Steve Newborn

Assistant News Director

Steve Newborn is WUSF's assistant news director as well as a reporter and producer at WUSF covering environmental issues, politics and transportation in the Tampa Bay area.

He’s been with WUSF since 2001, and has covered events such as President George W. Bush’s speech in Sarasota as the Sept. 11 attacks unfolded; the ongoing drama over whether the feeding tube should be removed from Terri Schiavo; the arrest and terrorism trial of USF professor Sami Al-Arian; how the BP Deepwater Horizon spill affected Florida; and he followed the Florida Wildlife Corridor Expedition through the state - twice.

Before joining WUSF, he covered environmental and Polk County news for the Tampa Tribune and worked for NASA at the Kennedy Space Center during the early days of the space shuttle.

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Steve Newborn / WUSF News

The newest segment of the Pinellas Trail opened Thursday, connecting it to Pasco County. It's part of a trail that will eventually allow bikers and hikers to travel all the way to the Atlantic coast.

Steve Newborn / WUSF News

Hillsborough County Commissioners voted Wednesday to move a Confederate memorial that has stood outside the county courthouse for more than a century.

Steve Newborn / WUSF News

A cleanup of one of the most urban - and polluted - streams running through Sarasota began Saturday.  We visit one condominium, whose residents not only asked for help to restore Phillippi Creek - but are helping to pay for it, as well.
 


U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio has been criticized in some quarters for not holding a Town Hall on the Republican attempt to repeal and possibly replace Obamacare. So he recently held an audience-free Facebook Live post, saying reports that Floridians will be kicked off of Medicaid under the pending Senate health care bill are missing the mark.

Steve Newborn / WUSF News

Tampa is in the market for a new police chief as of Thursday, after Eric Ward submitted his resignation.  The city will now start a nationwide search for a successor.

Drivers got a taste of freedom from high prices at the gas pump over the long Independence Day weekend. But these low prices may soon be a thing of the past.

Gas prices have been flirting with going under the $2-a-gallon mark for a couple of weeks now, and were at their lowest price for the July 4th holiday in over a decade.  

Courtesy of Florida Museum of Natural History

A new disease has been found in five Florida counties, including Hillsborough. It goes by the name of rat lungworm, and it comes courtesy of snails.

Researchers at the University of Florida have found the parasites can cause meningitis in people. And it's been found in Hillsborough, along with Alachua, Leon, St. Johns and Orange counties.

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A 30-year veteran of TECO and a Tampa contractor were killed in an accident Thursday at the Big Bend Power Plant in Apollo Beach. 

 

The explosion happened when the workers were trying to unclog a blockage in a tank where molten coal slag falls into cooling tanks after being burned to generate electricity.

Google Maps

The south side of St. Petersburg - best known among locals as "Midtown" -- is a predominantly African-American area with a high rate of poverty.

Steve Newborn / WUSF News

Last week, Hillsborough County Commissioners voted against removing a Confederate memorial that has stood outside the county courthouse for more than a century. On Tuesday, a group of protesters met to keep up the pressure.

Steve Newborn / WUSF News

The state's new Chief Financial Officer made a tour of several cities Monday after his appointment to the post by Gov. Rick Scott.

Jimmy Patronis will replace outgoing CFO Jeff Atwater, who is leaving office on Friday. The Panama City restaurant owner served eight years in the Florida House of Representatives before being appointed by Scott to the state's Public Service Commission.

Photo Courtesy Bradenton Herald

The claims are flying fast and furious around the proposed replacement for the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare. A version proposed by Republicans in the House of Representatives would replace it with the American Health Care Act.

Steve Newborn / WUSF News

Thousands of people drive by one of the best birding areas in Sarasota County every day without even knowing it. 

The Confederate Solider's Monument has silently stood guard outside the Hillsborough County Courthouse in downtown Tampa since 1911, with one soldier facing north to the enemy, another with its head drooped low facing the defeated homeland.

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A man from Orlando by the name of Desmond Meade is a convicted drug offender who later turned his life around, got a law degree, and is now leading the charge to automatically restore voting rights to felons. Now, all he needs is 700,000 signatures on a petition to put it on next year's ballot.

Steve Newborn / WUSF News

A potential tsunami of tourists could be in store for Tampa when the National Hockey League's All-Star Game is held on the same weekend in January as the Gasparilla parade. But NHL and city officials are saying they'll be prepared.

Tampa has hosted one hockey All-Star Game, back in 1999. And it's hosted Gasparilla parades since 1904 - including the last time the Super Bowl was here, in 2001.

Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn said it could present challenges in terms of traffic and security, but this "balancing act" will work out just fine.

Selby Gardens

It's a plant so rare they call it the "Queen of the Night."

And your only chance to see it bloom is - tonight.

Selby Gardens in Sarasota is hosting a "pop-up bloom-viewing party" Wednesday at 8 p.m. to show off the Selenicereus. It's a flowering cactus that blooms only once a year. Its name is derived from the Greek moon goddess and the Latin word for candle.

Sarasota County

Sarasota County planners will hear a request Thursday afternoon to rezone land for a scrap recycling center next to what has been called the best bird-watching spot in the county.

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Three Pinellas County beaches being eroded by the Gulf of Mexico are taking one step closer toward being restored. The $30 million will be used to help restore beaches at Sand Key, Upham Beach and Treasure Island.

Steve Newborn / WUSF News

Several hundred people showed up Wednesday night at the first of many planned public meetings to discuss revamping the Tampa Bay area's transportation system. It's a reboot of TBX - Tampa Bay Express - which would have added more than 90 miles of toll lanes to existing free Interstate highways.

It's now called Tampa Bay Next.

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