Parking Authority: No More Pay By Phone Service Fees For Customers

Categories: Road Rage

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Photo by Rich Robinson
Happy Thanksgiving, Miamians.

And here's something to legitimately be thankful for: No more Pay By Phone parking service fees. Seriously. Beginning at 12:01 a.m. Monday, the Miami Parking Authority (MPA) announced this week, the authority will absorb the $.35 fee that accompanies each Pay By Phone transaction.

"As a measure to try to give back to the community that we serve, but also to incentivize people," Rolando Tapanes, MPA's director of planning and development, told Riptide. "We did the numbers and we decided that it would be worthwhile for us to absorb the transaction fee."

See also: Parking Authority Announces New Plan for Wynwood

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Jeffrey Loria Just Misses Out on Title of Worst Sports Owner to Guy With Racist Team Name

Categories: Sports

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Just about one of the best things you can say about Jeffrey Loria's stewardship of the Miami Marlins is that he hasn't changed the team's name to something offensive. In fact, an elegant-looking fish is probably one of the least offensive things to name your team for.

And it's that fact that kept Loria from being named the worst professional sports team owner in existence according to Rolling Stone. He had to settle for number two.

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Florida Deputy Suspended For Ferguson Facebook Comment: "Damn cockroaches! Squashem all!"

Categories: The Badge

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A Florida Sheriff's deputy has been placed on suspension with pay after making insensitive comments on Facebook in the wake of civil unrest in Ferguson, Missouri.

"Damn cockroaches! Squashem all !!!! I say we rally for Wilson, who's with me?" wrote Detective Richard Moon of the Wakulla County Sheriff's Department on his Facebook page.

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305 Photo of the Day: Tunnel Travel

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Today's photo comes from Sandra Canning's Flickr. To see your photo here join our Flickr group.

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Florida Turnpike Will Offer Free Coffee Over Thanksgiving Travel Rush

Categories: Road Rage

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Photo by Julius Schorzman | WikiCommons
Taking a trek to elsewhere in the state for Thanksgiving? Sounds unfortunate, but at least you can look forward to one perk if you take the Florida Turnpike. The road's 24 -hour service stations will be offering everyone free coffee during specific hours during the busy travel time.

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Rick Scott Admits to Being Shady or Just an Old Guy Who Doesn't Understand How Email Works

Categories: Politicks

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Rick Scott has a Gmail account. He also has his official state email account.

He swore he'd just used the personal Gmail account for private, family matters, telling the press back in August that "if anybody sends me an email to my private account, I do the right thing." Meaning he claims he forwarded all emails about state matters to his state e-mail account.

Well, whoops, after an internal review of his email habits, his office has admitted that wasn't always the case.

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Ten People in Sports Miami Is Thankful For

Categories: Sports

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Ah, Thanksgiving. The day our nation sets aside every year to give thanks, stuff our faces with amazing food, and watch football. God bless America!

Here in South Florida, we have so many things to be thankful for: the weather, the surroundings, the lifestyle, and, of course, our sports. Beyond the more important things in life like family and health, sports play a big of part as anything else in keeping us sane year-round, and for that we are extremely thankful.

Sports is entertainment, one of the few constants in life, and one of the only things set on a schedule that will happen regardless of how your week goes. So let's give thanks to those people that make our entertainment that much more fun and our sports that much more sportastic.

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Miami Beach's Hellish Year of Traffic Is Over: Most Alton Road Construction Now Completed

Categories: Road Rage

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Photo by Lyssa Goldberg
If you live in Miami Beach, the past year has been a steady descent into driving madness. First, it was impossible to travel south on Alton Road. Then random cross streets were also closed. Lanes began to magically merge and disappear like an M.C. Escher drawing. Buying organic kale at Whole Foods suddenly because an odyssey worthy of an epic poem. Some local businesses simply gave up.

But that nightmare is now over. After a year of construction, FDOT contractors have completed most of their work ahead of schedule.

That means you can now drive north and south on Alton Road -- just in time for Art Basel.

See also: Businesses Worry as South Beach Construction Moves on to West Avenue

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Jeff Ransom: Ancient-History Preservationist

Categories: Environmental

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Photo by Stian Roenning
Jeff Ransom can be found around the county surveying the land, looking for Miami-Dade's archaeological past.
In this week's Miami New Times, we profile 30 of the most interesting characters in town, with portraits of each from photographer Stian Roenning. See the entire Miami New Times People Issue here.

When he was a 9-year-old Boy Scout, Jeff Ransom and his fellow troop members got lost in a Venezuelan cave. Flashlights were dying. Kids were crying. Even their adult Eagle Scout leader shed tears. Luckily, the future archaeologist of Miami-Dade County was there to save the day.

