Wednesday, July 11, 2018

The Light Bag is back with private funding

What happens when one of those sudden storms comes up? Lights, sirens racing to Spa Beach to save the Bag?

It looks like Spa Beach in St. Pete will be all aglow with a Janet Echelman Sculpture after all. 

Fourteen  or so anonymous “contacts” have pledged about $1.5 Million for the project according to an article in the Tampa Bay Times, by Waveney Ann Moore: Mayor Kriseman: Donors will bring Echelman sculpture to St. Pete.
One must wonder what Kriseman has promised all these “contacts” for their generous contributions.
The project has not been without opposition. The Waterfront Parks Association has expressed its opposition stating "(a project), of this scope on designated waterfront parkland is inconsistent with the great vision of our city’s Founding Fathers ... when they purchased and mandated a downtown waterfront primarily reserved for green space.”
The problems with this effort are legion beginning with the Parks Foundation statement and continuing on through who will be responsible for the cost of maintaining this massive aerial display.
Check out my Post Floating art sinking for lack of funds? In Bay Post Internet.
Also, from the Winston-Salem Journal by Dawn DeCwikel: Echelman sculpture soon will billow again above Greensboro's LeBauer Park
It is one thing to raise a million dollars or so to go along with the City “art” funds to get this thing in place but where will the funds come from to pay for its upkeep every time the Echelman team has to fly back into St. Pete to fix the latest disaster with the light bag?
Then there is the cost of putting up and taking it down.
Without a doubt, there are wind and weather conditions when it is not safe to have this thing up. What City Department will be charged with the responsibility to launch and retrieve the “floating art sculpture”?
Where the money come from to keep a group of people trained to handle this massive piece of “art?”
What happens when one of those sudden storms comes up? Lights, sirens racing to Spa Beach to save the Bag?
This adds yet another expensive and time-consuming issue to getting ready for a hurricane as the light bag will have to put away.
Maybe our anonymous “contacts” would like to pick up the tab for that expense.
Kriseman is still trying to work out a positive legacy for his time as mayor and this mesh of lights dangling over Spa Beach in front of the Vinoy is just the latest attempt.
Too late Rick, your legacy is already set: A Pier no one wanted and a sewer system that still won’t be fixed when you leave office.
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Friday, July 6, 2018

Fl Democratic Party Continues to Alienate Progressives, Jeopardizing Entire Ticket

Tampa, Fl
Tampa Bay Beat

 By Jim Bleyer

The Florida Democratic Party is going all in on its marginalization of its progressive wing, risking its only statewide officeholder U.S. Senator Bill Nelson, any chance of recapturing the governorship, and pickup opportunities in the Florida Legislature.
Ramifications of what are known in state Democratic circles as “the corporatist agenda” can easily filter down to the courthouse.
Progressives are roiling in several counties including Broward, Duval, Orange, and Hillsborough.  All are populous, all have significant communities of progressive Democrats and left-leaning NPAs, all are vital to keeping Nelson in the Senate and being competitive in the other four statewide races including the governorship........
Read full Post at: TAMPA BAY BEAT 

Cross Posted with permission from: Tampa Bay Beat

This post is contributed by Tampa Bay Beat. The views and opinions expressed in this post are the author's and do not necessarily reflect those of Bay Post Internet or the publisher.

Sunday, July 1, 2018

Kriseman – Trouble on the horizon for the Trop

While the Trop site looks like a plum ready for the picking, it could quickly turn into a real nightmare.

St. Petersburg, Fl
Opinion by: E. Eugene Webb PhD
Author: In Search of Robin, So You Want to Blog.
You may have missed the Post on St. Pete PATCH a hyper local news site if you did check it out. St. Pete PATCH By: Jackson Hollingsworth, This Time 'Til It's Won! Make the Southside Black Again!

By now, you may have forgotten the fiery election rhetoric from the local black activist group the Uhurus. Lead by Akile Anai who ran for City Council and Jessie Nevel who ran for mayor. They had a brief but somewhat spectacular impact on the St. Pete elections in 2017.

It would seem the group is back with a new structure the Conference of Communities United for Reparations and Economic Development (CURED).

In a somewhat rambling Post, Hollingsworth lays out what he touts as a new direction, but it is essentially a rehash of the election efforts with one exception.

Quoting Hollingsworth “A major campaign being launched by CURED is the "Take Back the Dome" referendum, where CURED will be going out to the people of the city to win petition signatures to return the land of the baseball dome, known as Tropicana Field Stadium, back over to the black community as an expression of reparations.

I am not sure if they know it, but the CURED folks could be on to something.

Central to their theme has been the issue of “reparations” or payments to the African-American Community for the property acquired to build the DOME (Tropicana Field). This new approach, a return of the land, is something different altogether.

The Kriseman administration could just blow this off as an attempt by Anai and Nevel to raise some funds, so they don’t have to get real jobs but that may be a big mistake.

I was working for the City when the Dome property was being assembled, and the structure was being constructed. Things were moving fast.

Many of the African-American people whose property was “acquired” for the Dome project have passed on, and their children may or may not have copies of the agreements they signed.

Since there were no electronic records during this period public record if they still exist would be hard, but not impossible, to find and the effort would be costly.

What CURED needs is a good law firm that is not issue driven and has enough resources to pursue the information.

If the CURED group can find an instance where the City acted improperly or even questionably in a Dome land acquisition action and get a serious lawsuit with evidence filed that might  grow to class-action status the Tropicana site redevelopment would likely come to a screeching halt.

No developer in their right mind wants to end up in the middle of a fight as potentially ugly as this one might be.

The real problem of the moment is getting Anai and Nevel under control. I have rarely seen people who become more unglued than these two when you hand them a microphone or point a camera at them.

The timing is critical, and CURED be on to something, but actions like those of the Mayoral election cycle will allow CURED to be smothered in a blanket of ridicule as just another nonsense radical effort.

Kriseman would be wise not to simply write this one off. Even a hint of this kind of issue could send Trop developers and financiers running for the woods.

It may be time for the Kriseman administration to sit down with CURED and get an idea of who is involved, who is pulling the strings and where their money is coming from.

E-mail Doc at mail to: or send me a Facebook (E. Eugene Webb) Friend request. Like or share on Facebook and follow me on TWITTER  @DOC ON THE BAY.
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