08/20/14 Local Government
ST. PETERSBURG — City officials say they are taking multiple steps to address issues in the Stormwater Department in the aftermath of a black city worker's claim that his white boss spray-painted "KKK" on his back, and a subsequent investigation that unearthed serious racial friction among employees.
Employees will undergo sensitivity training, and the city will seek an outside group to conduct a formal climate survey, said city spokesman Ben Kirby....
08/16/14 Local Government
ST. PETERSBURG — The long-sleeved shirt is orange, and stained with dirt and sweat and accusations.
It's been wrapped in a clear plastic bag, sitting in a city storage room for months.
Stretched across the shoulders on the back, "STORMWATER" is printed in big, black block letters.
The white letters are sprayed over that. If you look closely, you'll see the outline of what appears to be a "K," with a vertical line next to it, and then a third white smear. Similar white splotches are more pronounced on an accompanying safety vest....
Ladies, let's talk.
A couple weekends back, I flew away for a long weekend. It was lovely and a great escape. I got some much-needed rest, some quality hang-out time, and witnessed the nuptials of some dear friends. And while on a shopping trip with my sister, I decided to be a little adventurous.
We ducked into a Bath & Body Works because she needed something. I didn't have plans to get anything. I'm picky about what does go on my sensitive skin, and it's been years since I actually bought something for myself from there....
ST. PETERSBURG | Mayor Rick Kriseman made his first endorsement of this year's legislative election season, saying he supports University of South Florida St. Petersburg professor Judithanne McLauchlan for the Senate District 22 seat currently held by Republican Jeff Brandes.
The mayor and McLauchlan held a press conference Friday morning at Demens Landing park downtown....
08/05/14 Local Government
CLEARWATER — The rule for police chiefs, county administrators and other top government leaders tends to be a firm one: If you're going to work here, you need to live here.
But with rules come exceptions, and officials in Pinellas County are making some for what they say are the right hires.
St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman is not making his new police chief Tony Holloway move to the city from Belleair, and Clearwater City Manager Bill Horne is not requiring Daniel Slaughter, who will be sworn in as chief of police on Thursday, to move to Clearwater from Trinity in Pasco County....
Let's go ahead and get this out of the way: This is not my typical outfit post.
You'll see no dress here, no fancy heels, no makeup. Just me, some jeans, a T-shirt. Deal with it, because this IS what I'm wearing today. I'm not on the clock today, and just got off a plane (just got back from -- wait for it -- a wedding!)
So cut me some slack, please. It can't be that bad, right?
Actually, the main part of my outfit -- pants and top -- are both new items to my closet. I got the grey jeans last month in San Francisco. They're those ubiquitous ones from Forever 21 -- you know the ones, They're like $5 or something. I needed them when my legs got a little chilly. They have just enough stretch to be comfy on long flights, trust me....
08/01/14 Local Government
ST. PETERSBURG — A little more than halfway through his first year in office, Mayor Rick Kriseman packs his days with as many staff briefings, community meetings and small business tours as possible.
He's still getting to know the pace of city bureaucracy, he said last week, but he's generally pleased with where things stand.
"It's been a whirlwind, but it's been energizing," he said....
Wedding advice for the girl who has not been planning her wedding her whole life (and maybe also for the girl who has)07/31/14 Blog
Last weekend I went to a lovely wedding of a friend. It was at the St. Petersburg Museum of History (a pretty cool venue for those out there looking), and had a great casual feel. Everything looked and felt effortless.
So after the last toast was done, and the last song played, I snagged my friend Emily (the bride) and told her we HAD to talk. Not every girl has been dreaming of her nuptials since kindergarten. I certainly haven't, and neither has Emily. So I wanted to know: what tips could she give for the bride who doesn't have a vision board under her bed?...
New chief Tony Holloway readies to tackle bevy of policy issues, projects at St. Petersburg Police Department07/26/14 Public Safety
ST. PETERSBURG — When new chief Tony Holloway takes the reins at the Police Department next month, he won't be alone.
Holloway, 52, announced as the city's new top cop a week ago, is putting a team together to focus on his transition to the county's second-largest law enforcement agency.
He said he may draw from his experience at the Clearwater Police Department, where he has been chief for four years, but also plans to tap the expertise of others....
07/24/14 Public Safety
ST. PETERSBURG — The city's new police chief is no stranger to the Tampa Bay area.
Tony Holloway grew up in Hillsborough County. But the 52-year-old, who has led the Clearwater Police Department for the past four years, is probably more familiar to residents in the northern half of Pinellas County.
His challenge now will be to get to know south county. Holloway spoke to the Tampa Bay Times this week and said he plans to talk to everyone in his department to get a feel for how it works and what its problems are. But he also will get out in the community so people can get to know him....
This was supposed to be an intervention post.
Inspired by this article on one of my favorite sites, I was all ready to lay down a sermon about responsibility, frugalness and how not to fall in the trap of impulse buying. (Yea, I hear you laughing.)...
07/22/14 Public Safety
ST. PETERSBURG — In introducing the city's new police chief, Mayor Rick Kriseman spoke of his hire as the start of the agency's transformation, the "day that we begin to come together."
Tony Holloway stood gripping both sides of the lectern and smiled big. Before him was a room packed with elected officials, community leaders, police officers and a line of TV cameras.
"There's a lot of good men and women at the St. Petersburg Police Department, and we're going to show you a force that's going to stand together," Holloway said. "But we're also going to show you that we're going to build some bridges back into our community. Because that's what we need."...
07/21/14 Local Government
ST. PETERSBURG — A day after Mayor Rick Kriseman interviewed his top four candidates for police chief last month and introduced them to the community in a public meet-and-greet, he got on a plane to Dallas.
He was unsettled, unconvinced that any was the right fit.
At a conference that weekend, Kriseman sought advice from other mayors around the country. They all had the same message: Don't settle. Don't be afraid to scrap the list....
07/20/14 Local Government
ST. PETERSBURG — Mayor Rick Kriseman has picked a surprise candidate to lead the St. Petersburg Police Department, after eliminating all four known finalists over the weekend.
Kriseman would not say whom he selected but confirmed that the candidate accepted the offer.
So who got the job? The focus Sunday was on Clearwater police Chief Anthony "Tony" Holloway.
Clearwater Mayor George Cretekos confirmed to the Tampa Bay Times that Holloway was approached about the St. Petersburg job, but he did not know if a deal was inked....
07/19/14 Local Government
ST. PETERSBURG — When he took office this year, Mayor Rick Kriseman wasted no time trying to jump-start the city's sputtering effort at universal curbside recycling.
His administration unveiled a plan in February to get recycling bins to all of St. Petersburg's 76,000 households, not just those who pay a special fee for it now.
But almost six months later, the endeavor is bogged down and essentially on pause....