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Pensacola wrap-up: week ending Nov. 19

November 19, 2016

For Whom the Bridge Tolls
The people spoke up and the Escambia Board of County Commissioners listened. The toll booths on Pensacola Beach will not become fully automated until more input is received from the citizens. We tracked this issue on “Pensacola Speaks” this week: Free SunPass Future; People heard.

Please May We Have Another Public Meeting
Pensacola Mayor Ashton Hayward has some explaining to do also. He and his staff have been working for months on a plan for the redevelopment of the Blount Middle School site on the corner of C and Gregory streets into workforce housing. However, residents around the site haven’t heard anything about the plan over three years. Read Out-of-date Input.

Drop, Baby, Drop
With the mayor and council members Larry Johnson, Gerald Wingate, and P.C. Wu out of town, the Pensacola City Council approved contributing $30,000 for the Pelican Drop by a 5-0 vote. Before he left town, Mayor Hayward honored 2012 Pace High graduate and World Series champion Addison Russell with a proclamation and a key to the city.

One Door Closes, Another Opens?
Escambia County Commissioner Grover Robinson announced on Wednesday that will not run for a third term. He said he wanted to give others time to make plans to run for the District 4 post.
Robinson did not rule out running for Pensacola mayor in 2018. Open door.

Master Developer of ECUA site
Studer Properties will hire a master developer to develop of the entire 19-acre parcel of land on Main Street that formerly was home to the ECUA Main Street Sewage Treatment Plant. Quint Studer says low wages and poor education have created a “powder keg” on the west side of Pensacola. Read West Side ED. (Meanwhile ARB approved Early Learning play area for Bodacious Brew Thru.)

Corcoran Heard on Pensacola Speaks
Rep. Richard Corcoran will be sworn in next week as the new Speaker of the Florida House. He loves coming on Pensacola Speaks.

Bense Contributes Her Buried Treasure
The University of West Florida hosted the 50th Anniversary Gala celebrated this week the public launch of the 50th Anniversary Capital Campaign. The fundraising goal: $50 million. Retiring UWF President Judy Bense contributed $1 million to the campaign. Read 50th Anniversary Capital Campaign.

Let Them Play
Councilwoman Jewel Cannada-Wynn pulled her recommendation that the City permanently close the playground in Morris Court at the corner of J and Lloyd streets and let ownership revert to the Area Housing Commission for more low-income housing. Read Morris Court Keep Playground.

WFH Ironman
West Florida Healthcare, an affiliate of HCA, announced the appointment of Carlton Ulmer to the position of President and Chief Executive Officer effective January 1, 2017.

Kudos
The Association of Fundraising Professionals West Florida Chapter announced the winners of the 2016 National Philanthropy Day during its annual awards luncheon held at the Pensacola Grand Hotel: Laverne Baker, Sue Straughn, Washington High School Student Government Association, Cat Country 98.7, Epps Christian Center, Tip McAlpin and Seville Rotary Club Of Pensacola

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