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GOP convention gives excess contributions to local charities

More than $5 million leftover after the GOP paid its bills for the 2012 national convention in Tampa will now go to support local charities.

Party leaders collected more contributions than were necessary to host the presidential nomination, and as tradition dictates, donated the excess back to nonprofits serving clients in the host city.

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Measuring costs of transit in Pinellas County

Pinellas County voters will weigh the costs and value of more transit options before voting on the November ballot initiative Greenlight Pinellas.

Thought provoking questions surround expectations that while an individual's taxes may increase $3 to $5 a month for more buses and the start of light rail, drivers may save even more in gasoline, insurance and wear and tear on their cars by using alternative transportation.

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Tampa prepares to launch bike share program

The much-anticipated bike sharing program in downtown Tampa is about to take off. 

Expect a sea of blue bikes to take to the streets with the arrival of cooler weather.

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Dolphin Tale 2 debuts to theater crowds

Dolphin Tale 2 starring Winter the dolphin and a new baby dolphin named Hope attract crowds to local theaters as the sequel filmed in Tampa Bay opens nationwide.

The inspirational story is set at Clearwater Marine Aquarium, home to Winter.

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Immigrant Entrepreneur Gives $10M Legacy Gift To USFSP

Successful entrepreneur Kate Tiedemann, a post-World War II immigrant who made her fortune by following the American Dream decides to leave a legacy gift of $10 million to USFSP to support business education.

The gift follows Tiedemann's desire to help young and budding entrepreneurs build a solid foundation of knowledge to launch startups and achieve their own successes. 

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Interim Director At MOSI Tampa Brings Fresh Perspective

Molly Demeulenaere, the interim director of MOSI Tampa following the retirement of Wit Ostrenko, brings a fresh perspective, new ideas and a solid strategy for ensuring the science museum's success.

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USF Eyes Downtown Tampa For New Medical School

USF's longtime interest in building a medical school closer to downtown Tampa is being revived by the evolving urban experience, including the city's recent success in attracting developers planning to build apartments and additional retail space.

USF would be building upon its downtown presence at CAMLS and at the Tampa Port offices. 

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Florida Polytechnic Celebrates Grand Opening

Florida Polytechnic University, the state's 12th university, opens its doors to 555 students August 25th at the new and innovative Polk County campus.

The university, already being called Florida Poly for short, will focus on STEM subjects and grooming students for future jobs.

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Lights On Tampa Art Project Grows Brighter, Bigger

The City of Tampa plans a major expansion of the signature Lights on Tampa Art project in time to light up the Hillsborough River through downtown in 2015.

The expansion may mean the end to graffiti painted along the river's seawalls by visitng college rowers.

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Tampa Tops List Of Emerging Craft Beer Towns

Tampa tops a list of "America's Top Ten Emerging Beer Towns,'' says The Pour Fool, a Seattle-based blogger who reviews  wines, beers and spirits from the Pacific Northwest and around the globe.

The ranking follows a recent story in 83 Degrees titled "Local Breweries Set Stage For Florida's Craft Brew Revolution.''

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Proposed FDA Regs Threaten Tampa's Cigar Makers

Proposed new FDA regulations designed to protect the health of children and improve safety around smoking products, especially e-cigs, is threatening one of Tampa's oldest industries: cigar making.

J.C. Newman Cigar Company owners Eric and Bobby Newman are working to find a solution.

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Florida Hospital Donates $2M To MOSI For IMAX

Florida Hospital's $2 million gift to MOSI Tampa will enable the IMAX Theatre to be upgraded and redesigned for a transition to 3-D Digital Media. 

The hospital and museum are also working out plans to live broadcast surgeries for use in teaching students.

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Audi Tests Driverless Car In Tampa

Audi is testing driverless cars in the Tampa Bay area, taking to the Selmon Expressway for two days in an effort to re-create potential situations that a car's sensors could face.

Automotive engineers are high on test driving in Florida because it is one of only four states that allow driverless cars on public roads and streets.

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Educating Florida Voters On Medical Marijuana

Florida voters face what many consider a difficult decision in November when it comes to whether to approve the use of marijuana for medical purposes.

The Tampa Bay Times outlines 5 things voters need to know before making a decision.

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Hillsborough Commissioners Vote For Equality

Hillsborough County commissioners, representing one of Florida's most urban counties and home to the cities of Tampa, Temple Terrace and Plant City, voted unanimously to ban discrimination against people based on their sexual orientation or gender identity.

The vote followed recommendations by leaders in the LGBT and human rights communities who cite discrimination in housing, public accommodations, contracts and real estate transactions.

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