Monday, February 19, 2018
News Roundup

News at Noon: Airport construction update, Zika virus concern, a funny celebration, more from USF medical school

Take a look at Tampa International Airport, which is halfway through phase one of its $1 billion renovation, and things are starting to take shape. There were more than 1,700 workers on site at the airport any given day in July, and more than 5,000 workers have worked there since construction began.

SO WHO IS TIFFANY TRUMP?

It's a question that no one has to ask anymore about her older half-sister Ivanka, who is one of the most important public faces of Donald Trump's presidential campaign and brand. By contrast, Tiffany Trump, just out of college, has rarely been seen on the campaign trail — until Tuesday's brief speech at the Republican National Convention.

ZIKA VIRUS CASE IN FLORIDA MAY NOT BE TRAVEL-RELATED

Health officials in Miami-Dade County say they are investigating a possible Zika virus case that is not travel-related but did not say whether it involves a bite from a native mosquito. The case could represent the first local transmission of the virus in the United States.

30 YEARS OF A ST. PETE TRADITION; SERIOUSLY, FOLKS

This weekend, the Coconuts Comedy Club brand Bob Shoemaker created celebrates its 30th anniversary of funny business. Coconuts has gained fame as a pipeline to success for many well-known comics, Billy Gardell, Larry the Cable Guy and Jim Breuer.

DEAN: CHALLENGES REMAIN FOR AMBITIOUS USF MEDICAL SCHOOL

Much has changed at USF's Morsani College of Medicine since Dr. Charles Lockwood took over as dean two years ago. But Lockwood isn't satisfied. He's moving ahead with an agenda that he hopes will transform the school into a world-class institution.

GOOD NEWS IN PASCO FOR TRUMP

There has been plenty of concern among down-ballot Republican candidates about Donald Trump's effect on their campaigns. A recent, internal poll shows the opposite may be true in Tampa Bay, and it's Hillary Clinton who could be a drag on the candidacies of fellow Democrats.

CONACHER REJOICES OVER RETURN TO BOLTS

Cory Conacher, who was traded away by Tampa Bay to get goalie Ben Bishop, says returning to the Lightning is a "dream come true." The forward is reunited with coach Jon Cooper, whom he played for at Norfolk in 2011-12, and teammates Alex Killorn, Ondrej Palat and Tyler Johnson.

BRADY, SANDOVAL TO PERFORM AT BUSCH GARDENS

Comic, singer and TV host Wayne Brady and Cuban jazz icon Arturo Sandoval will kick off the new Red Carpet Series of concerts at Busch Gardens Red Carpet Series of concerts at Busch Gardens. The series is a theatrical-style evening event at the park's 1,100-seat Moroccan Palace Theatre.

BUSH CIRCLE NOWHERE TO BE SEEN AT RNC

Amid the balloons and parties, speeches and spectacle, one faction of the Republican Party is almost invisible at the national convention this week: the Bush family network.

News at noon is a weekday feature from tampabay.com. Check in Monday through Friday for updates and information on the biggest stories of the day.

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Bubba Wallace emotional after Daytona 500 runner-up finish

Bubba Wallace emotional after Daytona 500 runner-up finish

DAYTONA BEACH – No, Bubba Wallace did not win the 60th running of the Daytona 500.But you wouldn't have known that after seeing his emotions after he placed second – the highest finish ever by a black driver in the Great American Race.Wal...
Updated: 5 hours ago
After Irma evacuation gridlock, new energy for Interstate 75 options

After Irma evacuation gridlock, new energy for Interstate 75 options

OCALA — In mid-2016, a regional task force that spent almost two years exploring ways to improve safety on a crowded Interstate 75 decided to take a conservative approach: make changes to the highway rather than build or expand other roads. Then Hurr...
Updated: 6 hours ago
Austin Dillon wins Daytona 500 after Aric Almirola wrecks late

Austin Dillon wins Daytona 500 after Aric Almirola wrecks late

DAYTONA BEACH – As Austin Dillon celebrated his Daytona 500 win Sunday, he couldn't help but remember the time he was standing there, in Victory Lane, 20 years ago this week.He was 7 then, and his index finger jutted into the air triumphantly t...
Updated: 6 hours ago
‘We had this monster living under our roof and we didn’t know.’

‘We had this monster living under our roof and we didn’t know.’

Nikolas Cruz was immature, quirky and depressed when James and Kimberly Snead took him into their Parkland home. But he was pleasant and seemed to be growing happier, they said.How the 19-year-old turned into a man now arrested and charged with 17 co...
Updated: 6 hours ago

Open-mic night at Pilars is a hot spot for Disney talent

WINTER GARDEN — At the end of the day, when the tourists are gone, Disney performers head out to their favorite spot to keep on singing after their shifts are over. Every Thursday, they perform at open-mic night at Pilars, a Winter Garden martini bar...
Updated: 6 hours ago
Broward program will give small-time offenders a big break

Broward program will give small-time offenders a big break

FORT LAUDERDALE — Pot smokers aren’t the only law breakers able to get a second chance in South Florida. Underage adults buying alcohol, those stealing property worth less than $300 and people nabbed for trespassing, loitering or disorderly conduct a...
Updated: 7 hours ago

Facebook turns to postcards to snuff foreign ads

MENLO PARK, Calif. — Facebook will soon rely on centuries-old technology to try to prevent foreign meddling in U.S. elections: the post office. Baffled in 2016 by Russian agents who bought ads to try to sway the U.S. presidential campaign, Facebook’s...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Parkland students to march on Florida Capitol to demand changes to gun laws

Parkland students to march on Florida Capitol to demand changes to gun laws

TALLAHASSEEAhundred students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland will travel to Tallahassee for a march on the state Capitol on Wednesday in the first organized protest of their #NeverAgain movement.Their demand: that Florida legisl...
Updated: 7 hours ago
EPA chief Pruitt cancels visit to Israel

EPA chief Pruitt cancels visit to Israel

WASHINGTON — Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt has canceled a nearly weeklong trip to Israel, agency officials confirmed Sunday.Pruitt, who had been scheduled to leave this past weekend for an extensive tour of the Mideast al...
Updated: 7 hours ago
As victims are mourned in Florida, a search for solace, and action

As victims are mourned in Florida, a search for solace, and action

PARKLAND — On the Sunday after Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School lost 17 of its own, a minister in Parkland implored his flock not to let the horrific shootings lead them away from their faith."Our world is broken, but Jesus is not," the Rev. Eddi...
Updated: 7 hours ago