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Sunday, Oct 26, 2014

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South Tampa canal advocate files for District 4

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— South Tampa resident Kent King, who helped finance a study looking at the economic impact of South Tampa’s silt-clogged canals, has filed to run against Tampa City Councilman Harry Cohen for the council’s District 4 seat.

Cohen has said he intends to run for re-election but hasn’t filed yet.

In 2012, King helped pay for the $1,700 study by Tampa-based Urban Economics Inc. that looked at how much property values and property taxes would increase if 14 canals in the area were dredged fully.

The study found 347 single-family homes along those canals would increase in value by a collective $88.2 million. Combined and property tax revenue would increase by nearly $506,000 annually.

At the time, King said the dredging was about more than wealthy residents wanting to take their boats out. It also would improve wildlife habitat and tidal flow and help maintain the city’s storm-water system, he said.

The boost in property taxes would pay for the improvements, he said.

Ultimately, the city spent $2.3 million in a partial dredging.

King, 51, is business development manager for Southern Wine & Spirits of Florida.

“With 28 years of business, management, and problem-solving experience,” King said in a statement, “I will fight for the citizens and neighborhoods of District 4 to get the best return on their taxes and ensure needed infrastructure and services are delivered to them by the city.”

kwiatrowski@tampatrib.com

(813) 259-7871

Twitter: @kwiatrowskiTBO

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