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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Gus hopes Silver is golden



U.S. Rep. Gus Bilirakis, R-Palm Harbor, today filed a bill to give federal grants to states that set up a "Silver Alert" system, akin to the Amber Alert for missing kids, for finding missing senior citizens.

The bill was prompted largely by the death of Mary Zelter, 86, of Largo, who signed out of her assisted-living facility on Feb. 25 and whose body was found a week later, floating in the Intracoastal Waterway about 10 miles away.

He doesn't have any cosponsors yet, but he'll be shopping it around to Florida's members of the U.S. House and Senate soon. The bill calls for spending $5.6-million a year on grants to states.

"A lot of states, like Florida, are having a bunch of problems, and we don’t want any excuses for not implementing the program," he said after introducing the bill Thursday afternoon.

[Last modified: Wednesday, September 15, 2010 10:53am]


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