City okays extension of streetcar line

Published April 20, 2007

TAMPA - The City Council voted Thursday to back a one-third-mile extension of the streetcar.

The 4-0 vote came after representatives of the Hillsborough Area Rapid Transit Authority outlined extension plans that will cost from $3.7-million to $5.6-million. HART says $4.3-million will come from the Federal Transportation Administration.

Right now, tourists make up most of the streetcar's riders, which reached about 400,000 people in 2006, said Robert Cursey, a planner with URS, the company hired by HART to study the extension. .

But the extension will take the track closer to downtown's employment center.

Cursey said about 7,500 people should be living downtown and in the Channel District by 2010, which is when the extension should be complete.


Pasco schools move to ensure safety

PORT RICHEY - In light of the Virginia Tech slayings and nationwide concerns about campus security, Pasco County schools took extra precautions Thursday to ensure that students are safe.

Superintendent Heather Fiorentino asked all principals to use "high supervision dismissal procedures" for the rest of the week.

That means as many adults as possible should walk with students to their buses and cars, to make sure things go smoothly as the children leave.


Officials take stock of 911 procedures

BROOKSVILLE - Emergency dispatch procedures are under review as Hernando County Sheriff's Office officials retrace the steps that might have contributed to the death of a 75-year-old Spring Hill man earlier this week.

Supervisors are trying to determine whether disciplinary action is warranted.

Bill Kicklighter, who oversees the dispatchers, said officials are looking at the possibility of adding a computer-aided prompt to the emergency dispatch system that could help prevent a call from getting overlooked.