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Get girls flag football in Pasco over the line - FlagSpin

Get girls flag football in Pasco over the line

This article represents the opinion of the Tampa Bay Times Editorial Board.

Pasco’s flag football. The school year in Pasco County is ending on a high note. Schools superintendent Kurt Browning announced Tuesday he would include a girls flag football program in his budget proposal for the coming year. “I’m throwing in the flag,” Browning told School Board members, a nod to the students and parents who have pushed for years to have flag football included in Pasco schools, even though it was not a priority for Browning given the county’s limited budget. But give the Pasco students and parents credit for continuing to make their case, and give Browning credit for listening. This is a popular sport that has developed a strong following across the region; Hillsborough and Pinellas counties field teams, too. Participating in team sports carries great benefits, from learning responsibility and socializing with others to dealing with success and loss. Giving girls another opportunity to participate in these programs benefits these students and their communities. The School Board should support the proposal when the budget comes up this summer.

Tampa’s Rome Yard(s). It’s been a long time coming, but the groundbreaking this week of Tampa’s Rome Yard promises an exciting new era for the West Tampa neighborhood. The 18-acre lot between Rome Avenue and the Hillsborough River is where the city used to store and maintain its utility trucks and equipment. In that sense, the Rome Yard was both an eyesore and a puzzle: Why would anyone waste a bluff over the river with such sweeping views of the downtown waterfront? Soon enough, this coveted real estate — now rebranded the Rome Yards, which screams industrial chic — will become a mixed-use community of subsidized and market-rate housing, storefronts, open areas and workforce training space. Its proximity to the massive West River development just to the south, and easy access to downtown, Ybor City and Tampa International Airport, will make this remodeled enclave a hot commodity in the ever-expanding city center. Tampa is again maximizing its waterfront and transforming its historic space to welcome a new generation. And it’s putting undervalued public land to better use. We hope the build-out matches the high expectations.

Orlando’s homeless win. Every major city in Florida (and across the country) is grappling with a housing crisis that seems only to be getting worse. Yet a project in Orlando showed that cities don’t need the most outlandish ideas or a bottomless pot of money to make a difference. An effort last year by the city of Orlando and the Christian Service Center had hoped to use a $617,000 federal grant to rescue about 40 homeless people. But about 257 people, or 111 households, were lifted from homelessness using about $346,000 of the grant, according to a recent report by the Orlando Sentinel. The program succeeded because organizers were creative in using the money. Dozens of people simply needed a bus or train ticket to reach family members willing to house them. Others needed only a security deposit or first and last month’s rent to lease an apartment. In other words, modest bridge financing made the difference in getting hundreds of people into stable housing, and on the track to staying there. This is what can happen when cities start small, work together with quality nonprofits and find practical solutions to build on.

Editorials are the institutional voice of the Tampa Bay Times. The members of the Editorial Board are Editor of Editorials Graham Brink, Sherri Day, Sebastian Dortch, John Hill, Jim Verhulst and Chairman and CEO Conan Gallaty. Follow @TBTimes_Opinion on Twitter for more opinion news.

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