Powerless Couple

  By Jim Bleyer A year ago significant others Yvonne Fry and Mark Ober sat on top of Hillsborough County’s political world.  He: a four-term state attorney heavily favored for a fifth.  She: a politically ambitious civic activist and a district favorite to win an open legislative or county commission …

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Drain the Regional “Swamp” Before Its Filled

      By Sharon Calvert   We’re being setup AGAIN! As we posted here, Senator Jack Latvala unscrupulously used his position as Senate Appropriations Chair to ram his crony TBARTA bill written by special interests thru the state legislature to create a new transit agency “Tampa Bay Area Regional …

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Closing the Millennial Gap

Part 2 of 2   By Jim Bleyer Tampa Bay lags behind the rest of the country in attracting Millennials.  Business leaders claim to want them here but they fail to recognize what is important to that generation beyond jobs. The Tampa Metropolitan Statistical Area’s population breakdown reveals the problem. …

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Ferry Tales

By Jim Bleyer The first step on the road to success is defining success at the outset, not during the effort or at its completion. By any professional transportation yardstick, the Tampa Bay ferry experiment is a failure. The fact that politicians, the ethically-corrupt Tampa Bay Times, and Ed Turanchik, …

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Fact Checking The Poynter Institute

  By Jim Bleyer The Poynter Institute, self-anointed watchdog of journalistic ethics and the public trust, has declared Apr. 2 as International Fact-Checking Day. Billed as a “global initiative,” the effort is aimed at heightening awareness about misinformation, “especially online.” But before holding itself up as the epitome of trustworthiness …

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Feeding a Regional Transit Authority on Tampa Bay

 By Sharon Calvert  Regional bureaucracies an arms length away from voters and taxpayers are not more efficient, especially over time. They become less accountable and more powerful, arrogant, crony and wasteful. We posted here about Latvala’s Senate bill 1672 and its companion House bill 1243 that grows the size and …

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Sharpe Promotes Transit for Innovation Place

  By Jim Bleyer Improved mass transit is the top priority of the 238 businesses that comprise Innovation Place, the economic district anchored by the University of South Florida, the organization’s Executive Director Mark Sharpe said Friday. Speaking at Cafe con Tampa’s weekly community forum, Sharpe conceded that Hillsborough County …

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Jack Latvala: The Elephant in the Room

A Latvala Power Trip To Seasons 52 in Tampa By Jim Bleyer The aura of power, if not power itself, was on full display Monday at a workshop for the Hillsborough Area Regional Transit Authority (HART) board of directors. Senate Bill 1672, which would create an umbrella transit authority over …

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