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Riviera Bay, Coffee Pot Bayou water test results near normal, St. Pete says

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

Initial test results from water samples taken from waters in and around Coffee Pot Bayou and Riviera Bay have shown no abnormalities, but testing of sick and dead pelicans will continue, St. Petersburg officials said. “From all we’ve seen, the water there is in overall good shape,” said Interim Water Resources Director John Palenchar. “But we will continue testing, and so the signs will stay up for awhile.” The city has collected 15 dead or dying pelicans since Jan. 12.…

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St. Pete bringing in ecologist to investigate sick pelicans

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In an effort to expedite and enhance current testing and investigation into a troubling discovery of sick birds near local waterways, the city of St. Petersburg is calling in an independent ecologist to assist. Scientists with Arcadis U.S., based in Melbourne, Florida, have joined with St. Petersburg Water Resources and investigative crews from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWCC) to gather clues into what is causing the Pelicans’ sickness. “We want to have experts evaluating this,” said John…

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Wal-Mart to close Midtown St. Pete Neighborhood Market March 3

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After opening to much fanfare three years ago, Wal-Mart is shuttering its Neighborhood Market in the Midtown section of St. Petersburg. First reported by the Tampa Bay Business Journal, the retail giant announced it will close the store at 1794 22nd St. S March 3; its pharmacy will close Feb. 1. The store was formerly a Sweetbay Supermarket. “After a careful and thoughtful review process, we have made the difficult decision to close our Wal-Mart Neighborhood Market on 22nd Street…

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Rick Kriseman will seek to deregulate the city’s taxi cabs

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The announcement came toward the end of St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman’s state of the city address Saturday: The next ordinance Kriseman plans to introduce is one deregulating the vehicle-for-hire industry. Kriseman did not provide many details except to say it would include incentives for taxi companies and ride-sharing companies like Uber and Lyft to comply with St. Petersburg’s system. Let the market decide what’s best, Kriseman said, adding that, if his plan succeeds then St. Petersburg would be a…

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Charlie Crist pleads case of Michael Morgan, unjustly jailed for 23 years, to Barack Obama

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Charlie Crist is calling on President Barack Obama to intervene on behalf of one of his constituents, a St. Petersburg man imprisoned for 23 years for a crime a growing number of people believe he did not commit. On Friday, the freshman St. Petersburg Democrat sent a letter to the White House telling the story of Michael Morgan, who has been unjustly serving three life sentences for crimes that many — including reporters, a former Pinellas County Commissioner and even…

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St. Pete schedules second session to discuss sewer plant improvements

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St. Petersburg has scheduled a second informational meeting to discuss proposed improvements to the Southwest Water Reclamation Facility and the 31st Street Sports Complex. The meetings are designed to inform residents about a proposal to drill wells at both facilities to increase the storage capacity for reclaimed water. An increased storage capacity will help handle the increase in water during storms and help prevent overflows. Last year, the city dumped thousands of gallons of raw and partially treated sewage into…

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Improvements to St. Pete sewage system begin

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Work to line aging sanitary sewer collection mains and city sewer laterals began Monday in the Bahama Shores and Coquina Key neighborhoods. Part of Mayor Rick Kriseman‘s infrastructure plan, the $3.2 million lining project will help extend the life of sanitary sewer mains and prevent groundwater infiltration from entering the city’s sewage collection system. Depending on the weather, the project is expected to be completed by September. St. Petersburg’s sewer system became the focus of controversy last year after the city…

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