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HART delays request by developer to pay for new bus site listen

04/06/09 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Monday
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Today the Board of Directors with Hillsborough County’s transit agency, HART, voted to delay until early next month a decision regarding a proposal to allow a private developer to fund a new transit site that needs to be built by the end of next month to receive state funding.

The developer, Atlantic Housing, wants and needs bus service to go to an affordable housing project that would be built on Falkenberg Road right near Progress Village in eastern Hillsborough County.

Today, HA...

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Hillsborough drafting ballot language for light rail amendment listen

04/01/09 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Wednesday
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Hillsborough County Commissioners today took their first concrete step toward getting a possible sales tax referendum on the 2010 ballot that would help pay for a mass transit system.

The Board approved a motion to have the County Attorney and staff work with a task force to come up with draft language for the proposed referendum – but not before one commission said he didn’t think the measure would pass anyway.

Lucia Garces is the with the Administrative Planning & Infrastructure D...

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Hillsborough budget process analyzed listen

03/31/09 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Tuesday
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Officials with Hillsborough County announced earlier this month that decreasing property taxes would leave a huge deficit for next fiscal year, possibly more than $100 million. County Administrator Pat Bean said the reduced revenue could lead to 1,000 layoffs in the county, an admission which stunned some Commissioners and led to a heated discussion about how the County Commission ultimately works.

Leading off the discussion was county Budget Director Eric Johnson, who had little positive ...

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Tampa water situation gets more dire listen

03/26/09 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Thursday
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A week after the Tampa City Council announced strict water rationing rules, and a week before they go into effect, the city’s Water Director said the flow of the Hillsborough River has never been this low at this time of year.

Brad Baird said Tampa is unique in being the only local government that draws from the river.

Meanwhile, the city has been contacting landscapers and utility contractors to discover whether it makes business sense to fill watering trucks with reclaimed water th...

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Iorio focuses on economy and transit in State of the City address listen

03/23/09 Seán Kinane
WMNF Drive-Time News Monday
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Tampa Mayor Pam Iorio gave her annual State of the City address this morning to an overflow crowd made up mostly of city workers at the Tampa Convention Center.

Iorio focused on progress that has been made in the city since she was elected in 2003 in areas such as mass transit, infrastructure, and economic development.

Even though Tampa has been through economic downturns before, Iorio says that the current ...

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Tampa gets tough, bans sprinkler watering listen

03/19/09 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Thursday
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Addressing a drought situation that appears to only be getting worse, the Tampa City City Council today voted to ban the use of lawn sprinklers, beginning April 3.

The vote was 5-1, only John Dingfelder opposed the measure.

Brad Baird, Water Department manager for the city, said the drought and the lack of potable water available from the reservoir and desalination plant forced the drastic action.

Currently, Tampa citizens can irrigate once a week -- Tuesday for addresses that end in...

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Hillsborough Homeless Coalition doing more with less listen

01/29/09 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Thursday
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The head of the Coalition for the Homeless in Hillsborough County says his organization is trying to do more with less this year.

Rayme Nuckles told the Tampa City Council that when the Coalition does its annual count of the homeless next month, he expects to have a higher count than a year ago. And, he says the organization will be doing the count with fewer dollars.

Nuckles said he has great hopes for the economic stimulus package that passed the House of Representatives Wednesday nig...

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PETA wants Lowry Park Zoo investigated listen

12/22/08 Seán Kinane
WMNF Drive-Time News Monday
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Lex Salisbury resigned his position as president of Lowry Park Zoo last week after the zoo’s board asked for his resignation. It came on the heels of a Tampa audit that found Salisbury used resources and animals from the zoo for his own for-profit animal park called Safari Wild.

Over the weekend Salisbury resigned from another post, according to tbo.com. He and Lowry Park Zoo’s director of collections, Larry Killmar, resigned last week from the ...

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Lowry Park Zoo president resigns listen

12/18/08 Seán Kinane
WMNF Drive-Time News Thursday
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Embattled Lowry Park Zoo president Lex Salisbury has resigned. He made the decision this afternoon at a five-hour zoo board meeting at the Mainsail Suites Hotel in West Tampa.

Salisbury has been criticized because of questions regarding his for-profit business called Safari Wild. He came under even more scrutiny following a scathing 60-page audit report released last week by the city of Tampa.

According to the city audit, Salisbury owes the zoo more than $200,000 for such things as $700...

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Tampa officials outline plan for dealing with foreclosures

11/13/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Thursday
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The city of Tampa will get $13.6 million from a federal grant to purchase and refurbish approximately 100 homes in Sulphur Springs and West Tampa.

The funding comes from the Neighborhood Stabilization Program, passed by Congress and signed by President Bush to deal with the foreclosure crisis.

According to new statistics issued today by RealtyTrac, Florida posted the third-highest foreclosure rate in the nation in October, with one in every 157 housing units receiving a filing. Foreclos...

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