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Morning watch: Tampa garbage truck rescue; Buckhorn on paid parental leave; Elizabeth Warren is silenced; farewell to Rattlesnake Festival

Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn said family leave is not a women's issue but an economic one. [Times file]


Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn said family leave is not a women's issue but an economic one. [Times file]

The latest news and developments to help you get ready for the day ahead.

MAN RESCUED AFTER BEING DROPPED INTO GARBAGE TRUCK IN TAMPA WHILE SLEEPING IN DUMPSTER

Tampa Fire Rescue crews have rescued a man who was trapped inside a garbage truck near W Hillsborough Avenue and N Dale Mabry Highway. Officials say the man was sleeping in a dumpster early Wednesday morning when the waste management driver deposited the contents of the dumpster into the truck. He is in stable condition; stay with tampabay.com for updates.

BUCKHORN: ACCESS TO PAID PARENTAL LEAVE MAKES TAMPA MORE COMPETITIVE

Last week, Mayor Bob Buckhorn announced that the City of Tampa will begin providing paid parental leave to our full-time workers. Attracting and retaining the most talented workforce does not solely lie in downtown amenities and adding jobs, it also requires providing a 21st Century workplace for 21st Century families. Read his column for his thoughts on how this will impact Tampa's families.

THE SILENCING OF ELIZABETH WARREN AND AN OLD SENATE RULE PROMPTED BY A FISTFIGHT

[Associated Press]

In an image from Senate Television, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., speaks on the floor of the U.S. Senate in Washington on Monday.

America got a civics lesson Tuesday night when Senate Republicans used an obscure rule to shut down a speech by Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., that criticized Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., the nominee for attorney general. Republicans took issue when Warren quoted from a pair of letters written by the late Coretta Scott King and the late Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass., opposing Sessions's ill-fated nomination to a federal judgeship in 1986. King's letter accused Sessions of racial bias; Kennedy's called him a "disgrace to the Justice Department."

COURT DELAY OF TRUMP TRAVEL BAN DOESN'T HELP USF STUDENT IN IRAN

Mehdi Zeyghami boarded a plane in Tehran, Iran, on Monday with a glimmer of hope that he would soon make it back to the University of South Florida to finish his doctoral degree. After a federal judge temporarily blocked key parts of President Donald Trump's executive order barring travel from Iran and six other countries, the 34-year-old Iranian national hoped he could pick up the student visa approved late last month before the order cancelled it. He flew to the U.S. embassy in neighboring Armenia and waited about 15 minutes before a clerk dashed his hopes: Because his visa had been approved but not issued, it was still in "refused" status. He would have to reapply, starting over a process that takes months.

SEN. SESSIONS ON TRACK FOR CONFIRMATION AS ATTORNEY GENERAL

The Senate is working overtime toward confirming President Donald Trump's close ally, Sen. Jeff Sessions, to become the nation's top law enforcement officer as attorney general. The Alabama Republican appears headed toward confirmation on Wednesday evening by a nearly party-line vote. Democrats harshly criticized Sessions for being too close to Trump, too harsh on immigrants, and too weak on civil rights.

AFTER 50 YEARS, SAN ANTONIO'S RATTLESNAKE FESTIVAL IS FINISHED

[Times file photo]

Rattlesnakes made regular appearances during the early years of the annual San Antonion Rattlesnake Festival and Run.

Last week, the Rotary Club of San Antonio announced it had decided to discontinue the attlesnake Festival and Run., a mainstay since 1967. It wasn't an easy decision to give up on the festival, said chairwoman and former Rotary president Betty Burke. But the advent of competing events has made it difficult to procure enough sponsors and volunteers to continue.

CARLTON: COULD SALTY TALK BE THE FINAL STRAW FOR THE PTC?

You could call Hillsborough County's Public Transportation Commission controversial, Sue Carlton writes. You could also call it under investigation, this time over whether agency cell phones were wiped clean despite public records law. And now, she says we can add to the list of things one small detail that might finally (and rightly) doom it: An apparent case of potty-mouth.

ABSENTEE RATES AT HERNANDO SCHOOLS: HIGH BUT SHOWING IMPROVEMENT

Hernando County has instituted several strategies that have helped gradually reduce the percentage of chronically absent students — defined by the state as missing more than 21 days of the 180-day school year — from 15.4 percent during the 2011-12 school year to 13.5 percent in 2014-15, the most recent year for which statewide numbers are available. According to district statistics, that number fell by about .3 percent in 2015-16, Dan DeWitt writes.

Morning watch: Tampa garbage truck rescue; Buckhorn on paid parental leave; Elizabeth Warren is silenced; farewell to Rattlesnake Festival 02/08/17 [Last modified: Wednesday, February 8, 2017 8:52am]
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