Sue Carlton, Columnist

Sue Carlton


My dad always said the Carltons were thieves and cattle rustlers run out of Georgia, which makes me a bona fide Floridian going back generations. I grew up in Miami and landed in Tampa, a town that said “bland” to the world but turned out anything but. I live in an old bungalow in an old neighborhood with my husband and a very enthusiastic dog. I’ve covered everything - crime, courts, the homeless. I’ve come to love this place of outrages and injustices, history and culture, Deep South and café con leche, downtown growing up and a parade of political characters let’s just call interesting. And lucky me, I get to write about all of it three days a week.

Artsy condo near Tampa Riverwalk, water views, move-in ready. Sleeps 4,000. Tenants must fly at night and eat mosquitoes.

These fancy digs with room for 4,000 awaits Tampa's Riiverwalk bats at Julian B. Lane Park. [Photo courtesy of City of Tampa]
When Tampa Riverwalkers and bats got too close, the city built this state-of-the-art bat box across the water. Sue Carlton tells us what happened next.

The Florida governor's bold move on Amendment 4. Or is that against Amendment 4?

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis would like the Florida Supreme Court to opine on the Amendment 4 mess, please. [CHRIS URSO  |   Times]
Gov. Ron DeSantis wants the Florida Supreme Court's blessing on requiring felons to pay off all court fees before they can vote again. Sue Carlton asks: Is this what voters voted for?

Who's Tampa's e-scooter grinch? Maybe not the person you think

During Tampa's pilot program to see if this city is ready for e-scooters, citizens have lodged complaints like this double violation: 1. Not parked properly in a corral, and 2. on the Riverwalk, one of the pedestrian-busy areas on which e-scooters are not allowed.
[CHRIS URSO  |   Times]
Of nearly 100 "comments" on Tampa's new electric scooters, 30 came from one man. Get off my lawn, you say? Nope, says Sue Carlton. He’s exactly the guy you'd want to hear from.

Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody shows her true colors on guns

Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody answers reporters questions during the 2019 legislative session. [SCOTT KEELER   |   Times]
As a Hillsborough judge, Ashley Moody seemed reasonable enough. Then she went to Tallahassee, Sue Carlton says, and picked party politics over people when it comes to guns.

Pelicans, check. Green space, check. Water views, restaurants, shade, fun, check. Open the new St. Pete Pier already!

The new and still under construction St. Pete Pier as seen from the Spa Beach area. (SCOTT KEELER | Times)
Forget the controversy and stumbling blocks in trying to rebuild the iconic St. Pete Pier. When it opens next year, Sue Carlton says, you won't believe it.