Overcast75° WeatherOvercast75° Weather

Kameel Stanley, Times Staff Writer

Kameel Stanley

Kameel Stanley covers the St. Petersburg Police Department and public safety issues in southern Pinellas County for the Tampa Bay Times. She grew up in Michigan and started with the Times in January 2009 after graduating from Central Michigan University. Before coming to the Florida, she racked up bylines during summer internships at several newspapers, including the Grand Rapids Press and the Washington Post. She lives in St. Petersburg in a charming 1920s bungalow she swears she will repaint someday. A crazy Boston terrier keeps her company. When she's not working, she's usually shopping. Find her thoughts about style and fashion at the Deal Divas blog. Drop her a line if you want to talk crime patterns, police tactics or the advantages of a platform pump.

Phone: (727) 893-8643

Email: kstanley@tampabay.com

Twitter: @CornAndPotatoes

Blog: Deal Divas

link
  1. Deal Divas: Avoid the mall with holiday shopping apps and buying local

    Retail

    Head to the malls if you'd like.

    There's plenty of selection, of course. It may infuse you with holiday spirit. And you can wait in line for a few hours to sit on Santa's lap if that's your thing.

    But those crowds. That parking. The lines. (Deep sigh.)

    Looking for some alternatives?

    The Tampa Bay Times' Deal Divas have a few ideas.

    LOAD UP YOUR SMARTPHONE...

    The mall can even tire Santa out (well, especially Santa). The Deal Divas have some ideas to avoid the mall by using phone apps and shopping local. 
  2. Deal Divas: Holiday shopping tips for everyone from the tween to grandma

    Retail

    It's tougher today than ever before to buy gifts for a member of another generation. Older adults struggle with what kind of boop-bop-beep-bop machine to get for the kids. Meanwhile, the younger generations must try to figure out if a $400 iPad for Grandma would change her life or collect dust in the dumbwaiter. The Tampa Bay Times' Deal Divas have a few ideas.

    MILLENNIAL

    What child of the '90s didn't waste hours every day on a Sega Genesis? Now you can re-create the old days with a Sega Genesis that actually works (Bed, Bath and Beyond, $39.99). Warning: This present, which includes two controllers and several built-in games, may reduce your 20-something to a puddle of nostalgic tears. ...

    The grandmas and the youngsters in this photo from a holiday party in Zephyrhills a few years ago seem in agreement that these hats and mittens are pretty neat. But it’s more difficult than ever for people from different generations to know what to get as a gift for those older or younger. Good thing the Deal Divas have some ideas.
  3. Stop by Sundial this weekend to get holiday style ideas

    Blog

    Have your invitations to holiday parties started piling up yet? Yea, ours too -- which inevitably begs the question.

    What should you wear? And more important, what should you make your guy wear?

    A new local boutique is here to help. Jackie Z Style Co, one of the new shops at the revamped Sundial in downtown St. Pete, is hosting a special event from 5-9 p.m. on Saturday. And a fancy big-name fashion designer is the special guest....

    Is it hot in here? If you really really like the guy, you might get him these $158 Mr. Turk swim trunks (cause lets be honest, we here in Florida probably will be at the beach on Dec. 25).
  4. Despite minimum wage hike for workers, St. Petersburg at odds with largest union on contract

    Local Government

    ST. PETERSBURG — Four weeks ago, Mayor Rick Kriseman stood on the steps of City Hall to announce his city would be the first in the Tampa Bay area to raise the floor on wages for its workers.

    The announcement of a $12.50 minimum wage for full-time and some part-time city employees garnered headlines and praise.

    Now those fuzzy feelings of goodwill seem to be fizzling for some. Despite months of negotiations, the city still has not inked a contract with its largest union....

    St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman announced in October a plan to raise the minimum wage for many city employees to $12.50 an hour.
  5. My Outfit Monday: Started from the blazer now I'm here

    Blog

    If the above picture tells you anything, this sums up our Monday.

    No joke guys, the Divas are swamped these days. With an ever-expanding to-do list, and plenty of holiday-shopping gift guides to execute (check your paper soon!), there was barely anytime for girl talk about, well, our outfits.

    Luckily, Deal Diva Katie and I snagged a couple moments to ourselves to dissect mine.

    First thing to know: it starts and ends with this awesome blazer. It's one of my favorite statement pieces, with colors and pattern perfect for fall....

    What's that, you say? Let's go get coffee? Ok!
  6. St. Petersburg sees budget surplus, but may return $2.2 million federal grant

    Local Government

    ST. PETERSBURG — The city will end its budget season with a surplus for the first time in years, despite months of projections about a possible deficit.

    That was the good news budget director Tom Greene delivered to City Council members on Monday. The bad?

    That surplus could have been much greater if it wasn't for a large looming payment the city must make to the federal government early next year for failing to create jobs with grant money it received for that purpose....

  7. Uhurus threaten civil disobedience in St. Pete if Ferguson, Mo., officer isn't indicted

    Local Government

    ST. PETERSBURG — A day after a grand jury delivers its decision about the Michael Brown shooting case in Ferguson, Mo. — which could be any day now — a community group here in St. Petersburg is planning to demonstrate downtown.

    Representatives of the St. Petersburg International People's Democratic Uhuru Movement say they will gather the following day at noon at Central Avenue and Fifth Street and engage in civil disobedience. The public is invited to participate....

