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Tampa City Council reverses panhandling decision listen

02/03/11 Kate Bradshaw
WMNF Drive-Time News Thursday
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The Tampa City Council reversed course today and voted down an ordinance that would have created a partial ban on panhandling within city limits. Members of the council couldn’t agree on how to tackle an issue many say is one of the recession’s most visible consequences.

Fran Williams, a pastor with Paradise Missionary Baptist Church, plainly stated his views on a panhandling ban that would apply to everyone from curbside beggars to charities and those who hawk newspapers along busy roadsi...

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Homeless Coalition of Hillsborough tries to get an accurate picture of a very big problem listen

01/28/11 Kelly Benjamin
WMNF Drive-Time News Friday
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Yesterday, over 300 volunteers assisted with the Homeless Coalition of Hillsborough County’s biennial homeless count throughout Hillsborough County. WMNF’s Kelly Benjamin was embedded with groups of volunteers as they fanned out across the County to conduct the count.

At 4am, the first shift of a dozen volunteers met at Mental Health Care in Seminole Heights, one of several homeless outreach centers participating in the count. Volunteers picked up survey forms, rain ponchos, and pairs of ...

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City Council hopefuls talk panhandling listen

01/21/11 Kate Bradshaw
WMNF Drive-Time News Friday
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Yesterday Tampa City Council voted four to three to support an ordinance banning panhandling on the city’s busiest streets. Today, in Downtown Tampa, twelve candidates from three council districts weighed in on the conversation, and they had a wide range of takes on the issue of a panhandling ban.

Those who vote strictly along party lines have a little more work to do when choosing who will represent them at the local level. City council elections are nonpartisan, and often driven more by ...

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Tampa City Council paves way for partial panhandling ban listen

01/20/11 Kate Bradshaw
WMNF Drive-Time News Thursday
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For months, the Tampa City Council has avoided an official discussion of whether to ban panhandling along the city’s roads. Today, that changed. The council narrowly adopted an ordinance that, if made into law, would ban panhandling on Tampa’s busiest roads.

Supporters of a panhandling ban say it’s an issue of public safety. Opponents say it undermines the ability to raise money for groups ranging from the unemployed to nonprofits. Darren Tierney is circulation manager with the *St. Peters...

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HIllsborough County Takes on Panhandling listen

01/11/11 Sarah Curran
WMNF Drive-Time News Tuesday
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St. Petersburg banned it, Tampa won't discuss it and Hillsborough County is still unsure about what to do with Panhandlers. Yesterday a County Panhandling Committee met for the last time, in an attempt to come up with some ideas on how the area can tackle the roadside sellers and beggars.

Yesterday's meeting gave the public a chance to hear about the organizations that panhandle for good causes. director of business development for the Muscular Dystrophy Association, Susie Austin, says...

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Hillsborough continues talk of countywide panhandling ban listen

11/10/10 Kate Bradshaw
WMNF Drive-Time News Wednesday
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With no relief for rampant unemployment and underemployment in the Tampa Bay area, many jobless and working poor take to curbsides and medians in the hope that enough passersby will spare a dollar or two. Many see it as a hazard, which is why Hillsborough County is considering revamping a countywide ban on the practice. Today Tampa and county officials held its second workshop to kick around possible ways of curbing the practice.

Assistant Tampa Police Chief John Bennett says a recent ag...

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Tampa City Council rejects panhandling ban - for now listen

10/14/10 Kelly Benjamin
WMNF Drive-Time News Thursday
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Today the Tampa City Council considered banning roadside panhandling on city streets. But they put off the decision.

Concerned residents on both sides of the panhandling debate filled City Hall this morning to speak out on whether or not Tampa should ban panhandling and street vending at intersections and alongside city streets.

Spencer Kass is the President of the Virginia Park Neighborhood Association and asked the City to crack down on panhandling. "Our concern is that the City of T...

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St. Pete passes panhandling ban listen

06/04/10 Kate Bradshaw
WMNF Drive-Time News Friday
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Residents flooded city hall in St. Pete last night to weigh in on a contentious ordinance that bans exchanging money curbside on major thoroughfares. The move, which the city council passed, was meant to curb roadside panhandling, but many were outraged about the new law’s collateral damage.

You see them on many of St. Pete’s I-275 on-ramps. They vary by age and background. Some have dogs; others come in a pair. But they a...

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St. Pete moves to crack down on panhandlers listen

01/10/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Thursday
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The St. Petersburg City Council today voted unanimously to create an ordinance that would expand a ban on panhandling in downtown St. Pete.

The boundaries begin west near the Holocaust Museum and east to the Pier, while going north to the Vinoy Hotel. Downtown mainstays like Baywalk are also included.

City Attorney John Wolfe told the Council he was comfortable how the lines have been drawn. Wolfe said the ordinance is being crafted on what Ft. Lauderdale has done, and the boundaries...

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