Archived Blogs & Articles

Posted: 9/3/2013
Public Meeting Sept. 9th to discuss Nancy Avenue sidewalk construction

Hillsborough County has scheduled a public meeting on Sept. 9 to discuss a project to build a sidewalk on Nancy Avenue.

The $43,000 project will add a sidewalk on the south side of Nancy Avenue, east of Simmons Road in northwest Hillsborough County. The proposed sidewalk will tie into the existing sidewalk in front of 1824 Rebecca Road. Construction is expected to begin in September 2013 and be completed within 90 days.

The project is being funded by the Community Investment Tax and General Revenues. DATE:  Monday, Sept. 9
TIME:  6:30 p.m.
PLACE: Lutz Community Center, 98 1st Ave. NW, Lutz

For more information about the project, visit the Nancy Avenue Sidewalk project page on the County’s website.

All meeting facilities are accessible in accordance with the Americans With Disabilities Act. Any additional necessary accommodations will be provided with a 48-hour notice.

For more information, call Steve Valdez, Citizen Services Manager, 813-272-5275. (TTY: 813-301-7173) Para información, llamar al 813-272-5275.

Posted: 8/14/2013
Dig Into Summer Camps At County Parks

With summer just around the corner, this is the perfect time to plan for your children to dig into summer by attending a camp at Hillsborough County’s Parks. Parks summer camps will be held weekdays from June 17 – August 9 from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. Online registration opens May 6 at noon. Those wishing to receive an enrollment fee discount must build an online profile, and then take their Free/Reduced Lunch Letter to any Rec2Six site BEFORE May 6.

Space is limited. Parents are encouraged to build their online profiles now so they can quickly register on May 6, before their favorite camp is full. Camps offered at Westchase, Northdale and Roy Hanes are expected to fill up within the first few hours on May 6, and the online registration would be the only way to register at these popular camps!

Hillsborough County summer camps are said to be the most affordable camp available. The cost of the Parks summer camps are:

• $76 Traditional day camps, per two-week session

• $120 Specialty Nature camps, per two-week session

• $50 Bakas Equestrian therapeutic camp, per day

• $38 Camp Sparks therapeutic per week

Income-based discounts are available.

Summer camps at County parks will be offered at the following locations:

Traditional Summer Camps (Ages 5-12)

• Brandon, 502 E. Sadie St. in Brandon, 813-635-8179

• Gardenville, 6219 Symmes Road in Gibsonton, 813-672-1120

• Keystone, 17928 Gunn Highway in Odessa, 813-264-3819

• Northdale, 15550 Spring Pine Drive in Tampa, 813-264-8956

• Roy Haynes, 1902 S. Village Ave. in Tampa, 813-903-3480

• Ruskin, 901 6th St. SE in Ruskin, 813-672-7881

• Thonotosassa, 10132 Skewlee Road in Thonotosassa, 813-987-6206

• Westchase, 9791 Westchase Drive in Tampa, 813-964-2948

• Winston, 7605 Destin Drive in Tampa, 813-744-5539

Fine Arts Camp (Ages 7-12)

• Roy Haynes, 1902 S. Village Ave. in Tampa, 813-903-3480

Teen Camps (Ages 12 – 17)

• Apollo Beach, 664 Golf and Sea Blvd. in Apollo Beach, 813-671-7635

• Jackson Springs, 8620 Jackson Springs Road in Tampa, 813-554-5004

• Mango, 11717 Clay Pit Road in Seffner, 813-635-7489

• North Lakes, 2640 N. Lakeview Drive in Tampa, 813-264-3824

• Providence West, 5417 Providence Road in Riverview, 813-672-1120

Nature Camps (Ages 8-15)

• E.G. Simmons Fishing Camp, 2401 19th Ave. NW in Ruskin, 813-635-3500

• Lettuce Lake Canoe Camp, 6920 E. Fletcher Ave. in Tampa, 813-635-3500

• Upper Tampa Bay Fun With Nature, 8001 Double Branch Road in Tampa, 813-635-3500

Therapeutic/Special Needs Camps ( Bakas Ages 5-17; Camp Sparks ages 5-22)

• Camp Sparks at All People’s Life Center, 6105 E. Sligh Ave. in Tampa, 813-744-5978.

• Bakas Equestrian Center, 11510 Whisper Lake Trail in Tampa, 813-264-3890.

For additional information on these summer camps, visit us online at, or contact the Parks, Recreation and Conservation Department at 813-635-3500.

Media Contact: Kemly Jiménez Green, Communications and Digital Media Services Department, 813-276-2677

Posted: 8/2/2013
Free Back-To-School Immunizations And Physicals For First Time Florida Students Available In August

Free Back-to-School immunizations and physicals will be available for school-aged children (grades K-12) who are entering Florida schools for the first time. The free immunizations and physicals will begin on Saturday, Aug. 3, and continue each Saturday through Aug. 17.