    Omali Yeshitela speaks at news conference Wednesday on the steps of St. Petersburg City Hall about  a planned demonstration, including "civil disobedience"  if the Ferguson grand jury decides not to indict Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson for murder. The decision is expected any day. The St Petersburg International People's Democratic Uhuru Movement's demonstration will be at Fifth Street and Central Avenue the day after the decision is announced. [CHERIE DIEZ   |   Times]
  8. St. Petersburg earns perfect score for attention to LGBT issues

    Local Government

    ST. PETERSBURG — When it comes to promotion of equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender residents, St. Petersburg gets a perfect score, according to a national report card.

    The Human Rights Campaign, based in Washington, D.C., which three years ago began ranking cities based on LGBT inclusion in local laws and policy, gave St. Petersburg 100 out of 100 points on its 2014 Municipal Equality Index — a score received by three cities in Florida....

    A pair of bikers get rolling in the St. Petersburg LGBT Pride Parade on June 28. 
  9. Kriseman taps North Carolinian to head up city development in St. Pete

    Local Government

    ST. PETERSBURG — On the heels of naming a new arts director, Mayor Rick Kriseman on Friday announced another new member of his administration.

    Alan DeLisle, of North Carolina, will be in charge of city development, replacing longtime administrator Rick Mussett, who retired last spring.

    DeLisle has been involved in economic development in Buffalo, Durham, N.C. and Louisville, Ky., where he most recently worked as director of that city's downtown partnership....

  10. Brandes, Latvala and Lee headed to state Senate victories

    Elections

    State Senate

    Republican incumbent Jeff Brandes cruised to an easy victory Tuesday night over scrappy Democratic challenger Judithanne McLauchlan, winning a second term to represent District 22 in the state Senate.

    Brandes first won the swing district seat, which covers a large swath of south Pinellas and parts of South Tampa, in 2012.

    With all of the precincts reported Tuesday, Brandes was ahead by a more than a 3-2 ratio....

    Latvala
  11. Shuttle provides free rides for St. Petersburg's needy seniors

    Local Government

    ST. PETERSBURG

    On her 72nd birthday, Ray Jackasal had a list of things to do. At the top? Get to the doctor, where she would get an injection in her knee. Once, a few years ago, Jackasal would have driven herself. But a bout with breast cancer resulted in her losing her home and car.

    Instead, Jackasal takes advantage of a new service that shuttles seniors like her to and from doctor's visits and grocery stores — at no cost....

    Erica Lewis of St. Petersburg rides in a free shuttle service Wednesday, Oct. 22, 2014. Lewis said she uses the service twice or three times a month to visit her doctors. She broke her femur and back in a car crash three years ago and is on disability.
  12. Beyonce wants you to look flawless at the gym, and she's making the clothes to get you there

    Blog

    Perhaps you were busy or sleeping or just dead or something Monday afternoon when the Internets collectively gasped at the latest Beyonce news.

    It's ok. That's what we're here for. (And no, we're not talking about the latest 'Yonce/Taylor Swift song mashup someone did. Don't EVEN get us started on that,..)

    Anyway, in case you hadn't heard, your muse/inspiration/imaginary BFF/sister Beyonce is getting in the clothing biz - collaborating with Topshop for a collection of athletic wear....

    Beyonce wants you to work out. She's making some cute clothes with Topshop to motivate you. GO.
  13. Nordstrom Rack coming to Clearwater in 2015

    Blog

    Sometimes here at Deal Divas, our regular beat jobs intersect with our roles for you guys.

    Did you see this dispatch in the paper by Deal Diva Keyonna (also a reporter in North Pinellas) about some big retail news?

    Nordstrom Rack is coming to Clearwater next fall!

    From Keyonna's story:

    "More than a decade after Nord­strom opened a full-fledged department store at Tampa's International Plaza, it continues to steadily expand its brand within the Tampa Bay region with what will become its third lower-priced sister version....

  14. St. Petersburg mayor abruptly replaces cultural affairs official

    Local Government

    ST. PETERSBURG — Mayor Rick Kriseman fired the city's main arts official on Tuesday and announced Wayne Atherholt will be the city's next director of cultural affairs.

    Atherholt, executive director of downtown's Morean Arts Center, will begin his new position Dec. 1, following the departure of current cultural affairs manager Elizabeth Brincklow.

    "Wayne Atherholt was a leader in turning St. Petersburg into a 'City of the Arts'. He knows where we have been and where we are going and I am confident he will serve us well as our director of cultural affairs." Kriseman said in a statement....

    Morean Arts Center director Wayne Atherholt, second from left, mingles at a benefit for the Morean Arts Center last year. He will become St. Petersburg's director of cultural affairs. [Times (2013)]
  15. County judge declares St. Petersburg's parking ordinance unconstitutional

    Local Government

    ST. PETERSBURG — A judge ruled this week that an ordinance regulating two-hour parking restrictions in the city's downtown core violates the law, sparking questions about an often-buzzed-about topic.

    Pinellas County Judge William Overton declared city code section 26-152, which sets out rules for parking limitations in central downtown, to be unconstitutional.

    In doing so, Overton sided with St. Petersburg lawyer Chris Sierra, who launched a legal campaign this year after he says the city erroneously issued him a ticket for remaining too long in a two-hour parking space. He argued that the city's restrictions were too vague for drivers to understand....

    St. Petersburg Parking Enforcement personnel leaves a ticket on a car on First Avenue North. (Times)