"I wasn't scared, and I remembered the way back out, so I got everybody out," Ransom, now 49, recalls as he sits in a 12th-floor conference room at the Stephen P. Clark Center. "I've always felt very comfortable in caves."

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Tony Cho: Designing Miami

Categories: Unreal Estate

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Photo by Stian Roenning
Tony Cho has helped turn industrial and blue-collar areas into hip epicenters.
In this week's Miami New Times, we profile 30 of the most interesting characters in town, with portraits of each from photographer Stian Roenning. See the entire Miami New Times People Issue here.

The bright pink and green "For Sale" signs are everywhere in Wynwood, the Upper Eastside, Little Haiti, Edgewater, and downtown. And the name at the bottom of the sign is always the same: Tony Cho.

As a new real-estate boom hits the Magic City, the 36-year-old has clearly become a go-to real-estate tycoon in Miami's most happening neighborhoods. But getting there has meant weathering a historic recession and navigating a rapidly changing market.

"It's been a challenge," Cho says.

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Iñaki Goikoetxea: Jai Alai Superstar

Categories: Sports

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Photo by Stian Roenning
Iñaki Goikoetxea has been widely considered the world's best jai alai player.
In this week's Miami New Times, we profile 30 of the most interesting characters in town, with portraits of each from photographer Stian Roenning. See the entire Miami New Times People Issue here.

In his native Basque Country, Iñaki Goikoetxea frequently gets stopped on the street by fans wanting to shake his hand or ask for photographs. In Miami, not so much.

"Here nobody knows who you are or what you do," he says.

If they did, Miamians would probably want a photo too. For more than a decade, Goiko, as he is known, has been widely considered the world's best jai alai player -- not that the soft-spoken 34-year-old would ever point that out. "That's what they say," he shrugs. "I try to do my best every day on the court, and that's it."

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Jose Javier Rodriguez: Master of the Minority

Categories: Politicks

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Photo by Stian Roenning
Jose Javier Rodriguez is in Tally to get things done, not to pick partisan fights.
In this week's Miami New Times, we profile 30 of the most interesting characters in town, with portraits of each from photographer Stian Roenning. See the entire Miami New Times People Issue here.

After November's Republican shellacking at the polls, you'd imagine the few Florida Democrats who emerged unscathed are about as eager to return to Tallahassee as a fourth-grader going back to school after a glorious summer vacation.

So why does Democratic Rep. Jose Javier Rodriguez sound so damn excited about sitting in a House that now has a new GOP supermajority, not to mention a re-elected, re-emboldened Rick Scott in the governor's mansion?

"The honest truth is what happened this November doesn't change a whole lot," Rodriguez says. "The GOP had an overwhelming majority before, and they still do today. Yet I still got a lot of things done before."

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Anthony Alfieri: Clean-Up Man

Categories: Environmental

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Photo by Stian Roenning
Anthony Alfieri's legacy in Miami is uncovering the mess of Old Smokey in the Grove and beyond.
In this week's Miami New Times, we profile 30 of the most interesting characters in town, with portraits of each from photographer Stian Roenning. See the entire Miami New Times People Issue here.

After 45 years of poisoning the mostly black residents of West Coconut Grove, the incinerator Old Smokey was finally shut down in 1970. But tons of toxic ash remained, buried in parks, swales, and open fields. It may well have caused an epidemic of pancreatic cancer that still afflicts the area.

The City of Miami discovered the problem several years ago but buried the information.
Who uncovered it? An environmental justice project that is the brainchild of Tony Alfieri, a full-time University of Miami professor and part-time rabble-rouser.


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Dan and David Le Batard: Cultural Ambassadors

Categories: Media Watch

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Photo by Stian Roenning
Dan and David Le Batard never lose perspective on who they are and where they've come from.
In this week's Miami New Times, we profile 30 of the most interesting characters in town, with portraits of each from photographer Stian Roenning. See the entire Miami New Times People Issue here.

Lebo, the painter and cartoonist, stares out into the cloudless, azure sky through oversize shades, a Cheshire Cat grin creeping across his stubbled face. "I'm a pimp for myself," he declares after older brother Dan ribs him about the many corporate sponsors -- Google, Microsoft, Red Bull -- the artist has signed deals with. "Total sell-out prostitute!"

Everything you need to know about the Marx Brothers-like dynamic between sportswriter and radio host Dan Le Batard and his younger artist brother David, AKA Lebo, is found in a childhood photograph that shows Dan inexplicably wearing an eye patch and David wielding a stick. The image encapsulates the two goofballs who would grow up to change the cultural landscape of Miami through art and media.

