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Tampa appoints transportation tax advocate Tyler Hudson to county transit board

Hudson helped launch All For Transportation, an advocacy group that put a one-cent transportation sales tax on the 2018 ballot.
Tyler Hudson, center, the newest member of the Hillsborough transit board, attended transportation tax oral arguments before the Supreme Court in February with fellow All For Transportation member Christina, Barker, right, and attorney David Smith.
Tyler Hudson, center, the newest member of the Hillsborough transit board, attended transportation tax oral arguments before the Supreme Court in February with fellow All For Transportation member Christina, Barker, right, and attorney David Smith. [ CAITLIN JOHNSTON | Times ]
Published Aug. 20, 2020
Updated Aug. 20, 2020

TAMPA — Tyler Hudson, co-founder of the All For Transportation team that helped pass a one-cent transportation sales tax in November 2018, will serve on Hillsborough’s transit authority board.

Hudson was appointed by the city of Tampa Thursday and will replace Kathleen Shanahan, who resigned earlier this summer. Shanahan, who served on the board for about six years, cited disagreements over procurement policies and the process of hiring a new chief executive officer.

Related: Tampa businesswoman Kathleen Shanahan resigns from Hillsborough transit board

Hudson, 35, is a partner at Tampa law firm Gardner Brewer Martinez-Monfort. He thanked Tampa Mayor Jane Castor and the City Council for their support and nomination to the Hillsborough Area Regional Transit Authority board.

“Improving transit is an economic and civic imperative,” Hudson said.

He will be one of four City of Tampa representatives on the 14-person transit board. One state-appointed position remains vacant after John Melendez resigned in October.

Hudson helped launch All For Transportation, an advocacy group that put a one-cent transportation sales tax on the 2018 ballot, and has defended it against legal claims that it is unconstitutional.

Hudson traveled to Tallahassee in February for oral arguments in a Florida Supreme Court case that will decide whether the tax stays in place.

Related: Justices question validity of Hillsborough transportation tax

Hillsborough County Commissioner Mariella Smith, who chairs the transit board, welcomed Hudson’s appointment and his experience.

“Having been involved in that countywide campaign for All For Transportation, he would bring an understanding — not just from the city — and nuanced feelings from around the county for what is needed,” Smith said. “I think he’ll bring a really good, well-rounded perspective.”

Castor said in a statement that she “could not be more thrilled” to have Hudson join the transit authority board.

“His unwavering commitment to transform Tampa’s transportation future will serve both the board and our community well,” Castor said.