Sunday, March 1, 2020

Weekend Update

It's the Weekend Update! Read at your own risk.

It sucks for cars too.
Opposing the future growth, proposing stagnation.
Second verse same as the first. Hillsborough's AFT 2.0.
Hillsborough County new approach to force congestion.
More than 350 families in need after Tampa affordable housing project sells.
Tampa Bay Times announces temporary pay cut for full-time staff.
Because it all went so well in Tampa, St. Petersburg can share the misery now.
New Tampa is a donor to Tampa, and now Wesley Chapel.
Tampa Chosen for Climate Change grant.
Where ever you are, you are there.
Sustain Sustainability Sustainably.
Florida Man.
Keep them away from us.
Uh... because they need customers who mostly use cars?
Not sure if she should still be driving, but she can still putt.

It sucks for cars too. Tampa is home to one of the worst truck bottlenecks in the nation, according to a new report. The intersection of I-4 at I-275 is the 91st worst in the U.S., according to the American Transportation Research Institute’s annual list, which was released Wednesday. Atlanta has three of the top six.

Opposing the future growth, proposing stagnation. Public voices concerns for I-275 changes as officials attempt to find common ground.
“A lot of what we heard, I think we’ve taken it into account in the past. That’s why you saw the option for the downtown interchange go from one that was going to impact 200 parcels down one less than 10 [parcels]," FDOT District 7 Secretary David Gwynn told the Tampa Bay Business Journal. "I know some folks would prefer for us to do absolutely nothing, but I think from a safety standpoint, we can’t look at a thousand crashes a year and say we aren’t going to do anything."
Contrary to some of the TBBJ report, there were several public speakers in support of the plan. It's never a perfect plan. Perfect is the enemy of good, etc. And while we have some sympathy with those that live nearby, its not like they did not know there was a congested interstate nearby used regionally by hundreds of thousands of people every day. FDOT has repeatedly refined plans based on the "concerns" raised by certain public voices. No one else has anything else resembling a plan. Besides, with a million new residents coming this way soon, automobiles will increasingly be in our future for quite a while yet.

Second verse same as the first. Hillsborough's AFT 2.0. Published as part of the March 4, 2020 BOCC agenda.
Staff's Recommended Board Motion:

Receive a draft ordinance generally providing for the levy of, and referendum on, a one percent (1%) Discretionary Transportation System Sales Surtax, confirm the previously scheduled public hearing to consider enactment of such ordinance, and direct staff to advertise the public hearing. If the referenced ordinance is enacted, the County would receive an estimated $88,399,445 in new revenue in FY 21 to fund certain transportation expenditures. The estimated new revenue in FY 22 is estimated at $117,865,927. Additionally, the City of Tampa, the City of Temple Terrace, the City of Plant City, the Hillsborough Transit Authority, and the Metropolitan Planning Organization would receive estimated new revenue of $26,507,215, $1,859,648, $2,731,253, $81,015,296, and $2,025,382, respectively in FY 21 and $35,342,953, $2,479,531, $3,641,671, $108,020,395, and $2,700,510, respectively in FY 22.
They could not even get the financial impact correct. Collections start in 2021, and they don't apply growth and inflation factors.

Again the ballot summary language is missing something. A million new residents heading our way, one might think they are driving cars. Perhaps increased road capacity might be of interest?

Should a one percent sales surtax be levied for 30 years commencing January 1, 2021, with the funds deposited in a trust fund, for the County, Tampa, Plant City, Temple Terrace, HART and the Metropolitan Planning Organization to improve, construct and operate transportation services throughout Hillsborough County, with citizen oversight, which projects could include:
  • Improving roads and bridges,
  • Enhancing public transit,
  • Improving sidewalks,
  • Promoting safety and reducing accidents,
  • Other transportation uses authorized by Florida law?
_____ Yes _____ No
Hillsborough County new approach to force congestion. Rather than simply add more lanes to the road, the County is taking steps to accommodate residents, businesses, and commuters who use the vital artery. Safety is the focus, and wider sidewalks, more lighting, a park or recreation area, and zoning that reflects the area's pedestrian character are among planned improvements.

More than 350 families in need after Tampa affordable housing project sells. Once touted as a possible home for a Tampa Bay Rays ballpark, Tampa Park Apartments complex between downtown and Ybor City is sold.

It’s unclear who has bought the 21-acre property or how it will be redeveloped. The eight parcels that make up the site are valued by the county property appraiser at a combined $13.7 million.

