Initiatives aim to help veterans

Veterans statewide could soon see a slew of new and expanded benefits and services, if the Florida Department of Veterans Affairs gets its way in the 2020 legislative session and beyond. The agency is enrolling 17 legislative bills for the upcoming 60-day session, which begins in January, Al Carter, the department’s chief of staff, reported at the North Tampa Bay Chamber of Commerce’s November … [Read more...]

Medal of Honor recipient inspires local students

It was May 8, 1968, in La Chu, when then 19-year-old U.S. Army Specialist 4 Robert Martin Patterson singlehandedly bum-rushed five machine gun bunkers, killed eight enemy soldiers and captured a weapons cache, all in the midst of a firefight in the Vietnam War. The actions that day earned him the Congressional Medal of Honor, the United States military’s highest and most prestigious … [Read more...]

New Suncoast Parkway projects are being planned

Projects aimed at improving traffic flow on the Suncoast Parkway are included in the Florida Turnpike Enterprise’s tentative work program. Those projects call for adding lanes at the parkway’s intersection with State Road 54, and for connecting the parkway with Ridge Road and with Tower Road. Carol Scott, of the Florida Turnpike Enterprise, highlighted those proposed projects at the Pasco … [Read more...]

World War II vet celebrates 100th birthday

VFW Post 8154, in Zephyrhills, was packed with people to celebrate Edward Bruno’s 100th birthday on Oct. 12. “I think he will be absolutely stunned to see how many people have come out today to honor him and celebrate his birthday,” said Suzanne Ahmad, his niece. And, so he was. “It’s a surprise to me,” said Bruno, a decorated U.S. Marine Corps veteran, during an event that attracted … [Read more...]

At the intersection of law enforcement, mental health

An ‘All hands on deck approach’ is needed to address the nation’s mental health crisis. That means greater levels of state and federal funding, and enhanced collaboration between law enforcement and behavioral practitioners. At least that was the message delivered by a group of experts during a recent criminal justice panel discussion titled “The Intersection of Law Enforcement and Mental … [Read more...]

Leveraging the power to do good

The tables aren’t exactly round. Instead, they’re set up in the shape of a giant square, and those seated around it are taking turns — talking about organizations they represent. They share what they do day-to-day. They announce upcoming events. They identify current needs. Some folks in the room are familiar with others. The rest are total strangers. But all have come to Bridgeway … [Read more...]

School boundary workshop set

Thousands of Pasco County Schools students will be affected by proposed boundary changes for the 2020-2021 school year. Most of the boundary changes are related to the opening of Cypress Creek Middle School, which is scheduled to open next fall. But there are also some changes being proposed that will affect schools in Central Pasco — but would not affect any current students in those … [Read more...]

Moffitt to add Pasco campus?

A proposal by Moffitt Cancer Center to boost its share of the state’s annual cigarette tax money would support expanded cancer care and research, both in Hillsborough and Pasco counties. The new location in Pasco County would be near the Suncoast Parkway and State Road 52, and is being viewed by local leaders as having the potential to be a catalyst that would transform the Central Pasco … [Read more...]

School district expands mental health services

The Pasco County school district has been ramping up training and tapping into outside sources, in its quest to build a better mental health support network for students. Statistics from across the school district underscore a compelling need for increased services. District figures show that more than 1,200 suicide assessments were done last year of students in elementary, middle and high … [Read more...]

Chance conversation leads to permanent memorial

What began as an idea to host a  9/11 Memorial Mile, quickly turned into something bigger because of a chance conversation. In recent years, the Rotary Club of Wesley Chapel has been honoring the anniversary of Sept. 11 by serving breakfasts to area first responders and by passing out American flags at Tampa Premium Outlets. This year, the club decided to stage its first run to … [Read more...]