08/18/17 Local Government
ST. PETERSBURG— Mayor Rick Kriseman has chosen a controversial restaurant concept to occupy the Manhattan Casino, saying he made a decision 11 days before the mayoral primary because he didn't want politics to get in the way of progress in struggling Midtown.
ST. PETERSBURG — If Rick Baker is elected mayor, he said he will not recuse himself from any city business involving his current boss, businessman Bill Edwards.
"As mayor, it is my job to aggressively negotiate on behalf of the citizens of St. Petersburg to ensure that their best interests are well represented," Baker said in a statement issued by his campaign. "I have always done that and will continue to do so."...
Mayor Rick Kriseman picked a Floribbean-themed restaurant to highlight turning a new page in the historic Manhattan Casino, which has been shuttered for more than a year after the city evicted its previous tenant, Sylvia's.
Kriseman announced he had selected the Callaloo Group, which is comprised of free agent Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Vincent Jackson and Ramon Hernandez, the owner of Pipo's chain of Cuban restaurants. ...
08/17/17 Local Government
ST. PETERSBURG — The City Council was forced to consider its first labor dispute in years Thursday when it gave the firefighters union most of the pension enhancements it has long asked for.
City officials warned council members it could cost an extra $750,000 a year from the operating budget to bring firefighters' retirement benefits closer to those enjoyed by police officers, including allowing them to retire after 25 years of service and using overtime to calculate pension payouts....
Elections have consequences. Donald Trump. Charlottesville.
That was the message delivered by Congressman Charlie Crist and Mayor Rick Kriseman as they rallied progressives Wednesday in a get-out-the-vote effort with less than two weeks to go before the Aug. 29 primary.
Trump’s actions prove that what happens in Washington, D.C. and Tallahassee matter to St. Petersburg, the Democratic mayor said....
Hillsborough commissioners renew monument debate while St. Petersburg swiftly moves Confederate marker08/16/17Local
Without public comment or deliberation, St. Petersburg officials on Tuesday quietly removed an obscure reminder of the Confederacy sitting on the city's downtown waterfront.
Meanwhile, a debate over the future of Tampa's Confederate monument — one that began long before last weekend's violent white nationalist protests in Charlottesville, Va., but persists today — will likely continue during today's Hillsborough County Commission meeting....
The Stonewall Jackson Memorial Highway marker that sat on Central Avenue and Bayshore Drive since 1939 was removed by the city on Tuesday.
When the Tampa Bay Times inquired about the marker on Monday, St. Petersburg officials said they were researching whether it was on public or private land. But on Monday they acted anyway.
Mayor Rick Kriseman issued this statement to the Times:...
ST. PETERSBURG — Once it was a small, obscure reminder of the Confederacy sitting on the downtown waterfront. Now it’s gone.
A local chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy put down the stone marker noting the southern terminus of the Stonewall Jackson Memorial Highway at the intersection of Central Avenue and Bayshore Drive on Jan. 22, 1939. It has gone mostly unnoticed since then....
08/15/17 Local Government
ST. PETERSBURG— The future of the iconic Manhattan Casino, which has been empty for more than a year, is back on Mayor Rick Kriseman's desk.
There are now four restaurant proposals for the iconic city-owned building on 22nd Street S, which was once the epicenter of black life and commerce in the city.
Mayor Rick Kriseman edged out his main opponent in individual campaign donations in the latest two-week filing period.
It’s welcome news for the incumbent Democrat who is locked in a historically expensive race against a well-funded Republican opponent.
Kriseman has been trailing Rick Baker in fundraising in what has long been the most expensive mayoral race in the city’s history ---still more than two weeks away from the Aug. 29 primary....
08/10/17 Local Government
ST. PETERSBURG — A $65 million project to turn sewage into renewable energy poses no risk to public safety, the city's public works administrator told City Council members Thursday.
Claude Tankersley and council members pushed back against a Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission report that said the city's biosolids project at the Southwest plant was risky because it would produce and store methane gas next to the campus of Eckerd College....
In the escalating cash race to fund the expensive mayoral race in St. Petersburg, Rick Baker has opened a commanding lead.
In July, Baker’s Seamless Florida PAC raised $84,500 more than four times as much as Mayor Rick Kriseman’s Sunrise PAC, which netted $21,000.
Baker, mayor between 2001 and 2010, has now raised $624,053 in PAC money compared to Kriseman’s $326,950....
Judging from his comments to Gypsy Gallardo, it's been a rough week for Pastor Ron Gibson.
Gallardo reported last week that Gibson, despite being included in a list of 40 pastors backing Rick Baker, hadn't endorsed the former mayor in his bid to unseat Mayor Rick Kriseman.
The apparent flub was seized by Kriseman supporters as evidence that Baker was overstating his support in the black community. Kriseman himself criticized his opponent via Twitter on Aug. 5....
The two Ricks turned over a new leaf Wednesday. Or maybe they just took a break from the cage match of a nasty, expensive mayoral race during a sedate forum in which Mayor Rick Kriseman and former mayor Rick Baker attempted to outdo one another in praise of the beauty, uniqueness, character and plain awesomeness of the Sunshine City.
A nearly two-hour forum at the Museum of Fine Arts was by invite only. About midway through the crowd started to thin. By the end, Kriseman felt obliged to thank the hardy audience who stuck it out....
The two Ricks turned over a new leaf on Wednesday.
Or maybe they just took a break from the cage match of a nasty, expensive mayoral race with a sedate forum in which Mayor Rick Kriseman and former Mayor Rick Baker attempted to outdo one another in praise of the beauty, uniqueness, character and plain awesomeness of the Sunshine City.
The nearly two-hour forum at the Museum of Fine Arts was by invite only. The crowd started to thin about midway through. By the end, Kriseman felt obliged to thank the hardy members audience who had stuck it out....