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Hillsborough MPO head wants to slow down talk of new regional transportation authority

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Beth Alden is looking to have a serious discussion about regional transportation in the Tampa Bay area. In early 2017, the consensus among the political and business establishment is that the Tampa Bay region must come together as one cohesive regional entity to maximize its leverage before anything can be done about transportation. However, Alden, the head of the Hillsborough County Metropolitan Organization (MPO), wants to put on the brakes. “Let’s not do this half-assed,” she asserted in an interview earlier this…

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At long last, Jamie Grant files bill to kill Hillsborough PTC

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Tampa GOP state Representative Jamie Grant has filed a bill (HB 647) that would eliminate the controversial Hillsborough County Public Transportation Commission. “With new information being made public every day, it becomes increasingly clear that this agency needs to be abolished,” Grant said in a statement. “Everything that has come to light has confirmed what we knew all along; that this agency no longer serves a useful purpose and the residents of Hillsborough County deserve better.” That ‘new information’ Grant is referring…

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Corey Givens Jr. says he’s ready to serve on the St. Petersburg City Council

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Corey Givens Jr. isn’t even 25 years old, yet the millennial activist is immersed in a panoply of local organizations in St. Petersburg. In addition to being president of the Lakewood Terrace Neighborhood Association, he serves on the local chapters of the NAACP, the Sierra Club and the Citizens Advisory Council for the South St. Pete CRA.  And now he’s running for the St. Petersburg District 6 City Council seat being vacated this year by Karl Nurse, who is term limited. “I want to focus on…

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Saying voter intent ‘ignored’ on medical marijuana, Tampa Bay Times is just plain wrong

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The Tampa Bay Times is just plain wrong about something, and it has stuck in my craw for nearly a week now. Last Thursday, a Times headline read: “Voter intent on medical marijuana ignored.” Two days later, columnist John Romano followed suit with virtually the same narrative. “Ignored?” The clear inference of the editorial – notably, the word “ignored” – utterly fails to acknowledge reality. “Ignored” clearly and purposefully claims the will of those who voted for the constitutional amendment…

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Alan Clendenin dismisses complaint filed against him as ‘baseless’

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The battle to be the next chair of the Florida Democratic Party is becoming increasingly crazy – and intense. Two of the five candidates have had to move to different counties to be eligible for the position and one of them, Alan Clendenin, has been hit with a complaint regarding his election as state committeeman in Bradford County last month. On Tuesday, the Tampa Bay Times Adam Smith was first to report that Patricia Byrd, a state committeewoman in Bay County, filed a complaint last week with current chair Allison Tant, calling…

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Media lawyer Alison Steele leaving Rahdert, going solo

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Longtime media attorney Alison Steele is leaving the St. Petersburg law firm she has helped build for the last quarter-century and starting her own solo practice. Steele, a name partner in the firm of Rahdert, Steele, Reynolds & Driscoll, Friday said she was sending announcements out over the past weekend. She will continue to focus on media and employment law and civil litigation. According to her online bio, Steele “has concentrated in legal issues affecting journalists, including litigation and appeals in cases involving Florida’s public records…

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As 2016 closes, Hillsborough’s transportation problems still mostly unsolved

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

Another year of our lives is about to become history, and that means another year where little tangible was accomplished in terms of addressing the transportation needs of the citizenry in Hillsborough County. But a whole lot of people did get angry with each other over the process, anyway. At this time a year ago, the biggest concern was: What would come out of the Hillsborough County Sheriff Department’s investigation into Go Hillsborough, the two-years-in-the-making transportation plan that called for a 30-year,…

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