, Nelson Diaz, Matthew Forrest, and Sylvester Lukis with Ballard Partners; and Edgar Castro with Southern Strategy Group to represent it during the 2017 Legislative Session.

Whatever you do this weekend, take a moment to remember the real reason for Memorial Day. Originally called “Decoration Day,” the holiday was borne out of the Civil War and the desire to honor those people who died in service of the United States.

New York was the first state to officially recognize the holiday in 1873. It was officially dubbed Memorial Day under a federal law passed in 1967, and was moved to last Monday in May in 1971.

While the holiday commemorates those who have died in service to the country, it’s still fair to give a shout out to Veterans of Foreign Wars and the American Legion? Bill Helmich with Helmich Consulting represents the Florida departments of the American Legion Auxiliary and the Veterans of Foreign Wars.

Blake Dowling: Ransomware, the Mob catching up with the times

Attending a Florida Public Relations Association professional development session, seeing many of the state’s best PR pros in the room was thrilling.

Nanette Schimpf from Moore Communications Group; my man Rick Oppenheim (from RB Oppenheim Associates) and the main sponsor of the event, the rock-solid team at Sachs Media Group represented by Ryan Cohn and Jon Peck.

The event began with a breakfast that featured the most spectacular bacon, so I was ready for anything – bacon is power, bacon is motivation. (#BaconIsLife)

Speaking was Sandra Fathi, president of the public relations, social media and marketing firm Affect.

She is a Pro, who has been featured all over the news – CNN, Forbes, etc.

Fathi dove into a presentation on hacking, discussing the response should be from a PR perspective. Your client could be an elected official, airline, restaurant etc.

What happens when you are breached?

Fathi discussed the basics of cybercrime at first offering clear definitions of spear phishing, ransomware, DDOS attacks etc. and what they were.

She talked about the WannaCry ransomware from earlier in the month.

Then she lost me.

Fathi said something like, it is OK to pay the ransom from terrorists if infected.


In my opinion, you should never pay the ransom from these criminals. It only encourages them, encourages more people to get involved, (think organized crime in our state).

Hypothetically, the Genovese Crime Family launches a cyberattack using ransomware, they collect 50k in bitcoin and use the money to buy a couple of kilos of cocaine resale.

You get the picture; the domino effect of paying these types of things ravages our communities eventually.

The alternative is to invest in your technology. Dictate strict policies to your team in regard to password management, install antivirus/antispam products, set your firewall to geo-block rogue nations, you know who, the “Stans” (Pakistan or anything with “stan” in it), Russia, China etc.

And if all that fails, have a redundant backup protocol (on-premise and cloud), so that if you are infected, you can make a clean start with a wipe and reload of all things.

Sandra’s message was to individuals in the PR game, and her message about crisis management was on point. But make no mistake about it, paying criminals only encourages them.

Also, Fathi mentioned that criminals generally give you the means to get your data back, after you pay them.

After seeing several local examples where the ransom was paid – and they got nada.

These are criminals, after all. That’s kind of what they do.

Am I right?

The Mob caught up with the times, and it’s no longer like what Tony Soprano said in 2002 about surfing the net: “Log off. That ‘cookies’ s**t makes me nervous.” Classic.

I hope everyone has a fantastic day, and your week is crisis free.

But if one pops up, you can let me know. I’ll point you in the right direction.


Blake Dowling is CEO of Aegis Business Technologies and can be reached at

Yolie Capin noncommittal about possible 2019 mayoral bid

With more than 21 months before Tampa voters will choose a successor to Mayor Bob Buckhorn, there’s no real reason for anyone seriously considering such a run to announce their intentions.

That’s why presumptive candidates 2019 mayoral Mike Suarez and Jane Castor said they don’t intend to launch their campaigns anytime soon. It’s also probably why Tampa City Council Chair Yolie Capin declined the opportunity to show her cards when asked about her plans during an appearance Friday morning at the Oxford Exchange.

“I was asked ‘tell me what you’re not running for,’ ” she told the crowd at the Cafe Con Tampa “I said I’m not running for governor.”

The longest-serving member of Council (she was selected by Councilmembers to replace John Dingfelder in July 2010 after 17 ballots), Capin will be term-limited in two years. Progressive Democrats are talking her up for a possible run in 2019, with enthusiasm that comes from her liberal stance on several issues, including advocating for stronger relations between Tampa and Cuba.

While that stance propelled some of that progressive enthusiasm, it put her at odds with Buckhorn.

During her speech, she spoke extensively about her five trips to the communist island.

One of the pet projects she’s most proud of is a cultural assets commission. A cultural assets advisory committee created by Capin has been working for the past six years on looking how to leverage the city’s assets, and now that idea is set to become a reality.

Capin met with Hillsborough County Commissioner Ken Hagan on creating a Cultural Assets Commission, fashioned after the Tampa Sports Commission; the County has now allocated $2.1 million for a public-private partnership that should be up and running by late summer.

Among those private partners with the project is developer/hockey owner Jeff Vinik.

