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Forum on race, religion in media held in Tampa listen

05/30/08 Jamie Kidder
WMNF Drive-Time News Friday
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Last night in Tampa, a public forum was held to discuss the issues of race and religion in the Media.

The Tampa Bay Association of Black Journalists, along with the Council on American–Islamic Relations (CAIR), hosted last night’s panel discussion.

The panel consisted of Ahmed Badir, a local civil rights activist and president of the Tampa/Hillsborough Human Rights Council. He is also the host of WMNF’s True Talk, which airs Friday mornings from 11 to noon.

Other panelists i...

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Activists object to Internet voting listen

05/30/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Friday
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Voting rights activists are objecting to a plan by Okaloosa County to experiment with Internet voting for overseas service members – and they’re hinting at a lawsuit if Secretary of State Kurt Browning doesn’t intervene.

Under plans for a pilot program fostered Okaloosa County Elections Supervisor Pat Hollarn, service members and other Okaloosa residents living in Germany, England and Okinawa would vote at computer stations on encrypted electronic ballots. A secure computer line woul...

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Is Tropicana Field site too contaminated? listen

05/30/08 Seán Kinane and Kamala Chetty
WMNF Drive-Time News Friday
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Florida’s Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has given the city of St. Petersburg until July to put a deed restriction on the Tropicana Field site. Some people have concerns about whether that means that the site could not be redeveloped as hoped by the Tampa Bay Rays baseball team as part of their plan to have the city and county build them a new waterfront stadium.

The DEP’s most recent letter, dated May 8, gives the city a 60-day deadline to execute a “deed restriction f...

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Downtown Partnership reviews progress

05/29/08 Mark Anderson
WMNF Drive-Time News Thursday
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Last night, the Tampa Downtown Partnership hosted its third annual community review meeting. The Partnership was formed to expedite the transformation of downtown into a more livable central city, with a focus on residential, cultural and aesthetic improvements. The downtown partnership vision and action plan debuted in 2005.

Last night, the overall progress to date was reviewed and community feedback was solicited from the 50 attendees.

The overall message to the community is that sig...

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Businesses who reduce pollution lauded listen

05/29/08 Seán Kinane
WMNF Drive-Time News Thursday
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The Tampa Bay Clean Air Partnership (CAP) is an air-quality initiative geared toward reducing vehicle exhaust and traffic congestion. Today at the InterContinental Hotel in Tampa’s Westshore district, CAP held a lunchtime ceremony to honor organizations committed to reducing the air pollution generated by transportation.

The Environmental Protection Commission of Hillsborough County is one of the two groups that formed CAP in 2002, and Rick Garrity is their executive director. The other...

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Forum on race, religion and media

05/29/08 Robert Lorei
Radioactivity: Live Call-In (Thursday)
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Tonight the Tampa Bay Association of Black Journalists along with the NAACP and the Council on American Islamic Relations will host a forum on race religion and the media.

Our guests are two of the organizers of the event: Eric Deggans who is the TV Media critic at the St. Petersburg Times and Ahmed Bedier, co-host of the True Talk program here on WMNF and with the Tampa/Hillsborough Human Rights coalition.

For more information, visit [Tampa Bay Association of Black Journalists](http:...

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Union officials uneasy about USF budget cuts listen

05/29/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Thursday
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In recent weeks we’ve reported on the mandated budget cuts at some of Florida’s top Universities, particularly at USF and USF- St. Pete.

Last week, USF President Judy Genshaft said there would be 450 positions cut, but only 70 people or so would actually lose their jobs because those other positions hadn’t been filled.

Bill McClellan, president of Local 3342 AFSCME, told WMNF that much of his rank and file are working under the fear that they too may not have much job security at ...

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Progress Energy seeks approval for rate hike listen

05/29/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Thursday
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On Friday, St. Petersburg-based Progress Energy Florida is expected to ask state regulators to be allowed to increase power bills to make up for rising costs for oil and coal. Progress Energy is also paying more for electricity it buys from other utilities.

