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Clearwater Beacon
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SAND KEY - Concerned that as time goes on people might not remember the events of Sept. 11, 2001 as distinctly, a Clearwater firefighter decided to do something unique in the hopes of keeping the memory of those who lost their lives alive.

Lt. Mark Wing decided to don full firefighting gear, then, in the heat, 90-plus degrees, he ran 11 miles from Clearwater Fire and Rescue Fire Station 44 on Sand Key to Fire Station 49 behind the Clearwater Mall.

Before the run, he was concerned because of the heat and the extra 60 pounds of gear he would be carrying.
 ... Read More 
CLEARWATER - With the contract of its current contractor, the Citation Management division of Professional Asset Management LLC, due to expire at the end of September, Clearwater officials sought proposals from companies interested in the job of processing the city’s parking tickets.

Five firms submitted proposals, three made presentations, and a selection committee of staffers from the city’s Audit, Information Technology and Parking departments recommended Data Ticket Inc., based in Newport Beach, California, to replace Citation Management for the next three years, with two one-year renewals of the contract possible after that.

“Data Ticket was ranked the top firm based on the following selection criteria: experience and qualifications, project approach, financial stability/references, customer service approach, (computer) hardware/software, and fees,” a staff memo to the Clearwater City Council explained.
 ... Read More 
CLEARWATER - Clearwater Police Chief Daniel Slaughter announced the promotions of three longtime veterans from sergeant to lieutenant on Sept. 12.

Sgt. Anthony Monte, currently assigned to homicide, will become the lieutenant assigned to the general investigations section of the Criminal Investigations Division. Sgt. John Connor, currently working with the bike team, will become lieutenant in the District 2 Patrol Division. And Sgt. Laura Spelman, currently assigned to the Crimes Against Children and Families Unit, will become the lieutenant in the Professional Standards Section.

The appointments of Monte and Connor are effective Sept. 20, and Spelman’s promotion takes effect on Oct. 4. Spelman has been with the department for 20 years, Monte for 18 years and Connor for 16 years.
 ... Read More 
CLEARWATER - The Clearwater Aging Well Center, 1501 Belcher Road in the Long Center will host educational forums and creative experiences in October. For details or to register for a program, call 724-3070.

- Medicare analysis and open enrollment - Wednesday, Oct. 8, 1 to 2 p.m. Attorney Jonathan Kinsella explains traditional Medicare, prescription plan options, Advantage plans, and supplement options. Sponsored by Bay Area Legal services, Inc., and the Clearwater Bar Association. The event is free.

- Improvisational acting - Tuesdays, Oct. 14 and 28, 3 to 4:30 p.m. Learn theatrical skills in this dynamic group setting. Explore scenes, develop characters, enhance creative thinking, and have fun. Fees apply.
 ... Read More 
CLEARWATER - Chabad of Clearwater, the local branch of the largest Jewish outreach organization in the world, will present free Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur services in an inclusive setting.

Chabad’s services are user-friendly, making it enjoyable and meaningful for both the beginner and the advanced. Song, commentary, and the use of English-Hebrew prayer books, enable those of all levels to become active participants in the services.

Rosh Hashanah begins this year after sundown on Wednesday, Sept. 24 and extends until nightfall on Friday, Sept. 26. Yom Kippur begins this year after sundown Friday, Oct. 3 and extends until nightfall on Saturday, Oct. 4.
 ... Read More 
Thursday, September 11
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CLEARWATER - Clearwater Marine Aquarium hosted the premiere for “Dolphin Tale 2,” Sept. 10 at Ruth Eckerd Hall.

It was the the movie's second premiere with the first occurring in Hollywood Sept. 8.

Stars from the movie appeared on the blue carpet as the media and public gathered for pictures, autographs and interviews.

The original “Dolphin Tale,” released in 2011, was based on the story of Winter, an injured bottlenose dolphin whose recovery hinged on a prosthetic tail. “Dolphin Tale 2”continues the story and introduces a baby dolphin named Hope, rescued by Clearwater Marine Aquarium in 2010 and still living there.
 ... Read More 
CLEARWATER - Every five years, municipal officials throughout Pinellas County sit down and decide how to spend the money they expect to receive from the Penny for Pinellas sales tax in the upcoming five years. Sept. 4 was Clearwater’s turn.

Florida law sets the statewide sales tax at six percent, but it allows individual counties to add a “local option sales tax” on top of that. Several counties have raised their total sales tax to 7 or 7.5 percent. Many are tourist destinations where the residents believe that by raising the sales tax, which is paid by locals and tourists alike, the property taxes of residents can be kept relatively low.