Parents or legal guardians must accompany their children at all times, and prior immunization records are required for children to receive these free immunizations. No Head Start or day care physicals will be available. Sports physicals will only be available at D1 Westchase Sports Medicine on Aug. 3. Appointments are required at several of the locations, and can be made by calling 813-443-3048.

The Back-to-School events will be held at the following locations:

  • Aug. 3 — D1 Westchase Sports Medicine, 6918 Gunn Highway, Suite C, Tampa, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sports physicals only (appointment required)

  • Aug 3 — Lee Davis Neighborhood Service Center, 3402 N. 22nd St., Tampa, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. (immunizations in the Hargrett building at 2002 East 26th Ave.), (appointment required)

  • Aug. 3 — Blake High School, Project LINK/St. Joseph’s Hospital, 1701 N. Blvd., Tampa, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. (appointment required)

  • Aug. 10 — Tampa General Hospital at HealthPark, 5802 N. 30th St., Tampa, 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. (walk-ins only). 813-844-3247

  • Aug. 17 — Ed and Myrtle Lou Swindle Medical Arts Center, 1601 W. Timberlane Drive, Plant City, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. (appointment required)

  • Aug. 17 — Eisenhower Middle School, 7620 Old Big Bend Road, Gibsonton, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. (appointment recommended, walk-ins limited)

  • Aug. 17 — Webb Middle School, 6035 Hanley Road, Tampa, 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. Physicals only (walk-ins only)

The clinics are hosted by the Back-to-School Coalition of Hillsborough County, which includes Hillsborough County's Family & Aging Services Department, Hillsborough County Public Schools, Hillsborough County Health Department, local hospitals, social service organizations, and local health care organizations.

Posted: 7/30/2013
Children's Board shifts funding for domestic violence programs

TAMPA – The Children's Board of Hillsborough County plans to financially assist two agencies that work with victims of domestic violence to help prevent services from going away when the Family Justice Center of Hillsborough County closes next week.

The Children's Board said Wednesday that it's negotiating contracts with both The Spring of Tampa Bay and Bay Area Legal Services to allow both agencies to continue offering programs the groups provided from the office of the Family Justice Center. The center's office is at Busch Boulevard and Florida Avenue at the former FloriLand Mall.

The Family Justice Center will close its doors late next week because of funding problems. The agency said it couldn't overcome a steep drop in funding from the Children's Board.

The center subcontracted for services with The Spring and Bay Area Legal Services. Directly contracting with those groups will allow them to continue providing help to the victims of domestic violence, said Kelley Parris, executive director of the Children's Board.

"We don't want the victims to not have the service," Parris said.

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Posted: 7/26/2013
Public forum Aug. 6th to consider transportation for economic development

The Transportation for Economic Development in Hillsborough County initiative will develop a roadmap for transportation improvements to enhance the community’s ability to successfully compete in the economic marketplace. A Policy Leadership Group comprised of the mayors of Plant City, Tampa and Temple Terrace; Hillsborough County Commissioners; and the Chair of Hillsborough Area Regional Transit (HART) is meeting monthly to identify where, what and how to pay for transportation improvements that will stimulate jobs. Through a parallel path, these monthly public forums allow the community to consider the same information and provide valuable feedback to policymakers.

The first public forum will be held on Tuesday, Aug. 6, at 6 p.m. at County Center, 26th floor, Conference Rooms A and B. County Center is located at 601 E. Kennedy Blvd. in downtown Tampa.

All meeting facilities are accessible in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act. Any additional necessary accommodations will be provided with a 48-hour notice. For more information, call Steve Valdez, Citizen Services Manager, 813-272-5275. TTY: 301-7173. Para información, llamar al 813-272-5314.

Posted: 7/25/2013
Bring your child to the Teddy Bear Clinic on August 8th!
News Image

Date: August 8th, 2013
Time: 12:00pm-1:00pm
Children's Board Family Resource Centers
Managed by REACHUP, Inc.
1002 E. Palm Avenue, Tampa, FL 33605 MAP

The Teddy Bear Clinic, provided by St. Joseph's Children's Advocacy Center, is designed for your child and their favorite stuffed animal to learn about what to expect when going to the doctor for a check-up. Please have your child bring their favorite stuffed animal from home to the class!

Family Resource Center Hours:
Mon., Wed., Thurs.: 9:30 am-6:30 pm
Tues.: 10:30 am-7:30 pm
Fri.,: 9 am-1 pm
2nd and 4th Saturdays of the month: 9 am-1 pm

Posted: 7/22/2013
Public Meeting scheduled for July 23 to discuss new YMCA in Gibsonton

Public Meeting To Discuss The Proposed Agreement For A YMCA To Be Located Next To Vance Vogel Park

What: Public Meeting To Discuss the Proposed Agreement for a YMCA to be located next to Vance Vogel Park
When: Tuesday, July 23 at 6:30 p.m.
Where: East Bay High School Auditorium, 7710 Old Big Bend Road in Gibsonton

Hillsborough County will conduct a public meeting to receive public comment regarding an agreement to locate a YMCA on County-owned land adjacent to the Vance Vogel Sports Complex in Riverview.

