Tampabay Times by Adam Smith
July 5, 2018
Today we welcome The Florida Phoenix, a new news outlet dedicated to covering Florida state government and politics with four aggressive, top-tier veteran reporters. The progressive-leaning site will feature in-depth news stories, a blog, political cartoons, guest columns, social media updates on the latest happenings, and commentary.
Included on the site’s debut is a report on Clemency Board member Jimmy Patronis, Florida’s CFO, asking a black man seeking to regain his civil right how many children children he has and with how many mothers. Another examines how easy it is to pass Florida’s algebra 1 exam.
Based out of the Florida Press Center, the Phoenix is funded in large part by the New Venture Fund, a charitable non-profit that supports a range of public interest projects including filling the gaps in state government news coverage created by budget cuts at traditional media outlets.
“So much of what affects people in their daily lives happens at the state level, so having watchdog reporters covering state government and politics is critical to a functioning democracy,” said Florida Phoenix Editor-in-Chief Julie Hauserman, a Tampa Bay Times alum. “There’s a lot of wrong-headed policies and influence peddling that goes on and needs to be exposed. That’s our job.”