Monday, November 20, 2017
News Roundup

The DayStarter: It's hot, the future of national defense is discussed in Florida — and is truth dead in presidential politics?

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It should be brutally humid today, according to 10Weather WTSP, with "feels-like" temperatures approaching 110 degrees. There is a decent chance of afternoon thunderstorms.

• The defense industry brings in some $80 billion a year to Florida. On Wednesday, a panel of experts and lawmakers will examine the future of this important sector, including the prospects for another round of base closings and how MacDill Air Force Base might avoid it. It's part of the 2016 Florida Chamber Foundation's Military, Defense & Veterans Opportunities Summit in St. Petersburg. Look for a story from reporter Howard Altman at tampabay.com later today.

• Should animal abusers be allowed to adopt a dog or work with cats in shelters? Hillsborough County will consider the question today when commissioners hold a public hearing to decide whether to create a registry for convicted animal abusers. To follow the discussion and other commission action, follow county reporter Steve Contorno, on Twitter (@scontorno).

• We've seen the stories that 2016 will go down as the post-truth or post-fact election. But is that true? PolitiFact has been fact-checking the presidential candidates since 2007, and through July 2016, we have amassed a library of more than 950 fact-checks of the major party presidential nominees. We dug into that data to compare the major party nominees for the last three election cycles — 2016, 2012 and 2008. Read the report at PolitiFact.com.

• Want to know what it's like to climb into the controls of one of the new cranes at Port Tampa. At 135 feet in the air, it offers terrific views of Tampa Bay but is pretty dizzying. To read about the full experience, check out a report from business reporter Justine Griffin later this morning at tampabay.com/money.

• A Tampa Bay area home belonging to a famous Floridian has hit the market. To see whose home it is and if it's in your price range, see the story from real estate reporter Susan Taylor Martin later this morning at tampabay.com/money.

• The advocacy group Florida Community Health Action Information Network has scheduled a news conference for 11 a.m. at St. Petersburg City Hall to present a new report that will make the case for Florida to increase its spending on Medicaid. St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman and Pasco County Tax Collector Mike Fasano will be among those joining the group.

• Visit the Gradebook blog to keep up with education news from across Florida. Tampa Bay Times education reporter Jeff Solochek offers a roundup every day, Monday through Saturday.

• From the restaurant team the brought us Pietopia comes Oggi Italian Street Food on Davis Islands' main drag. Our food critic Laura Reiley checked out Joe DeBartolo's first nonpizza venture.

• Here are the top things to do today around Tampa Bay, including a Shiners parade in Ybor City thanks to a nation convention being held in Tampa.

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Top 5 at noon: Adam Matos sentencing begins; Seminole Heights thanks first responders; and more

Top 5 at noon: Adam Matos sentencing begins; Seminole Heights thanks first responders; and more

Here are the latest headlines and updates on tampabay.com:SENTENCING PHASE CONTINUES IN TRIAL OF ADAM MATOS, FOUND GUILTY IN MURDER OF FOURThe sentencing phase begins Monday in the trial of Adam Matos, convicted Friday of first degree murder in the ...
Updated: 9 minutes ago
UPDATED: Crocodile spotted lurking on Florida beach has been captured (w/video)

UPDATED: Crocodile spotted lurking on Florida beach has been captured (w/video)

HOLLYWOOD, Fla. — Authorities say they’ve captured a 6-foot (2-meter) crocodile that came ashore on a Florida beach.News outlets report that wildlife officers caught the large reptile Monday afternoon on Hollywood Beach.Hollywood spokeswoman Joann Hu...
Updated: 10 minutes ago
HomeTeam Hot Shot winners: Nick Ferrini and Kellyn Trowse

HomeTeam Hot Shot winners: Nick Ferrini and Kellyn Trowse

HomeTeam Hot Shots Nick Ferrini, MitchellOn Monday, Ferrini embarked on a five-day cruise with 30 family members. "Parents, grandparents, uncles, aunts, cousins, you name it," he said. Destinations during the trip include Key West, The Bahamas and a...
Updated: 1 hour ago
St. Petersburg council okays restaurant deal for Manhattan Casino

St. Petersburg council okays restaurant deal for Manhattan Casino

ST. PETERSBURG — The City Council on Monday approved a lease for the Manhattan Casino, a landmark building in the city’s historic African-American business and entertainment community.It was a controversial decision for some of the city’s black resid...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Sex assault reports declining at MacDill despite increase militarywide

Sex assault reports declining at MacDill despite increase militarywide

TAMPA — The number of sexual assaults reported to officials at MacDill Air Force Base has decreased dramatically during the past three years even as reports across the military have increased slightly, new Pentagon statistics show.Officials at MacDil...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Fennelly: Hope glimmering through the gloom of Bucs’ season

Fennelly: Hope glimmering through the gloom of Bucs’ season

ST. PETERSBURG — It isn’t easy avoiding The Jameis Winston mess.But it’s worth a try. If only to see some thin shafts of light.It’s worth considering that the 2017 Bucs, their death certificate already signed, have shown signs of life. Okay, near lif...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Tampa Electric, contractor fined $43,000 in gas leak

Tampa Electric, contractor fined $43,000 in gas leak

APOLLO BEACH — The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration fined Tampa Electric $18,108 and gave the company two "serious" citations for its response to a gas leak at the Big Bend Power Station in May, the agency announced late Friday.T...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Forecast: Florida retailers expect strong holiday shopping sales

Forecast: Florida retailers expect strong holiday shopping sales

‘Tis the season for holiday shopping, and this year is expected to be particularly kind to retailers.The Florida Retail Federation’s holiday shopping forecast predicts that a combination of high consumer confidence, strong tourism numbers and a littl...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Dr. Delay: Pinellas traffic officials to tweak signals near Largo Mall

Dr. Delay: Pinellas traffic officials to tweak signals near Largo Mall

The Largo Mall entrance stoplight on Ulmerton Road just east of Seminole Boulevard has been causing traffic delays on eastbound Ulmerton at Seminole Boulevard. It appears that the light at the Largo Mall entrance is being triggered on-demand by folks...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Up for sale? Activist investor grabs stake in Tampa’s Bloomin’ Brands

Up for sale? Activist investor grabs stake in Tampa’s Bloomin’ Brands

TAMPA — If you tread water too long in the same spot, someone might start asking why you’re not trying to swim somewhere.Tampa’s Bloomin’ Brands — parent company of such prominent restaurant chains as Outback Steakhouse, Carrabba’s Italian Grill and ...
Updated: 1 hour ago