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RIVERVIEW FAMILY FACES LOSING HOME OVER $150 ASSOCIATION PAYMENT
Tina and Luis Lopez are just one step away from eviction after their homeowners association failed to record their annual $150 dues payment in 2009. Now only a judge's ruling can keep them in their home. They are one of the 1,386 owners of single-family homes, town homes and villas who are expected to pay dues each January to the Rivercrest Community Association in Riverview. But they're not the only ones raising questions about the association's aggressive pursuit of fees.
TOURISM LEADERS MOUNT SHOW OF FORCE TO FIGHT CORCORAN PLAN
As the Florida House prepares to demolish the foundation of Gov. Rick Scott's job-creation agenda, tourism leaders have a chance to show off their marketing skills to the political world this afternoon. The stage is a meeting of the House Careers & Competition Subcommittee, which is expected to move along a bill eliminating Enterprise Florida and Visit Florida and mothballing nearly two dozen economic incentive programs. Local tourism groups were hoping to assemble an invasion of up to 1,000 people in an effort to defeat a top priority of House Speaker Richard Corcoran.
COMMISSION PLUGS IN CONNECTED CITY IN WESLEY CHAPEL
The Pasco County Commission has given final approval for the nation's first gigabit community to be built from the ground up in Wesley Chapel. It would include 96,000 people, 66,000 jobs and 37,000 homes if the 50-year projections hold true.
FORUM OVER MEDICAL MARIJUANA DRAWS NEARLY 200 PEOPLE
A standing-room-only crowd packed a forum in Tampa this morning to discuss new medical marijuana rules for Floridians. The gathering at the Florida Department of Health — one of many statewide — drew a stream of speakers with personal tales about how medical marijuana can help them and their families. They peppered state health officials with questions and pleas.
TRUMP: NO TOLERANCE FOR VIOLENCE AGAINST LAW ENFORCEMENT
President Donald Trump today promised "zero tolerance" for violence against law enforcement officers in an address to a gathering of American police chiefs and sheriffs. He also said that his administration will give their departments the resources to recruit and retain officers.
ATTENTION, WORD NERDS: MERRIAM-WEBSTER ADDS ABOUT 1,000 NEW ENTRIES
In addition to elevating "surreal" in 2016 to word of the year, the dictionary company on Tuesday added about 1,000 new words and new definitions to existing listings on its website, Merriam-webster.com. Among them are: "arancini," those stuffed, breaded and fried Italian rice balls, "conlang," meaning an invented language like Klingon, "fast fashion" and "microaggression," a flash-point favorite on some college campuses.
CONSOLIDATION OF UNITED WAYS CONTINUES WITH SUNCOAST, MANATEE
United Way Suncoast will merge with United Way of Manatee County by this summer, the nonprofit organizations said. United Way Suncoast serves Hillsborough, Pinellas, DeSoto and Sarasota counties. The merger was prompted by last year's retirement announcement by Manatee group's president.
THINGS TO DO PLANNER: STATE FAIR, KNIGHT PARADE AND MORE
There's lots to do this weekend. First, it's time for the Florida State Fair, where you can indulge on a Cheesy Fried Enchilada Funnel Cake, lawn-mower races and the largest portable Ferris wheel in North America. The fair opens Thursday and runs through Feb. 20. Also on the calendar is Saturday's Sant' Yago Illuminated Knight Parade in Ybor City. This year's march has a Buccaneers flavor, with players coaches and street team members among more than 100 units. The Bucs and Glazer Family Foundation are grand marshals.
MUSE, GREEN DAY, NICKELBACK AND MORE COMING TO THE AMP
A dozen tour announcements for the MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre have come down the pike in the past month or so, some arriving so quickly we haven't had time to track them all. Times music critic Jay Cridlin gets you caught up on the action so you can start planning your summer.
JONES: LIGHTNING RESEMBLING TEAM WE EXPECTED
The magic returned Tuesday night at Amalie Arena for the Lightning. Ben Bishop pitched a shutout. Nikita Kucherov had a pair of goals. Jonathan Drouin added a goal. And the Lightning blasted the Kings, 5-0, for the team's first back-to-back victories since right before Christmas. All's well again, right? Eh, not so fast, writes columnist Tom Jones.
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