Tuesday, January 23, 2018
Business

GOP activist among those seeking seat on Tampa airport board

Tampa

GOP activist among those seeking seat on airport board

Republican political activist Sam Rashid has joined the list of those vying for a seat on the Hillsborough County Aviation Authority's governing board, which oversees Tampa International Airport.

Rashid, 51, is an east Hillsborough County businessman and prominent fundraiser for GOP candidates and causes. He's also the chief executive officer of a Plant City company, Holtec USA, which is the American arm of a German manufacturer of specialized sawing equipment.

Rashid was a friend of Steve Burton, the former chairman of the aviation authority who died on April 22. Gov. Rick Scott appointed Burton's replacement Tuesday: Martin Garcia, 57, a Tampa attorney who served as Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi's campaign chair in 2010.

But the term of board member Dr. Joseph Diaco is expiring soon. Diaco reapplied for his position. He and Rashid are among the 22 candidates who want to be on the board.

Also applying are former Hillsborough County Commissioner and Tampa City Council member Tom Scott; retired Air Force Brig. Gen. Arthur "Chip" Diehl III, who served at MacDill Air Force Base; and A.D. "Sandy" MacKinnon, a Tampa businessman and the husband of former County Commissioner Dottie Berger MacKinnon.

Tampa

Pinkberry will close Citrus Park location

Pinkberry, a frozen yogurt chain that helped start the nationwide fro-yo craze, is closing its Citrus Park location at 7002 Gunn Highway. Its last day will be on or before Monday.

There's no official word about its other Tampa Bay location at WestShore Plaza, even though talk on Twitter said both stores are closing.

A spokeswoman for the chain, based in Santa Monica, Calif., confirmed only the Citrus Park closure and said the company will continue to look for more opportunities to develop stores.

"We look forward to serving in the area again soon,'' she said in an email.

Founded in 2005 in California, Pinkberry attracted a groupie-like following for its original tart frozen yogurt. It has about 170 locations worldwide, including seven in Florida. Both Tampa locations opened in 2011.

This week, @PinkberryTampa posted on Twitter: "We regret to inform you, but we had to make a tough business decision. Thank you for your loyalty & support!''

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