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Thursday, Jul 19, 2018
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News Roundup

The Daystarter: CareerSource used credit cards to boost hiring totals; report says Winston suspension coming; Hedman wins Norris Trophy; get ready for Pride

Catching you up on overnight happenings, and what to know today.

• Today is also the official start of summer, not that anyone will be able to tell. It will be hot and muggy with just a 30 percent chance of rain heading into Friday, according to 10Weather WTSP.

• As you head out for your morning commute, check out our live blog for the latest traffic updates and road conditions across Tampa Bay.

• The largest Pride celebration in Florida is just days away. Here’s your guide to St. Pete Pride and what’s changed in 2018 in the move to downtown. And here’s all the related Pride parties, art exhibits and events happening this week.

• Here are the top things to do today in Tampa Bay including free skating for Go Skateboarding Day and Tyler Henry of Hollywood Medium will be at Ruth Eckerd Hall.

• Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston could be suspended for up to three games next season following the league’s investigation into allegations he groped a female Uber driver in Arizona in 2016, a Tallahassee radio station reported. Jeff Cameron, a host on ESPN Tallahassee 97.9 FM, said Wednesday he wasn’t sure of the exact number of games Winston may be suspended but indicated it would be for a violation of the personal conduct policy. Stay with tampabay.com for the latest.

• Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Victor Hedman won the Norris Trophy as the NHL’s top defender.

• The state’s publicly funded career centers handed out millions of dollars in gift cards each year to people who lack gas money, tools or other essentials needed to start a new job. CareerSource Tampa Bay and Pinellas lead the state in handing out the pre-loaded credit cards. And they don’t always go to the needy. Some people get them just for reporting they found work on their own. Read our special report this morning.

• President Donald Trump may have signed an executive order retreating from his child separation policy, but the government has no immediate plan to reunite more than 2,300 children, including an unknown number in Florida, with their parents. The reality set in Wednesday evening after Trump gave in to overwhelming public and political pressure — and it adds to an array of questions that could keep the issue burning.

• Imagine signing a lease on a new home, packing up all your family’s belongings and showing up ready to move in — and there’s four other families who think they’re moving into the same home. That nightmare scenario unfolded in Largo on Tuesday. McKenna Oxenden reports how Largo police believe the scam was pulled off and who they believe is responsible.

• Clearwater has signed a proposed deal to spend $79.7 million to overhaul the Philadelphia Phillies’ spring training facilities depends. But that deal depends on getting $40 million in bed taxes from Pinellas County, and as Tracey McManus explains, it might be a while before the county has the money.

• Restaurant review: Food critic Laura Reiley finds that Chile Verde is serving up some very solid tacos in an unlikely spot.

• Lucky’s Market is considering a move into the old Albertsons box space in Clearwater, according to preliminary plans filed with the city. Lucky’s master broker, Rick Lewellyn, was listed on an agenda as discussing renovating the existing property with a Clearwater committee that reviews building plans. If the plans are pursued, it would be the Tampa Bay area’s second Lucky’s. The first opened earlier this month in a former Sears box at the Tyrone Square Mall in St. Petersburg.

• State Rep. Jay Fant touts his experience leading his family’s Jacksonville bank as the reason why he should be put in charge of the Office of Financial Regulation. But Lawrence Mower reports that the Jacksonville Republican left something off his application: in 2012 the agency closed down the bank he ran.

• It’s time to plan your weekend! Our critics and writers have their top picks on our Weekend Planner page including a guide to St. Pete Pride weekend, concerts by Hall and Oates and country star Luke Bryan. And on stage, Freefall brings out the parody The Musical of Musicals — The Musical!

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