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Tampa ponders campaign finance reform listen

09/20/07 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Thursday
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Earlier this year, Tampa City Councilman John Dingfelder engaged in a financial war with a well funded opponent in his bid for re-election. Dingfelder won, but he says some citizens approached him afterward about changing the laws to prevent so much money being spent on a local election.

Current law puts a $500 cap on individual contributing to races for mayor and City Council. City Attorney David Smith said that his office has learned that local muncipalities can make their own regulatio...

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Viorst on danger in the Middle East

09/19/07 Robert Lorei
Radioactivity: Live Call-In (Wednesday)
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Our guest on this segment was former Washington Post and New Yorker writer Milton Viorst, one of the leading U.S. journalists on the Middle East.

Viorst will be in St. Petersburg this week. Today on WMNF, he discussed Israe's threat to isolate the Gaza Strip, Iran's threat to bomb Israel, the problems with the U.S. occupation of Iraq and the 1,400 year history of conflict between Christianity and the Muslim world.

Viorst will launch Eckerd College's 2007-08 [Presidential Events Ser...

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Forum on local news coverage is tonight

09/19/07 Robert Lorei
Radioactivity: Live Call-In (Wednesday)
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We're joined now by St. Petersburg Times TV and media critic Eric Deggans. He is also president of the Tampa Bay Association of Black Journalists.

Tonight the group is sponsoring a forum for the public about how to get news coverage for your neighborhood or community organization. The forum takes place at 7 p.m. in Fletcher Lounge at Plant Hall on the University of Tampa campus.

Deggans says "this promises to be a singular event -- connecting the area's top journalists to the communit...

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Hillsborough environmentalist slams Planning Commission selections

09/19/07 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Wednesday
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The Hillsborough County Commission appointed two new people to the City-County Planning Commission today.

Engineer Hung Mai and and Miller Doody, of Metro Area Properties, a Tampa brokerage and development firm, were selected by the Commission this morning for a four-year term.

In the wake of the controversy about the county’s Environmental Protection Commission and related development issues in the County, the selection process attracted greater interest.

Trying perhaps to disasso...

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Hillsborough considers generous severance packages listen

09/19/07 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Wednesday
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Hillsborough Commissioner Brian Blair today called on the County Attorney and Administrator to research the policy on offering severance packages to departing employees.

Blair raised the issue after the head of the county’s Public Transportation Commission received a severance package equal to three months of his pay – even after he was suspended the month before for several alleged transgressions. And it follows a series of dismissed employees who were granted generous packages.

B...

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Intelligence critic: Why CIA and FBI weren't ready for 9/11 listen

09/18/07 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Tuesday
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In the six years since the 9/11 attacks, there have been several books about how the failures of our intelligence agencies helped allow Osama Bin Ladin and al-Queda to plan the deadly incident.

In her new book,Spying Blind:The CIA, the FBI, and the Origins of 9/11, Amy Zegart, an associate professor of Public Policy at UCLA, shows how and why the intellgence system itself left the U.S. vulnerable.

Zegart writes that six years later, the intelligence community’s most serious deficien...

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What Bible really says about homosexuality

09/18/07 Robert Lorei
Radioactivity: Live Call-In (Tuesday)
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A workshop, featuring author and theologian Daniel Helminiak, Ph.D., entitled “What the Bible Really Says About Homosexuality” will be held this Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. in St. Petersburg.

Dr. Helminiak is the author of 10 books and numerous articles published in academic journals and religious publications. He is a professor in the Department of Psychology at the University of West Georgia and is also a psychotherapist and theologian, with a Ph.D. in psychology and a Ph.D. in ...

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USF students present affordable housing proposals listen

09/18/07 Seán Kinane
WMNF Drive-Time News Tuesday
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Students from the University of South Florida’s Community Real Estate Development Certificate program presented three projects focusing on affordable housing today at USF’s Channelside campus.

These real estate development projects dealt with transitional housing for disabled veterans, affordable housing for city workers, and the creation of a resource guide to affordable housing developments. Tom Zuniga is the principle instructor of the class.

“We offer classroom training in rea...

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Hillary Clinton's health care proposal examined

09/18/07 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Tuesday
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Yesterday Democratic front runner Hillary Clinton unveiled her health care plan. The proposal provides new options for buying coverage and tax credits to help pay for them.

The New York senator made the rounds of the morning talk shows today to sell the plan.

Clinton says by rescinding the Bush tax cuts, she will pay for half of the $110-billion a year plan.

Eric Kotke is the senior research director of Campaign For America’s Future, a liberal think t...

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Castor says Dems can limit funding for war listen

09/17/07 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Monday
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A leading Congressional critic of the Iraq war is predicting that his fellow Democrats may not be able to pass any meaningful legislation to end the war any time soon.

Congressman John Murtha of Pennsylvania says they may have to wait until after the presidential primaries are over next year, according to the Associated Press.

That’s one House Democrats opinion.

Today WMNF asked another – Tampa area Congresswoman Kathy Castor - if she thought there was anything substa...

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Local officials address foreclosure crisis listen

09/17/07 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Monday
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As the subprime mortgage crisis reaches deeper into the U.S. economy, Tampa congresswoman Kathy Castor and officials from neighborhood associations spoke this morning about the escalating mortgage foreclosure crises, and what can be done to help those in danger of losing their homes.

The message Castor and others wanted to deliver for homeowners in trouble is, they can get assistance in restructuring their loans, to ensure that they keep their homes.

Last month, East Tampa resident Isa...

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Sales tax exemptions, exclusions under review listen

09/17/07 Seán Kinane
WMNF Drive-Time News Monday
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The constitutionally-created Florida Taxation and Budget Reform Commission is meeting this year and is charged with examining and making recommendations for possibly changing the tax and spending policies of the state. The next time it will meet will be in 20 years. The commission met today in the Hillsborough County Aviation Authority boardroom at the Tampa International Airport.

One of the things that the Taxation and Budget Reform Commission is examining is the possibility of getting r...

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Signing statements help Bush shape laws

09/17/07 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Monday
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After Watergate and the Vietnam War, a group of conservatives hatched a plot that would allow the White House to return to the virtually unchecked powers that Richard Nixon had briefly tried to wield in the 1970s.

Today, that plot has come to fruition, according to the new book by Boston Globe reporter Charlie Savage. The book is called Takeover: The Return of the Imperial Presidency and the Subversion of American Democracy.

Savage won a Pulitzer Prize earlier this year for his repo...

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Climate Change is topic at brown bag lunch

09/14/07 Seán Kinane
WMNF Drive-Time News Friday
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This afternoon at the US Geological Survey (USGS) in St. Petersburg, the monthly Community, Science, and Environmental Policy brown bag discussion focused on global climate change.

The event featured local experts on two aspects of climate change. Dick Poore is a geologist with the USGS and studies climate variability over the last few thousand years, especially in the Gulf of Mexico. Gary Mitchum is a professor with the USF College of Marine Science who studies sea levels.

Poore: “W...

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Davis speaks to new Democratic club in Hillsborough listen

09/14/07 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Friday
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After years being lost in the wilderness, Democrats in Hillsborough County say things are up on the upside.

Recently, a new organization called the Democratic Professionals Council created a chapter in the Tampa Bay Area.

On Tuesday, former Congressman Jim Davis addressed the lunchtime crowd at Mise En Place in Tampa. In a more relaxed mode than when when he was in Congress or running for governor last year, Davis spoke to the young Democrats about the joys of public service.

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