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Christmas House owner in bankruptcy
By Times Staff Writer
Published November 20, 2007
Visitors walking into Rogers' Christmas House are greeted with the merry sounds of the holiday season from an overhead speaker playing Christmas carols.
How long the cheer will remain at the landmark store likely will depend on the financial picture that emerges after a recent personal bankruptcy filing by store owner Donna Jones.
According to papers filed Oct. 30 through U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Tampa, Jones has $2.3-million in debt, much of it tied to the Christmas House business. The 74-page document also lists $1.9-million in personal and business assets.
Jones, 65, said she planned to keep the doors open to the Christmas House but added, "It's been a little hard lately."
City refuses to hear fired officer's case
The city's Civil Service board declined Monday to hear the case of a former Tampa police captain who lost his job when he qualified to run for mayor against Pam Iorio.
"I believe I've been wronged by the city," said Marion Serious Lewis after the board made its decision.
Tom Gonzalez, an attorney for the city, asked the board to postpone the hearing because the case is winding its way through the courts.
Lewis said he has been paying bills by dipping into his savings, grading FCAT tests and collecting a city pension.
"Mayor Iorio - she's the mayor and who do you think you are to run against her," he said.