Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Group launches bid to represent Keystone area

KEYSTONE — A new group says that it — not the long-established Keystone Civic Association — represents the interests of homeowners and businesses in this northwest Hillsborough community.

Keystone: The Great Northwest Business League Inc. has filed for recognition as a not-for-profit corporation from the Florida Department of State's Division of Corporations and rolled out a Web site that could pass as the area's official online portal.

In fact, that's the intent of the league's founding members.

"We're trying to become the official Keystone association instead of the one that is current," said Dimitri Artzibushev, one of three founders listed in state incorporation documents.

He says because of that group and a county-sanctioned community plan that restricts growth, the area lacks sidewalks, water, schools, adequate roads and other basic infrastructure. The civic association has long fought for these protections, as it seeks to maintain a rural style in Keystone.

"I'm in favor of preserving rural characteristics with common sense," Artzibushev said. "With the development that's been going on over the years and the people moving in, you can't go 100 percent rural."

The league wants to widen Gunn Highway, Van Dyke Road, Lutz-Lake Fern Road and Tarpon Springs Road; extend water and wastewater services; and build schools and additional recreational facilities closer to home.

"They may not want a super Wal-Mart, but they want that roadway widened, they want a sidewalk and they want a bike trail," said Claire Clements, another founder.

On its Web site, the league describes itself as a community-based partnership of residents, businesses and property owners.

But critics say that's not entirely true. All the founders are developers who have had trouble getting the county to sign off on projects they've tried to push through.

Only one — Artzibushev — calls Keystone home. The other two own property but don't live there. Clements resides in Westchase; Stephen Dibbs in Northdale. The league's mailing address, 5277 Ehrlich Road, is Dibbs' Carrollwood office.

"All three of them have huge axes to grind," said Tom Aderhold, a Keystone homeowner who had hoped to unseat County Commission Chairman Ken Hagan in Tuesday's primary.

He called the league's formation and its Web site "a full frontal assault" on the Keystone community-based plan, which homeowners drafted and commissioners approved in 2000.

"The real residents of Keystone love the area as it is," Aderhold said.

He should know. He's president of the Keystone Civic Association, which claims 300 paid members.

So far, the new group only has three known members.

Dibbs was unavailable for comment. However, Artzibushev said the civic association's membership numbers are misleading.

"The current Keystone association is controlled by 20 people that make all the decisions," he said. "You've got a lot of pacifists that stay in the background and just pay the membership fee."

Clements added that the point of the Web site is to recruit members and to get input from a cross-section of homeowners, not just a few independent minds.

"You get our Web site out there and we'll see who represents who," she said.

Times researcher Carolyn Edds contributed to this report. Rodney Thrash can be reached at or (813) 269-5303.

. fast facts

Web sites

• Keystone Civic
Association: www.

• Keystone: The Great Northwest Business League Inc.: www.

Group launches bid to represent Keystone area 08/31/08 [Last modified: Saturday, September 6, 2008 4:02pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Tom Sawyer with a revolver? Twain house has live 'Clue' game


    HARTFORD, Conn. — Was it Tom Sawyer in Samuel Clemens' billiard room with a revolver?

    In this July 14 photo, actor Dan Russell, left, portraying the character Arkansas from Mark Twain's book Roughing it, responds to a question from 10-year-old Emma Connell, center, of Arizona during a "Clue" tour at the Mark Twain House in Hartford, Conn. The tour allows visitors to interact with Twain characters while playing a live-action version of the board game. [AP Photo/Pat Eaton-Robb]
  2. East Tampa store owner who survived one shooting is targeted again with fatal results


    TAMPA — In the 2011 video, Mahamoud Ibrahim stands behind the counter of his tiny East Tampa convenience store, his back to the surveillance camera meant to discourage thieves.

    A memorial has sprouted in front of the 29th Street Store in East Tampa, where a robber fatally shot owner Mohamoud Ibrahim on July 16. Security experts say small mom-and-pop stores in high crime areas are easy targets for robberies and typically don't have the budgets for extra security measures. [TONY MARRERO/Times Staff]
  3. Pinellas superintendent, School Board pen letter to legislative delegation for help against 'unjust' funds for charter schools


    Because of a recent change in state law, the Pinellas County school district will have to shell out $25 million over five years  -- more funding per student than any other large district in the state -- for charter school construction and maintenance projects, and district officials …

    Pinellas County School Board Superintendent Michael Grego during a School Board meeting on August 25, 2015 at the School Administration Building, 301 Fourth Street SW in Largo.
  4. AARP still waiting for the two Ricks to send voter education videos


    AARP Florida wants to educate St. Petersburg residents on Mayor Rick Kriseman and former mayor Rick Baker’s views on how to make the Sunshine City more livable.

    It's been a frenetic St. Pete mayor's race so far. Maybe that's the reason AARP hasn't received voter education videos from the campaigns
  5. Photos: Kehlani packs fans into a sold-out Orpheum in Tampa


    R&B singer Kehlani had to postpone a spring show in Tampa due to illness, but it seemed she was no worse for the wear on Thursday, when her make-up show sold out the Orpheum well in advance. Ella Mai and Jahkoy opened the show. Aubrey Wipfli was there snapping photos; click the headline …

    Kehlani performed at the Orpheum in Tampa on July 20, 2017.