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The staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Political spot Tucson's Southwest Grill shutting down

Tuscon's Southwest Grill, the restaurant near Ulmerton Road that was home to monthly meetings of the Democratic and Republican parties of Pinellas County, has closed, majority owner Leslie Rubin confirmed on Monday.

The restaurant -- a mid-county favorite for gatherings and political events -- couldn't make ends meet. Rubin recently took control from previous owner David Earp, but the economy and a road construction on Ulmerton cut business, said Rubin, who owns the venue with several other partners.

Rubin said he didn't immediately know how many employees were put out of work by the decision, which was made over the weekend. The phone system and Earp's voice mail were still running Monday with nobody answering. He also declined to say how bad the financial losses were.

But Rubin said he wants to re-open as a restaurant or other business as soon as possible.

"We're actively working on a lot of options," Rubin said.

David DeCamp, Times staff writer

[Last modified: Thursday, September 16, 2010 3:40pm]


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