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Quality of Life Index // OUR TIMES AS TOLD BY STATISTICS

Number of dead possums that civic gadfly Tony Daniel tried to carry into last week's meeting of the Tampa City Council: 1

Number of dead possums that police officers let Daniel take into the City Council meeting: 0

Receipts for the road production of Miss Saigon at the Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center for Jan. 15-21: $853,111

Tampa Electric Co.'s maximum generating capacity, in megawatts: 3,700

The amount of TECO electricity, in megawatts, used at last Monday's peak of cold-weather demand: 3,640

Increase, in percent, in nationwide sales of Quaker-brand oatmeal during the four cold-weather weeks ending Jan. 20: +19

Increase, in percent, in sales of Quaker oats in Tampa during the same four cold weeks: +39

Convenience store robberies in Hillsborough County in 1987: 344

Convenience store robberies in Hillsborough last year: 60

Percentage of the companies the city of Tampa awarded construction contracts last year that are owned by women or minorities: 17.7

The city of Tampa's goal, in percent, for the number of companies owned by women and minorities that should get a piece of the city's construction business: 26

Compiled by RICHARD DANIELSON with contributions from BARBARA HIJEK.

Sources for Quality of Life Index

Dead possums: Staff report. Daniel, 38, a longstanding City Council antagonist, told bystanders that he wanted to display the possum, which had blood dripping from its mouth, to make a point about the "dead marsupial problem" on Bayshore Boulevard.

Miss Saigon: Variety for Jan. 29-Feb. 4.

Electricity demands: Tampa Electric Co. The peak, which occurred at 7:02 a.m. Monday, set a record for usage. By comparison, 24 hours later, usage had dropped to 3,188 megawatts.

Oatmeal sales: Feb. 7 news release from Quaker Oats Co. The increases cited are for the same four weeks the previous year. The release quotes Steve Odland, Quaker vice president for marketing-hot cereals, as saying, "There's a good reason why January is National Oatmeal Month. Oatmeal consumption is at its highest in January."

Convenience store robberies: Staff report. The trend is similar throughout the state, with convenience store holdups dropping 39.7 percent between 1990 and 1994. Experts think criminals hit convenience stores less now because virtually all stores in Florida use drop safes and surveillance cameras and generally limit the amount of cash on hand to $50 or less.

Minority contracts: City of Tampa purchasing department statistics for the last fiscal year.

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