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Pat Kemp talks (about low-paying) jobs before a group of Tampa millennials

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A recent Census Bureau report reveals what many people in the Tampa Bay area know all too well – that the area doesn’t pay that well in terms of annual salary compared to other major regions in the nation. The median household income in Tampa Bay is $48,911. That’s dead last among the top 25 metro regions in the country, and the only region in the top 25 below an average salary of $50,000. “We have to look at our economy and…

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Stacy White voted in as Hillsborough County Commission Chairman by his colleagues

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A year ago, the majority Republican led Hillsborough County Commission crossed party lines to vote for Democrat Les Miller as chairman over the GOP incumbent at the time, Sandy Murman, angering some local Republicans. On Tuesday the board made sure not to repeat the same thing. Despite a strong speech supporting Miller’s re-election by Al Higginbotham,  his fellow Republican colleagues opted to go in a different direction, voting 4-3 to elect District 2 Commissioner Stacy White to lead them in 2017. “I…

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Joe Henderson: Kevin Beckner made a difference, which should never be forgotten

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All politicians start out by saying how they want to make a difference. Well, Kevin Beckner did. His now-former colleagues at the Hillsborough County Commission acknowledged that Wednesday during his final meeting as a member of the board. He is leaving because of term limits after serving eight years. Yes, Beckner was the first openly gay man to serve on the commission, which by itself was highly significant given that just a decade ago Hillsborough banned any recognition of gay…

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Mitch Perry Report for 11.17.16 — Will there be a Democrat ready to challenge Nancy Pelosi?

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If it were up to Nancy Pelosi, the Democratic House Caucus would be voting for their leadership later today, where she would win another term as House minority leader, since there is no opposition to her leadership role. Not yet, anyway. In an ominous note for the 76-year-old representative from San Francisco’s Pacific Heights, dozens of rank-and-file lawmakers at a closed-door meeting earlier this week called on her to delay leadership elections for a couple of weeks. Although their chances to retake the House…

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Hillsborough County Commissioners honor Kevin Beckner as he departs the board

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Kevin Beckner was feted with plaudits and awards by his colleagues on Wednesday, his last day on the Hillsborough Board of County Commissioners. “My service was never about me, it was always about we,” the 45-year-old Indiana native said at a ceremony celebrating his eight years of service on the board. Term-limited out of his seat this fall, he had hoped to continue his political career by running for the Hillsborough Clerk of the Circuit Court seat, but lost in a bitterly…

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Pat Frank defeats Eric Seidel in Hillsborough Clerk of the Court race

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Hillsborough Clerk of the Circuit Court Pat Frank has defeated Republican Eric Seidel, 53 percent to 47 percent. That’s with 335 out of 340 precincts reporting. Although the margin was much closer than Frank’s victory over Kevin Beckner in the Democratic primary (where she won by 18 points), the race against Seidel was much easier. That’s because the former Fox-13 consumer reporter decided that he would not adopt the hardball tactics employed by Beckner in his campaign. It helped him…

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Eric Seidel says picking off Democrats is part of his strategy to defeat Pat Frank in Hillsborough Clerk’s race

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Eric Seidel is hoping his campaign’s strategy of reaching out to independent voters will pay dividends Tuesday night in the Hillsborough County Clerk of the Court’s race. The former Fox-13 consumer reporter became a political candidate for office for the first time this year, running as a Republican against Democratic incumbent Pat Frank. “We knew because of what was happening at the top of the ticket, independents were going to be where it’s at and where the tide has turned, and that’s who…

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