If approved, the project will be funded jointly with the YMCA, with about $2 million provided by the County.

This project would provide additional recreational facilities in southern Hillsborough County. Preliminary plans include various indoor recreational facilities, an aquatic center, various athletic field and related improvements.

The first meeting, on Jan. 31, 2012, discussed the proposed location of the YMCA by Vance Vogel Park. As referenced in that meeting, this second meeting is to present the project and the agreement that will be presented to the Board of County Commissioners.

For more information, contact Hillsborough County’s Real Estate and Facilities Services Department at 813-272-5810.

Posted: 7/17/2013
Governor appoints four to Hillsborough Children's Board

Gov. Rick Scott announced two new appointments and two reappointments to the Children's Board of Hillsborough County on Friday, July 12.

The two returning board members are Chris Brown, 44, of Brandon, the board's chairman who is general counsel to the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office, and Susan Schneider, 60, of Tampa, is a psychological services diagnostician with the school district.

Edwin Narain, 36, of Tampa, an area sales manager at AT&T and Democratic candidate for state House District 61, replaces Valerie Goddard. And Kelly O’Brien, 43, of Tampa, the president of KSO properties, will fill a vacant seat.

All terms run through December 2016.

Source: Tampa Bay Times

Posted: 7/15/2013
County seeks nominees for Community Violence Prevention Collaborative

Hillsborough County is seeking nominees to serve on subcommittees supporting the newly established Hillsborough County Community Violence Prevention Collaborative, a countywide initiative to establish data-driven and evidence-based priorities for reducing violence in Hillsborough County. The initiative shifts policy from a public safety to a public health model and aligns community and professional stakeholders to develop a comprehensive prevention and intervention approach.

These subcommittees make recommendations to the Leadership Council of the Violence Prevention Collaborative. The Leadership Council is comprised of the Mayors of Plant City, Tampa and Temple Terrace; the Hillsborough County Sheriff, the Thirteenth Judicial Circuit’s Chief Judge, State Attorney and Public Defender; and the School Board of Hillsborough County. It is chaired by County Commissioner Kevin Beckner.

Five positions are vacant. Terms are for one year (12 months). Positions are specified as:

  1. Public Safety/Judiciary Subcommittee
  2. Education Subcommittee
  3. Faith Community Subcommittee
  4. Health Care Subcommittee (includes mental health and substance abuse)
  5. Community-based Organizations Subcommittee

Please specify the subcommittee of choice on the application. Monthly meetings will be held with the date and time to be determined.

All nominees must be registered voters in Hillsborough County. All applicants must sign and date and submit a Standards of Conduct Form and submit with the Questionnaire for County Appointment to a Subcommittee of the Hillsborough County Community Violence Prevention Collaborative by July 25, 2013. Appointments are voluntary positions and members serve without compensation. Applicants may apply to more than one board but may only serve on one board at a time, unless specifically approved by the Board of County Commissioners.

The forms are available online at You can locate the forms by 1) clicking on Government, 2) click on Boards and Committees, and see the information box specific to the nominations for the Hillsborough County Community Violence Prevention Collaborative. Forms are also available by calling the Boards and Councils Coordinator at (813) 272-5826.

The forms can be mailed to: Boards & Councils Coordinator
2nd Floor County Center
601 E. Kennedy Blvd.
Tampa, FL 33602

faxed to: (813) 307-3237

or scanned and emailed to:

The Board of County Commissioners will select and confirm appointments at its regularly scheduled board meeting on August 21, 2013.

Posted: 7/12/2013
Two Tampa art exhibits are made from recyclable materials

Learn more about the exhibit at the Children's Board offices

TAMPA – Imagine the stuff that gets thrown away — the plastic, bottles and cans. Dream about microbial plants and creatures of the sea — the phytoplankton and zooplankton.

Two sculpture exhibits made of recycled materials — "THINK eARTh"and "Beautiful Beasties" - are on display at the Children's Board of Hillsborough County and the Hillsborough Community College Ybor Art Gallery, respectively.

Both were created under the guidance of the art team at Community Stepping Stones, a youth art program based in Sulphur Springs. The nonprofit also provides after-school art programs for the Tampa Housing Authority.

THINK eARTh can be seen in the lobby of the Children's Board, at 1002 E. Palm Ave. It will have an official opening on July 16 at a reception welcoming the agency's new director, Kelly Parris, and will be on display through October. Beautiful Beasties opens Monday and runs through July at the Ybor Art Gallery, at the corner of Palm Avenue and 15th Street.

"Little kids when given direction and left to their imaginations can do remarkable things," said Sigrid Tidmore, executive director of Community Stepping Stones.

Tidmore and a team of artists, including Stepping Stones creative art director Brenda Gregory, worked with about 90 children from the Oaks at Riverview in Seminole Heights on THINK eARTh. The Oaks is a mixed-income complex of apartments and town homes managed by the housing authority.

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