Pinellas County, where tourism is a major industry, originally adopted a 7-percent sales tax in 1990 and called it “Penny for Pinellas.” The voters have since approved renewals of that tax rate in 2000 and 2010, in referenda dubbed Penny II and Penny III. At last week’s Clearwater City Council meeting, the councilmembers unanimously approved the city’s Penney III wish list of projects for fiscal years 2014-15 through 2019-20.
 ... Read More 
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CLEARWATER - Clearwater Police Chief Dan Slaughter recently announced three significant promotions in the department, some caused by a ripple effect from the resignation of Deputy Chief Sandra Wilson. All promotions went into effect on Saturday, Sept. 6, and Wilson’s last day was on Sept. 5.

Donald Hall replaced Wilson as deputy chief, promoted from his previous position as major of the criminal investigations division; Eric Gandy was promoted to patrol major from criminal investigations lieutenant and SWAT commander; David Dalton, who was a lieutenant in the support services division took Hall’s previous position as the CID major.
 ... Read More 
CLEARWATER - By a unanimous vote on Sept. 4, the Clearwater City Council gave the risk management division of the city’s finance department permission to purchase “excess liability, excess workers compensation and numerous specialty insurance policies from Oct. 1, 2014 through Sept. 30, 2015” for an amount not to exceed $695,000.

The package, which will be acquired through Lloyds of London, includes such things as general, automobile, employee benefits liability, public officials liability, personal injury law enforcement liability, marine operator’s liability, emergency medical services liability, and compressed natural gas liability.

In addition, the city will get coverage through Safety National for such things as workers’ compensation and employee liability, third-party storage tank liability, hull protection and indemnity, cyber liability and “numerous flood property policies.”
 ... Read More 
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CLEARWATER - Clearwater police arrested a man on Sept. 8 in connection to a string of commercial burglaries in which coin-related machines were targeted. Eight of these had occurred in less than a month.

An officer noticed a vehicle matching the suspect vehicle description near a Publix. After stopping the vehicle, the driver was charged with driving with a suspended or revoked license. After further questioning, Joshua Poole, 30, of Clearwater, allegedly admitted to the burglaries.
 ... Read More 
CLEARWATER - Clearwater Police warns the public of a scam that is circulating in the area. In this scam, citizens receive a text message from thieves posing as Mastercard representatives. They request citizens to call them at 727-228-1617 and provide their credit card number and other personal information.

Mastercard has been contacted, and they are aware of the scam. Police say not to provide this information to anyone that you do not know or where you do not know for certain what company they represent. Thieves are constantly coming up with new ways to try to scam people out of their money.

If anyone receives calls or mailings that seem suspicious, police say to remember this: Credit card companies are never going to call you and ask you to provide your information to them. Additionally, the police and federal agencies such as the IRS are never going to call you and tell you there is a warrant for your arrest or that you owe back taxes, giving you an option to pay them over the phone. Finally, do not allow any one remote access to your computer where all of your personal information is stored. When in doubt, hang up with them and call police at 562-4424.
 ... Read More 
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Community Calender
• Monday, Sept. 22, 2014
Aquaponics program
PALM HARBOR – An introduction to aquaponics will be presented Monday, Sept. 22, 6 p.m., at the new Sol Terra Lifestyle Center, 1090 Michigan Ave. The program is free.

The guest speaker will be Gina Cavaliero, from Green Acres Aquaponics in Brooksville. She will present an introduction to aquaponics. Attendees will have an opportunity to learn how to produce both fish and organic/chemical free fruits and vegetables, in a dynamic, man-made, pond type ecosystem in their own backyard.

If there is enough interest in this class, Cavaliero hopes to return to the area soon to do a full day, hands-on workshop where she will demonstrate how to get started with aquaponics for a no-till, no-weeds, no-irrigation food production system.

Visit www.solterra.guru. Call 348-9435.
 ... Read More 
Bone and Joint Lecture Series
ST. PETERSBURG – Two programs are scheduled in the weeks that follow at Bayfront Health St. Petersburg, 701 Sixth St. S.

The Bone and Joint Lecture Series will kick off with a presentation by Dr. Brian Burke, Bayfront Health orthopedic surgeon, set for Wednesday, Sept. 24, noon to 1 p.m., in the Sheen Conference Center. This free seminar will include a light lunch.

A Matter of Balance classes will begin Monday, Sept. 22. The eight-week session is designed for adults age 60 and older and will cover how to manage falls and increase activity levels.

For information and to RSVP for a program, call 895-3627. Visit Bayfront.com.
 ... Read More 
Candidate forum
PALM HARBOR – The Greater Palm Harbor Area Chamber of Commerce Town Hall Series presents a candidate forum on Monday, Sept. 22, 6 p.m. at the Palm Harbor Library.  

