Friday, December 15, 2017
News Roundup

News at noon: Gasparilla tips on cell service and Uber; 5 planets visible this morning; Hillsborough real estate changes; Rays draft; Local celebrity lip-sync battle

This Saturday, hold on tight to your friend's hand. Don't get separated, because at Gasparilla, dead cellphone service is as ubiquitous as beads and rum drinks. And if you do get cell service, to Uber or not to Uber, that is the question.

If you can't make it to Gasparilla 2016, our live blog is the next best thing. You can follow all of the action from the Gasparilla Pre-Invasion to the Parade of Pirates this weekend. Just scroll through the photos and posts. If you're going, use the tag #GasparillaGram for your photos and you'll be on our blog!

Despite their efforts to re-create the life of Florida cowboys from the 19th century by wearing bonnets, suspenders and cowboy hats, and sleeping in sod fields at night, the more than even closer view with a Celestron telescope.

As work on a new state budget moves forward, Senate leaders are crafting a plan that would reduce the burden on local property taxpayers to pay for a boost in school funding, and make it part of Gov. Rick Scott's call for $1 billion in tax cuts.

A Pinellas Sheriff's deputy was arrested Friday on a count of attempted manslaughter, authorities said. Check back for an update from Pinellas Sheriff Bob Gualtieri at 1 p.m. this afternoon.

Tampa Bay's foreclosure rate continues to drop although it remains well above the national average. Find out why in November of last year, 3.1 percent of all Tampa Bay homes with mortgages were in some stage of foreclosure.

For $50,000 less, you can get a brand-new home with more than twice the square footage in south Hillsborough County. No other part of the Tampa Bay area is seeing such an explosion of single-family home construction as the vast area of former groves and farm fields south of the Alafia River in Hillsborough.

Florida unveiled its new state business brand — Florida: The Future Is Here — in an extensive campaign presentation Friday that shows a sleek, 21st-century theme for a state that very much wants to be a bigger economic player in the new century.

Without any money to lure filmmakers to Florida, 'Iinfiltrator' is the last major production to film in the Tampa Bay area for a while. No other large scale productions are currently planned, though local film officials are targeting smaller filmmakers.

There's plenty at stake in Sunday's NHL All-Star Game at Bridgestone Arena, but captain Steven Stamkos is mainly focused on a signed stick by future Hall of Famer Jaromir Jagr, 43, the Atlantic Division captain.

New Rays outfielder Corey Dickerson is billed as a quiet, Southern guy who loves to play baseball and is very competitive. Mississippian Dickerson was surprised to be traded but excited to be joining the Rays.

The Buccaneers have committed so many penalties in recent years that fans have grown accustomed to seeing as much yellow on the football field as scarlet and pewter.

USF coach Willie Taggart reportedly has filled the final vacancy on his coaching staff with the hiring of former Tennessee defensive coordinator John Jancek.

We're starting something new this year. Every month we'll choose five reader-submitted photos and ask you to help pick the one that will win the coveted title of Reader Photo of the Month.

The Ritz Ybor announced Wednesday that it would be hosting a local Lip Sync Battle on May 14. Here's our fantasy Tampa Lip Sync Battle cast ft. Rick Kriseman, Weinbraubs, and Roz from those Ask Gary commercials.

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Lightning routs Coyotes for sixth straight win

Lightning routs Coyotes for sixth straight win

GLENDALE, Ariz. — As much as the Lightning has been rolling, it remembered how it lost twice last season to the Coyotes.That included blowing a one-goal third-period lead at home down the stretch, with Tampa Bay missing the playoffs by a point."You l...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Stephan Jiggetts’ 20 points lead USF basketball over Bethune-Cookman

Stephan Jiggetts’ 20 points lead USF basketball over Bethune-Cookman

TAMPA — USF used a 21-3 run midway through the second half en route to an 83-63 win over Bethune-Cookman on Thursday night before an announced 2,091 at the Sun Dome.The victory halted a four-game losing streak for the Bulls (5-6), who scored the last...
Updated: 3 hours ago

High school scoreboard for Dec. 14

Thursday’s scoreboardGirls soccerLargo 4, Boca Ciega 1
Updated: 3 hours ago
House Speaker Paul Ryan says he’s not leaving Congress soon

House Speaker Paul Ryan says he’s not leaving Congress soon

WASHINGTON — House Speaker Paul Ryan said Thursday he’s not leaving Congress anytime soon, trying to squelch rumors that he will walk away in triumph after the Republicans’ treasured tax bill is approved. Politico and the Huffington Post published re...
Updated: 4 hours ago
No big deal for Rays at winter meetings, but it’s still coming

No big deal for Rays at winter meetings, but it’s still coming

LAKE BUENA VISTA — Here’s the one thing we definitely know:Rays officials headed home from the winter meetings and back across I-4 Thursday without making deals to trade any of their bigger-name, higher-paid players. Not closer Alex Colome, not third...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Tampa police seek ‘person of interest’ in Dec. 3 homicide

Tampa police seek ‘person of interest’ in Dec. 3 homicide

TAMPA — Police are seeking a "person of interest" who they believe has information about a Dec. 3 drive-by shooting that killed a 22-year-old man.Police are searching for Anan Motilal, 25. He stands about 5-foot-10 and weighs 180 pounds. He may have ...
Updated: 4 hours ago

Lottery resultsNumbers drawn after 9 p.m. are no longer available by our deadlines. For results, please go to tampabay.com/lottery.Pick 2, 3, 4, 5Thurs., Dec. 14, midday:97 796 8399e_SRit63724Thurs., Dec. 14, evening:37 731 1382e_SRit63276LottoWed., ...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Pence to delay Mideast trip as tax deal nears vote

Pence to delay Mideast trip as tax deal nears vote

WASHINGTON — Vice President Mike Pence is delaying his weekend departure for the Middle East as Congress nears completion of a tax overhaul, his office announced Thursday. White House officials said Pence now plans to leave for Egypt on Tuesday so he...
Updated: 4 hours ago

Pinellas Park officer stuns middle school student with Taser

PINELLAS PARK — A school resource officer stunned a middle school student with a Taser while trying to break up a fight between her and another female student on Thursday, police said.Neither the Pinellas Park officer nor the students involved in the...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Senator: Comey’s remarks on Clinton probe heavily edited

Senator: Comey’s remarks on Clinton probe heavily edited

WASHINGTON — A draft statement former FBI director James Comey prepared in anticipation of concluding the Hillary Clinton email case without criminal charges was heavily edited to change the "tone and substance" of the remarks, a Republican senator s...
Updated: 5 hours ago