Tracey McManus - Clearwater and Scientology Reporter

Clearwater and Scientology Reporter

I cover a range of topics in Pinellas County with a focus on the Church of Scientology, which is downtown Clearwater's largest and most influential property owner. Before joining the Times in 2015, I spent five years with The Augusta Chronicle in Georgia. I've wanted to be a journalist pretty much since I was old enough to read the newspapers my dad kept stacked near the kitchen table every day. I was born in Brooklyn but grew up in south Florida and graduated from University of Florida in 2010 with degrees in journalism and Spanish. When not on deadline, I'm usually out running with my two dogs Tiger and Ollie, both strays I found in Georgia.

  1. A sign advertises a rental in the 1100 block of 8th Street N on Thursday, Feb. 10, 2022 in St. Petersburg. A proposed Pinellas County ordinance would provider greater protections for renters.
  2. Tarpon Springs City Commissioners Michael Eisner, left, and Craig Lunt, right, oppose a resolution that notes people of color and those with lower incomes are disproportionately affected by traffic crashes.
  3. State Rep. Chris Latvala will be term-limited out of the Florida House in November and become a Pinellas County commissioner unopposed.
  4. A rendering provided by The Bluffs, a group that was chosen Thursday to negotiate a development deal with the city of Clearwater. The rendering shows a hotel in the top center of the frame and two apartment towers to the right with both projects surrounding the future Coachman Park.
  5. In this image from a livestream, Tarpon Springs City Commissioner Jacob Karr speaks during a June 14, 2022 meeting, where fellow commissioners reprimanded him for using his city position when he intervened in a private matter between a resident and a contractor. The commission removed him from intergovernmental boards and sent a complaint to the Florida Commission on Ethics.
  6. A rendering from The Bluffs development group shows a hotel in the top center of the frame and two apartment towers to the right, with both projects surrounding the future Coachman Park on the downtown Clearwater waterfront. The Bluffs is one of three groups vying to develop two city-owned sites adjacent to the park.
  7. Clearwater Gas System’s headquarters, on Wednesday, Oct. 13, 2021, at 777 Maple Street in downtown Clearwater. The utility is headed for changes, including more oversight from City Hall.
  8. A rendering from The Bluffs, one of three development groups bidding to build on two parcels along the downtown Clearwater waterfront. The image shows a hotel in the top center of the frame and two apartment towers to the right, with both projects overlooking a revitalized Coachman Park.
  9. Kaylee Marnell of Oklahoma and Kolton Doggett of Brandon play with Rudy, a Belgian Malinois, on Tuesday at Petland in Largo. They came to the store because they saw Rudy online, and planned to come back to buy him later in the day. The store is one of six in Pinellas County that will be allowed to continue selling dogs and cats under an ordinance approved Tuesday.
  10. Members of the nonprofit West Klosterman Preservation Group visited the 14-acre parcel they are trying to save from development on Aug. 12, 2020. From left, they are Brad Husserl, of Tarpon Springs, Don Richter, of Palm Harbor, Kay Carter, of Tarpon Springs, and her husband, Tex Carter. The land is located on W Klosterman Road in Tarpon Springs.
  11. Clearwater Gas System’s headquarters, on Wednesday, Oct. 13, 2021, at 777 Maple Street in downtown Clearwater.
  12. Tampa Bay Rays pitchers Shane McClanahan (18), Luis Patiño (61) and Cody Reed (54) practice a drill with assistant pitching and rehab coach Rick Knapp (92) at the Charlotte Sports Park spring training complex in Port Charlotte in March. Gov. Ron DeSantis vetoed a $35 million allocation for a youth sports complex in Odessa in Pasco County that had been earmarked as a potential future spring training site for the Rays.
  13. Kyle Harris pulls up a picture taken 18 hours after he was allegedly being punched at a Gulfport bar by Adam Peters, the son of Pinellas County Commissioner Kathleen Peters. Harris had to have surgery to repair a broken nose and orbital socket. “I still can’t blow my nose, I can’t feel my teeth,” Harris said.
  14. State Rep. Chris Latvala, left, originally filed to run in 2024 for Pinellas County Commission District 5, currently held by Karen Seel, right. A new state law allows him to run this year instead.
  15. The amphitheater is pictured on the left in this rendering of the $84 million Imagine Clearwater waterfront renovation. The park is under construction with a completion target of July 2023.
  16. This photo from the L. Ron Hubbard Library shows Hubbard, the founder of Scientology, in the south of France in 1968.
  17. The Church of Scientology's Flag Building at 215 S Fort Harrison Ave. in downtown Clearwater.
  18. Pinellas County Clerk of the Circuit Court Ken Burke, left, sits next to St. Petersburg Mayor Ken Welch at an event in St. Petersburg on Feb. 24, 2022. Burke is suing the county commission over whether his office should pay expenses for a lawsuit.
  19. The site of the 60-unit residential project approved by the Clearwater Community Development Board on May 17, 2022, is seen from the south end at the corner of Cedar Street and Blanche B Littlejohn Trail. The Pinellas Trail is to the east, beyond the guardrail at far right.
  20. Clearwater is one of 27 towns or cities in Florida that own a natural gas utility, and Clearwater Gas is the fourth-largest of the municipally owned systems.
  21. Clearwater Gas System’s headquarters, on Wednesday, Oct. 13, 2021, at 777 Maple St. in downtown Clearwater.
  22. Guests line up to board the Cross Bay Ferry docked at the Tampa Convention Center in November 2020. Local governments have been subsidizing the ferry since its pilot season in 2017.
  23. This 2021 city of Clearwater illustration shows the City Hall and Harborview sites being advertised for redevelopment. The city is asking for proposals to develop the sites with hopes of presenting details to voters in November. The vacant lot at far left on Pierce Street is not part of the current proposal and is being considered for a land swap.

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