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Newly released emails show Hillsborough County PTC head’s cozy relationship with limo and taxicab industry

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

The Hillsborough County Public Transportation Commission’s mandate is to regulate for-hire vehicles in the county, which includes taxicabs, limousines, and in the past couple of years, ridesharing companies — which the agency considers to be operating outside the law. But newly unearthed emails show that PTC executive director Kyle Cockream worked with the taxi cab and limo industry to advocate for their cause, against ridesharing companies. “Make me an inspector, I’ll clean it up,” wrote Ray Sabb with Gulf Shore Limos in Sarasota, in an…

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Victor Crist calls for emergency meeting regarding Hillsborough PTC executive director Kyle Cockream

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

Rocked by recent revelations about Hillsborough County Public Transportation executive director Kyle Cockream, PTC board chairman Victor Crist is calling for an emergency meeting of the board next week to deal with the situation. “I am scheduling an emergency meeting of the Public Transportation Commission Board with our legal counsel and germane support for the purpose of discussing recent allegations attacking the integrity, character, and independence of our director, staff, and board,” Crist wrote to PTC board members on Thursday. Crist is calling…

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Dana Young calls for FDLE investigation into Hillsborough County PTC

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

In the aftermath of published reports about questionable decisions made by Hillsborough County Public Transportation Executive Director Kyle Cockream over the past year, Tampa state Rep. Dana Young is calling for the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) to conduct an investigation into the agency. “When the line is blurred between the regulator and the entities they regulate, the public cannot rely on impartiality in the government,” wrote Young in her letter to the FDLE. “The disturbing revelations of the relationship between the PTC, Mr.…

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Kyle Cockream’s appearance before Palm Beach County Commissioners this year wasn’t his first time

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

(UPDATED with responses from Kyle Cockream). When Hillsborough County Public Transportation Commission Executive Director Kyle Cockream appeared in front of the Palm Beach County Commission on a ridesharing ordinance it was reviewing last April, some state lawmakers and officials with Uber questioned his visit, saying it had the appearance of taking sides in the now two-and-a-half year battle between the taxicab industry and the ridesharing companies in Hillsborough County. Cockream said at the time he was in West Palm Beach for four days “on personal…

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Bill Galvano backs statewide ride-sharing legislation

in Statewide by

Senate Majority Leader Bill Galvano will push for ridesharing legislation, saying this week the state needs a “single, unified approach” to the new transportation sector. In a guest editorial in The Bradenton Herald, Galvano said if Florida wants to continue to attract the next generation of innovators, the state “must solidify, through legislation and strategic partnerships, an ecosystem that supports companies defining their own path.” The Bradenton Republican said in the past the state has chosen to “actively engage and…

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David Jolly announces federal grant for PSTA-Lyft partnership for disabled bus riders

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The Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority (PSTA) will receive a $500,000 grant from the Federal Transit Administration for a pilot program to provide “real time” transportation to disabled customers so they can get to work, the doctor, and other necessary places. “This is a great day for Pinellas County, but an even greater day for the residents of Pinellas County” who will use the service, U.S. Rep. David Jolly said in announcing the award. Jolly, a Republican who represents Florida’s 13th Congressional…

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Joe Henderson: Hillsborough rideshare decision could rest with ‘problem solver’ Ken Hagan

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

Ken Hagan has been elected five times to the Hillsborough County Commission. That ought to say something about the way voters feel he takes care of both his and the public’s business. Headlines tend to find him because he always seems to be involved in something important, but I wouldn’t say he seeks out publicity. Not at all. He tends to fly at treetop level, quietly working to get things done. And as Peter Schorsch of this great website just…

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