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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. The city of Dunedin and Pinellas County are in talks to make an offer for 44 acres in unincorperated Pinellas County owned by the estate of the late Gladys Douglas.
  2. Pinellas County Commissioner Dave Eggers talks after his colleagues unanimously selected him as 2021 chair on Tuesday.
  3. This prominent restaurant space at 635 Cleveland Street, as seen on August 9, 2019, is owned by a company run by a Scientology parishioner, has long sat vacant.
  4. Tarpon Springs Police Chief Robert Kochen.
  5. Clearwater Mayor Frank Hibbard and City Attorney Pam Akin met with Scientology leader David Miscavige on Oct. 30 at this church building at 118 N Ft Harrison Ave, Clearwater.
  6. Jim Halios has been named director of Clearwater Parks and Recreation, the city's second largest department.
  7. The Landings Golf Club, showing Clearwater AirPark to the north
  8. Pinellas County School Board member Rene Flowers, left, and former St. Petersburg NAACP president Maria Scruggs, right.
  9. Democratic District 3 Pinellas County Commissioner Charlie Justice, left, and Republican challenger Tammy Vasquez, right.
  10. Former state Rep. Larry Ahern, left, a Republican, and Pinellas County Commission incumbent Janet Long, right, a Democrat.
  11. Hubbard's Marina is pictured just past a small beach that has been created due to sand buildup throughout the decades along the John's Pass boardwalk, threatening business and creating a safety concern, on Friday, Oct. 23, 2020 in Madeira Beach.
  12. Traffic streams east over the Clearwater Memorial Causeway Brige from Clearwater Beach on Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2020.
  13. City Attorney Pam Akin, left, and City Manager Bill Horne, right.
  14. Before she died in 2019, philanthropist Gladys Douglas Hackworth stated she wanted her 44-acre property of woods and a lake in unincorporated Pinellas County to be preserved as a public park. A housing developer has walked away from a contract, giving local government another chance to purchase it.
  15. Real estate brokers Ray Cassano and Terry Novitsky, also members of the Church of Scientology, were elected to the Downtown Development Board last week.
  16. Pinellas County School Board member Rene Flowers, left, and former St. Petersburg NAACP president Maria Scruggs, right, are running to succeed Ken Welch as District 7 County Commissioner.
  17. Pinellas County District 3 Commissioner Charlie Justice, a Democrat, left, is being challenged by Republican and small business owner Tammy Vasquez, right.
  18. Former state Rep. Larry Ahern, left, a Republican, is challenging Pinellas County Commission incumbent Janet Long, right, a Democrat.
  19. The city of Clearwater is moving forward with a developer's plan to build 171 apartment units on this city-owned property at 306 S. Washington Avenue in downtown Clearwater. The $38-million project would be a collaboration between the city, Pinellas County and SP Clearwater, an affiliate of Southport Financial Services, led by developers Peter Leach and David Page.
  20. The former Trickel's Jewelry building sits empty at the corner of Cleveland Street and Myrtle Avenue, the entrance to the core of downtown. A company managed by a Church of Scientology secretary bought the retail building in January 2017 and has done nothing with it.
  21. Before she died in 2019, philanthropist Gladys Douglas Hackworth stated she wanted her 44-acre property of woods and a lake in unincorporated Pinellas County to be preserved as a public park. But because neither the county nor city of Dunedin made an offer, her estate went into negotiations with a housing developer.
  22. Real estate brokers Ray Cassano and Terry Novitsky, also members of the Church of Scientology, are running for the Downtown Development Board. Four of the advisory board's current members, including Cassano, are members of Scientology. Two other candidates are running who are not members of Scientology, business owners Derek Williams and Nick Petrantoni.
  23. Golf balls are retrieved on the driving range with airplanes parked at the Clearwater Airpark in the background at The Landings Golf Club,1875 Airport Dr, on Tuesday, May 19, 2020 in Clearwater. Voters will decide on Nov. 3 whether the city should lease most of the 77 acres for a developer to turn it into a light industrial complex.