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Josh Solomon - St. Petersburg City Hall Reporter

St. Petersburg City Hall Reporter

I cover the city of St. Petersburg — its residents, leaders and issues. The dramatics of Washington and Tallahassee often overshadow the work of local government, but City Hall is where the decisions are made that have the greatest impact on people’s daily lives. It’s my job to keep it interesting so more people stay engaged with their community. I’m also on the Tampa Bay Times’ hurricane team, and have been deployed to report on the aftermaths of three storms: Hermine in 2016, Irma in 2017 and Michael in 2018. I find serenity in following recipes, the more complicated the better. I’m a bourbon fan, an amatuer pizza critic and a Pinellas Trail bike rider. Otherwise I like watching YouTube and talking on the phone. I’m proudly from New Jersey, don’t @ me for it — or do, it won’t matter. I came to the Times in 2014 after graduating from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism.

  1. Sharon Newby, right, announced on Friday that she is dropping out of the Republican primary in Florida's 13th Congressional District. She threw her support behind Anna Paulina Luna, left. [Courtesy of the Luna campaign]
  2. The Historic Manhattan Casino will once again have its business model reimagined.
  3. Graham Ivan Clark, 17, of Tampa appeared in court on Saturday, 8/1/2020 via video monitor from Hillsborough County jail. He faces 30 charges related to hacking Twitter accounts and soliciting Bitcoin, reaping $117,000. [JOSH SOLOMON  |  Times]
  4. Graham Ivan Clark, 17, of Tampa, appeared in court on Saturday via a video feed from the Hillsborough County jail. He faces 30 charges related to hacking Twitter accounts and soliciting Bitcoin, reaping $117,000, authorities say. [JOSH SOLOMON  |  Times]
  5. The Republican candidates for Florida’s 13th Congressional District include (from top left) Sheila Griffin, Anna Paulina Luna, George Buck and Amanda Makki. (Sharon Barry Newby, who's also running, is not pictured.) [handout]
  6. Plexiglass dividers separate seats on the St. Petersburg City Council dais. It's one safety measure the city is considering for its eventual return to in person City Council meetings. [SCOTT KEELER  |  Times]
  7. Antonio Cruz Ortiz, 31, went on a shooting rampage in Tampa on July 30, wounding at least five people including a police officer, authorities said. Gunfire penetrated the front windshield of a Tampa police cruiser and shattered the rear glass, police said. [Hillsborough County Sheriff's Department | Tampa Police Department]
  8. Graham Ivan Clark, 17, of Tampa, was arrested Friday on 30 charges. Authorities say he was the "mastermind" of a July 15 Twitter hack scheme which gave him and two others access to the high-profile accounts of Bill Gates, Barack Obama and many other celebrities with millions of followers. At left is a message sent when Apple's Twitter account was hacked. [Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office | Twitter]
  9. A view shows downtown St. Petersburg, looking across the new Pier District while it was under construction last year. [SCOTT KEELER  |  Tampa Bay Times]
  10. A man waits to be tested at the new COVID-19 testing site at Pinellas Community Church Wednesday in St. Petersburg. Residents are required to make an appointment. [JONAH HINEBAUGH  |  Times]
  11. Protesters march down Central Avenue in St. Petersburg. [JONAH HINEBAUGH  |  Times]
  12. St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman, center, Alan DeLisle, the city development administrator, and Nikki Gaskin-Capehart, the city's director of urban affairs, stand on the steps of St. Petersburg City Hall on Monday, July 27, 2020, to announce the release of the Tropicana Field RFP. [JOSH SOLOMON  |  JOSH SOLOMON   |   Times]
  13. U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist, D-St. Petersburg, represents the 13th Congressional District. [Courtesy of Charlie Crist]
  14. St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman addressed lawyers rallying for equal justice Friday outside the St. Petersburg Judicial Courthouse. [SCOTT KEELER  |  Times]
  15. A screenshot of the website for Republican Amanda Makki, who is running for Congress in the Florida's 13th District, currently held by Democrat U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist. [STEVE CONTORNO]
  16. Protesters and police faced off outside St. Petersburg police headquarters on May 31. [SCOTT KEELER  |  Times]
  17. A St. Petersburg Fire Rescue vehicle was blocked by protesters on Wednesday. Protesters said they would have made way for the vehicle if its lights and siren were on. [St. Petesburg Police Department.]
  18. The City Council approved new lease terms for Bayfront Health St. Petersburg, which is on city property. [DIRK SHADD  |  Times]
  19. Protesters projected "Black Lives Matter" above the sign for the St. Petersburg Police Department headquarters on Wednesday. [LUIS SANTANA  |  Times]
  20. Visitors walk along the 26 acre, $92 million St. Petersburg Pier District, Monday, July 6, 2020 as the pier opened to the public. [SCOTT KEELER  |  Times]
  21. Visitors walk along the 26 acre, $92 million St. Petersburg Pier District, Monday, July 6, 2020 s the pier opened to he public.  [SCOTT KEELER  |  Times]
  22. St. Petersburg protest leader Terron Gland announced on Monday that he tested positive for COVID-19. [JOHN PENDYGRAFT  |  Times]
  23. A Tampa police officer attempts to detain a protester as officers break up a march blocking traffic on N Dale Mabry Highway on Saturday. [IVY CEBALLO  |  Times]