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HART board contemplates releasing annual statement to public

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A suggestion by board member Kathleen Shanahan about sending local newspapers a letter-to-the-editor or op-ed listing the goals and agenda of Hillsborough Area Regional Transit agency prompted a larger debate Monday. “I continue to believe that this organization should be the platform of leadership for transportation, both policy as well as opportunity for implementation for this region,” Shanahan said, adding that there’s considerable interest in the business community about what HART is doing vis-á-vis transportation currently. Shanahan, the chairman and CEO…

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HART committee approves contract for Yellow Cab to provide same-day service for paratransit riders

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A subcommittee with the Hillsborough Area Transit Authority (HART) has approved a contract with Yellow Cab Company of Tampa to provide same-day rides for riders who use their paratransit HARTPlus program that service those with disabilities. Currently, those riders must call a day in advance for such service. Greg Brackin, director of Operations and Support and ADA officer, informed HART’s Finance, Governance, and Administration Committee on Monday that the such riders will continue to pay the $4 fee they currently are charged, but…

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FDOT offers feasibility study in Tampa on “premium transit”

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Paul Steinman, the Florida Department of Transportation secretary for District 7, said Thursday that his agency is willing to work with HART on a feasibility study on premium transit in Tampa. It could include bus rapid transit, light-rail or working with CSX, but it’s unknown at this time. Steinman referenced the fact that FDOT has already committed $1 million with the city of Tampa on feasibility study for the streetcar. “We are excited to work with all our regional partners on premium…

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HART board member questions agency’s advertising with 83 Degrees

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Last week, The Tampa Tribune’s Chris O’Donnell reported on how six public agencies in the Tampa Bay area have contracted to pay out more than $200,000 to online magazine 83 Degrees for news and feature stories. The story concentrated on how such sponsored content can be considered problematic if the publisher does not explicitly reveal that such stories are being paid for by a certain entity. The Hillsborough Area Regional Transit Authority (HART) spent $8,000 this year on those stories, and board…

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HART CEO Katharine Eagan nominated for White House ‘Champion of Change’ program

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Katharine Eagan, the CEO of the Hillsborough Area Regional Transit agency (HART), has been nominated for the White House “Champion of Change” program in the category focused on “Beyond Traffic: Innovators in Transportation.” Eagan announced the nomination at the conclusion of HART’s Finance, Governance and Legislative Committee meeting on Monday. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s website, those individuals who will be chosen “have provided exemplary leadership in advancing transportation and leading change that benefits our nation’s transportation system for decades to come at the…

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Next phase of Go Hillsborough public outreach campaign begins tonight

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Despite the mixed reaction that the proposed half-cent transportation tax has received so far in Hillsborough County, local officials insist that the final plan isn’t completely baked in the cake yet, and say there is plenty of time for members of the public to weigh in on the proposal. Along with the fact that the plan is heavy on building new roads and resurfacing and lighter on transit, there’s also been criticism that the half-cent tax will obviously bring in fewer…

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Mitch Perry Report for 7.21.15 — Bill McCollum isn’t seriously thinking of running for Senate. Is he?

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I was going to opine on John Kasich entering the GOP presidential contest this morning, but let’s get to that tomorrow. Instead, let’s talk about the Florida U.S. Senate race, now that David Jolly is officially in the race, along with U.S. Ron DeSantis, Lt. Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera and retired CIA contractor Todd Wilcox. Lately the conventional wisdom from at least two Florida political reporters/analysts is that with such a relatively unknown field, former Central Florida U.S. Rep. Bill McCollum could be viable if…

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