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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 Mayor Jane Castor talked with the Tampa Bay Times recently about Super Bowl security, coronavirus vaccines and President Donald Trump's impeachment.
  2. Tampa Fire Rescue needs more fire fighters and better equipment, interirm Fire Chief Barbara Tripp told City Council members on Thursday.
  3. Tampa Mayor Jane Castor announced Wednesday that a controversial wastewater reuse proposal would be delayed for several weeks before a City Council vote to allow time to build consensus.
  4. Chlorinated water flows over a weir at the Howard F. Curren Advanced Wastewater Treatment Plant. The city has a new plan to convert wastewater to drinking-quality water to replenish its water supply.
  5. A rollerblader takes a spin through Julian B. Lane Riverfront Park last year.
  6. Tampa is raising parking rates in downtown, Ybor City, the Channel District and parts of South Tampa. The first phase went into effect Jan.1.
  7. Tampa Mayor Jane Castor addresses the media after she cast her ballot in person during early voting at Amalie Arena, Monday, Oct. 19, 2020 in Tampa. After talking with reporters, Castor took photos with the Stanley Cup, won by the Tampa Bay Lightning, that was on site at Thunder Alley for people to see.
  8. Crowds gather on 7th Avenue as they celebrate New Years Eve at nightclubs and restaurants in Ybor City.
  9. Tampa Mayor Jane Castor's partner, Ana Cruz (left), will be spending more time in Washington, D.C. in her lobbying efforts, but Castor won't be leaving her job leading Florida's third-largest city.
  10. Tampa Mayor Jane Castor, pictured here in December,  recently talked to the Tampa Bay Times about the year about to end and the one to come.
  11. Pipe layers with Woodruff and Sons await the delivery of a section of box culvert while joining sections of a new stormwater drainage system on Monday, Dec. 14, 2020, below Gray Street at the Havana Square apartment complex in Tampa. The site is part of a massive, multi-block construction zone in North Hyde Park, the result of a $251-million stormwater assessment approved by in 2016 the Tampa City Council to tackle perennially flooded streets, particularly in South Tampa.
  12. A tree service employee cuts a limb on a tree in Tampa. A new grant program for East Tampa residents to help pay for tree trimming and removal has raised questions about the lack of Black-owned firms participating. [Times (2005)]
  13. OCTAVIO JONES   |   Times 
Council member John Dingfelder during a city council meeting at the old city hall in downtown Tampa, Florida on Thursday, June 6, 2019.
  14. Tampa has rarely needed to utilize its membership in the three-county consortium that makes up Tampa Bay Water because of its abundance of surface water, including supply sources such as the Hillsborough River Dam just upstream of the David L. Tippin Water Treatment Facility.
  15. Visitors crowd Seventh Avenue in Ybor City, Tampa, Halloween night this year. This weekend, a majority of the citations for violating the county's order on social distancing and mask wearing occurred in the entertainment district.
  16. Tampa's skyline as seen on Jan. 7, 2019.
  17. Los alcaldes de Tampa, St. Petersburg y Clearwater, junto con los presidentes de las comisiones del condado de Pinellas y Hillsborough, discuten las medidas de aplicación como región en una reunión virtual el jueves.
  18. The mayors of Tampa, St. Petersburg and Clearwater, along with Pinellas and Hillsborough County Commission chairs discuss enforcement measures as a region in a Thursday virtual meeting.
  19. Tampa Mayor Jane Castor announced late Wednesday that a regional enforcement effort targeting business owners who violate local mask orders will be rolled out Thursday.
  20. Madison Park is seen in this image from Google Earth.
  21. Tampa Mayor Jane Castor, after voting last month. On Wednesday, Castor announced her fifth and final task force on resiliency and sustainability.
  22. Tampa Mayor Jane Castor, on left, along with Carole Post, who Castor named the city's new Administrator for Development and Economic Opportunity, after a 2019 press conference in Tampa.
  23. Tampa City Council member Luis Viera, at a June council meeting at the Tampa Convention Center.