Saturday, April 21, 2018
News Roundup

News at Noon: Animal abuse registry approved; Tebow signs with Mets; NBC's Lauer criticized; J.T. Brown responds to Tortorella

Convicted animal abusers will no longer be able to adopt dogs and cats in Hillsborough County. County commissioners approved a new registry for people convicted of harming animals. Individuals on the registry won't be able to adopt or work with animals, and retailers and shelters will be required to check the registry whenever someone wants to adopt.

TEBOW SIGNS MINOR-LEAGUE DEAL WITH METS

Tim Tebow will be wearing orange and blue again — but not for the Florida Gators. Tebow, the 2007 Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback for the Gators who last month expressed interest in pursuing a baseball career, was signed to a minor-league contract by the New York Mets and will report to the team's Instructional League.

NBC'S LAUER BLASTED FOR PERFORMANCE AT CLINTON-TRUMP FORUM

It was a high-stakes political moment, far from the chummier confines of the Today show and, for Matt Lauer, NBC's stalwart of the morning, a chance to prove his broadcasting mettle on the presidential stage. The consensus afterward was not kind. Meantime Politifact fact-checks statements by Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump from the forum.

LARGO COMMISSION OKAYS ZIPLINE, AERIAL COURSE

A zipline and aerial obstacle course is coming to Highland Recreation Complex after Largo commissioners approved it Tuesday night. The 5-2 vote, with Commissioners Curtis Holmes and John Carroll dissenting, ends a monthlong battle between city officials and residents who live near the complex over concerns, including parking, noise, safety, environmental impact and transparency from city officials.

DIRK SHADD | Times

Lightning wing J.T. Brown heads out on the Amalie Arena ice for warmups before an April playoff game against the Red Wings

J.T. BROWN SPEAKS OUT ON LIFE AS 'BLACK ATHLETE IN THE NHL'

Lightning forward J.T. Brown, an African-American, wants to make one thing clear: "I have no ill will towards John Tortorella." That doesn't mean Brown, 26, agrees with everything the Team USA and former Tampa Bay coach says. And Brown took to Twitter this week to let his voice be heard on Tortorella's statement that he'd bench any Team USA player who didn't stand for the national anthem. The tweet went viral.

TARPON SPRINGS FLOODING AMONG THE WORST EVER, SHOP OWNERS SAY

Flooding is nothing new to most businesses sitting along the low-lying areas of Dodecanese Boulevard at the Sponge Docks. But the waters that came along with Hurricane Hermine last week left many shop owners along the tourist strip surprised.

TRUMP CAMP DENIES WRONGDOING IN BONDI DONATION

With attention swelling over Donald Trump's $25,000 donation to Attorney General Pam Bondi, the Trump campaign insists the two never discussed allegations facing his real estate seminars. "Mr. Trump was not made aware of any investigation or discussion about a potential investigation," a spokeswoman said.

GARY JOHNSON'S CANDIDACY NOT HELPED BY 'ALEPPO' RESPONSE

"And what is Aleppo?" And with that response, it would be easy to say Libertarian Gary Johnson's appearance on MSNBC's Morning Joe today doomed his third-party candidacy for president. But the English language lacks a good way to describe something that was already in bad shape and then, somehow, becomes far worse rather dramatically.

REPORT: FLORIDA JOB GROWTH SLOWS SLIGHTLY IN AUGUST

Florida job growth cooled slightly in August as it added 15,200 private sector jobs, according to the monthly ADP Regional Employment Report. Florida's two chief rivals among top job-creating states — California and Texas — both outperformed the Sunshine State, adding 27,800 jobs and 21,400 jobs, respectively.

CHERIE DIEZ | Times

Clyde Walters, 88, owner of Ace Motors, has been selling motorcycles or cars since he retired in 1972 after working 20 years as a police officer.

