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What you need to know for Thursday, Nov. 12

Newsies runs through Sunday at the Straz Center | Associated Press

Newsies runs through Sunday at the Straz Center | Associated Press

• It'll be a little cooler this morning, with a touch of fog. All that will clear up fairly quickly, giving way to "plentiful sunshine," according to WTSP 10Weather. Look for a high in the mid-80s.

• More than 10,000 Pinellas County teachers and support professionals are eligible to vote today on a contract that calls for average raises of 4 percent. But some union leaders are calling on employees to reject the pact because it doesn't expand planning time, removes language supporting PE teachers and school counselors, and eliminates family leave protections for first-year employees. Look for the results to be announced around 8 p.m.

• Today at the White House, President Barack Obama will present former Army Capt. Florent Groberg with the Medal of Honor for his heroic actions against a suicide bomber. Groberg becomes the 10th living recipient of the nation's highest military award for actions in Afghanistan.

•Neighbors of a south Tampa home are worried that the land where it sits could be split into two lots, making way for a McMansion. The home, as it turns out, is linked to Tampa's most notorious mobster figure, Santo Trafficante Jr., who died in 1987. Read the story here.

• Beat writer Joe Smith and columnist Tom Jones discuss the Lightning's woes in the latest Lightning Strikes podcast available at

•A St. Petersburg man is suing fantasy sports websites FanDuel and DraftKings. Did he lose his shorts betting on games? Nope. In fact, he's never even played. So why is St. Petersburg resident Nelson C. Steiner -- once called the baron of Tampa Bay's mobile home industry -- suing with the backing of a powerful law firm? Read here to find out.

• Former Vice President Dick Cheney headlines the Republican Party of Florida's Statesman's Dinner Thursday night at Disney's Contemporary Resort. Times Political Editor Adam C. Smith will have the story at

• Tampa is only about 24 hours away from experiencing the opening of a 60,000 square-foot, four-story Restoration Hardware (now called RH) at International Plaza. For Tampa Bay, this is a pretty big deal. Business reporter Justine Griffin got a sneak peek at the story Wednesday.

• Plan your weekend: Online today are our critics' top picks this weekend for the stage (Newsies, reviewed here), the movies (the women of Suffragette), dining out (Chowder Challenge on St. Pete Beach!) and family fun (a Pinellas Country Fair). Not to mention our guide to Ribfest in Vinoy Park this weekend and more in our Weekend Planner page.

What you need to know for Thursday, Nov. 12 11/12/15 [Last modified: Wednesday, November 11, 2015 10:59pm]
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