Tampa Electric will build the largest solar project in the Tampa Bay area, the subsidiary of TECO Energy announced Tuesday.
The 25-megawatt system will feature more than 70,000 solar panels on 125 acres of the company's existing land at the Big Bend Power Station in Apollo Beach.
Slated for completion in 2016, the project marks the latest in more than $50 million the Tampa Electric will have invested in solar since 2000....
08/04/15 Local Government
BROOKSVILLE — Retired finance professional William Kemerer, who was unsuccessful last year when he sought Seat 4 on the Brooksville City Council, won Seat 3 on Monday when two council members supported him for the job.
Once the vote was taken, the Southern Hills Plantation Club resident was sworn in and took his place with the council. He fills the seat of Vice Mayor Joe Johnston, the longtime council member who died last month. Council member Natalie Kahler was selected by the council to be the new vice mayor....
08/04/15 Local Government
The Pinellas County Commission is set to vote today on a proposal to increase the county tourist tax from 5 percent to 6 percent.
If approved, the measure would generate an additional $7 million a year, bringing the total to $42 million that would be spent annually on advertising and marketing, beach nourishment and other capital projects, including a potential new stadium for the Tampa Bay Rays....
08/04/15 Public Safety
PLANT CITY — A toddler was hospitalized Tuesday morning after a Hillsborough sheriff's detective found a dog carrying the boy in its mouth, sheriff's officials said.
At about 8 a.m., Detective Jeffrey Harris was talking to a business owner at 3701 Trapnell Road, east of Plant City, about a car theft when they saw a 50-pound Boxer with something in its mouth, officials said. When they approached the dog they realized it was carrying Michael Diaz, who will be 2 years old next month....
Some of our best photography, either inside or outside of our studio, appears in the pages of Bay magazine. Here are some photos from the latest issue of Bay, published on August 2, 2015.
Visit the Times image archive to license or purchase a reprint of any image shown above or to see some more photos from Bay magazine....
Sun might make an appearance in Tampa Bay on Tuesday.
After 10 days of hard rain, the region is returning to its normal summer weather pattern today, with a 30 percent to 40 percent chance for rain, according to WTSP 10Weather. Forecasters predict passing showers and some clouds with high humidity as the highly saturated ground heats up.
But residents are not in the clear yet. Authorities in Pasco before dawn evacuated residents from the Oaks View Apartments in New Port Richey because of flooding, according to the county. ...
08/03/15 TV and Radio
Baseball Mets at Marlins 7 p.m. FSF Red Sox at Yankees 7 p.m. MLB Rays at White Sox 8 p.m. Sun Sports; 620-AM Baseball, Youth Leagues Big League World Series 7:30 p.m. ESPN2 Cycling Tour of Utah 3 p.m. FS1 Soccer Audi Cup: Real Madrid vs. Tottenham 12:30 p.m. ESPN2, ESPND Audi Cup: Bayern Munich vs. AC Milan 2:30 p.m. ESPN2, ESPND Mexican: Tijuana at Zacatepec 8 p.m. ESPND Mexican: Lobos at Veracruz 10 p.m. ESPND Softball National Pro Fastpitch: Dallas at USSSA Pride 7 p.m. CBSSN Tennis Citi Open 2 p.m. Tennis WNBA Indiana at Chicago 8 p.m. NBA Minnesota at Los Angeles 10 p.m. ESPN2
08/03/15 The Heater
CHICAGO — Sure, Richie Shaffer's first night as a big-leaguer could have gone better, as he struck out twice, walked and was hit by a pitch while making a handful of uneventful plays in six innings at first in the Rays' 5-4 win over the White Sox.
But that didn't keep it from being one of the best days ever.
"It was incredible," Shaffer said. "Loved every second of it. Thought I had some good at-bats today and really soaked it in. Awesome team win. A ton of fun tonight. … And ready to do it again tomorrow."...
08/03/15 The Heater
Rays at White Sox
When/where: 8:10 tonight; U.S. Cellular Field, Chicago
TV/radio: Sun Sports; 620-AM, 680-AM (Spanish)
RAYS: RH Chris Archer (9-8, 2.54)
WHITE SOX: LH Chris Sale (9-6, 3.20)
On Archer: Hasn't won since June 23, going 0-4, 3.96 in six starts since. Retired first 19 Tigers in last start, lost duel with Justin Verlander. Yielded one or no earned runs in 13 starts. Is 1-0, 4.64 in four games vs. Sox....
08/03/15 The Heater
CHICAGO — The Rays got a series of big hits to come back to beat the White Sox 5-4 on Monday. But it was a throw from CF Kevin Kiermaier and a catch and tag by C Curt Casali that was the big play.
After blowing a 2-0 lead in the sixth when RHP Nathan Karns, who had a one-hitter going, gave up a two-run homer to Jose Abreu, and after blowing a 3-2 lead in the seventh when Steve Geltz, trying to fill the role of traded Kevin Jepsen, gave up a two-run homer to Carlos Sanchez, the Rays (53-54) rallied again....
Four feet of water flooded the couple's yard, overflow from a lake swollen with rain. On Monday morning, every room in their New Port Richey home filled with 2 inches of water.
"It's been a slow torture watching the water get higher and higher," said Monique Annas, 35. All of the family's belongings aside from hanging clothes, she said, were ruined. Their vents leaked; their carpets came undone. They used a kayak to salvage what they could....
Dale Foster never realized how much he missed football until it was taken away from him.
After a freshman season on Pinellas Park's junior varsity, Foster was told he couldn't join the varsity for the final few games because his grade-point average was too low.
"I was kind of like everyone else and didn't take high school seriously," Foster said. "But I found out football was a big deal to me. It's my life right now. I didn't like being without it."...
Weather clears up
Continued heavy rains forced the Bucs to keep Monday's practice closed to the public, citing safety concerns with flooding in parts of the area, but the Bucs were pleasantly surprised to get their drills in without any rain.
"I thought we were either going to USF again or no practice, but the weather cleared up for us and that was pretty good," WR Mike Evans (above) said. "We want to practice and get the practices out of the way so we can be ready for the 15th (preseason opener)."...
08/03/15 Local Government
CLEARWATER — The city should spend the money it will receive in its BP settlement on something that will have a lasting impact, City Manager Bill Horne told the City Council on Monday.
The city will get about $6.48 million as its share of BP's settlement from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill of 2010. Rather than use it on operating funds or lowering the property tax rate, Horne suggested the city dedicate the money to a legacy fund, focus on disaster management or invest in economic initiatives, such as the city's downtown project....
TAMPA -— Jameis Winston performed like — well — a rookie NFL quarterback in practice Monday, throwing three interceptions on his first five passes during a team blitz period.
He was picked off by S D.J. Swearinger and CB Leonard Johnson on consecutive plays. After two completions, CB Sterling Moore stole another pass.
Bucs coach Lovie Smith, who was pleased to see his defense create turnovers, said he wanted to give Winston defensive looks early in training camp that Winston inevitably will see during the season....