Saturday, January 20, 2018
News Roundup

News at noon: Iraq and Syria Q&A; Delegate meeting in Tampa; 'Hamilton' has 16 Tony Award nominations; Options other than brunch with mom this Sunday

• No one disputes that U.S. military forces are fighting in combat in Iraq and Syria — except maybe President Barack Obama and some members of his administration. Iraq and Syria Q&A: When is a U.S. 'boot on the ground' not a 'boot on the ground'?

• A jury in St. Louis has ordered Johnson & Johnson to pay $55 million to a South Dakota woman who claimed the company's talcum powder caused her to develop ovarian cancer.

• Florida GOP officials will select target="_blank">15 at-large delegates next weekend in Tampa, part of a two-day quarterly meeting that will feature a presentation from Google, a "next generation GOP roundtable" and breakfast with Dan Bongino. Several U.S. Senate candidates are expected to attend the May 13-14 meeting at the Doubletree on W Cypress Street in Tampa.

• Democratic state Rep. Dwight Dudley six days ago surprised a ton of people by announcing that he would not seek reelection to his Democratic-leaning south Pinellas state House seat. Two things happened quickly.

• Children in the Hillsborough County public schools can look forward to less testing in the coming year as the district responds to a backlash that has existed nationwide for years. Teachers and principals will be able to choose which tests to administer, how to use them, and when to schedule them.

• Brunch on the water. Flowers. A spa day. There's nothing wrong with any of it. But, just like dads with their grilling and sports and gadgets, moms can fall victim to a sea of well-meant cliches. Moms are actually complex, interesting individuals who just happened to give birth. Maybe she does want brunch and flowers. But maybe she wants to try something new this year. Our critics and writers have offered up a host of Mother's Day ideas for the not-so-average woman in your life.

• The megahit musical Hamilton has grabbed a record-breaking 16 Tony Award nominations, the biggest haul in Broadway history and another notch in the show's march into theatrical history.

The Maids, Jean Genet's superior piece of art, still wears well. The 90-minute one-act, which opened in 1947 in Paris, keeps getting performed because the issues it raises remain touchy and up-to-the-minute. The current production at Jobsite Theater is a straightforward representation of Genet's work, with good results.

• Aerosmith may or may not be plotting a farewell tour, and it may or may not make its way to Florida. But with or without his bandmates, Steven Tyler is coming to town.

• The Bucs' battle for a fourth tight end is a complicated one -- first, whether they'll carry one -- but one challenger to veteran Brandon Myers and practice-squad prospect Tevin Westbrook is undrafted rookie free agent Tim Brown of West Chester in Pennsylvania. Meet the Bucs rookies: West Chester TE Tim Brown

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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U.S. government shuts down; Democrats, GOP blame each other

U.S. government shuts down; Democrats, GOP blame each other

WASHINGTON — The federal government shut down at the stroke of midnight Friday, halting all but the most essential operations and marring the one-year anniversary of President Donald Trump’s inauguration in a striking display of Washington dysfunctio...
Updated: 1 hour ago

High school scoreboard for Jan. 19

Friday’s scoreboardBoys soccerIndian Rocks Christian 2, Lakewood 1Lennard 3, Spoto 0Girls soccerPCAC Championship: Largo 3, Osceola 1Lennard 8, Spoto 0
Updated: 2 hours ago

Four people linked to Tampa carjacking captured hours later

TAMPA — It took officers just 27 minutes Friday night to capture four people who they said stole a car from its owner.The incident started outside the Ybor Coffee Shop at 5:45 a.m. A group approached the driver as he sat in his 2010 Toyota Corolla. T...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Inspector General launches investigation into Tampa Bay’s local career centers

Inspector General launches investigation into Tampa Bay’s local career centers

The state has opened an investigation into CareerSource Pinellas and CareerSource Tampa Bay, days after the Tampa Bay Times asked about whether the two regional job centers were inflating the number of people they had helped get hired. The agencies, ...
Updated: 3 hours ago

Florida National Guard soldier killed, five injured in Sebring crash

SEBRING — A soldier with the Florida National Guard was killed and five others were hospitalized after a multi-vehicle crash on Friday, officials said.The crash took place at about 1 p.m. at the intersection of U.S. 27 and Hammock Road.The soldiers ...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Two New Port Richey men accused of stealing $11,000 in cellphone merchandise

Two New Port Richey men accused of stealing $11,000 in cellphone merchandise

NEW PORT RICHEY — Two New Port Richey men face charges after Pasco County deputies say they stole about $11,000 worth of cellphones and cellphone equipment at a Metro PCS store on State Road 54.Robert Jackson and Ronald Hartshorn were arrested Wednes...
Updated: 4 hours ago
U.S. Attorney: Tampa woman uses soul food restaurant as part of scheme to steals thousands

U.S. Attorney: Tampa woman uses soul food restaurant as part of scheme to steals thousands

TAMPA — The owner of a soul and seafood restaurant is facing more than 10 years in federal prison for filing dozens of false tax returns and stealing thousands of dollars, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.Natalie Rene Panko, 57, owner of Ladie...
Updated: 4 hours ago
That noise you hear from MacDill is low-flying A-10 Warthogs in training

That noise you hear from MacDill is low-flying A-10 Warthogs in training

TAMPA — If you hear loud noises coming from MacDill Air Force Base over the next few days, don’t be alarmed.It’s the sound of flying hogs.A squadron of A-10C Warthogs, beloved by troops in the field for their ability to swoop low and slow and tear ap...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Autopsy: drugs found in MLB star Roy Halladay’s system after plane crash

Autopsy: drugs found in MLB star Roy Halladay’s system after plane crash

When former Major League Baseball pitcher Roy Halladay died in a plane crash in November, he had amphetamines, morphine and the sleep aid zolpidem in his system, according to an autopsy report.Halladay, 40, died from blunt force trauma with drowning ...
Updated: 5 hours ago
USF leaders move to calm fears over consolidation plan

USF leaders move to calm fears over consolidation plan

ST. PETERSBURG — Holding a piece of computer paper and a microphone, the leader of the University of South Florida St. Petersburg began a Friday afternoon forum by repeating the USF administration’s new mantra.He reassured the crowd before him that t...
Updated: 5 hours ago