Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Community news briefs


Related News/Archive

Guy Harvey aquarium on animal planet tonight

Guy Harvey's Outpost on St. Pete Beach and the Secrets of the Sea Marine Exploration Center and Aquarium be in the limelight tonight. Animal Planet's Tanked is airing an episode about the construction of a 33,500-gallon aquarium recently added to Guy Harvey's Rumfish Bar & Grill, part of the TradeWinds Island Resorts.

Secrets of the Sea curators have been instrumental in planning the aquarium, and will provide staff for the education and maintenance. The shoot airs at 10 p.m.

Since plans to open at John's Pass fell apart, Secrets of the Sea has been considering other locations for the aquarium, which closed with the St. Petersburg Pier in June.

Lari Johnson, chair of the Secrets project, said it is considering several locations. There have been "informal talks" with Mayor Rick Kriesman about the new Pier. Another possibility is a property in Treasure Island where a group has floated plans to build a resort. Johnson said the group also is considering the former St. Pete Beach police station, but the City Commission on Tuesday decided to study moving City Hall to the station.

Katherine Snow Smith, Times staff writer


School land is now a park

Rio Vista Elementary School was closed in 2009 because of shrinking enrollment.

On Saturday it will have a reopening of sorts. The city transformed the site at 8131 Macoma Drive NE into a $1.6 million park, with tennis courts, basketball courts, exercise zone and a walking path connecting to the Pinellas Trail. The city is leasing the property from the school district for 50 years at no cost.

Now called Riviera Bay Park, it also will feature a community flower garden. A ribbon-cutting ceremony will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday with Mayor Rick Kriseman.

The park was built using money from the Weeki Wachee Fund, created when the city sold a 440-acre recreation area along Weeki Wachee Springs in Hernando County. Two corners of the old school building were preserved as park of the park.

Waveney Ann Moore, Times staff writer


Emergency officials honored

Christopher Eisenhardt has been named Pinellas County's paramedic of the year. Eisenhardt is a firefighter-paramedic with Palm Harbor Fire Rescue. He also works with Sunstar Paramedics, the county ambulance system, and serves on the Pinellas County Sheriff's SWAT team as a paramedic.

Jay Horne was named EMT of the year. Horne works for Paramedics Plus, the company that contracts with the county to run the Sunstar ambulance program.

Terri Griffin was named Pinellas County's emergency medical dispatcher of the year. Griffin works at the county's 911 call center.


Police justified in firing gun

A police officer was justified when he shot at a vehicle that rammed his cruiser this year, an internal investigation found. Officer Neil Rambaran was part of a team tracking a stolen vehicle Jan. 8 near 14th Avenue S and 49th Street. Police said when the suspects realized officers were nearby, they tried to flee, striking an officer and Rambaran's cruiser and other police vehicles. Rambaran, 33, who has been on the force since 2008, fired. The suspects escaped. In another internal affairs case, Officer David Watson received a memo of counseling for not immediately getting approval for a pursuit last June.


Police chief reprimanded

After barely two months in office, the town manager has twice reprimanded police Chief Mike Rossi. Both were oral reprimands with memos put in Rossi's personnel file.

The first concerned Rossi's failure to notify Town Manager Matt Campbell that a council member had spent more than an hour in the Police Department. Campbell had told Rossi he wanted to be informed whenever Rossi, or one of his staffers, visited or contacted the police without first informing the manager.

The second involved Rossi's taking home to Pasco County a new Ford Explorer that had been purchased for officers to use patrolling. Rossi had left his take-home vehicle at the Police Station while using the new SUV.

Rossi agreed that Campbell had "reasonably addressed areas of concern regarding my work performance."


Ceremony for fallen officers

Law enforcement officials will gather Monday to honor officers killed in the line of duty.

A ceremony will take place at 7:45 p.m. at the memorial space at Demens Landing Park.

Before the event, a 3K fundraiser walk for COPS (Concerns of Police Survivors) will take place. Participants will leave the park at 7 p.m. and go to the Pier before returning to the memorial. Registration is $20 before the walk; $25 on the day of the event.

Community news briefs 05/15/14 [Last modified: Thursday, May 15, 2014 10:42am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. PolitiFact Florida: Claim that 5.7 million noncitizens voted is wrong

    State Roundup

    President Donald Trump's unfounded allegations that millions voted illegally in 2016 is back in the news, with his supporters pointing to a new analysis that claims millions of undocumented immigrants voted in 2008.

    Instances of noncitizens voting have been reported, but evidence points to a small number among millions of votes cast.  
  2. For Fourth of July, an American feast inspired by founding father Alexander Hamilton


    Are there a million things you haven't done? Is one of them throwing a patriotic party inspired by one of the founding fathers?

    Caribbean Pork With Potato Salad makes for the perfect Fourth of July meal.
  3. 'Baby Driver' literally turns heist movie genre on its ear, set to slick soundtrack


    Buckle up for Baby Driver, a movie so full throttle cool that you want to fist bump the screen. Style is the substance of Edgar Wright's inventive heist flick, a fresh, masterful synching of music and getaway mayhem, as if La La Land's traffic jam was moving, armed and dangerous.

    Baby (Ansel Elgort) is a getaway driver for heist arranger Doc (Kevin Spacey). Plagued by tinnitus, Baby tunes out his distracting “hum in the drum” by listening to music while he drives.
Sony Pictures
  4. Former mayor Rick Baker, left, is challenging incumbent Mayor Rick Kriseman, right, to become St. Petersburg mayor
  5. Life after HB7069 to be discussed at Pinellas school district workshop


    The Pinellas County school district is still trying to navigate life after the controversial passage of HB7069.