City warned against sex offender ban

Published February 15, 2007


Don't do it. That's what the city attorney will tell the Tampa City Council today after studying the legality of banning sex offenders from moving into Tampa.

City Attorney David Smith says such a law would likely be challenged as unconstitutional and would be difficult to defend.

Rather than the citywide sex offender ban council members proposed in January, Smith said he will suggest the council consider "exclusionary zones" that define places where offenders can't be, instead of where they can't live.

That approach is in line with a new bill in the state Legislature filed by state Rep. Rick Glorioso, R-Plant City.

Most council members contacted Wednesday said they would heed Smith's advice on the citywide ban.

Mobile home owners' advocate dies at 66

Donald "Don" Hazelton Jr., a tireless advocate for mobile home residents statewide, died Sunday at home. He was 66.

As president of the Largo-based Federation of Manufactured Home Owners of Florida, a position he left two years ago, Mr. Hazelton often was a leading voice on issues such as the widespread redevelopment of mobile home parks.

Mr. Hazelton also worked to educate mobile home owners about hurricane safety through annual mobile home expositions and was concerned about the rising cost of insurance.


Habitat for Humanity loses home by airport

A zoning issue has cast a shadow over Habitat for Humanity of Hernando County because the agency is being forced out of its own home near the airport.

Habitat officials say the move being mandated by the county could end up costing more than $100,000, money that could otherwise build two homes.

Terminix International also is being forced out. County zoning officials say Habitat's thrift store and Terminix's operations center are commercial operations and do not comply with the building's industrial zoning.