PSTA receives grant to integrate Direct Connect into Transit app

ST. PETERSBURG — Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority recently received a $120,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Transit Administration through the Accelerating Innovative Mobility initiative to support mobility and innovation in the transit industry.

The funds will help integrate PSTA’s Direct Connect program, which connects riders in areas with low-frequency transit service to subsidized on-demand trips, into the Transit app. This project will offer riders a simple way to plan and book trips.

Since July 2019, Transit has displayed PSTA Direct Connect locations in the app and linked to more info about the program. With the AIM grant, PSTA will build on that work to make the innovative PSTA Direct Connect program fully accessible from within Transit, PSTA’s official app.

PSTA Direct Connect multimodal trips will appear as an option in Transit’s trip planner alongside fixed route bus service and other shared mobility options, and riders will be able to hail their Direct Connect ride from within Transit and make a seamless connection to fixed-route service.

PSTA was one of 25 other projects that received federal funding through this grant.

Tax collector announces heavy truck registration renewal changes

Pinellas County Tax Collector Charles W. Thomas recently announced the registration renewal period for heavy trucks weighing between 5,001 pounds and 7,999 pounds will now align with the primary owner's birthdate.

The statewide change went into effect Sept. 1, and applies exclusively to heavy trucks owned by individuals, not businesses. The shift will take place during this year's renewal period in December.

Typically, registration renewal dates are determined by the primary registrant's birthdate. However, nearly 30 years ago, an exception was put in place that required individual heavy truck owners to renew in December, instead of by their birthdate.

This December, owners will have options allowing them to renew up until their next birthdate in 2021 or 2022. Registrations can be renewed up to three months prior to their expiration month. Therefore, individuals owning trucks weighing between 5,001 pounds and 7,999 pounds can renew as early as Sept. 1. As long as there are no stops or holds on their registration, customers can renew online at or at one of the self-service kiosks located in tax collector offices and select Publix stores.

For more information, visit or call the office at 727-464-7777 Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m., or Wednesday from 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.

Pinellas County Educational Facilities Authority announces vacancies

Applications are being accepted for two appointments for a five-year term on the Pinellas County Educational Facilities Authority.

The County Commission appoints a total of five members, including one member who must be a trustee, director, officer or employee of an institution of higher education, for five-year terms. One of the two current openings must be filled by a trustee, director, officer or employee of an institution of higher education.

Applications must be submitted by 3 p.m., Sept. 22. Applications are available online at

The Educational Facilities Authority was created pursuant to Chapter 243, Part I, Florida Statutes, and assists fully accredited institutions of higher education and other educational providers with “projects” as defined in Chapter 159, Part II, Florida Statutes, by providing an additional means to finance facilities and structures.

The authority issues bonds to make loans for the costs of projects, with the institution receiving the loan responsible for repayment and for the cost of administration. Bond issues for educational facility financings are projects approved by the Board of County Commissioners.

Meetings are scheduled monthly and normally held at the St. Petersburg College EpiCenter, Room 1-200, 13805 58th St. N., Clearwater. Meetings are usually on the third Thursday of the month at 4 p.m. and are canceled when there is no business to consider.

County commissioners will review all applications and make its selection at an upcoming meeting.

All material submitted to Pinellas County government is subject to the public records law of the state of Florida.

Pinellas County Health Facilities Authority announces vacancy

Applications are being accepted to fill one vacancy to the Pinellas County Health Facilities Authority.

Applications can be found at and must be received no later than 3 p.m. Oct. 5.

The Health Facilities Authority is a conduit financing authority that issues revenue bonds for nonprofit health care facilities, including hospitals, assisted living facilities, nursing homes and hospice facilities. Meetings of the Authority are scheduled on the second Wednesday of each month to consider applications for financing approval.

Applicants must be registered to vote in Pinellas County and should be knowledgeable about the health care field and bond financing. A business, accounting or legal background is a plus. Appointments are 4-year terms. Applicants must be willing to attend meetings in order to ensure the Authority has a quorum.

County commissioners will review all applications and make its selection at an upcoming meeting.

All materials submitted to Pinellas County government are subject to the public records law of the state of Florida.