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Patrick Mantiega

After fierce debate, Hillsborough Commissioners vote to keep controversial Confederate statue

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

After three hours of intense debate, the Hillsborough County Commission decided to keep a Confederate monument that has stood outside of the Hillsborough County Courthouse Annex for more than a century. Commissioners also approved Wednesday a plan to enhance the statue of a soldier by adding a painted mural celebrating diversityon a wall behind it. The 4-3 vote was a bitter defeat for Commissioner Les Miller, the lone black member of the BOCC, who announced earlier this month he believed…

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Hillsborough Commission candidate Elvis Pigott explains his arrest record – again

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

Last week, SPB published a story about 29-year-old Elvis Pigott, a Democratic candidate for the District 5 countywide seat on the Hillsborough County Commission. The seat will be vacated next year by a term-limited Ken Hagan (who will run again in District 2). The story referenced Pigott’s arrest record, where he is listed as having been charged with five separate felonies, including charges of grand theft and dealing in stolen property and providing false information on secondary metals recycling. Pigott denied that he was…

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Lisa Montelione feels confident in HD 63 Democratic primary versus Mike Reedy

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

Lisa Montelione said it was “excruciatingly hard” to decide to give up her Tampa City Council seat next year, but that’s what will happen now that she’s decided to run for the Florida Legislature in 2016. She’ll take on fellow Democrat Mike Reedy in the House District 63 primary next August, with the winner to face GOP incumbent Shawn Harrison in November. Regarding that primary race against Reedy, Montelione said simply, “I will win.” The Hillsborough County-based seat is one…

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Al Fox and Ralph Fernandez engage in ‘great debate’ over U.S. Cuba relations in Ybor City

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It was billed as “The Great Debate” with two of the most prominent Tampa residents on the issue of Cuba, Al Fox and Ralph Fernandez, duking it out on whether the United States should end the 54-year-old economic embargo against the Castro-led government. Hundreds jammed into the historic Centro Asturiano building in Ybor City for a 90-minute forum hosted by the Tampa Tiger Bay Club on Monday night, and judging by the laughs alone, were thoroughly entertained by these two passionate advocates when it comes to…

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Debate on normalizing relations with Cuba slated in Tampa tonight

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While the breakthrough in U.S. diplomatic relations with Cuba has been met with restraint in Miami, most lawmakers and business leaders in Tampa have embraced the new rules relaxing restrictions on trade and travel with the Communist island that began at the beginning of this year. And while overall more Cuban Americans in the Tampa Bay area appear eager for the 54-year-old economic sanctions to end soon, it’s hardly a universal sentiment. Being billed somewhat hyperbolically as “10 years in the making,” The…

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