Tuesday, December 12, 2017
News Roundup

News at Noon: Commission to discuss sewage; Starbucks inside Publix; 'Zombie Cat' gets new home; Bucs' Winston earns honor

Pinellas County Commission Chairman Charlie Justice is expected today to propose creating a sewer task force to tackle problems through the area. The commission is expected to discuss the proposal during the regular meeting, which begins at 2 p.m. in the assembly room at 315 Court St. in Clearwater. Follow reporter Tracy McManus (@TroMcManus) on Twitter for updates.

STARBUCKS WHILE YOU SHOP AT PUBLIX

The Publix on Gandy Boulevard in South Tampa will be among the first in the chain to get a Starbucks. It will replace a cafe already inside the supermarket and operate in a similar fashion to Starbucks that shoppers see in Target and other stores. More Starbucks are expected to be rolled out at other Publix stores as part of the pilot program.

'ZOMBIE CAT' GETS NEW OWNER

Remember Bert, the so-called "Zombie Cat"? In January 2015, he famously clawed his way out of a roadside grave after his owners assumed him dead. Today, the feline is getting a new home following a 20-month legal battle between the Humane Society of Tampa Bay and the man who raised Bart and found him "dead" in the street.

[LOREN ELLIOTT | Times]

Jameis Winston passed for 281 yards and four touchdowns in the Bucs' 31-24 win at Atlanta Sunday

BUCS QB WINSTON WEEKLY NFC HONOR

Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston, who passed for 281 yards and four touchdowns in a 31-24 win at Atlanta on Sunday, was named the NFC Offensive Player of the Week today. It's a far cry from last year's Week 1, when Winston, the draft's top pick, threw a pick-six and No. 2 pick Marcus Mariota threw four touchdown passes as the Titans walloped the Bucs, 42-14. Check out our quick analysis on how the quarterbacks reversed roles.

LATEST: PTC DISCUSSES RIDESHARE RULES

A decision on regulating rideshare businesses in Hillsborough County, which could determine whether companies like Uber and Lyft remain here, is likely to be delayed until next month. The Public Transportation Commission is expected to discuss regulations, as scheduled, during its meeting at 9 a.m. today. Reporter Chris O'Donnell provides updates online.

GOVERNOR CONTINUES ZIKA MISSION IN WASHINGTON

Gov. Rick Scott today will continue his Capitol Hill tour in search of funding for Zika virus, holding a full day of meetings with Florida lawmakers and several key leaders, including Sen. Mitch McConnell.

FLORIDA CONGRESSMAN CATCHES SOME CUBANS

U.S. Rep. Ted Yoho, a Gainesville Republican, recently told constituents that he was fishing with his son when they spotted a boat carrying 20 Cuban refugees. He said he called the Coast Guard and tried to slow down the boat. "The Coast Guard showed up and they deported those people back to Cuba," Yoho said to applause. "I'm protecting the sovereignty of the United States of America."

ONE LESS PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE IN FLORIDA

Disgusted with Donald Trump? Had it with Hillary Clinton? You'll have five options on your presidential ballot in Florida, but Evan McMullin won't be among them. The state officially blocked the insurgent independent from the November ballot, saying McMullin failed to comply with a key provision of state election laws: He was not nominated by a national political party at its convention.

MADEIRA BEACH FERRY TO INCLUDE JOHN'S PASS VILLAGE STOP

The city of Madeira Beach is offering the public a new way to get around town: ferries. Beginning next month, Hubbard's Marina will host a ferry service set to run every Friday, Saturday and Sunday to nine designated spots around Madeira Beach, city officials said.

[SKIP O'ROURKE | Times]

Teenagers at the Hillsborough County Juvenile Detention Center East. According to a new report, Hillsborough has arrested more juveniles than issuing civil citations than most.

HILLSBOROUGH RANKS HIGH IN ARRESTING JUVENILES VS. CITATIONS

Hillsborough County has a long way to go to increase its use of juvenile civil citation programs — an alternative that experts praise as a more effective and beneficial option to arrest for misdemeanor crimes, according to a new independent study released today. The report highlighted Hillsborough, Duval and Orange counties as among the worst for arresting juveniles rather than using citations.

RAYS, JAYS MEET TODAY IN AFTERNOON MATINEE

The Rays and Blue Jays conclude their series in Toronto at 12:30 p.m. today. The Rays are giving second baseman Logan Forsythe a DH day. And manager Kevin Cash said catcher Bobby Wilson has earned the right for the additional playing time, and that the pitchers like throwing to him. Follow reporter Marc Topkin for game updates.

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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