News & Public Affairs

Monday May 4, 2015

DEBATE ON SMART GROWTH-Andrew Stelzer

This week, the Florida chapter of the American Planning Associstion is holding their annual conference in St Petersburg. Several hundered planners gathered to hear a debate on value of rail systems and smart growth for cities. Smart growth has been adopted by most planners worldwide ove rteh last few decades as the best way to avoid sprawl. It includes public transportation, walkable communities, community commons and parks rather that large yards for each house, and often requires extensi...

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Eyewitness to the Aftermath of Hurricane Katrina

Rev. Bruce Wright of the Reguge Church in St. Petersburg has just returned from distributing aid in the hurricane ravaged sections of Louisiana and Mississippi. Early this morning he arrived from the area and described what he found. He said aid was not getting to people who truly needed it; reports of looting were overblown; and that the people he spoke with wanted to participate fully in the rebuilding of their communities. Wright said the military and people with guns who had been given au...

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Al-Arian trial, Problematic jury issues - by Lance Robson

In an effort to address a jury misconduct allegation, brought to hs attention on August 25th, US District Judge James Moody took a few days to formulate a solution. Today he made a ruling.

Moody refused to dismiss jurors who have listened to comments from another juror about Media reports and his own opinions of the trial, according to the concerned jury member that brought the issue to the Judge's attention. He also declined to grant the mistrial request that Defense attor...

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New Orleans Resident and Former WMNF Programmer Mabili Ajani Talks About the Aftermath of Katrina

Former WMNF programmer Mabili Ajani now lives in suburb of New Orleans, where he rode out Hurricane Katrina. He survived but some of his extended family members are still missing. He described what life is like for him in the aftermath. Ajani noted that upper income neighborhoods or neighborhoods with oil refineries seemed to have better flood protection. He described other class- related difficulties and what he called the media's obsession with looters.

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Tampa City Council votes on Wastewater and Water Rates By Mitch E. Perry

For the 2nd time in as many weeks, the Tampa City Council today raised taxes on citizens for basic infrastructure needs.

Last week, the Council originally voted against a proposal to triple stormwater fees – until Mayor Pam Iorio intervened and got Councilmember Gwen Miller to reverse her no vote.

Today, City Staff came before the Council to ask for an increase on waste water, solid waste and water rates.

City Finance Director Bonnie Wise said that when Mayor Iorio took ...

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PIRG News Conference (Ernesto)

The Florida Public Interest Research Group, or PIRG held a news conference today to release their “Made in the USA� report. The study shows that Hillsborough County has some of the highest power plant emissions of Mercury in Florida. WMNF’s Ernesto Difilippo has the story.

An upcomming Senate vote could overturn a March 2005 ruling that allows the most polluting power plants in the nation to ignore existing environmental protection laws. Adam Rivera is the field organize...

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HOLYGROUND HOMELESS SHELTER BUSSES IN KATRINA EVACUEES. Mark Antokas

INTRO: Relief efforts continue nationwide for victims of Katrina, the most devastating disaster in this Nation’s history, and with frustrations over delayed and inept services by local, state and federal agencies, come private efforts to help those displaced in the aftermath of the storm. From Hudson, WMNF’s Mark Antokas has more.

SCRIPT: The scene at the Holyground shelter for the homeless on Denton Avenue yesterday, was one of controlled pandemonium. Cars were being direc...

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ST PETE WILL REEVALUATE EMERGENCY PLANS-Andrew Stelzer

Several members of the St Petersburg city council are calling for a meeting of the whole, to evaluate the evacuation and rescue plans that are in place for the city and improve them using the lessons of Katrina. WMNFs Andrew Stelzer reports.

ACT--Kriseman “if we have learned anything its that we cant rely on the state and federal government..�

Rick Kriseman is the chair of the St Petersburg city council.

ACT--Kriseman

“like most of the city...

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SOURCE TEEN THEATRE WANTS FUNDING BACK-Andrew Stelzer

Last month WMNF reported on a decision by the Hillsborough county commission to not fund the Source teen theatre, a peer education program run by Planned parenthood. The issue will be discussed again at tomorrows county commission meeting. This afternoon, the Source teen theatre invited the media to learn about the program in an effort to educate the public about what they say is an important tool for preventing pregnancy which had is budget line unfairly cut. WMNFs Andrew Stelzer reports....

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St Pete Takes in Katrina evacuees - By Mitch E. Perry

St Pete city council woman Virginia Litrell said she estimates a couple of hundred Katrina evacuees are now in St Petersburg, and that the city is trying to figure out how to absorb them (roll tape#1 o.q. “on a daily basis�)

Perhaps one local organization that might be able to help those newcomers to the Bay area find housing is the Florida Fair Trade Coalition, based in St. Petersburg.

Eric Rubin is state director of the Florida Fair Trade Coalition(roll ...

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