C.T. Bowen - Hillsborough County Reporter

Hillsborough County Reporter

I'm fairly new to the Hillsborough County government beat, but not so new that I'm considered green. Gray is more like it. I've been in Florida for more than three decades and have spent that entire time writing and editing news stories, columns and editorials about the Tampa Bay region. After working at the Tampa Tribune, I joined the Times in 1998 as a member of the editorial board based in Pasco County and later switched to news reporting and column writing. I'm originally from upstate New York (Go Bills!) and worked at newspapers in Jamestown, N.Y. and Syracuse before relocating to Florida. I like reading, listening to music and watching sports. My wife, Mary Beth, is a public school teacher, and we are a house divided. We have two grown sons - one Gator and one Seminole.

  1. Hillsborough County Commissioners Gwen Myers, left, and Harry Cohen, and Yes for Transportation’s campaign manager, Kevin O’Hare, campaign Nov. 8 outside the West Tampa Library in Tampa. On Wednesday, in the aftermath of the transportation referendum's defeat, commissioners voted to drop their appeal to an earlier court ruling that had called the ballot language misleading.
  2. Hillsborough County commissioners voted Wednesday to consider an ordinance banning retail sale of rabbits. It will be modeled after a similar ordinance in Pasco County. Shown are two rabbits at the SPCA Tampa Bay in November 2021.
  3. Hillsborough County Commissioner Michael Owen is asking county staff to investigate a potential ordinance that would prohibit sale of electronic cigarettes, also known as vaping, within 500 feet of a school.
  4. Departing Tampa Police Chief Mary O'Connor will continue receiving a nearly $80,000 pension from the city from her more than two decades on the police force before she was chosen to lead the department.
  5. Acting State Attorney Susan Lopez, top, is pictured on the lobby wall of the Pat Frank Courthouse in Tampa. Suspended State Attorney Andrew Warren is pictured at the bottom right.
  6. District 2 Hillsborough County Commissioner Ken Hagan speaks during the Board of County Commissioners investiture ceremony at the Hillsborough County Center in Tampa on Tuesday, November 22, 2022.
  7. Hillsborough County will spend $10.24 million for this 487-acre cattle ranch in Wimauma to add to the Little Manatee River environmental corridor. The property, owned by Bickett Holdings of Kentucky, is on Flowers Road.
  8. David Ingram is the new executive director for the Tampa Convention Center.
  9. Andrew Warren, center, speaks during a news conference in September. Hillsborough County Commissioner Mariella Smith is dropping her bid to rename an auditorium in the Pat Frank Courthouse after the ousted Hillsborough County prosecutor.
  10. The Cross Bay Ferry Provincetown III is shown carrying passengers headed from St. Petersburg to Tampa. A proposed expansion of ferry service to run between southern Hillsborough County and MacDill Air Force Base faces an uncertain future with the defeat of a sales tax referendum and new county commissioners elected Nov. 8. {Times (2018) ]
  11. Hillsborough County commissioners-elect Donna Cameron Cepeda and Joshua Wostal
  12. Classes in public schools around Tampa Bay are canceled for Thursday in anticipation of Hurricane Nicole.
  13. Hillsborough County Center at 601 E Kennedy Blvd. and all county facilities will be closed Thursday as part of the emergency response to Tropical Storm Nicole.  [Luis Santana | Times (2016) ]
  14. Se espera que la tormenta tropical Nicole se acerque a la costa este de Florida como huracán el miércoles, según el Centro Nacional de Huracanes.
  15. The Hillsborough County administration building on E Kennedy Boulevard pictured on Thursday, Sept. 29, 2022 after Hurricane Ian pummeled Florida.
  16. Hillsborough County Commissioner Ken Hagan waves at people in front of the Philippine Cultural Foundation’s Bayanihan Arts and Events Center in Tampa on Tuesday, November 8, 2022.
  17. Mailers from the 2018 1% sales tax for Hillsborough County referendum are shown. Voters approved the tax 57% to 43%, but the Florida Supreme Court later voided the tax. A new transportation tax referendum is on the Nov. 8, 2022 ballot. TIMES (2018).
  18. Karen Talamantez, 60, left, and Greg Talamantez, center, pay for their produce while Hope Hamilton works the cash register at Bearss Groves at earlier this year.  On Thursday, the Hillsborough County Commission blessed a rezoning to allow the produce stand to continue operating.
  19. The ongoing effort to obtain federal protections for the Little Manatee River faces an end-of-the-year deadline when the current 117th Congress ends.
  20. Photographs of the people who have served as Hillsborough County state attorney are on the lobby wall of the Pat Frank Courthouse in Tampa. County commissioners balked Wednesday at a request from current State Attorney Susan Lopez, top, to rename a conference room after a former colleague.
  21. A view of the overflow debris management site at Maximo Park where debris from Hurricane Ian collected in St. Petersburg has been taken over the past month. The city is on schedule to finish debris collection next week, an administrator said.
  22. Pasco County Animal Services is ceasing operations at its shelter in Land O' Lakes because of a highly contagious virus outbreak. TIMES (2019).
  23. A rendering from WSP Engineering shows what a potential neighborhood station could look like for a 41-mile bus rapid transit line connecting Pasco, Hillsborough and Pinellas counties. On Friday, the board of the regional transit agency, known commonly by the acronym, TBARTA, acknowledged the authority is headed toward its demise because of funding issues.

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