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  1. Top Tampa Fire Rescue official retires after quarrelling over evaluation, missing money

    Fire

    TAMPA — A high-ranking Tampa Fire Rescue assistant chief retired last week after quarreling with Chief Tom Forward about a performance evaluation and a cash fund that the assistant chief said was missing thousands of dollars.

  2. Dunedin mayor says 'major points' for prospective Jays contract are on track

    Growth

    DUNEDIN — After her recent trip to Toronto, Mayor Julie Ward Bujalski said she is confident all of the "major points" that would comprise a prospective spring training contract with the Blue Jays could be in place by season's end. Though it's important to note, she said, nothing is official.

    Dunedin Mayor Julie Ward Bujalski cutline goes here
  3. Fate of mandatory abortion waiting period unclear hours before law goes into effect

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — Will Florida's abortion waiting period have to wait?

  4. Recycling kickoff leaves Bayou Bonita Park residents feeling left out

    Blogs

    ST. PETERSBURG---- By most accounts, the city's universal curbside recycling kickoff went smoothly. The first neighborhoods to get their big, blue bins picked up Monday were on the city's southeastern side. Mayor Rick Kriseman stood with the Old Southeast Neighborhood Association's president to symbolically …

  5. Scott veto of money to free clinics decried as another blow to poor, uninsured Floridians

    Health

    CLEARWATER — As patients streamed into the Clearwater Free Clinic with a range of medical concerns Tuesday, clinic administrators were contemplating an altogether different problem: the sudden appearance of a $100,000 hole in their $950,000 operating budget.

    Richard Tracy, 64, of Crystal Beach is examined by Nurse Practitioner Jan Humphreys at the Clearwater Free Clinic, Tuesday. [CHERIE DIEZ   |   Times]
  6. Judge pushes Pasco theater shooting trial back to January — and for the last time

    Crime

    DADE CITY — Circuit Judge Pat Siracusa begrudgingly agreed Tuesday to delay the trial of Curtis Reeves Jr., the retired Tampa police captain accused to shooting and killing a man in a movie theater, after attorneys on both sides asked for more time.

    Curtis Reeves Jr. needs a web-only caption, please. [BRENDAN FITTERER   |   Times (2014)] 
  7. Tampa Premium Outlets mall tenants identified in building permits

    Retail

    WESLEY CHAPEL — Simon Property Group says its not yet ready to announce its tenants for the Tampa Premium Outlets mall, but public records filed in Pasco County identify scores of retailers — from Coach to Rack Room Shoes — for the nine-building mall scheduled to open Oct. 29.

  8. Jeb Bush's income soared after he left office, 33 years of tax returns show

    State Roundup

    The Bush family mantra has been consistent for generations: First make a lot of money, then focus on public service.

    Jeb Bush's income jumped from $261,000 in 2006, his final year as Florida governor, to more than $2.2 million in 2007. Then, from 2010 through 2013, tax returns released Tuesday show his annual income exploded from $3.2 million to nearly $7.4 million. (He got an extension until Oct. 15 to file his 2014 return.)" [MONICA HERNDON | Times]
  9. Fire department threatens to sue Pinellas County over funding

    Public Safety

    One of Pinellas County's 18 fire departments is threatening to sue the county over years of cuts in the emergency medical services budget.

  10. Uncle John's Band hits Chicago for Grateful Dead glory

    Human Interest

    TAMPA — Minutes after midnight, Uncle John's Band close another sprawling set at Skipper's Smokehouse with the Grateful Dead's U.S. Blues, drawing cheers from the tie-dyed faithful.

    Mike Edwards, co-founder of Uncle John’s Band, rehearses a Grateful Dead tune. The Grateful Dead tribute group will play at an event connected to the Dead’s final shows in Chicago.
  11. Pasco man pleads guilty to 2012 cross burning incident

    Criminal

    Pascual Pietri didn't go to his neighbor's house Halloween night 2012 for candy.

  12. Festivals, parties around Tampa Bay celebrate Independence Day

    Events

    With July 4 on Saturday, there's no shortage of parties and fireworks displays popping off across Tampa Bay. Here's everything you need to know to have a safe and festive Fourth.

    Fourth of July parties

    Light Up the Bayou

    CAMERON COTTRILL   |   Times
  13. Where to see fireworks around Tampa Bay for July 4

    Events

    Here's a quick guide to where to see the rockets' red glare this weekend. Sunset is at 8:30, and most fireworks shows begin at 9 p.m. but the weather could push back the starting time.

    Early adopters

    Crowds flock to St. Petersburg’s downtown waterfront and parks to watch festive Fourth of July fireworks illuminate the night sky.
  14. Don't be a bad neighbor: July Fourth etiquette rules for noise, fireworks

    Events

    If you must ignore the law and can't ignore your urge to blow something up on the Fourth of July, at least do your neighbors and their pets a favor by being considerate.

    Colin Hayter of Clearwater shops with his father, Ron Hayter, at Phantom Fireworks in Tampa.
  15. Haley VA has a new director

    Veterans

    TAMPA — The James A. Haley VA Medical Center has a new director, an administrator with more than 30 years of experience with the Department of Veterans Affairs.