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Wednesday, Jun 20, 2018
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Top 5 at noon: Why Parkland students have emerged as a powerful political voice; unlicensed contractors arrested after Pinellas sting; and more

Here are the latest headlines and updates on tampabay.com.

WHY PARKLAND STUDENTS HAVE EMERGED AS A POWERFUL POLITICAL VOICE

The boldest voices to emerge in the wake of last week’s mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland have been unexpected ones. Surviving students at the school quickly spoke out on social media and to news cameras both about the incident and, more broadly, about political leadership which they saw as having let them down. In the days since, those voices have only grown louder. This isn’t a pattern we’ve seen after past shooting incidents. But there are a number of reasons why we shouldn’t be surprised that, after this shooting in this place at this time, we’re seeing young people mobilizing and making themselves heard.

MORE THAN 20 UNLICENSED CONTRACTORS ARRESTED AFTER PINELLAS STING

More than 20 unlicensed contractors offered to perform home repairs the past few days, but they didn’t know Pinellas County deputies waited with handcuffs to arrest them. Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri this morning announced details about a weekend operation that led to the arrest of more than 20 unlicensed contractors who face more than 40 charges. Gualtieri’s announcement comes as a proposal is moving through the Florida Legislature that would to turn the Pinellas County Construction Licensing Board over to the County Commission on July 1.

NEXT PHASE FOR TAMPA ARMATURE WORKS: CO-WORKING OFFICE SPACE

The mixed-use rebirth of the old Tampa Armature Works warehouse is proceeding in stages. First up: last month’s debut of the new ballroom, followed closely by the opening of more than a dozen vendors in the Heights Public Market food hall. Coming soon: Bay 3, an 11,000-square-foot space with views of the Hillsborough River on the second floor of the Armature Works. When it opens in mid-April, Bay 3 will have 28 private offices, five conference rooms, an on-site receptionist and notary, plus common areas, as well as video conferencing, mail and package handling, secure high-speed Internet and printing stations.

KIERMAIER SOUNDS OFF ON RAYS’ WEEKEND MOVES

Standout centerfielder Kevin Kiermaier made very clear today what he thought of the Rays’ weekend decisions to part ways with veteran outfielder/designated hitter Corey Dickerson and pitcher Jake Odorizzi. "I am 100 percent frustrated and very upset with the moves. No beating around the bush. It’s one of those things that makes you scratch your head, you don’t know the reasoning why. And then you see the team’s explanation and still it’s just like, okay, well, so be it."

PLATT STREET BOROUGH IS CASUAL TAMPA DINING WITH HIGH STANDARDS

It wasn’t that long ago that Platt Street was a bit of a conundrum for restaurateurs: Not exactly downtown, without the dense auto traffic of Kennedy, and far enough off the South Howard main drag that it didn’t entirely qualify as part of SoHo. But in recent years, starting with Boca and Smoke in its place before that, Platt is filling up with ambitious and chef-driven restaurants. Noble Rice is killing it, and since the second week in November, Platt Street Borough has been sending out smart and contemporary, but casual, food and drink.

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