Tampa Bay Times political editor Adam Smith will be the moderator.  

The event will feature the candidates for State Senate District 20, State Representative Districts 64 and 65, County Commission Districts 2 and 4, School Board District 4, and East Lake and Palm Harbor Fire Districts.  

This is an opportunity for citizens to meet the candidates on the Nov. 4 ballot. Supervisor of Elections staff will be available starting at 5:30 p.m. for voter registration.
 ... Read More 
Fall prevention programs
ST. PETERSBURG – September is National Falls Prevention Awareness Month. Bayfront Health’s Trauma Center will host several events on site at the hospital, 701 Sixth St. S., St. Petersburg.  

The following events are scheduled:  

• A Matter of Balance – Monday, Sept. 22, 1 to 3 p.m. This is the first program in an eight-week free class designed for older adults to learn fall prevention.  

• National Falls Prevention Awareness Day Lunch and Learn Seminar – Tuesday, Sept. 23, noon to 1 p.m. Carol Bissinger, R.N., and Chastity Rogers-Johnson, R.N., will host a free presentation on fall prevention and stroke awareness. Light lunch will be provided. Attendees are encouraged to wear yellow in honor if National Falls Prevention Awareness Day.  

For information or to RSVP, call 895-3627.
 ... Read More 
Florida Silver Haired Legislature meeting
CLEARWATER – The relaunched Florida Silver Haired Legislature invites citizens 55 years and older to join its organizational meeting Monday, Sept. 22, 10 a.m., at the Suncoast Hospice Center, 5771 Roosevelt Blvd.

The group originally was organized in 1978 to advocate in senior, national, state and local issues.

Ernie Bach, a former leader of the group, is opening a new state headquarters in Pinellas County and chapters in Pinellas, Hillsborough and Pasco counties.

The group is seeking new officers and members. To register or for more information, call 585-1111.
 ... Read More 
Immunization seminar
ST. PETERSBURG – Bayfront Health St. Petersburg will host a seminar on immunization education on Monday, Sept. 22, 7 to 9 p.m., in the Sheen Conference Center, Bayfront Medical Center, 701 Sixth St. S.  

A panel of clinical experts, including Bayfront’s own pediatrician Dr. W. Michael Brown, will be on hand to discuss and help educate attendees on the importance of immunization for children.

Seating is limited. To register, call 895-3627.
 ... Read More 
Speak Easy Toastmasters Club meeting
PINELLAS PARK – The Speak Easy Toastmasters Club meets Mondays at 6 p.m. at Lin’s K Hibachi Buffet, 7610 49th St. N.   Guests are welcome.  

The Toastmasters program helps members become better speakers for their jobs, presentations and meetings.   Call Jim Martin at 536-3392 or email jmartin2040@tampabay.rr.com.
 ... Read More 
• Tuesday, Sept. 23, 2014
Fall prevention programs
ST. PETERSBURG – September is National Falls Prevention Awareness Month. Bayfront Health’s Trauma Center will host several events on site at the hospital, 701 Sixth St. S., St. Petersburg.  

The following events are scheduled:  

• A Matter of Balance – Monday, Sept. 22, 1 to 3 p.m. This is the first program in an eight-week free class designed for older adults to learn fall prevention.  

• National Falls Prevention Awareness Day Lunch and Learn Seminar – Tuesday, Sept. 23, noon to 1 p.m. Carol Bissinger, R.N., and Chastity Rogers-Johnson, R.N., will host a free presentation on fall prevention and stroke awareness. Light lunch will be provided. Attendees are encouraged to wear yellow in honor if National Falls Prevention Awareness Day.  

For information or to RSVP, call 895-3627.
 ... Read More 
Kiwanis Breakfast Club meeting
SEMINOLE – The Kiwanis Breakfast Club of Seminole meets Tuesdays at 7:15 a.m. in the third floor card room at Lake Seminole Square, 8333 Seminole Blvd. 

On the second, third and fourth Tuesdays of the month, the group features speakers from different organizations. 

Visit kiwanisseminolebreakfast.com or call 319-8343 for more information.
 ... Read More 
Medicare lunch and learn
BELLEAIR – A lunch and learn session on understanding Medicare options will be presented Tuesday, Sept. 23, 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., at the Belleview Biltmore Golf Club, 1501 Indian Rocks Road.  

Karyn Rizzo, director of patient services for Allegiance Care Services, will present the program. To RSVP, call 581-6540 or email gfortino@belleviewbiltmoregolfclub.com.  
 ... Read More 
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