Saturday, January 20, 2018
Opinion

Candidate replies: Shulman, Belcher

Editor's note: Candidates not recommended by the Tampa Bay Times are given an opportunity to reply.

Josh Shulman

Florida House District 69

I appreciate the kind words the Tampa Bay Times editorial board said about me, but they made the wrong choice in this race.

As a certified financial planner, I've seen the effects of Tallahassee's extreme policies on family and small business budgets. Over the last few years, they've slashed Bright Futures, allowed property insurance to rise by double digits, and given our tax dollars to out-of-state corporations. We must elect a representative who will not be rubber stamp for Rick Scott.

I will fight to make sure we invest in our schools to prevent teacher layoffs and keep class sizes small. I will fight to keep taxes low for small businesses, and fight against massive tax giveaways to special interests. I will be a voice for Pinellas County families and our values. If you play by the rules, I will make sure you have a fair chance to get ahead.

Elizabeth Belcher

Florida Senate District 24

The Times recommended my opponent saying "he has a solid feel for Brandon, Plant City and Fishhawk." What about the rest of the district: New Tampa, USF, Temple Terrace, Riverview, Seffner, Mango, Dover, Sun City, Valrico? I will represent all of District 24.

Republicans have controlled the state for the last 14 years, leading to total arrogance and hubris. Senate President-elect Don Gaetz handpicked my opponent for this district — talk about arrogance!

Do you believe that Florida is on the right path? I do not! Florida is No. 1 in public corruption. Students are being taught to test, not learn. The Citizens Insurance mess has been "kicked down the road" as far as it can go. Florida is "bribing" large corporations with scarce tax dollars to relocate here.

I am running on the 4 E's: Ethics, Economy, Education and Environment and yes, "I am the best choice."

Comments
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The death last fall of a 20-year-old Florida State University fraternity pledge revealed pervasive dangerous behavior within the school’s Greek system. Andrew Coffey, a Pi Kappa Phi pledge, died from alcohol poisoning after an off-campus party, and a...
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William March: Tampa Bay Democrats line up for state legislative races

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Editorial: Saying ‘thank you’ helps Tampa police build needed trust

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Editorial: State’s warning shot should get attention of Hillsborough schools

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Published: 01/18/18
Updated: 01/19/18
Editorial: More talk, answers needed on future of USF St. Petersburg

Editorial: More talk, answers needed on future of USF St. Petersburg

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Published: 01/18/18

Another voice: Self-dealing by nursing home owners threatens patient care

The outsourcing of logistical support services, which became commonplace in the U.S. military in the 1990s and later was adopted by state prison systems, has now come to dominate the nursing home industry. And while nursing homes, unlike the military...
Published: 01/17/18
Editorial: Making illegal sewage discharges legal is wrong answer

Editorial: Making illegal sewage discharges legal is wrong answer

Three years into a crisis with its sewer system, St. Petersburg has a dandy new idea for dealing with the environmental fallout of dumping dirty water into the aquifer. Instead of committing to banning the outlawed practice, a consultant suggested th...
Published: 01/16/18
Updated: 01/17/18
Editorial: Tighten substitute teacher rules in Hillsborough

Editorial: Tighten substitute teacher rules in Hillsborough

A substitute teacher at a Plant City elementary school berated a class of fourth graders — and then the school principal. Another compared a student to a stripper. Others were caught napping, hitting children, making sexual remarks, giving students b...
Published: 01/16/18
Updated: 01/17/18
Editorial: Balancing the playing field for workers’ compensation

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For the longest time, injured workers in Florida were basically at the mercy of the whims of employers to treat them fairly. A 2003 law aimed at reducing the cost of workers’ compensation coverage for businesses had the desired impact, but it also di...
Published: 01/16/18