Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Hillsborough school bus driver suspended for campaign violations

TAMPA — A Hillsborough County school bus driver who is running for School Board hit a bump in the road this month when he was caught distributing campaign material on school premises.

"Capt." Carl Kosierowski, 62, said he is on suspension and could lose his job. He said he did not know it was against school district policy to hand out bookmarks with his campaign logo to students who ride his bus.

He also gave a stack to a fellow bus driver, who had brought them in to the transportation office, where a supervisor discovered them.

Kosierowski is one of seven candidates challenging longtime board member Carol Kurdell for an at-large seat. He's been a bus driver for the district since 2004.

Kosierowski is not denying that he made a mistake. But he feels the punishment is overly harsh. "If I went through a railroad crossing with a busload of kids without stopping, I could see an immediate termination," he said. "But not this."

In a news release Monday, Kosierowski suggested his treatment might have something to do with unpopular positions he has taken in his campaign.

On his website, he upbraids School Board members for their handling of a controversy surrounding the Council on American-Islamic Relations, or CAIR, whose executive director spoke to Steinbrenner High School history students last year.

Critics say CAIR harbors terrorist sympathizers, which CAIR denies. The School Board, after a half-dozen heated meetings, did not vote on the issue, but instead accepted brief instructions about speakers from superintendent MaryEllen Elia.

District spokesman Steve Hegarty said the district's handling of Kosierowski's infraction has nothing to do with what he has stated in his campaign.

"What you just described does not violate School Board policy," Hegarty said.

Marlene Sokol can be reached at (813) 226-3356 or

Hillsborough school bus driver suspended for campaign violations 05/21/12 [Last modified: Monday, May 21, 2012 11:08pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Half of Florida lawmakers fail or nearly fail review of support for public records

    State Roundup

    WEST PALM BEACH — Half of Florida's legislators failed or nearly failed in a review of their support for public records and meetings given by Florida newspapers and an open-government group after this year's legislative sessions.

    State Senator Bill Galvano, R- Bradenton (left) and Florida House Speaker Richard Corcoran ranked on opposite sides of the spectrum in an analysis of support for open records. Galvano scored a B-minus and Corcoran scored a D-plus.
[Times file photo]
  2. Yale dean on leave over offensive Yelp reviews leaves post

    Bizarre News

    NEW HAVEN, Conn. — A Yale University dean who was placed on leave over offensive reviews she posted on Yelp has left her position at the Ivy League institution, school officials said Tuesday.

  3. Federal agencies demand records from SeaWorld theme park


    ORLANDO — Two federal agencies are reportedly demanding financial records from SeaWorld.

    Killer whales Ikaika and Corky participate in behaviors commonly done in the wild during SeaWorld's Killer Whale educational presentation in this photo from Jan. 9. SeaWorld has been subpoenaed by two federal agencies for comments that executives and the company made in August 2014 about the impact from the "Blackfish" documentary. 
[Nelvin C. Cepeda/San Diego Union-Tribune/TNS]
  4. The people you meet along O.J. Howard Lane


    OJ Howard (far right) is seen in a photo from his adolescent years at Bethesda Missionary Baptist Church in Prattville, Ala., on Wednesday, May 3, 2017. Howard served as an usher in addition to attending regular services at this church.