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Charlie Frago - Tampa City Hall Reporter

Tampa City Hall Reporter

Florida is the ninth state I’ve lived in. Hopefully, it’s the last. My family and I live in Clearwater and try to get to the beach at least once a month. I grew up mostly in the Midwest, but have spent the bulk of my adult years in the greater South, teaching elementary school and studying history in Texas before working for newspapers in Arkansas and North Carolina. I started my journalism career in Chicago. That’s where I met my wife. We like to visit the city of her birth as often as we can. Along with our two teenagers, we also spend time with my family in the Missouri Ozarks and New Hampshire’s lake country. It’s nice to see ridges and mountains every once in a while. Florida feels more like home each year. A big part of that is the reporting I’ve done for the Times, covering Clearwater, St. Petersburg and Tampa since 2013. In nearly a quarter-century of being a reporter, I never covered City Halls before coming to Florida and I’ve become interested in all things municipal from zoning to sewage to City Hall politics. Local government is the perfect window into what matters to us on both sides of the bay. I hope to see you at a Tampa City Council meeting or community event.

  1. Tampa City Council member Orlando Gudes paid back taxes and a penalty to the Hillsborough County Property Appraiser's Office last month for improperly claiming a homestead exemption on a residence.
  2. Tampa Mayor Jane Castor delivers her State of the City address at the Tampa Convention Center on Wednesday, May 11, 2022 in Tampa.
  3. John Godwin, pictured in center, ran unsuccessfully for Tampa City Council in 2019, losing to Charlie Miranda, left.  Joe Robinson, right, was also a candidate in that race.
  4. Tampa City Council member Guido Maniscalco has pushed for the creation of a tenants advocacy office in the city, modeled on a similar effort in South Florida.
  5. Darryl Shaw poses for a portrait overlooking Seventh Avenue in Ybor City from Hotel Haya on Tuesday, March 8, 2022.
  6. Where will the Rays play home games next. Hillsborough County officials still believe Ybor City makes the most sense. But St. Petersburg city officials believe the current Tropicana Field site is still very much in play and a decision, or at least movement, could be coming soon.
  7. U.S. Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm visited Tampa Thursday to tout clean energy initiatives by the Biden administration. She is flanked by Tampa Mayor Jane Castor, left, and U.S. Rep. Kathy Castor, D-Tampa.
  8. Tampa City Council member Guido Maniscalco said Thursday that Tampa should study how Miami-Dade County has tackled rising rents. His idea gained unanimous approval.
  9. Tampa Mayor Jane Castor has advanced a proposal to revamp bidding rules to effectively prevent a repeat of the controversial East Tampa City Center project.
  10. Tampa City Council member Orlando Gudes was accused by a former aide of creating a hostile work environment.
  11. Harbour Island residents who live behind private gates successfully lobbied Tampa City Council Thursday to reject a proposed hotel at the gates of their residential neighborhood.
  12. Mary O'Connor, left, acknowledges her supporters with Tampa Mayor Jane Castor, right, moments before being sworn in as the 43rd Chief of Police of the Tampa Police Department at her Swearing-In Ceremony on Friday, March 25, 2022, at the Tampa River Center at Julian B Lane Riverfront Park in Tampa.
  13. Tampa Mayor Jane Castor delivers her State of the City address titled “Resilient Tampa” at the Tampa Convention Center on Wednesday.
  14. Tampa City Council member Joseph Citro, seen during a council meeting in March, was elected chairperson Thursday, edging out council member Bill Carlson.
  15. Tampa Mayor Jane Castor appears to be in a strong position for reelection in 2023 with no visible opponent in a city that traditionally backs incumbent mayors.
  16. Tampa Mayor Jane Castor said Wednesday that she doesn't see a need for a reset with the City Council after a tumultuous week in which she announced transparency and accountability measures aimed at council members. In turn, Castor was accused by two council members of targeting her opponents on the council.
  17. From left, Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer, St. Petersburg Mayor Ken Welch and Tampa Mayor Jane Castor co-signed a letter to President Joe Biden saying their cities stand ready to welcome Ukrainian refugees.
  18. Tampa Mayor Jane Castor provided an update Monday on the city's $2.9 billion PIPES program at Cyrus Greene Center in East Tampa.
  19. Renderings of Tampa's proposed City Center were unveiled Tuesday at a news conference at the construction site, 2515 E Hanna Ave.
  20. Lynn Hurtak, sworn in as Tampa's newest council member Thursday to replace John Dingfelder, who resigned, says her views on policing have evolved since she indicated supporting defunding police departments online in 2020.
  21. Tampa Mayor Jane Castor announced ethics and public records reforms Wednesday, saying recent "scandals" involving City Council members were not caused by her administration.
  22. Orlando Gudes en una reunión del concejo .
  23. Lynn Hurtak, an Old Seminole Heights activist and city Variance Review Board member, was selected Tuesday to replace John Dingfelder on the Tampa City Council.
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