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John Romano

The two Ricks slug it out in first debate of St. Pete mayoral race

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Former Mayor Rick Baker and incumbent Rick Kriseman took plenty of verbal shots at each other during the first debate of the 2017 St. Pete mayoral race. Although seven mayoral candidates are on the ballot, only Baker and Kriseman could participate at the forum hosted by Midtown’s Mt. Zion Progressive Missionary Baptist Church. Kriseman began the evening by reciting the main theme of his campaign: A choice between whether St. Petersburg residents want to go forward, or look backward in a bid…

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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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Mitch Perry Report for 12.15.16 — Pier politics, part VIII

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St. Pete City Council members are scheduled to receive a report on the progress of the St. Petersburg Pier at City Hall this morning. Architects from ASD Architects, Rogers Partners Architects + Urban Designers, representing the Pier and W Architecture and Landscape Architecture and Wannemacher Jensen Architects, representing the Pier Approach will present updated renderings of the new Pier. According to a news release, City staff will report on timing, budget and next steps. Not covering St. Petersburg on a regular basis these days, I…

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5 things I think I think about today’s Tampa Bay Times

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Back before there was a FloridaPolitics.com and it was just me blogging at SaintPetersBlog.com, I would write a semi-regular screed about the Tampa Bay Times’ political coverage. This was so long ago, the Times still had St. Petersburg in its masthead. I gave up the “5 things I think I think…” column after a while because it got repetitive. (And because so many of my favorite writers — Howard Troxler, Eric Deggans, Michael Kruse —  left the newspaper). However, with 15…

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Plea to St. Pete residents: End voter apathy

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

Earlier Tuesday, and a bunch of times over the past several weeks, I shamed the Tampa Bay Times editorial board for taking a narrow stance on City Council races based solely on the Tampa Bay Rays stadium stalemate. Now, though, it’s time to praise Times’ columnist John Romano who is not on the editorial board. Looking down the barrel at lackluster voter turnout in what is actually a pretty damn important local election, Romano not so subtly heckled the tens…

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Tampa Bay Times column shows new potential for new tone on Rays – it’s time for team to compromise

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Tampa Bay Times columnist John Romano threw out a fresh take on the long-neglected conversation involving the Tampa Bay Rays and the team’s tenure at Tropicana Field. This new(ish) tone encourages the Rays to accept one of two deals being considered by City Council. That’s a giant step back from the editorial board’s oft-uttered postulations that the four City Council holdouts on a previous deal were obstructionists sure to bring strife and doom to a city on the rise. The…

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Tampa Bay Times outperforms all the rest in statewide media competition

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The Tampa Bay Times won more awards than any other large-circulation news group in the state in the Florida Society of News Editors competition this year. According to the paper, the Times took away 12 first-place awards and 29 others. Among the first-place finishers this year were Adam Smith and Michael Kruse for work in the Features and Arts Writing category under “Knowing Charlie Crist.” Times’ coverage of the Florida State University shooting took home a first place finish under…

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