C.J. Drake is a spokesman for Progress Energy.

The Energy Department says power plants are paying 54 percent more for fuel oil, 33 percent more for natural gas and 6 percent more for coal, on a national level.

If the Public Ser...

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DNC member okay with delegate split listen

05/29/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Thursday
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In less than 48 hours, the Democratic National Committee’s Rules and Bylaws Committee meets to decide what to do with the delegates in Florida and Michigan.

Sen. Bill Nelson is scheduled to make a presentation shortly after 9:30 a.m., representing the Florida Democratic party. He’ll be followed by Florida DNC member Jon Ausman and Tampa Sen. Arthenia Joyner, representing the Clinton campaign. It is not known at this time who will represent the Obama campaign.

ABC News reports that ...

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Allegations shake White House

05/28/08 Robert Lorei
Radioactivity: Live Call-In (Wednesday)
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Charges from former press secretary Scott McClellan that the Bush White House manipulated sources of public opinion to the president's advantage have drawn quick reaction from those who know and once worked with him, according to the Associated Press.

Fran Townsend, former head of the White House-based counterterrorism office, told CNN that the McClellan memoir is "self-serving, disingenuous and unprofessional."

The AP reports that White House press Secretary Dana Perino issued a sta...

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MoveOn.org issues Bush-McCain challenge listen

05/28/08 Seán Kinane
WMNF Drive-Time News Wednesday
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The liberal online activist group MoveOn.org has released a new television ad and quiz drawing comparisons between the policies of President George W. Bush and presumptive Republican nominee John McCain. Today, in over 300 locations across the country, MoveOn volunteers invited voters to take the quiz, called the “Bush-McCain Challenge.”

JoEllen Schilke hosts the program "Art In Your Ear" on Friday afternoons on WMNF. She organized the Bush-McCain Challenge on the corner of Fifth and ...

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Democratic activist loses again in court listen

05/28/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Wednesday
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A Federal Judge today threw out another lawsuit aimed at forcing the Democratic National Committee to seat Florida’s presidential delegates.

The challenge, by Tampa Democratic party political activist Vic DiMaio, was based on the claim that the Democratic National Committee was practicing reverse discrimination by allowing the states of South Carolina and Nevada to hold early primaries based on their large percentage of Black and Latino voters.

Judge Richard Lazarra wasn’t buying ...

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Clinton camp awaits DNC ruling listen

05/28/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Wednesday
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The Hillary Clinton camp refused to say today whether they’ll appeal if the meeting this Saturday of the Democratic Party’s Rules and By-Laws Committee does not rule in their favor.

The meeting this Saturday in Washington could potentially end the divisive issue of whether or not to seat Florida and Michigan’s congressional delegations, which have not counted since the national party ruled those states disobeyed party rules by moving up its primary date.

In anticipation of the mee...

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Pinellas teachers give school board an earful listen

05/28/08 Arielle Stevenson
WMNF Drive-Time News Wednesday
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The Pinellas County school board meeting last night was crowded with students being honored for their achievements, their proud parents holding cameras and the teachers who helped them along the way. But the largest group was the 50 or so teachers, dressed in dark colors to symbolize their frustrations with proposed pay cuts and closing schools.

Kim Black, president of the Pinellas Classroom Teachers Association, says that even Texas, another state with no income tax, didn’t increase the...

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USF St. Pete chancellor shoulders budget cuts listen

05/28/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Wednesday
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As the result of a current deficit of nearly $36 million, the University of South Florida last week announced plans to cut $50 million by eliminating about 450 jobs.

President Judy Genshaft said she plans to lay off about 70 employees in the coming weeks, with the rest of the eliminated jobs already vacant.

As part of the budget cuts, USF will also make some structural changes. Within the College of Arts and Sciences, the administration and operating expenses for smaller departments, s...

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