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Volume 24 No. 117
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Rays Billboard Near Tropicana Field May Be Removed After Running Afoul Of Ad Laws

The Rays own a 114-foot electronic billboard near Tropicana Field that has "run afoul of Florida's advertising laws and may have to be taken down," according to Anna Phillips of the TAMPA BAY TIMES. Florida Department of Transportation officials said that the problem is the team is "running advertisements for other businesses such as a local car dealership, violating a state law that requires signs over a highway to advertise only for the business at that location." Officials in June "sent the team a notice of violation, giving the ball club 30 days to remove the sign or pay the $4,800 cost for the state to take it down for them." The Rays were "able to postpone any action from the state by submitting two permit applications." But FDOT officials indicated that both of those applications were "found incomplete" (TAMPABAY.com, 8/20).

YOU COULD BE MY SULPHER SPRINGS: In Tampa, Varian & Danielson report Hillsborough County Commissioner Victor Crist wants the Rays to consider the "former dog track in Sulphur Springs" as a possible location for a new stadium. Crist: "I'm just saying this is an alternative that makes sense. I think we should put it on the table and look at it." The track is "just a few miles north of downtown and served by three Interstate 275 exit ramps." Crist said that it is "surrounded by acres of parking lots and aged commercial strips on both sides of the interstate, and a stadium could be just the thing to spur nearby investment in what has been a longtime sea of blight" (TAMPA BAY TIMES, 8/22).