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Clearwater Governmental Affairs Committee makes no endorsement without all the facts

Re: Business ideas bad for Florida | editorial, March 8 Perspective section

No endorsements without all the facts

I cannot speak for the Clearwater Regional Chamber of Commerce. However, as the volunteer 2009 chairman of its Governmental Affairs Committee, I can speak here for myself.

At times the Governmental Affairs Committee is asked to endorse various agendas of the Florida and United States Chamber(s) of Commerce and pass those endorsements up to the board of directors for public release. In fact, such was the case on March 4 relative to positions being considered in the current legislative session in Tallahassee.

Although there is always a certain weight attached to being in solidarity with the state and national organizations, the people of Clearwater should be proud to know that their local chamber Governmental Affairs Committee chose to be knowledgeable on the issues before it would give any endorsements.

I, as the chair, with the concurrence of our Government Affairs Committee Steering Committee, chose not to respond to a short-fuse communication from the Florida Chamber of Commerce. We deferred on any kind of action pending further review of the issues.

We did not dodge the issues. At times in the past (and more than likely at times in the future) we have been in complete agreement with the business organizations mentioned in your editorial. However, while holding the chairmanship for the balance of 2009, it is my firmest intention to make sure every vote is an educated one and that no undue influence is easily applied.

To that end, it is also my belief that the best interests of the community can be reconciled with the best interests of business. One without the other is a very short-sighted perspective.

Robert W. Murphy, Clearwater

Re: Beware of water violations | story, March 6

Responsibility, not victimhood

Once again, someone who didn't obey the law finds themselves feeling "like a victim." This person ignores a watering citation, ignores an order to show up in court for a hearing, then feels persecuted by the system when she gets booked.

We recognize that shouldering responsibility for one's actions seems to be lost on the upcoming generation, but does this apply to the older folks too?

I wonder where the young people get this from?

Ron Bond, Clearwater

Parking lot meters not user friendly

The new city parking lot on Coronado Drive on Clearwater Beach is lovely. However, the parking lot machines are difficult to use.

My 8-year-old niece and I went there to see if we could trade a dollar bill for quarters. After reading the instructions on the machine, we put our dollar in and nothing happened. Then we pushed the refund button. A little white piece of paper shot out and said, "No Refund, send receipt to City of Clearwater/Parking, P.O. Box 4748, Clearwater, FL 33758-4748."

Hmm. So let's see. I need to fill out an envelope, put a 41-cent stamp on it and mail it to get back 59 cents.

Is the city really going to send out checks for 59 cents?

Talk about waste.

Marlyn Tracey, Clearwater

>>your voice counts

You may submit a letter to the editor for possible publication through our Web site at, or by faxing it to (727) 445-4119, or by mailing it to Letters, 710 Court St., Clearwater, FL 33756. You must include your name, address and phone number. Letters may be edited for clarity, taste and length.

Clearwater Governmental Affairs Committee makes no endorsement without all the facts 03/14/09 [Last modified: Saturday, March 14, 2009 4:31am]
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