Tuesday, December 12, 2017
News Roundup

News at noon: ISIS in America; new downtown Publix; gas prices fall; new Holiday Desserts; World AIDS Day

U.S. authorities this year have arrested nearly five dozen people in the United States for helping to support or plot with the Islamic State, according to a new study, the largest number of terrorism-related arrests in the country in a single year since September 2001.

Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn once called it the "tipping point" for downtown growth. No, not a baseball stadium. He was talking about a grocery store. And it's finally happening. A 37,600-square-foot Publix is expected to open in the fall of 2017 in the Channel District.

A Pinellas judge is expected to decide today if U.S. Army Maj. Roman Izzo, accused in a Clearwater murder, will be allowed to return to base before his trial starts.

Bringing added cheer to the holidays, the average Tampa Bay area price for gas just fell under $2 a gallon. It's a gift for consumers and businesses, savings that are in effect a raise for wage-flat households and a confidence booster during the seasonal shopping season.

St. Petersburg is already home to the largest gay pride event in the state, and come 2017, the city will host the International Gay & Lesbian Travel Association's Annual Global Convention for the first time. The IGLTA's board of directors selected the Vinoy Renaissance St. Petersburg Resort & Golf Club as the site for the convention, which will take place May 3-6 2017.

Today we launch our inaugural Holiday Desserts issue of Taste. We have expanded our annual Christmas cookie issue to more kinds of desserts. And we're putting an emphasis on the stories that accompany them. The goal is to highlight those food-family connections the holidays tend to conjure up. Find them all here.

Kenny Leon's path to The Wiz Live! wasn't entirely paved with yellow bricks. His journey began in Jim Crow's Tallahassee, winding through boyhood on 18th Street S in a desegregating St. Petersburg. Leon, 59, eases on today as a Tony award-winning director, now entrusted with NBC's live telecast Thursday of a Broadway classic. "To me, I'm sort of like Dorothy in The Wiz," Leon said by telephone from New York. "It kind of parallels my life.

We finally got back to the Blumquists in Monday night's hilarious and suspenseful episode of Fargo. The rest of the characters took a back seat, and it was a little refreshing to stay on one storyline.

Steve Persall writes that Lenny Abrahamson's Room is a startling movie experience, peculiar in setting and profoundly simple. It's a story of love born out of unseen horror, of nurture conquering nature. Room must be felt to be believed.

PHOTO GALLERY

Around the globe, people pause for World AIDS Day.

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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Pinellas construction board prepares to lose independence

Pinellas construction board prepares to lose independence

LARGO –– In January, members of the Pinellas County Construction Licensing Board cried foul when elected officials wanted to fold the board under county government.The objections didn’t surface at Monday’s board meeting.That’s when the interim execut...
Updated: 14 minutes ago
Unusual paddle design earns worldwide market

Unusual paddle design earns worldwide market

Paddling on the heels of the last supermoon of 2017, Phil Hughes navigated an uncommonly low tide off Dunedin through St. Joseph Sound on an effortless but lengthy glide.This is not easy water, nor an easy paddle, and could be especially daunting for...
Updated: 27 minutes ago
Punit Shah’s Liberty Group building new Channel District hotel with Jameis Winston as limited investor

Punit Shah’s Liberty Group building new Channel District hotel with Jameis Winston as limited investor

TAMPA — Punit Shah’s Liberty Group announced plans Tuesday to start construction in January on a Channel District project that will include a Hampton Inn and Home2 Suites, both by Hilton, plus a Starbucks Coffee.Financing for the $40 million project ...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Democrats say Trump’s tweets about Gillibrand sexist, unsavory

Democrats say Trump’s tweets about Gillibrand sexist, unsavory

WASHINGTON — Plowing into the sexual harassment debate in a big way, President Donald Trump laced into Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand on Tuesday, tweeting that the New York Democrat would come to his office "begging" for campaign contributions and "do anyth...
Updated: 1 hour ago
A life-sized Pittsburgh Penguin once roamed Earth 60 million years ago

A life-sized Pittsburgh Penguin once roamed Earth 60 million years ago

NEW YORK — Fossils from New Zealand have revealed a giant penguin that was as big as a grown man, roughly the size of the captain of the Pittsburgh Penguins. The creature was slightly shorter in length and about 20 pounds (9 kilograms) heavier than t...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Nicko’s Fine Foods, classic diner and Seminole Heights icon, closes after six decades

Nicko’s Fine Foods, classic diner and Seminole Heights icon, closes after six decades

Nicko’s Fine Foods, known as the place Elvis Presley ate following a 1956 concert and Tampa’s last classic prefabricated diner, has shut down after more than 60 years in business.Owners Karen and Nicholas Liakos could not be reached for comment but w...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Top 5 at noon: Warren Sapp accused of harassment; NFL Network suspends three analysts over sexual assault allegations; Star Wars: The Last Jedi has everything The Force Awakens was missing; and more

Top 5 at noon: Warren Sapp accused of harassment; NFL Network suspends three analysts over sexual assault allegations; Star Wars: The Last Jedi has everything The Force Awakens was missing; and more

Here are the latest headlines and updates on tampabay.com.WARREN SAPP ACCUSED OF HARASSMENT; NFL NETWORK SUSPENDS THREE ANALYSTS OVER SEXUAL ASSAULT ALLEGATIONSWarren Sapp, a former Buc and Pro Football Hall of Famer, has been accused of sexual hara...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Creating PDQ from scratch: CEO of growing brand came from Bucs’ front office

Creating PDQ from scratch: CEO of growing brand came from Bucs’ front office

Shortly after leaving his job as chief financial officer of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to strike out on his own as an entrepreneur, Nick Reader wondered if he’d made the right move. "I probably had one of the coolest jobs in Tampa," said Reader, 42. Si...
Updated: 2 hours ago
‘Lead us not into’ what? Pope Francis suggests changing the words of the Lord’s Prayer.

‘Lead us not into’ what? Pope Francis suggests changing the words of the Lord’s Prayer.

One of the best-known prayers in the English language might need an update for the sake of theological clarity, Pope Francis recently suggested in an interview.The words in the Lord’s Prayer that ask, "Lead us not into temptation," can cause confusio...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Downtown St. Pete’s 24-hour diner 2nd & Second is open

Downtown St. Pete’s 24-hour diner 2nd & Second is open

Downtown St. Petersburg’s only 24/7 restaurant has opened and doesn’t plan to close, ever. The 2nd & Second diner at the corner of Second Street and Second Avenue N will remain open 24 hours a day, seven days a week offering a spot f...
Updated: 2 hours ago