Monday, June 1, 2015

Sh*t Happened Weekend Report, 6/1/15: Bolts win, surveillance expires, Cuba off terror list

Posted By on Mon, Jun 1, 2015 at 10:12 AM

NICOLE ABBETT
  • nicole abbett
Somehow, another weekend has snuck by. Hard to believe, no?

But not without incident(s).

Here are some of them. 


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Friday, May 29, 2015

With Cuba off terror list, Rep. Castor calls for Tampa embassy

Posted By on Fri, May 29, 2015 at 7:20 PM

Former Cuban Consul Raul Villamia chats with Rep. Castor Friday about newly-forged relations with Cuba. - OFFICE OF U.S. REP. KATHY CASTOR
  • office of u.s. rep. kathy castor
  • Former Cuban Consul Raul Villamia chats with Rep. Castor Friday about newly-forged relations with Cuba.
After she returned from a 2013 visit to Cuba, U.S. Rep. Kathy Castor (D-Tampa) sent a letter to President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry recommending the U.S. remove Cuba from the State Sponsor of Terrorism list.

Fast-forward to Friday, when the U.S. finally did so. According to a media release, when Castor heard the news, she happened to be visiting with Raul Villamia, 90, the former Tampa Cuban Consul. The two, plus Willamia's daughter, were in her Tampa district office talking about the history of the Tampa Cuban consulate. Villamia was occupying his former post at the time of the revolution.


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ACLU and Tea Party leaders unite against surveillance

Posted By on Fri, May 29, 2015 at 7:12 PM

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It takes a travesty most vile to compel two groups that are essentially polar opposites to get together and call for reform.

Enter the Patriot Act.

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Sh*t happened 5/29/15: Rays limbo, GOP clown car & more

Posted By on Fri, May 29, 2015 at 10:45 AM

SCREEN GRAB, IJREVIEW.COM
  • screen grab, ijreview.com

Admit it: you woke up this morning and reached for your Thursday pants, only to find they were gone. In the hamper. The only pair left? Your Friday pants. 

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Thursday, May 28, 2015

Tampa area activist profiled in CL faces heartbreaking decision

Posted By on Thu, May 28, 2015 at 1:12 PM

Months ago, we profiled local activist Olivia Babis, lead organizer for the progressive nonprofit Florida Consumer Action Network. Born without arms, Babis sought at an early age to be as autonomous as anyone else, and has been largely successful. 
Babis back in March. - KEVIN TIGHE
  • kevin tighe
  • Babis back in March.
Facing a recent cervical cancer diagnosis, an upcoming surgery and possible radiation and chemotherapy (she'll find out how advanced the cancer is after her surgery, which is in two weeks), she's now struggling to find a home for her 11-year-old Lhapo Apso, Hammy.

“I'm having a really hard time trying to rehome him,” she said.


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Rallies planned in Tampa and elsewhere for Amendment 1 Saturday

Posted By on Thu, May 28, 2015 at 12:59 PM

WIKIMEDIA COMMONS
  • wikimedia commons

Democracy [dih-mok-ruh-see] noun. 1. government by the people; a form of government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised directly by them or by their elected agents under a free electoral system.


In November, around three-quarters of Florida voters approved Amendment 1, asking the state to set aside millions of dollars to protect Florida land and waterways. More than six months later, state lawmakers have yet to put a plan into motion that would accomplish that. They have yet to even pass a state budget, of course, and are going up to Tallahassee next week for a 20-day special session to do so.

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Proposed changes to historic preservation rules draw support, fire

Posted By on Thu, May 28, 2015 at 10:07 AM

Homes in Historic Kenwood, a neighborhood that could be affected if it becomes easier for residents to apply for city historical designation. - WIKIMEDIA COMMONS/NEWT 82
  • Wikimedia Commons/Newt 82
  • Homes in Historic Kenwood, a neighborhood that could be affected if it becomes easier for residents to apply for city historical designation.

More than 200 people showed up to a public event space at Sunken Gardens Wednesday night to hear about proposed changes to the St. Petersburg's historic preservation ordinance, changes some worry will impose onerous restrictions on their property rights.

The crowded meeting was contentious at times, as residents heard about proposed rules that would make it easier for preservation advocates to apply for special historic designations for certain parts of town — neighborhoods like Kenwood and Old Northeast. The crowd seemed split on whether to support the changes. Quite a few in attendance were well-known preservation advocates who want to see the changes pass. But there were also many people who were concerned about the potential effect of such changes on property rights and values.

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Sh*t happened 5/28/15: Drones, medical marijuana, staycations and misplaced anthrax

Posted By on Thu, May 28, 2015 at 9:00 AM

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The future is now! Technology is bringing all sorts of great new things into your life, according to Tuesday's news! No, not flying cars. Er, no, not internet-enabled voting. But how about a sky full of drones recording everything, legal pot that doesn't get you high, and opportunities to be your own boss while never leaving the house? Yeah, let's go hijack a privately funded space vehicle...

Tampa's Fly Habana is the first company in the state to receive an FAA exemption allowing it to fly drones commercially. The official use for the drones is "commercial TV and movie production work," but we all know that's really code for crazy new "aerial creeper" porn.

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Wednesday, May 27, 2015

More calls for Medicaid expansion in St. Pete

Posted By on Wed, May 27, 2015 at 10:08 PM

With just days before the state legislature has another go at being functional during the three-week special session that starts next week, advocates for expanded health coverage are pitching the idea across the state.

On Wednesday morning, Congresswoman Kathy Castor, two Democratic State House members and a handful of health care industry spokespeople urged members of the public to call their legislators and demand that they consider a plan to accept billions in federal money to expand Medicaid.

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Ease of access: Should St. Pete make it easier for neighborhoods to apply for historic status?

Posted By on Wed, May 27, 2015 at 1:02 PM

From the looks of its skyline, St. Pete is a collection of condo towers. Beyond the high-rises, however, a visitor finds a mix of lush neighborhoods rich in history.

FROM THE TERRACE: A gazebo in Granada Terrace, one of three neighborhoods designated by the city as an historic district. - KATE BRADSHAW
  • Kate Bradshaw
  • FROM THE TERRACE: A gazebo in Granada Terrace, one of three neighborhoods designated by the city as an historic district.

Each has its own sense of place. There’s Old Northeast, a stretch of rambling homes near the waterfront. There’s Historic Roser Park, which is tucked into an unusually hilly patch south of downtown thick with lovingly renovated bungalows. West of downtown, the streets of Historic Kenwood are lined with examples of Craftsman-style architecture.

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