tampabay.com

Hillsborough projects: nonprofits

By JANET ZINK
Published May 7, 2007


Tampa Mayor Pam Iorio, in preparation for impending budget cuts, has said she will need to eliminate all funding to nonprofits, which amounted to more than $3.2-million last year.

That money included $150, 000 for the Mendez Drug Prevention Program, $790, 000 for the Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center, and $55, 000 for the Homeless Coalition of Hillsborough County.

"All of the nonprofits we fund play an important role in our community, " Iorio said. But slashing those groups means less will have to be trimmed from essential services in parks and public safety to meet the budget mandates expected to come from Tallahassee next month.

The state, though, still agreed to spend money on nonprofits. In Hillsborough County, such organizations could get $8-million, including:

- $250, 000 for the Brandon Community Advantage Center, a high-tech meeting space.

- $350, 000 for renovations to a historic building owned by the Centro Asturiano Mutual Aid Society, a social club.

- $1.6-million for public broadcasting stations.

"These are priorities according to my constituents and we fight for these things, " said Rep. Trey Traviesa, R-Tampa, who also got $2-million budgeted for the Tampa Riverwalk.

"The state budget has been held pretty much in check, " Traviesa said. "I appreciate Mayor Iorio's problem and we're going to come back in special session and try to come up with something the city and county governments can tolerate."