AT 88, ST. PETE CAR DEALER STILL GOING STRONG

Clyde Walters' office is like a museum of local history, with the walls adorned with decades worth of mementos, family items, old pictures along with all manner of trinkets. His business model is also a throwback to a bygone era. At age 88, his small used car lot is an old-school operation, but he still sells 80 to 100 a year, he said. "I have generations and generations of people who want to buy cars from me because people don't trust anyone else," he says.

'IT'S LIKE A FITBIT FOR YOUR CAREER'

Now, there's an employee badge with microphones doing real-time voice analysis, sensors that follow where you are in the office and motion detectors to record how much you move.It's all with the goal of giving employers better information to evaluate performance. Think of it as biometrics meets the boss.

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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Shaquem Griffin: ‘I’m not just a feel-good story’

Shaquem Griffin: ‘I’m not just a feel-good story’

TAMPA — Shaquem Griffin wakes up knowing each day will be better than the last and barely unable to wait until tomorrow."It's just a whirlwind,'' Griffin said.On Thursday, he will walk the red carpet with his family, including his twin brother,...
Updated: 2 hours ago
After months, no action on Hillsborough’s substitute teacher problem

After months, no action on Hillsborough’s substitute teacher problem

TAMPA — Confronted in late 2017 with reports of misconduct by substitute teachers hired through a contractor, Hillsborough County school superintendent Jeff Eakins said he would ask tough questions and demand answers. He had his lawyer, Jeff Gibson, ...
Published: 04/21/18
Goodwill to open second store in greater Brandon

Goodwill to open second store in greater Brandon

Times staffThe greater Brandon area will celebrate the grand opening of its second Goodwill store beginning at 9 a.m. on Saturday (April 28) at 1407 U.S. 301. The new store will add another 12,000 square feet to the complex, which includes a 200,000-...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Clearwater Central Catholic tops Dunedin Spring Tournament host in extra innings

Clearwater Central Catholic tops Dunedin Spring Tournament host in extra innings

DUNEDIN — After losing a four-run lead thanks to a bad sixth inning, it would have been easy for Clearwater Central Catholic to fold against Dunedin in the final of the 49th annual Dunedin Spring Tournament. But quality relief pitching from Gar...
Updated: 9 hours ago
Span, Rays top Twins in 10 innings

Span, Rays top Twins in 10 innings

ST. PETERSBURG — Roughly four hours before taking the field against his former team Friday, Rays outfielder Denard Span spoke admirably about the Minnesota Twins, their organization in general, even hometown icon Joe Mauer.But business is busin...
Updated: 9 hours ago
Lightning feels Ryan McDonagh’s impact

Lightning feels Ryan McDonagh’s impact

BRANDON — Ryan McDonagh blocks shots. He competes for pucks in the corners and wins those battles. He moves the puck up the ice well. He can join the rush. He can shoot from the blue line. He kills penalties."It was a great pickup by (Lightning...
Updated: 10 hours ago

High school scoreboard for April 20

Friday’s scoreboardSoftballSpringstead 15, Central 0
Updated: 10 hours ago
St. Pete says discharge never reached the bay. Its own report says otherwise.

St. Pete says discharge never reached the bay. Its own report says otherwise.

ST. PETERSBURG — The city said not one of the 266,000 gallons of reclaimed water released on Jan. 18 reached Tampa Bay.There was no mention of the waste released from the Northeast Water Reclamation Facility ever reaching the bay in the city’s notice...
Updated: 11 hours ago
Tampa Bay students voice opinions on gun laws during school walkouts

Tampa Bay students voice opinions on gun laws during school walkouts

Nicole Leary and Taylor Redington stood outside St. Petersburg High School on Friday morning with parents and protesters who had gathered with bullhorns and signs. In a few minutes they would lead about 70 students on a walk to City Hall, joining oth...
Updated: 11 hours ago
Deputies: Woman in road rage incident targeted ... a school bus?

Deputies: Woman in road rage incident targeted ... a school bus?

TAMPA — Deputies are searching for a woman accused of blocking a special needs school bus with her car, getting out and banging and kicking on the bus door until she broke the glass.And there were four children inside, deputies said, as she shouted a...
Updated: 12 hours ago