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Tampa Transit Initiative Gets $25,000 Boost From Orlando

Community leaders from the Tampa Bay and Central Florida regions met to discuss "the power of coming together" at the 2010 Super Regional Leadership Conference in Orlando on May 27.

The leaderships' mission is to break down county silos to create a unified super community of businesses that promote the Tampa Bay-to-Orlando corridor as a desirable place to live and work. And it was there that an extraordinary gesture took place.

Jacob Stuart presented Tampa Mayor Pam Iorio with a check for $25,000 on behalf of Central Florida Partnership.

"We gave it to the mayor to give to Moving Hillsborough Forward, a political action committee that is promoting transit throughout Hillsborough County," says Stuart. "We gave it to advance a regional transit agenda."

Part of that agenda involves a proposed sales tax that would go toward a light rail system in Hillsborough County. The referendum will come to vote in November and its success would go a long way toward Central Florida's SunRail plans. Both light rail systems would complement the high speed rail system that will run from Tampa to Orlando and is expected to be completed by 2015.

"I thought the gift was extraordinary," says Mayor Iorio. "Regionalism has come a long way in past decades. And the donation was symbolic of that progress. We all seem to share the general mindset that this region is important and we're all in this together."

Adds Tampa Bay Partnership President Stuart Rogel, "Like the Tampa Bay Partnership, the Central Florida Partnership understands the importance of having a robust transit system to the economic health of a region."

Writer: Missy Kavanaugh
Sources: Jacob Stuart, Central Florida Partnership; Pam Iorio, Mayor of Tampa; Stuart Rogel, Tampa Bay Partnership
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