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Martin Dyckman: End the ‘shame’ by restoring voting rights to ex-felons

in Statewide/Top Headlines by

In a pair of Context Florida columns titled, “The Shame of Florida,” Darryl Paulson has documented how Florida infamously leads the nation in the number of people—1.7-million—who are permanently barred from voting as ex-felons regardless of whether they are good citizens now. In Florida, as in Virginia, Alabama, Tennessee and other former Confederate states, these bans were imposed or radically expanded in the aftermath of Reconstruction with the plain intent of suppressing black votes. More than 10 percent of voting-age…

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USF sues bookstore for ‘dumping’ flyers on Tampa campus

in Local Courts by

Incessant littering at the University of South Florida’s Tampa campus has forced the school to sue a nearby textbook store. BookHolders is a chain that sells and rents textbooks to college students, with locations near seven campuses in five states, including USF Tampa. To advertise its business, employees walk through campus distributing flyers and other written materials. This is done without the permission of USF. The company, owned by Joe Verde, is being sued on five counts: Violation of the Florida litter…

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Joe Henderson: Despite opposition, ‘campus carry’ returns

in Statewide/Top Headlines by

Remember that measure some Republicans in the Legislature have tried to pass the last couple of years to allow guns on college campuses? You know, the bill the House passed last year before it died in the Senate (thank goodness). Well, it’s back. Of course, it’s back. It never really left, and it won’t leave until the National Rifle Association finally rams this thing into law. Never mind that a survey last year by the University of South Florida showed…

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USF’s Herb Maschner loses title, but not money

in Statewide/Top Headlines by

For an academic who can’t keep his hands off the co-eds, friends with funds sure do come in handy. That’s the takeaway from the tawdry tale of the University of South Florida’s Herb Maschner. The aptly named anthropologist left his longtime professional home at Idaho State University for USF, bringing with him a long-standing relationship with the well-endowed Hitz Foundation. Dazzled USF administrators didn’t ask about skeletons in the closet, and Maschner didn’t disclose that he was on the wrong end…

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Shawn Harrison holds on in rough-and-tumble HD 63 race

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

Republican Shawn Harrison held on in a rough-and-tumble race against challenger Lisa Montelione to represent House District 63. With all precincts reporting, Harrison had 51 percent of 71,483 votes cast. Montelione held a close early lead but Harrison overcame that and steadily pulled ahead as the night progressed. “Obviously, we’re very happy,” Harrison said in a statement. “We executed what was a perfect game plan. We had a very targeted and specific message to Democrats in this district, and we…

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67% of Floridians support moving to open primaries

in Statewide by

A majority of Floridians would support a shift to an open primary system. About two-thirds (67 percent) of self-identified registered voters believe Florida should move to an open primary system, according to a new USF-Nielsen Sunshine State Survey. The survey found 30 percent of respondents think the state should keep the current system. Florida has a closed primary system, which means only registered Republicans and Democrats can vote in their party’s primary. The closed primary system is often felt the…

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Pinellas schools superintendent gets distinguished alumni recognition from USF

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

Michael Grego, superintendent of the Pinellas County School System, has received the Dean’s Lifetime Achievement Alumni Award from the University of South Florida College of Education. The annual award is given to a community member who has demonstrated long-term contributions, achievement, and service within education or a related profession — on a local, state, regional, national, and/or global level. “Education is truly a career of service to others, and the programs and faculty of the USF College of Education offer…

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