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TBARTA: most residents want rail, but not to pay for it listen

11/19/10 Kate Bradshaw
WMNF Drive-Time News Friday
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Results of a post-election poll suggest the economy is the main reason Hillsborough County voters turned down a transit tax earlier this month. The board overseeing region-wide transit said today it hopes to present a multi-county transit plan to voters once the economy improves.

According to a poll surveying some 400 Hillsborough residents, jobs trump all other issues. Ben Kelley of the Kenney Group, the Denver-based consulting team commissioned to do the survey, says this year’s poll r...

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HART Board approves tentative light rail plan listen

10/18/10 Kate Bradshaw
WMNF Drive-Time News Monday
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Hillsborough County may be getting light rail. Today officials presented findings from a fifteen month transportation study, and transit board members, though skeptical of the fine details, approved of the recommendations.

More than a year in the making, the pages of the alternatives analysis contain a clue to how life in Hillsborough County may change in the coming decades. Hillsborough Area Regional Transit Authority head planner Mary Shavalier says it irons out numerous factors involved...

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TBARTA hears from freight giant CSX listen

08/27/10 Kate Bradshaw
WMNF Drive-Time News Friday
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This morning, the board of the Tampa Bay Area Regional Transportation Authority, or TBARTA, heard from freight company CSX. TBARTA is exploring the possibility of to running part of its proposed rail line along a CSX corridor. Tampa Mayor Pam Iorio said the CSX right of way in question would constitute a crucial portion of the proposed countywide mass transit system.

However, the mayor said, CSX doesn’t necessarily have to be part of the equation.

The other option is to go along I-275...

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Rail deal passes in legislature

12/09/09 Robert Lorei
Radioactivity: Live Call-In (Wednesday)
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A bill that would clear the way for commuter and high-speed rail systems is heading to Florida Gov. Charlie Crist's desk.

Final passage came yesterday in the Florida Senate on a bipartisan 27-10 vote to close out a 6-day special legislative session. It easily passed in the House on Monday.

Crist is a strong supporter of the bill (HB 1B) and is expected to sign it into law.

The measure includes liability protection for the giant CSX corporation, which backers said was needed to...

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State Legislature begins special session on rail transport

12/02/09 Robert Lorei
Radioactivity: Live Call-In (Wednesday)
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Good afternoon, welcome to Radioactivity. I'm Robert Lorei. According to the Associated Press:

Florida House Speaker Larry Cretul has refused to delay a special legislative session that will conflict with the annual meeting of the National Black Caucus of State Legislators.

The Ocala Republican on Tuesday rejected a request by House Democratic Leader Franklin Sands of Weston to postpone the start of the session on rail transportation until next week.

The black lawmakers' meeting...

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Tampa Port Authority approves land swap with CSX listen

09/15/09 Seán Kinane
WMNF Drive-Time News Tuesday
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This morning the Tampa Port Authority approved a land exchange with CSX Transportation during their monthly business meeting.

The area, known as Eastport, is leased to Cemex Construction Material. Cemex will build a roadway in the exchanged land. Rick Hood is assistant vice president for CSX Real Property.

The agreement was complex and took a long time, according to Port of Tampa CEO and director Richard Wainio.

Wainio says the agreement shows “once again” how well the port works...

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Efforts to revive high-speed rail in Florida

08/20/09 Robert Lorei
Radioactivity: Live Call-In (Thursday)
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Welcome to WMNF’s Radioactivity. I’m Rob Lorei. Coming up we’ll talk about efforts to revive high-speed rail here in Florida.

But first some listener comments about yesterday’s interview with Tim Curtis of Tampa912- an organization inspired by talk show host Glenn Beck and which has protested at recent town hall meetings on health care reform.

Earlier this week a new group called Connect Us held press conferences around the state calling for Florida to aggressively go after fede...

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Tampa Port Director not fond of new hub

08/05/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Tuesday
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In May, the Florida Legislature rejected the state Department of Transportation’s agreement with CSX Railroad to buy 61 miles of track in Central Florida. But since the purchase agreement doesn't expire until next year, supporters are preparing for a second legislative battle next spring.

The railroad wants to shift freight trains out of Orlando and send them through downtown Lakeland and Plant City to a proposed 318-acre hub in Winter Haven.

Supporters say when completed, the transpo...

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Transit Authority holds public hearings

07/31/08 Robert Lorei
Radioactivity: Live Call-In (Thursday)
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Welcome to Radioactivity, I’m Rob Lorei.

Coming up, we’ll meet two people involved in planning the future of transportation here in the Bay area. They are gathering information in seven counties up and down the coast to plan for the next phase of mass transit here in the bay area. We’ll get the latest on plans for a regional rail system in just a moment.

But first, some listener comments about yesterday’s program. The comments were about the election and the shootings last Sund...

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Economic Development Conference held in Tampa listen

05/19/08 Seán Kinane
WMNF Drive-Time News Monday
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The Florida Economic Development Conference is taking place in Tampa this week. The focus of this gathering of business leaders is “Driving Transformation: Innovations fueling economic development.”

The conference, sponsored by the Florida Economic Development Council, featured a lunchtime panel Monday with current and former Florida lawmakers discussing the legislative session that ended this month. There was optimism about the state’s economy from Sen. Mike Fasano, despite the fac...

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