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The staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Pinellas Park council member Rick Butler gets PSTA's equivalent of an Emmy - a roll of toilet paper



PINELLAS PARK -- For much of the past year, officials in this city have been eyeball-to-eyeball with officials at the Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority over one of its bus stops.

It seems that PSTA passengers who were stuck waiting at the station on the south side of the Shoppes at Park Place, 7200 U.S. 19 N, didn't have enough time to find facilities when nature called. So, instead, they ducked behind the Dumpster by a cut-through next to Regal Cinemas for relief.

The theater owner complained, mall owner complained. Pinellas Park police complained and city officials asked the PSTA to build bathrooms. The PSTA refused. The argument wnet back and forth until, finally, PSTA decided to build a transfer station there along with bathrooms.

On Wednesday, the bus agency gave Pinellas Park council member Patti Johnson a plaque and an award for the city's efforts. At Thursday's council meeting, Johnson passed on the plaque and award to council member Rick Butler, who had been in the forefront of the fight.

"This really is prestigious," Johnson said. "It took a long time, but everyone persevered, got through the hollering and screaming. ... Here is your present from the board of the PSTA for all the work you've done."

She handed Butler a plaque and a roll of toilet tissue.

"It's kind of like getting an Emmy," Butler said, explaining he needed to thank others for a successful job.

High on Butler's list of folks to be thanked -- the Pinellas Park police. He asked Chief Dorene Thomas, "You guys want the roll for a week?"

-- Anne Lindberg, Times Staff Writer


[Last modified: Friday, September 28, 2012 4:18pm]


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