Just as the Tampa City Council gathers today to decide what to do with the 60 or so surveillance cameras purchased for use during the RNC, National Journal is reporting that officers working during the convention in Tampa used specialized apps and software to "turn off-the-shelf smartphones and tablets into tools for sending real-time video, voice, and data. The effort involved an interoperable network that used technology from several private companies."
The story reports that this information is becoming public now because "police were wary of undermining security at the convention."
Well, the convention's been over for three weeks now. Perhaps as the TPD and the City's Legal staff (and perhaps the mayor himself) go before the council to argue why the cameras should remain downtown, perhaps the council can ask what other devices the department is using that the public isn't aware of. Or is that asking for too much?
In the past we've been too optimistic about the robustness of the public discussion at City Hall in Tampa, so who knows how the discussion will go? We'll be back with a report tomorrow.
If Tampa wasn't considered more of a Republican town before the convention, it sure is now. A day after 2008 GOP presidential candidate John McCain addressed an audience in Tampa, the irrepressible Herman Cain came to town yesterday, where among the many things he boasted about was that if he were president, our ambassador to Libya wouldn't have been killed last week.
The "father" of supply-side economics, Arthur Laffer, preceded Cain to the podium at the Marriott Waterside yesterday. Laffer said he' s an unabashed fan of the man who gave us "9-9-9."
HART COO Katharine Eagan won a nice prize earlier this week, and read what Chuck Todd thought of his stay in Tampa last month during the RNC.