Sunday, July 15, 2018
  • Bay Buzz
  • From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Hillsborough commissioners want a say on CRC proposals

Every 20 years, Florida convenes a group with extraordinary powers.

Proposals approved by the Constitution Revision Commission go straight before  voters without having to be approved by the governor or Florida Legislature.

Then if enough people vote for them, they are enshrined in the Florida Constitution.

But an arcane Hillsborough rule prevented county commissioners from having a say on those proposals  even if they have a direct bearing on county government.

No more.

On Wednesday morning, commissioners voted unanimously to revoke that policy.

"It's antiquated; we don't need it any longer and it ties our hands," said Commissioner Les Miller, who brought the matter to the board.

The move was prompted by concern about CRC Proposal 95, which states that cities and counties may only regulate "commerce, trade, or labor occurring exclusively within the respective entity's own boundaries."

The measure, which which was offered by state Sen. Tom Lee, R-Thonotosassa, is currently no longer under consideration but Miller said it could be revived at future CRC meetings. Critics say it would undercut the ability of cities and counties to regulate effectively and, therefore, centralizes more power in Tallahassee.

County staff could not recall why the gag on commissioners, in place since 1995, was adopted.

"We're in a different mindset in 2018 than the board was in 1995," Miller said. "We have some issues we need to address."

Comments
Scott taps Redington Shores businessman to fill Pinellas County Commission vacancy

Scott taps Redington Shores businessman to fill Pinellas County Commission vacancy

Gov. Rick Scott appointed real estate investor and former Redington Shores Mayor Jay Beyrouti to the Pinellas County Commission on Friday, filling the vacancy opened when Commissioner John Morroni died of cancer in May.In a short news release, the Go...
Published: 07/13/18
Names of donors for proposed Echelman artwork released

Names of donors for proposed Echelman artwork released

A day after the City Council voted down a $1.5 million contract with world- famous artist Janet Echelman, Mayor Rick Kriseman is signaling he's not given up on snagging one of the artist's billowing net sculptures.A week after announcing that he had ...
Published: 07/13/18
All aboard! Bob Buckhorn will back the CrossBay Ferry

All aboard! Bob Buckhorn will back the CrossBay Ferry

What a difference a few days makes.On Monday, Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn was still pondering whether to kick in $150,000 toward a return of the CrossBay ferry in November.Tampa is still finalizing a tight budget, made tighter by a $5 million deficit.Bu...
Published: 07/12/18
Straz rockets past $1 million mark in his run for Tampa mayor–using his own cash as fuel

Straz rockets past $1 million mark in his run for Tampa mayor–using his own cash as fuel

David Straz Jr. has said he'll spend whatever it takes to best a crowded field to become Tampa's next mayor.In his latest campaign filings this week, the retired banker and philanthropist placed a sizable down payment to back up that vow.In his June ...
Published: 07/12/18
Marco Rubio endorses Ross Spano for open congressional seat

Marco Rubio endorses Ross Spano for open congressional seat

Florida Sen. Marco Rubio is endorsing state Rep. Ross Spano in the race for the District 15 congressional seat.Spano is one of five Republicans contending for the nomination to replace U.S. Rep. Dennis Ross, who is retiring at the end of this term.In...
Published: 07/12/18
Much riding on Rays' Ybor City ballpark design

Much riding on Rays' Ybor City ballpark design

TAMPA – The more than decade-long stadium drama that surrounds the Tampa Bay Rays will enter a new phase today when Rays principal owner Stu Sternberg unveils the design of the ballpark the team wants built in Ybor City. The architect drawings...
Published: 07/10/18
Bob Buckhorn still mulling over Tampa’s support for CrossBay Ferry

Bob Buckhorn still mulling over Tampa’s support for CrossBay Ferry

Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn said Monday that he's still considering supporting the return of a ferry linking Tampa and St. Petersburg, but hasn't made a final decision on whether to commit $150,000 toward the cost during a tight budget year."We're open ...
Published: 07/09/18
Aakash Patel admonished for ad featuring presidential seal

Aakash Patel admonished for ad featuring presidential seal

Under attack from his Republican Hillsborough county commission primary opponent Todd Marks over his conservative credentials, Aakash Patel fought back with a mailer including a photo of himself with President Donald Trump.The grip-and-grin shot is e...
Published: 07/06/18
Koch Network takes aim at Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn

Koch Network takes aim at Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn

Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn's successful effort to gain a newly-minted federal tax break that could benefit a new Tampa Bay Rays ballpark in Ybor City has gained the attention of a group founded by conservative billionaires Charles and David Koch.On Thu...
Published: 07/05/18
Pinellas sheriff: 4-year-old emergency operations complex ‘looks like a dump’

Pinellas sheriff: 4-year-old emergency operations complex ‘looks like a dump’

When Hurricane Irma slammed Florida last year, hundreds of first responders worked inside Pinellas County's three-year-old Public Safety Complex.But deputies had to worry about their own safety. As rain and wind pummeled the region, deputies used buc...
Published: 07/05/18