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Ana María Polo: TV's New Judge

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Photo by Stian Roenning
It's Ana María Polo's blunt common sense that holds the show together.
In this week's Miami New Times, we profile 30 of the most interesting characters in town, with portraits of each from photographer Stian Roenning. See the entire Miami New Times People Issue here.

English-language daytime legal shows usually end in a monetary judgment and the robe-cloaked official dispensing his or her own form of folksy wisdom. Caso Cerrado, meanwhile, often winds up resembling an MMA fight between angry abuelas or an impromptu dance party.

Issues go beyond simple monetary disagreements and can include cases ranging from child custody and family disputes to immigration. Memorable guests have been a woman who identified as a vampire and wore surgically implanted horns, a vinyl-banana-hammock-clad go-go boy, and a mother of six with double-E breasts.

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Alicia Menendez: Fusion's Breakout Star

Categories: Media Watch

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Photo by Stian Roenning
If Alicia Menendez's show seems unconventional, perhaps it's because her path to the media was equally atypical.
In this week's Miami New Times, we profile 30 of the most interesting characters in town, with portraits of each from photographer Stian Roenning. See the entire Miami New Times People Issue here.

How can a news show stand out in the age of 24-hour-a-day screaming Nancy Graces and nonstop nonnews coverage? "If you are young, you know all of the news by the time you get home," Alicia Menendez says of her barely year-old show, AM Tonight. "So at 9 o'clock at night, my job isn't to tell you the news. It's to tell you why it matters."

The 31-year-old has become the breakout star of Fusion, the Doral-based cable news network joint gamble of Univision and ABC News to capture the increasingly diverse (and increasingly Hispanic) millennial audience by dropping the round-the-clock alarmism of competitors and, as Menendez puts it, presenting conversations that viewers might have with their friends.

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Avra Jain: Modern-Day Julia Tuttle

Categories: Unreal Estate

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Photo by Stian Roenning
Unlike her male counterparts, Jain is approaching the revitalization of the city in a completely different way.
In this week's Miami New Times, we profile 30 of the most interesting characters in town, with portraits of each from photographer Stian Roenning. See the entire Miami New Times People Issue here.

Just a few yards from the buzz of Biscayne Boulevard, Avra Jain sits by the pool at the Vagabond Hotel, the iconic Miami Modern structure that until a couple of years ago seemed doomed to linger in a state of blight. Today, the crackling paint and overgrown vegetation are gone, replaced by sleek chaise longues and playful water features.

Jain, whose fit, 53-year-old frame is matched by a cheerful and energetic demeanor, is largely responsible for the Vagabond's transformation. She's a former engineer and Wall Street trader who began fixing up apartments around downtown and SoHo in New York as a hobby. Eventually, she left her job when the opportunity to do a loft conversion in Tribeca came calling. During this time, she would bounce back and forth between New York and the '80s and '90s bohemian scene in South Beach. She moved here permanently in 1998 to be with her partner. But although love might have brought her here, Miami and its real estate potential have kept her interested.

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Brent Grimes: Heart of the Dolphins

Categories: Sports

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Photo by Stian Roenning
Brent Grimes has become an all-out superhero on the gridiron.
In this week's Miami New Times, we profile 30 of the most interesting characters in town, with portraits of each from photographer Stian Roenning. See the entire Miami New Times People Issue here.

Glance at Brent Grimes' resumé before he joined the Dolphins last year and you'd be hard-pressed to imagine him as the type of player who'd get adrenaline flowing at Sun Life Stadium. Standing only five-foot-ten, Grimes played college ball at the tiny Shippensburg University in his native Pennsylvania and didn't get so much as a sniff from NFL scouts on draft day.

But you can't measure heart with a yardstick. And in just a season and a half in South Florida, Grimes' gritty play and crazy athleticism have already marked him as a fan favorite on a resurgent Fins team. When it comes to the Magic City, Grimes says the feeling is mutual.

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Marissa Alexander, Mom Who Fired Warning Shot, Agrees to Plea Deal: Three Years in Jail

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Marissa Alexander, the Jacksonville mother had originally been sentenced to 20 years in prison for firing a warning shot to ward of her abusive ex-husband, has reached a new plea deal. She received a three-year sentence, of which the 1,030 days she already spent in jail will be counted towards. Meaning she could be a free woman in as little as 65 days.

However, the deal is an "open plea," and Alexander could still receive a five-year sentence for a second charge at a hearing in January.

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305 Photo of the Day: Big Toe

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Today's photo comes from Phillip Pessar's Flickr. If you'd like to see your photo here join our Flickr group.

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