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Your Thursday morning briefing

Highlights in Thursday's top stories in the Tampa Bay Times and on tampabay.com:


Tropical Storm Ericka's track shifts east, but forecast cone still covers Florida
Times staff
The forecast track for Tropical Storm Erika continued to slide eastward early Thursday as the cyclone spun toward Puerto Rico, strengthening slightly with winds of 50 miles per hour that extended 105 miles from its center.
Related: Tropical Storm Erika is worth watching, but panic should set in yet


Gyrocopter pilot due back in D.C. federal court
By Dan Sullivan, Times Staff Writer
The routine hearing in the case of Doug Hughes, the Ruskin mail carrier who flew a gyrocopter onto the lawn of the U.S. Capitol, is likely to address the issue of whether he can a lawyer specializing in First Amendment issues to his defense team.


Tampa holds public hearing today on stormwater fee increase
By Richard Danielson, Times Staff Writer
Is it any surprise Tampa floods, considering how settlers didn't hesitate to pave over creeks to put down roads? "We built on a swamp," says City Council member Mike Suarez, who heard about the old maps, "and we get swampy sometimes."


Rays continue to fade with another loss to Twins
By Marc Topkin, Times Staff Writer
This was the kind of late-season game the Rays had to win if they are planning to play in the postseason. And yet, a 5-3 defeat. "Disappointing loss, to say the least," manager Kevin Cash said.


Live on-air horror
Washington Post
The fatal shooting of a TV crew unfolds as if it were scripted by an ex-colleague.


Fuel bets: a $6.1B loss
By William R. Levesque, Times Staff Writer
Florida's Office of Public Counsel wants utilities to stop price hedging.


He was a champion of literacy until the end
By Patty Ryan, Times Staff Writer
John F. Germany helped found a law firm, Tampa's downtown library and the University of South Florida.


Shine Mural Festival celebrates St. Petersburg's pretty walls
By Lennie Bennett, Times Art Critic
The SHINE Mural Festival officially kicks off Tuesday, but you might already notice a small army of artists transforming drab exterior walls into tapestries of color and imagery along the Central Avenue corridor and fanning out north and south at three locations and counting.


Brothers' business feud turned fatal
By Michael Majchrowicz and Katie Mettler, Times Staff Writers
Scott Tomlinson, 51, was found shot to death in the kitchen of his 5,000-square-foot home, according to the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office. Detectives believe he was killed by his older brother.


Obamacare rates expected to rise
By Kathleen McGrory, Times Staff Writer
Floridians who purchase health insurance plans under Obamacare will see premiums rise by an average of 9.5 percent next year, the state Office of Insurance Regulation said.


Investigation finds Solyndra leaders repeatedly misled federal officials
By Carol D. Leonnig, Washington Post
A new federal investigative report says top leaders of the troubled solar panel company cost taxpayers a half-billion dollars with their falsehoods.


Self-preservation key for Winston
By Rick Stroud, Times Staff Writer
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers want their rookie quarterback and No. 1 overall draft pick to learn to better avoid big hits.

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