“If the art museum gets a blockbuster exhibit and they need a little help, we’re looking for grants,” she said in explaining how the commission would work. “So a corporation comes in and says, ‘I need $100,000 to do this, and this is the benefit, and we match it with $100,000. You have a matching partner and you have a program. That is going to benefit the community. That’s what we’re hoping to see with this.”

Capin decried the recently passed bill in the Florida Legislature that will put a ballot measure up in 2018 to increase the homestead tax exemption. If passed, the measure would take a chunk out of the ad valorem revenues of every local government in Florida. Tampa could take a $6-9 million hit, she said.

Capin championed Buckhorn’s op-ed just published in the Tampa Bay Times about the measure.

There are more than 600 jobs in the city that gone unfilled since the Great Recession hit in 2008. Audience member Jen McDonald asked if the council had plans in the future for more staffing moving forward. Capin said that the City Council had created an apprenticeship program to replace staffers with the Water Department who are aging out.

“I know we can do more with less, but I just wonder how long we can go on with that lower, leaner staff in the next three to four to five years,” McDonald said later.

Regarding the vexing issue of transit in Tampa, Capin said the issue would “take some leadership,” and said that part of the problem with the 2010 Moving Hillsborough Forward transit tax was that the public was too confused about it, and “no one that was looked at a real, honest straightforward leader took the reigns. … Everybody passed the buck, they brought somebody in try to try to pass it.”

If Capin is to run for higher office, however, she’ll need to make sure she’s on top on of all the issues of the day.

When asked if there were any partnerships between USF’s CAMLS medical school and the Cuban government, Capin referred to a 2006 state law that made it impossible for colleges and universities to use public or private money to travel to Cuba (or to any other country on the U.S. list of state-sponsors of terrorism). However, that hasn’t been the case for nearly two years, after the U.S. officially restored diplomatic ties with the Cuba, ending the last travel restrictions keeping Florida professors from visiting the island.

And while discussing local transit, she said that ridership on buses has risen “quite a bit, and that’s because of the recession.”

While ridership was up for several years, those ridership numbers have come down over the past year, both locally and nationally

Rays beat Twins 5-2; Chris Archer fans 11

Chris Archer struck out 11 while pitching into the eighth inning and the Tampa Bay Rays hit three home runs in a 5-2 victory over the Minnesota Twins on Friday night.

Archer (4-3) gave up two runs and five hits in 7 2/3 innings and reached double digits in strikeouts for the fourth time in five May starts. Logan Morrison, Kevin Kiermaier and Steven Souza Jr. all went deep, and Alex Colome got four outs for his 13th save, winning a battle with slugger Miguel Sano with two on in the eighth inning.

Hector Santiago (4-3) gave up three runs and four hits and struck out six in 5 1/3 innings. Kennys Vargas and Brian Dozier drove in runs for first-place Minnesota, one of the surprise teams in the league this season.

Morrison and Kiermaier each hit two-run homers to put the Rays up 4-0 after six.

Routinely hitting 97 mph with his fastball and mixing in a knee-buckling slider, Archer set down 10 straight between an infield single from Jason Castro in the third inning and a sharp single from Joe Mauer in the seventh.

Vargas drove Mauer in to put the Twins on the board, ending the Rays’ pitching staff’s streak of scoreless innings at 23.

Archer now has 51 strikeouts in May and has one more start to break David Price‘s club record of 54 set in June 2014.

The Twins had life in the eighth with two on and two out and down three runs. But Colome got Sano to strike out for the fourth time in the game to escape the jam.


Rays: RHP Brad Boxberger, on the 60-day disabled list with a right flexor strain, is scheduled to throw a bullpen on Monday in Florida.

Twins: Closer Glen Perkins, who has been on the disabled list all season with shoulder problems, threw a bullpen on Friday. He will throw again on Tuesday before departing to Florida for extended spring training. … Hard-throwing prospect Nick Burdi will undergo Tommy John surgery.


Archer got some help from his defense to put the clamps on a team with the fifth-best batting average in the American League.

Souza made a lunging catch at the wall in right field to take a hit away from Vargas in the second inning and Corey Dickerson sprinted to catch a liner from Mauer off of his shoelaces in the fourth inning.


Souza didn’t have as much luck in the seventh inning, bizarrely diving for a ball struck by Vargas that landed at least 15 feet away from him. Souza shared a laugh with Kiermaier after both watched the replay.

When Souza stepped to the plate in the eighth inning, the Twins showed the replay of the dive on the video board. A good sport, Souza smiled as he stepped into the box, then belted a solo shot into the second deck in left field.


Rays: RHP Jake Odorizzi (3-2, 3.14) will start Game 2 on Saturday. Odorizzi leads the majors with 20 no-decisions since the start of last season, 16 of which have come after yielding two earned runs or fewer.

Twins: Molitor said that LHP Adalberto Mejia (1-1, 4.96) will be recalled from Triple-A Rochester to start Saturday’s game. Mejia started for the Twins on Sunday, but was sent back down because Molitor has had to juggle the rotation due to so many rainouts early this season.

Republished with permission from the Associated Press.

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