Monday, August 13, 2018
News Roundup

The Daystarter: A playground for law enforcement, Trump's transition shakeup, and where Christmas trees will light up Tampa Bay starting tonight

• Wake up to temperatures in the mid-50s early today. We can expect sunny skies and afternoon highs in the 70s through Thursday, according to 10Weather WTSP

10News WTSP

The latest 7-day forecast

10News WTSP

Feels-like temperatures around the Tampa Bay area

• As you head out for your morning commute, check out our live blog for the latest traffic updates and road conditions across Tampa Bay.

• A free playground for law enforcement? That's what some are calling Dade Oaks, an abandoned public housing complex in Pasco County that is set for demolition in January. In the meantime, cops from throughout the region have been using it as a staging area for training.

• The bloodletting in President-elect Donald Trump's transition team that began with last week's ouster of New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie escalated Tuesday with new departures, particularly in the area of national security, as power consolidated within an ever-smaller group of top Trump loyalists. See who's on their way out.

• It's not even Thanksgiving yet, but tonight the lights get powered up on the massive tree in Ybor City, marking the start of many, many local holiday events through the end of the year. Here are the details on that tree-lighting ceremony and some others coming up across the Tampa Bay area in the coming weeks.

• Three local government agencies are putting together a rescue package for families stuck paying mortgages on government subsidized homes blighted by toxic drywall. Hillsborough County plans to partner with the city of Tampa and the Tampa Housing Authority to rehabilitate four homes in Belmont Heights and provide temporary accommodation during the work, which could take up to six months.

• The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is set to start two days of meetings at the University of South Florida St. Petersburg. The meetings start at 8:30 a.m. and the top item on the agenda for Wednesday is a discussion about the future of the Florida panther, and the FWC's rules for them and for all of its other imperiled species. Follow Craig Pittman at @craigtimes for updates.

• According to a recent consultant's report, the University of South Florida system's efforts to commercialize research discoveries and newly patented technologies is having a pretty significant impact on the state — to the tune of more than $400 million.

• After months of lawsuits, accusations and acrimony, Hillsborough's Public Transportation Commission narrowly approved an agreement for rideshare companies Uber and Lyft to let passengers use a cellphone app to summon a driver-for-hire in his or her own car. However, columnist Sue Carlton writes, there's still a lot of messiness to sort out.

• We've had a lot of big concert announcements this week. Bruno Mars is coming back to Tampa, Willie Nelson will be at the Strawberry Festival and the New Kids On the Block and Boyz II Men are bringing along Paula Abdul for their "Total Package Tour" next summer. Find all latest music news on our Soundcheck blog.

• Beauty ahead. Art critic Lennie Bennett reviews Anne Patterson's installation, "Pathless Woods," the inaugural exhibition at Ringling's new Keith D. and Linda L. Monda Gallery of Contemporary Art.

• Food critic Laura Reiley checked out Santa Fe Mexican Grill in Largo, which in a few weeks will open another location in Pinellas Park.Read her review here on the growing empire built on heaping Tex-Mex plates.

• Cheese is a staple of many Thanksgiving recipes, but grating it can be a messy proposition. In this Food Hack video, food editor Michelle Stark shows how to keep things clean as you prepare your favorite dishes.

• Here are the top things to do today in Tampa Bay, including Santa's Flight Academy at International Plaza and Florida Orchestra's Coffee Concerts at Ruth Eckerd Hall.

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Find A Friend: Paddington the Black Cat

Find A Friend: Paddington the Black Cat

Sweet! Friday (Aug. 17) is National Black Cat Appreciation Day. Love has no color, but Paddington and his black kitten siblings are all ready to celebrate. There are lots of reasons to adopt a black cat — and you’ll never need a lint brush during bla...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Habitat for Humanity says it plans to buy back mortgages sold to house flipper

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TAMPA — Habitat for Humanity of Hillsborough County said Monday that it will seek to immediately buy back 12 mortgages that it had sold to a Tampa company with a history of flipping foreclosed houses. The announcement came a day after the Tampa Bay T...
Updated: 5 hours ago
WWE star, Pasco resident Jim ‘The Anvil’ Neidhart dies at 63

WWE star, Pasco resident Jim ‘The Anvil’ Neidhart dies at 63

WESLEY CHAPEL — Jim "The Anvil" Neidhart, a former star with World Wrestling Entertainment who was known for his maniacal laugh, long goatee beard and powerhouse moves, died on Monday. He was 63.The Pasco County Sheriff’s Office said Mr. Neidhart fel...
Updated: 6 hours ago
What’s in the way of the Rays’ rebuild

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So here's the good news.The Rays are 60-58 after taking two out of three in Toronto. Their so-called "tanking'' plan isn't really a total tank job after all. Call it a rebuilding project, and this rebuilding project looks way ahead of schedule. Not o...
Updated: 6 hours ago
Shooter charged with manslaughter in Clearwater stand your ground case

Shooter charged with manslaughter in Clearwater stand your ground case

Frustration and anticipation have packed the roughly three weeks since Michael Drejka shot Markeis McGlockton in a convenience store parking lot in a case that has reignited the debate over Florida’s stand your ground law.And on Monday, it took a dra...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Hillsborough School District will speed up lead testing, following Times investigation

Hillsborough School District will speed up lead testing, following Times investigation

TAMPA — The Hillsborough County School District said Monday it will accelerate how quickly it is testing school drinking and cooking water for lead.The announcement came several days after the Tampa Bay Times reported that the district didn’t disclos...
Updated: 7 hours ago
How prosecutors decided to charge Michael Drejka, shooter in controversial stand your ground case

How prosecutors decided to charge Michael Drejka, shooter in controversial stand your ground case

Prosecutors on Monday decided to charge 48-year-old Michael Drejka with manslaughter in the fatal shooting of Markeis McGlockton, a major development in a case that has drawn national scrutiny over Florida’s stand your ground law.CHARGES FILED: Shoot...
Updated: 7 hours ago
What they’re saying: Reaction to the arrest of Michael Drejka in Markeis McGlockton shooting

What they’re saying: Reaction to the arrest of Michael Drejka in Markeis McGlockton shooting

The arrest of Michael Drejka in the controversial shooting of Markeis McGlockton drew loud approval Monday as a welcome development for family, advocacy groups and local elected officials in Florida.CHARGES FILED: Shooter charged with manslaughter in...
Updated: 8 hours ago
Bulls secondary brimming with Hillsborough talent

Bulls secondary brimming with Hillsborough talent

Based on the daily scrimmage periods open to media, the Bulls appear poised to brandish a predominantly Hillsborough County secondary in 2018.Senior Mazzi Wilkins (Plant) and sophomore Mike Hampton (Hillsborough) appear set at the starting cornerback...
Updated: 8 hours ago
Stand your ground now means we must read the mind of an accused killer

Stand your ground now means we must read the mind of an accused killer

Today, the liberals are doing a victory dance.And the conservatives are resting easier.Pinellas-Pasco State Attorney Bernie McCabe has done them all a huge favor by bringing a manslaughter charge against convenience store shooter Michael Drejka.You s...
Updated: 8 hours ago