Friday, November 24, 2017
News Roundup

Tampa looking at $24.8 million in police personnel costs for Republican National Convention

RECOMMENDED READING


TAMPA — Paying local and out-of-town officers working the Republican National Convention is expected to cost nearly $25 million — about half of what Congress appropriated to secure the convention.

The Tampa City Council will be asked Thursday to sign off on spending $24.85 million of the city's $50 million federal convention security grant on personnel.

Of that, $4 million is for city salaries. The rest will go to the estimated 3,000 or more officers being brought in from 63 other agencies from around the Tampa Bay area and across Florida.

That said, officials plan for Tampa police and Hillsborough County sheriff's deputies to have the most contact with the 15,000 protesters expected at the Aug. 27-30 convention. They work together already, know the community, will have the most training, and will have the biggest stake in how the rest of the world sees Tampa.

"It only would make sense that those folks would be the firewall," Mayor Bob Buckhorn says. "Most of these other officers will be dispersed elsewhere around the community."

Paying that coalition of officers will be just one of the city's convention expenses.

Police have said they expect to spend $2 million on 1,500 hotel rooms for visiting officers and have budgeted $1 million to feed the coalition of police and deputies working the convention.

The city also plans to buy an insurance policy with $10 million worth of coverage for police working convention security.

"That's only fair," Buckhorn said. Officers coming in to Tampa to help the city should not have to worry about false accusations or frivolous lawsuits, he said.

Beyond personnel, the City Council so far has approved spending more than $14.9 million on convention-related security purchases that include police gear, vehicles and communications equipment:

• $6 million for more than 1,900 handheld or vehicle-mounted radios.

• $2 million for about 60 surveillance cameras to be installed around the Tampa Bay Times Forum.

• $1.9 million for body armor and protective gear.

• $1.18 million to upgrade the video links between police helicopters and ground commanders.

• $992,490 to enhance existing police software and technology that allows multiple agencies to size up risks, share information, organize resources, and map, track and respond to trouble as it takes place.

• $518,460 for 1,400 gas masks and accessories, including 20 "voice projection units."

• $516,200 for cotton uniforms.

• $464,236 for two Tampa Fire Rescue vehicles: a tactical support vehicle that can serve as a mobile command post and a truck for the SWAT medic team.

• $319,400 for 200 police bicycles.

• $290,000 for up to 10,000 feet of temporary security fences to be put up around city and county buildings.

• $272,904 for an armored police SWAT vehicle.

• $225,063 for 225 tactical communications headsets, plus accessories and three days of training.

• $150,730 for 13 Bobcat 4x4 utility vehicles.

• $85,580 for 17,400 short- and long-sleeved, all-cotton printed T-shirts.

Comments
Region football: Plant 13, Venice 10

Region football: Plant 13, Venice 10

LAKELAND — The game — and the season — were supposed to be over.Lakeland was set to exact revenge. The Dreadnaughts had the lead and the ball in the final three minutes and were heading for a field goal. Then it happened. The magic continued.Plant’s ...
Updated: 9 minutes ago

Region football: Immokalee 42, Lakewood 14

IMMOKALEE — The final score wasn’t truly indicative of what transpired on Friday night.Lakewood fell to a dynamic Immokalee squad 42-14 in a tough environment in a Class 5A region final.The Spartans (9-2) forced three turnovers and held Immokalee (12...
Updated: 12 minutes ago
State semifinal football: Hollywood Chaminade-Madonna 49, Clearwater Central Catholic 3

State semifinal football: Hollywood Chaminade-Madonna 49, Clearwater Central Catholic 3

CLEARWATER — Stocked with a wealth of Division I-A commits and prepared by a heavy-duty schedule, Hollywood Chaminade-Madonna spent three months building for Friday night’s Class 3A state semifinal game.The Lions played at another level against top-s...
Updated: 16 minutes ago

Region football: Venice 48, Tampa Bay Tech 17

VENICE — Tampa Bay Tech not only had to stop a hot receiver in Friday night’s Class 7A region final against Venice, but a hot running back as well. That proved to be too much.Indians receiver Jaivon Heiligh caught 14 passes for 193 yards and three to...
Updated: 22 minutes ago

State semifinal football: Hialeah Champagnat Catholic 38, Cambridge Christian 0

TAMPA — Hialeah Champagnat Catholic was well on its way to a third unanswered touchdown, but the Lions just couldn’t stop blocking their own path. In one second-quarter drive during Friday’s 2A state semifinal against Cambridge Christian, Champagnat ...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Lightning attitude under fire after loss to Capitals

Lightning attitude under fire after loss to Capitals

WASHINGTON — You don’t often sense frustration in captain Steven Stamkos’ voice, at least not this season. With the Lightning off to its best start in franchise history, there haven’t been many reasons to chide. Every criticism seems nitpicky. But af...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Bucs-Falcons: Tampa Bay Times staff predictions for Sunday’s 1 p.m. game

Bucs-Falcons: Tampa Bay Times staff predictions for Sunday’s 1 p.m. game

The Bucs face the defending NFC champion in its new home Sunday in Atlanta.Here’s the Times’ Bucs coverage team’s predictions for Tampa Bay’s 1 p.m. game against the Atlanta Falcons at Mercedes-Benz Stadium:MATTY ICE-FOLLIESRick Stroud, @NFLStroud: T...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Freshman quarterback leads Pitt to 24-14 upset over No. 2 Miami

Freshman quarterback leads Pitt to 24-14 upset over No. 2 Miami

PITTSBURGH — Miami spent the better part of 13 months cultivating the nation’s longest winning streak behind a series of comebacks that returned the swagger to "The U" in all of its "Turnover Chain" glory. Sluggish through the first half against Pitt...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Florida-Florida State: What’s really riding on Saturday’s game

Florida-Florida State: What’s really riding on Saturday’s game

GAINESVILLE — If misery loves company, at least the Gators and Seminoles have each other.That’s about the only positive in the least-appealing Florida-Florida State showdown in decades. Both enter Ben Hill Griffin Stadium today 4-6 — only the second ...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Bucs journal: DE Will Gholston likely to return from neck injury

Bucs journal: DE Will Gholston likely to return from neck injury

TAMPA — Bucs DE Will Gholston is expected to make a healthy return Sunday in Atlanta after missing two games with a neck injury, and he’s thankful and relieved not to have to deal with anything more severe."It was knee-buckling," said Gholston, offic...
Updated: 2 hours ago