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Pick Up The Phone, Tampa: The Mayor’s Calling

Residents of Hillsborough County have the opportunity to speak to their elected leaders and share questions and concerns regarding the proposed 1 percent sales tax to fund light rail this week during a series of TeleTown conference calls and a public forum.

Tampa Mayor Pam Iorio, former Congressman Jim Davis and other community leaders are calling residents of Hillsborough County to invite them to a TeleTown conference call in an effort to clarify the initiatives put forth by Moving Hillsborough Forward, a grassroots coalition championing light rail and other transit improvements. A 1 percent sales tax to fund light rail is on the ballot for November, and leaders say it is crucial that it passes.

"If we're going to progress, we have to have a modern transit system," says Iorio. "You can't have an economic region grow and prosper in the 21st century without a modern robust transit system and if you're going to have one, you need a light rail system. If we're going to be competitive and attract businesses and really increase the quality of life, it's critical."

The calls will be made region by region, beginning in Brandon on July 22, South Tampa on July 29 and New Tampa, University and Temple Terrace on August 5 and 7. Residents who pick up the phone will be invited to participate in a live conference call and ask questions of the mayor, former congressman and other community leaders.

"We're focusing on geographic areas so people on each call can understand the specific benefits planned for their part of the county," says Gary Sasso, a lawyer with Carlton Fields and chairman Moving Hillsborough Forward.

Residents also can participate in Transit Talk, a free open forum hosted by the Urban Charrette at the Tampa Museum of Art from 6 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, July 29. Residents and business owners can speak in person to public officials, transportation experts and Moving Hillsborough Forward campaign representatives

Writer: Missy Kavanaugh
Sources: Mayor Pam Iorio, City of Tampa; Gary Sasso, Moving Hillsborough Forward


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