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Residents: Tampa Housing Authority policy verges on harassment listen

11/06/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Thursday
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Last month, Tampa City Council Chairman Thomas Scott called for a formal inquiry into reports by residents of public housing in Tampa, who have complained about some people being harassed by Tampa Police officers.

No word on the mayor taking up that call – but residents say they have been subjected to random stops while walking or driving, visitors have been threatened with trespass warnings, and officers have broken up small gatherings outside people's homes.

Joyce Wiggs said she di...

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Public reacts to spending plan for foreclosed property listen

11/06/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Thursday
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The Hillsborough County Commission today took public comments on how to spend more than $19 million to buy and redevelop foreclosed properties.

The funds are from the Neighborhood Stabilization Program, part of the massive housing bill passed by Congress and signed by President Bush earlier this year.

The county thinks it will receive the money from the Department of Housing and Urban Development by next January.

Valerie Turner is from the County’s Affordable Housing Office. She ...

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Hillsborough says every vote will be counted listen

11/06/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Thursday
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As the counting of ballots continues in Hillsborough County, two days after the election, two Florida Democrats are calling for Gov. Charlie Crist to intervene.

Senators Charlie Justice and Arthenia Joyner wrote a letter to the governor today, saying that they are concerned that if the situation "continues on its current path, many votes will be unaccounted for.”

The senators say the fact that Supervisor of Elections Buddy Johnson is on the ballot raises conflict of interest issues a...

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Hudson woman fired after wearing Obama T-shirt to work listen

11/06/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Thursday
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A Spring Hill woman was fired from her nursing home job in Hernando County today, a day after wearing a homemade Barack Obama T-Shirt the day after the election.

Tracy Thomas has worked at the Windsor Woods Rehabilitation and Healthcare Center for nearly 10 years. She said she was wearing her usual white T-Shirt to work on Wednesday, where she had written in Obama’s name on one side of the shirt with a magic marker, and the phrase “We need a change” on the other side. She said as s...

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Election problems continue in Hillsborough

11/05/08 Seán Kinane
WMNF Drive-Time News Wednesday
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Several Hillsborough County races, including Supervisor of Elections, are too close to call based on the number of ballots still to be tallied. Six thousand absentee ballots are being counted today, but as many as 80,000 early votes won’t be tallied until tomorrow.

Hillsborough County had 13 early voting locations and each one of those had two optical scan machines that read and recorded votes. But the results from half of those machines have still not been tallied. That process will beg...

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Obama supporters celebrate in Tampa listen

11/05/08 Emily Reddy
WMNF Drive-Time News Wednesday
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The Florida O-Train made its final stop last night in Tampa. Volunteers, staff and local leaders in President-elect Barack Obama’s campaign gathered at the Tampa Waterside Marriott to await election results.

An early surge for Obama in electoral votes, including a win in the coveted state of Pennsylvania put the crowd into an expectant but reserved mood. Then Ohio went blue, and most of the crowd seemed convinced he had won.

Alice Montalvo was overjoyed to hear that Hillsborough,...

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Some Hillsborough races still not determined listen

11/05/08 Seán Kinane
WMNF Drive-Time News Wednesday
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Several Hillsborough County races, including Supervisor of Elections, are too close to call based on the number of ballots still to be tallied. About 6,000 absentee ballots are being counted today, but as many as 80,000 early votes won’t be tallied until tomorrow.

Hillsborough County had 13 early voting locations and each one of those had two optical scan machines that read and recorded votes. But the results from half of those machines have still not been tallied. That process will begi...

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A Post-Election Call In Show

11/05/08 Robert Lorei
Radioactivity: Live Call-In (Wednesday)
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Welcome to Radioactivity. We’ll open the phone lines in a few minutes and get your comments about yesterday’s election results- including the selection of Barack Obama to be the next president of the United States. We’ll also hear about the ongoing problems with the vote count in Hillsborough County. And we’ll hear from David Isay, the founder of Story Corps, the Oral History project that is coming to Tampa in a few weeks to gather stories of ordinary Americans and put those stories i...

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Technical difficulties delay Hillsborough vote totals

11/05/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Wednesday
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So why are the results from Hillsborough County still not in?

Technical difficulties stopped the counting of votes early this morning with tens of thousands of ballots cast during early voting still not tabulated.

Tampa Political Consultant Vic DiMaio was at the Supervisor of Elections office until 3:30 this morning.

One race that is still undecided as of late this afternoon is the battle between Hillsborough County Supervisor of Elections Buddy Johnson, and Democratic challenger Phy...

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DiMaio on why Hillsborough Democrats continue to flounder listen

11/05/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Wednesday
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The big story in Florida and the Tampa Bay area is the lack of coattails for Barack Obama.

The Illinois senator took Hillsborough, Pinellas and nearly won Sarasota, counties that have all gone Republican in recent elections. He also swamped John McCain in Orange County, on the eastern side of the critical I-4 Corridor.

Despite that success, down ballot candidates with an R attached to their name did much better than Democrats in a variety of state and local races. In Pinellas County, R...

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Florida Secretary of State addresses voting problems listen

11/05/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Wednesday
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Florida Secretary State Kurt Browning boasted today that Florida’s relatively successful general election yesterday should exorcise the ghosts of the 2000 disputed contest.

Voter participation actually was lower in Florida than in 2004. In Hillsborough County, vote tabulation issues prompted the county's canvassing board chairman to shut down the vote counting process shortly before 3:30 a.m. Problems with 13 early voting machines and problems with accessing data at two precincts are ci...

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Kevin Beckner on possible commission victory listen

11/05/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Wednesday
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In Hillsborough County, the two most interesting races remained undecided as of late this afternoon were the races for County Commission and Supervisor of Elections.

Financial planner Kevin Beckner was poised to upset Republican incumbent Brian Blair in District 6.

Beckner, 37, was an unknown who put together a grassroots effort to win the Democratic Primary in late August, and then as an underfinanced candidate against Blair.

As the results started trickling in last night in his fav...

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Voting problems surface in Florida

11/05/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Tuesday

Voting Rights Advocates reported a number of problems at the polls. Perhaps the biggest problems statewide is optical scan ballots getting jammed and not being counted.

In some cases, blame was being cast on poll workers for folding the ballots too tightly.

Marcia Johnson-Blanco is with the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law. She said a problem in Hillsborough County in at least two polling places – at the Westchase Swim and Tennis Center and the American Legion Post on ...

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Hackworth holds his head high in loss to Bill Young listen

11/05/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Wednesday
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There were no suprises in any of the Tampa Bay congressional races.

GOP incumbents Ginny Brown-Waite, Gus Bilirakis, Adam Putnam, Bill Young and Vern Buchanan all won re-election, as did Tampa area Democrat Kathy Castor.

Two years ago, Buchanan defeated Democrat Christine Jennings in a disputed race by just 369 votes, in an election that had more than 18,000 undervotes. That was not the case last night. Buchanan crushed Jennings by a 55 to 38 percent margin.

In District 10 in Pinella...

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Alex Sink predicts Obama victory in Florida listen

11/04/08 Seán Kinane
WMNF Drive-Time News Tuesday
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Around midday, WMNF asked some Hillsborough County voters if they ran into any troubles while voting.

WMNF spoke with Alex Sink, Florida’s Chief Financial Officer, outside a polling location at the Seminole Heights Baptist Church.

Sink, a Democrat and Obama supporter, predicted he would win the state.

“I feel like Obama’s going to carry Florida.”

In central and West Tampa, WMNF encountered mostly Obama supporters, including two women who waved signs as traffic on Columbus ...

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