It's home to about 1200 people, with relatively affordable rent around $900 month in Tampa's increasingly expensive apartment market. About 33 tenants qualify for section 8 housing. However, Tampa Housing Authority won't be able to do much for the tenants as it's closed its waiting lists due to oversubscription. These apartments had a reputation for maintenance issues and disrepair.

This is an increasingly important issue around Tampa Bay. Expect to hear more, and expect plans that will do little to truly alleviate the issue of affordable housing. Few if any growing communities have had success.

Tampa Bay Times announces temporary pay cut for full-time staff. Citing a tough start to the year financially, the Tampa Bay Times announced Wednesday that all full-time staffers will temporarily have their pay cut by 10 percent.
The pay cut goes into effect next week and ends on June 5, according to a note distributed to staff and signed by the executive team. 
The five executives — Chairman and CEO Paul Tash, Executive Vice President and General Manager Joe DeLuca, Executive Vice President and Chief Digital Officer Conan Gallaty, Vice President of Advertising and Marketing Bruce Faulmann and Executive Editor Mark Katches — all will take a 15 percent pay cut in that time period.
This gives us no great pleasure. We believe in the value of good journalism, particularly good investigative journalism, which the Times has occasionally excelled at. This is particularly needed at to check the local political and power classes, which are getting too comfortable working in the shadows. There are extremely difficult headwinds for the newspaper business. But it also seems that the Times could do itself some good to be more balanced editorially rather than ostracize half of their subscribers.

Because it all went so well in Tampa, St. Petersburg can share the misery now. CSX closing roads in Pinellas.

New Tampa is a donor to Tampa, and now Wesley Chapel.  Some New Tampa residents feel slighted by businesses closing and a retail and restaurant boom to their north. A new USF survey provides a silver lining.

Tampa Chosen for Climate Change grant. Climate change and resiliency are one of Castor’s top five “Transforming Tampa’s Tomorrow” areas of focus. The city last year launched its PIPES program, which stands for Progressive Infrastructure Plan to Ensure Sustainability. It’s the city’s largest ever infrastructure project and part of Castor’s commitment to increasing resiliency and mitigating the effects of climate change.

Where ever you are, you are there. (Event) Choosing Tampa as The Destination to Live, Work & Play

Sustain Sustainability Sustainably.  EV’s ‘More Sense’ than ever with guests Phil Compton, of Suncoast Sierra Club, and Dory Larsen, with Southern Alliance for Clean Energy.

Via WMNF, so listen carefully.

Florida Man. Just the way its done around here. Man accused of dumping bucket of cow manure on victim at dairy farm in Crystal Springs.

Beyond the Bay

Keep them away from us. Seattle Is Socialism’s Laboratory, and It’s Not Pretty.
While many commentators have dismissed the rhetoric around the Green New Deal, Housing for All, and End Cash Bail as pie-in-the-sky abstraction, in Seattle, the socialist coalition is quickly translating this agenda into a political reality.
And this warning we should heed:
If the business sector wants to protect its own interests, it must rapidly adapt to this new reality. It’s no longer enough for local Chambers of Commerce to drop leaflets before local elections; they must build a permanent counterbalance to the progressive-socialists. They must begin by commissioning original policy research, funding local neighborhood groups, and building a political alliance of conservatives, moderates, and old-line liberals. In other words, they must reestablish a balance of power in America’s cities.
Is this why the Tampa Bay Business Coalition was recently formed?
A group of Hillsborough county business people has formed a political committee aimed at recruiting and supporting candidates for local offices who will foster a “business-friendly environment” in the county, in the words of its chairman, homebuilder Willy Nunn.  
The move appears to be in part a reaction to what some business people view as anti-growth leanings by the new Democratic majority on the board of county commissioners.
Uh... because they need customers who mostly use cars? Why would a bike shop fight a bike lane?
There’s nothing new about a store owner fighting a bike lane. Street changes that eliminate curbside parking spaces often stoke shopkeeper ire in cities around the world.
The fears of store owner Paul Olszewski will probably sound familiar to those steeped in the bike-lane politics of their own hometown. Reconfiguring the street could create challenges for delivery trucks, Olszewski told CityLab, and the loss of parking could lock out families who travel from afar to shop at his store, which is known for its selection of children’s bikes. “We do draw people from a large area around the Bay and people do drive here,” he said. “We appreciate those customers, as we appreciate all of our customers.”

Feel Good Story

Not sure if she should still be driving, but she can still putt.  Woman, 84, sinks putt across basketball court to win new car.

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