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Pinellas County

Bobby Jones Golf Club
Daylina Miller/WUSF Public Media

While Sarasota deals with a long time issue involving a historic golf club, Pinellas County is spending $1.2 million on a former golf club to, in part, create a new park.

The 2020 primaries are fast approaching in Florida. Those who have not yet registered to vote or changed party affiliation still have a little time to do so.

Primaries take place March 17. However, those who want to participate and are not registered voters, need to register before the February 18 deadline. 

A new decade means a new United States Census.

Pinellas County is announcing an outreach program to ensure as many people take part in the 2020 count as possible.

General elections were held across the Tampa Bay region Tuesday. Results from key races are below. 

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission

Red tide has returned to the Tampa Bay area.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission reported that a bloom of the organism that causes red tide was detected over the past week off Sarasota and Pinellas counties.

Respiratory irritation was also reported in Sarasota.

Red tide was first detected off Collier county in late September and slowly made its way north to Lee and Charlotte counties.

The hepatitis a vaccine
Julio Ochoa / WUSF Public Media

Pinellas and Pasco counties are starting to see significant declines in the number of hepatitis A cases that are being diagnosed each month, the state’s surgeon general told a panel of senators on Tuesday.

From a distance, the bright fluorescent figures under the Boot Ranch overpass in Palm Harbor may look like another wall covered in graffiti; but, take a closer look and you will find a common theme- a shark on a skateboard, a kid on a tricycle, an old turtle on a scooter.

These images are all part of a mural titled Be Right Back by artist Stephen Palladino, the first step in Pinellas County’s attempts to minimize vandalism and increase public art.

Chris Sprowls
Florida House of Representatives

The Tampa Bay area should get a larger voice in the state legislature next year. Members of the Florida House on Tuesday named Chris Sprowls of Pinellas County as its next speaker.

A film crew at work
Film Tampa Bay

Numerous films and TV shows have been filmed in Florida through the years, from Burn Notice and Miami Vice to The Truman Show, The Punisher and Scarface.   

Health department gives a hepatitis A shot to a person in Gulfport.
Julio Ochoa / WUSF Public Media

Florida is dealing with the state's worst hepatitis A outbreak in years and the Tampa Bay area has been hit the hardest. Health officials in Pinellas County are using a new method to combat the virus, which attacks the liver. 

Another 53 Hepatitis A Cases Reported in Florida

Jul 30, 2019

Florida had 53 new hepatitis A cases reported last week, bringing the total number of cases since January to 2,034, according to the state Department of Health. 

Pinellas County officials are urging residents and visitors to stay away from some blue-green algae blooms that have popped up in the last week.

National Mosquito Control Awareness Week is here, and the Pinellas County Mosquito Control center wants people to be aware of the dangers the bugs can pose to their health.
Wikimedia Commons

They’re quick, they’re noisy, and they’re out to suck your blood this summer.

As the weather heats up and Florida grows increasingly muggy, mosquitos are coming out in swarms.

William Kemerer, Pat Gerard, and Josie Rocco accept checks on behalf of Brooksville, University Area in Tampa, and Pinellas County.
Adam Bakst / WUSF Public Media

Three Tampa Bay area communities will be able to make improvements thanks to their share of almost a million dollars in grants from the Environmental Protection Agency.

The Lealman community in Pinellas County, the University Area in Tampa, and the city of Brooksville will each receive $300,000 to clean up contaminated properties and develop community projects.

Updated Pinellas County flood zone map.
Pinellas County

Pinellas County residents may find themselves living in a flood zone after a recent update to coastal flood maps by the Federal Emergency Management Agency. These new changes can mean higher or lower flood insurance premiums for some people.

The gate of Brooker Creek Preserve is closed with two cones in front of it and a sign that states center closed until further notice.
Mark Schreiner / WUSF Public Media

Residents in the Tampa Bay area are dealing with lingering smoke after a brush fire at Brooker Creek Preserve this week.

East Lake Fire Rescue, Oldsmar Fire and the Department of Forestry helped fight the fire at the preserve in north Pinellas County. Florida Forest Service officials said the fire burned 15 acres.

Hillsborough County evacuation zones.
Hillsboroughcounty.org

Hurricane season runs from June 1 through November 30. Emergency management officials say it's important residents know which evacuation zone they live in. Florida residents should have an evacuation plan in place before a storm is on the radar. 

  

When counties mandate evacuations, they will do it by zones A-E. The zones are set based on a home’s vulnerability to deadly storm surge, with Zone A being most vulnerable. Evacuation zones are not the same as FEMA flood zone designations.

Hepatitis A Outbreak Continues To Expand

May 14, 2019

Florida reported 92 hepatitis A cases last week, bringing the total to 1,129 cases this year as an outbreak continues to grow, according to numbers posted Monday on the state Department of Health website. 

Hepatitis A Cases Soar Past 1,000

May 8, 2019

Florida has had a reported 1,037 cases of the liver disease hepatitis A this year, nearly double the amount reported for all of 2018, according to numbers posted on the state Department of Health website. 

Hepatitis A outbreak data map
Florida Department of Health

Florida is seeing a surge in hepatitis A infections and a majority of the cases are turning up in the Tampa Bay area.

Pinellas County bus passengers will get to keep all of their routes -- for now. Members of the Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority's board decided last week to hold off on proposed route cuts.

Updated FEMA flood maps indicate risk zones in Pinellas County.
Pinellas County Government

Flooding is one of the most common and costly disasters during storms. Pinellas County is the latest area to have adjustments made to its flood map to better reflect the risk that some homeowners may face.

McMullen Booth Road is facing detours near State Road 590 as part of the railroad improvement program.
Transportation Division of Pinellas County Public Works

Every day, thousands of motorists drive McMullen Booth Road, one of the major north-south roadways in Pinellas County.

Starting Friday, they will be facing detours near State Road 590 in Clearwater as county workers improve a railroad line there.

Tampa Police

Hurricane season may be about three months away, but the city of Tampa already has a plan to help residents after a storm.

Stephen Splane / WUSF Public Media

While the fish kills have stopped washing up on Pinellas County beaches, red tide is still an ongoing problem in the area. The Board of Commissioners voted recently on an agreement with the state that would give the county an additional three million dollars for red tide cleanup.

Just days before Election Day, the Florida electorate is as divided as ever, with polls showing tight races for Florida governor and the U.S. Senate.

Tourists at Clearwater Beach.
WUSF Public Media

Pinellas County, a popular travel destination in Florida, will be receiving more tax dollars from tourists as the Pinellas County Tax Collector’s Office partners with various travel agencies.

Pinellas County Government

The Federal Emergency Management Agency is updating its flood zone maps in the Tampa Bay area and the changes could affect thousands of home and business owners.

Tarpon Springs Police Department

The Tarpon Springs Police Department will be cracking down on traffic violations, specifically those endangering pedestrians. Starting Friday, there will be an increased police presence in the city, all due to a grant from the Florida Department of Transportation.

It was a rough week for Florida's beaches, with a resurgence of red tide on the Gulf Coast and returning feces-related problems in South Florida.

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