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District 5

Teresa Jacobs calls faulty advisory from Emily Bonilla ‘unauthorized,’ ‘inaccurate’

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Orange County Commissioner Emily Bonilla sent an email to constituents Wednesday afternoon inaccurately advising them they still could arrange to get rid of big bulk items ahead of Hurricane Irma. The email led Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs to issue a sharp retraction and a rebuke charging Bonilla of overstepping her authority and causing potentially serious problems in a time of emergency.

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At forum, Pinellas school board candidates agree on one thing: System needs fixing

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

One thing was clear at Tuesday’s forum for Pinellas School Board candidates — the school system needs revamping. But how that is to take place isn’t so clear, although most agreed that communication and stakeholder participation are needed. “Parental participation is a must,” said Eliseo Santana, one of the candidates for District 5. “Our system is not geared to bringing our parents into the schools.” Eileen Long, who is running for the District 4 seat, said, “Survey our stakeholders, find what…

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Final City Council candidate forum gets heated

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Three City Council races will be decided next week when voters hit the polls November 3. Candidates in two of those races squared off in the final debate leading up to the election in what turned out to be a boisterous forum hosted by the St. Pete NAACP. Lisa Wheeler-Brown came out of the gate strong with an impassioned plea to voters to reject the negative attention her opponent, Will Newton, has stirred in the race for the District 7…

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Philip Garrett consistently fails to properly file campaign finance documents; has two foreclosures

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St. Pete City Council candidate Philip Garrett‘s finance history is a mess. So, far in his bid to unseat incumbent District 7 council person Steve Kornell, Garrett has filed a series of inconsistent campaign finance reports. For example, at the end of September Garrett reported $800 in contributions. Then he reported another $420, but failed to include the previous $800. The reports also don’t reflect totals from August when Garrett raised $100. The contributions also don’t add up. On a…

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Charlie Gerdes, Steve Kornell trump challengers in City Council debate

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If there’s a takeaway from Monday night’s City Council candidate forum among the two less competitive races for District 1 and 5, it’s that incumbents are playing on a key weakness their opponents share – inexperience. During the one-hour debate moderated by the League of Women Voters at City Hall, both Charlie Gerdes and Steve Kornell showed off their insider-knowledge of city workings. The first question of the night went to Gerdes and his opponent, Monica Abbott, vaguely asking how…

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Rene Flowers endorses Steve Kornell for St. Pete City Council

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Pinellas County School Board member Rene Flowers has endorsed Steve Kornell for re-election to City Council, District 5. “Steve understands the community and understands the sacrifices that so many have made to bring our city back to the vibrant, economic, thriving machine that it once was,” Flowers said. “I ask that you join me in returning one of the most dedicated public servants back to his place of service.” In addition to serving as a current school board member, Flowers…

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Direct mail roundup: Two Steve Kornell mailers hit mailboxes

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

Two campaign mailers touting City Council member Steve Kornell for re-election hit mailboxes Friday. Both are positive and highlight his past, current and future commitments to the city as well as previous accomplishments. One mailer shows four photos of Kornell engaging with residents. “Steve Kornell is focused on the issues that matter,” the header reads. The photos highlight four areas including “protecting our environment,” “creating opportunities for kids,” providing “a better, safer community” and creating “new jobs and a strong…

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