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THE DAYSTARTER: YOUR EARLY LOOK AT TODAY’S HEADLINES


Ex-mayor Baker will bypass Pride parade, will participate 'in other ways'

ST. PETERSBURG — As the city prepares for the largest LGBT celebration in Florida this weekend, this year's St. Pete Pride parade will march right into the midst of the heated election battl …

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Owners to level Port Richey flea market but may rebuild

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Bob Buckhorn and Tampa council say county vote on Confederate statue doesn't speak for them

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Five things to watch out for at St. Pete Pride, including the Babadook

Five things to watch out for at St. Pete Pride, including the Babadook

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Everything you need to know to party at St. Pete Pride

Everything you need to know to party at St. Pete Pride

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Plan your weekend June 23-25: Pride parade, Lego art, Tampa Theatre beer fest 'Barley's Angels'

Plan your weekend June 23-25: Pride parade, Lego art, Tampa Theatre beer fest 'Barley's Angels'

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5 things to do under $5: Typewriter Day, Tampa's Fourth Friday, Japanese festival

5 things to do under $5: Typewriter Day, Tampa's Fourth Friday, Japanese festival

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  1. Florida Insiders: The state parties are dying; 'I heard someone long for the leadership of Jim Greer'

    Blogs

    For all the attention on Florida Democratic Chairman Stephen Bittel's bone headed gaffe this week, the diminished state of the once mighty Florida GOP today compared to even a few years ago is arguably more striking than the condition of the long-suffering Florida Democratic Party. A decade ago, no one would have …

    Florida Insider Poll
  2. Florida Democrats surging with grassroots enthusiasm, but 2018 reality is grim

    State Roundup

    After Donald Trump's election, so many people started showing up at monthly Pinellas County Democratic Party meetings, the group had to start forking out more money for a bigger room.

    Former Vice President Joe Biden addresses Florida Democrats at the Leadership Blue Gala on June 17 in Hollywood, Fla. (Photo by Carol Porter)
  3. Will new laws protect condo owners from apartment conversions and rogue associations?

    Real Estate

    Danny Di Nicolantonio has lived in St. Petersburg's Calais Village Condominums for 33 years. Annoyed at times by the actions, or inaction, of the condo board and property managers, he has complained to the state agency that is supposed to investigate.

    That has left him even more annoyed.

    A bill passed by the Florida Legislature would affect places like The Slade in Tampa's Channelside district, where cCondominium owners have battled a plan to convert homes into apartments.
[Times file photo]
  4. Walmart opens first Pinellas County in-house training academy

    Retail

    Seminole — It had all the hallmarks of a typical graduation: robe-clad graduates marching in to Pomp and Circumstance, friends and family packed together under a sweltering tent and a lineup of speakers encouraging the graduates to take charge of their future.

    New Walmart Academy graduates are congratulated Thursday morning by associates during a graduation ceremony at the Walmart store, 10237 Bay Pines Boulevard, St. Petersburg. The Walmart location is one of the company's training academies where managers complete a one week retail course. David Shultz and Richard Sheehan, both from St. Petersburg, get high fives from the crowd.
[SCOTT KEELER   |   Times]

  5. Four questions with Largo City Commissioner Michael Smith before he helps lead the St. Pete Pride parade

    Human Interest

    A decade ago, Largo City Commissioner Michael Smith was afraid to tell his friends and family he was gay.

    Largo City Commissioner Michael Smith will serve as a grand marshal at the St. Pete Pride parade on Saturday. [City of Largo]
  6. Lawsuit: Florida contractor fakes death to dodge angry homeowners

    Human Interest

    SEMINOLE — For weeks, Glenn Holland, 67, crawled out of bed before the sun rose to look for a dead man.

    Last year Glenn and Judith Holland said they paid a contractor thousands of dollars to renovate their future retirement home in Seminole. But when they tried to move in on Dec. 14, they said the home was in shambles and uninhabitable. They sent a text message to contractor Marc Anthony Perez at 12:36 p.m. looking for answers. Fourteen minutes later, they got back this text: "This is Marc's daughter, dad passed away on the 7th of December in a car accident. Sorry." Turns out Perez was still alive. Now the Hollands are suing him in Pinellas-Pasco circuit court. [LARA CERRI   |   Times]
  7. Graffiti butts are everywhere in downtown St. Pete. What's going on? [CHRISTOPHER SPATA | Times]
  8. Owners to level Port Richey flea market but may rebuild

    Public Safety

    PORT RICHEY — The owners of the recently shuttered USA Flea Market have agreed to demolish all structures on the property, leaving open the possibility of rebuilding the weekend shopping attraction, according to Pasco County officials.

    Pasco County officials shut down the USA Flea Market after it received hundreds of citations for health and code violations.
  9. Anti-Trump and anti-Castro, local Cuban hardliner leader Ralph Fernandez is isolated

    Politics

    TAMPA -- A framed black-on-white sign in the reception area of Ralph E. Fernandez and Associates in Hyde Park makes a powerful political statement: "If you voted for Donald Trump this firm does not want your business."

    Ralph Fernandez in his Hyde Park office. Fernandez, who says he is both  

Anti-Trump and anti-Castro, is the longtime leader of Tampa's dissident community but now finds himself without a side in the Cuba debate. He has a sign near the receptionist desk that reads, "If you voted for Donald Trump this firm does not want your business." CHARLIE KAIJO   |   Times
  10. Joe Henderson: Teaching profession in Florida degraded, devalued

    Columns

    There was an eye-grabbing headline across the top of the front page in your Tampa Bay Times last Monday. It declared, "Fewer learning to teach."

    The University of South Florida College of Education, where enrollment has dropped 40 percent since 2010, mirroring a national trend. [OCTAVIO JONES   |   Times]
Florida Insider Poll

Florida Insiders: The state parties are dying; 'I heard someone long for the leadership of Jim Greer'

For all the attention on Florida Democratic Chairman Stephen Bittel's bone headed gaffe this week, the diminished state of the once mighty Florida GOP today compared to even a few years ago is arguably more striking than the condition of the long-suffering Florida Democratic Party. A decade ago, no one would have imagined the Republican Party of Florida all but abandoned by the sitting Republican governor and more or less avoided by the Republican frontrunner to succeed him....

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Some minor comings, including UTL Martinez opting for free agency

UTL Michael Martinez, acquired from the Indians for cash on May 18 when 2B Brad Miller was placed on the DL for the first time this season, cleared waivers Thursday and elected free agency....

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'Bachelor in Paradise' resumes filming, plus everything else you might have missed this week

'Bachelor in Paradise'

Bachelor in Paradise has resumed filming after an investigation found no misconduct on set. Season 4 of the show was suspended after a producer filed a complaint over concerns that contestant Corinne Olympios, 24, was allegedly filmed in a sexual act with Demario Jackson, 30, while being too drunk to consent....

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