Re: Elders are shoved aside by greed, letter, April 6
Big business hits older folks again
I thoroughly enjoyed the letter by Neva Wise. I couldn't agree with her more. We at Lakeside Mobile Home Park in Clearwater have gone through the same thing and been treated the same way.
At the beginning, we were offered $4,000 for a double-wide home and $2,000 for a single wide. That has been the top offer. All we have ever asked for was fair market value for our homes. I truly feel that we are entitled to that.
Many sold out to the park owners, but 63 units decided to go into litigation for a fair price. The property owners are surely making big bucks, or they wouldn't be doing such an atrocious act that involves approximately 85 people.
We are still in litigation. It will be two years in May that we have worked on this and gotten nowhere. We were told that as long as we were in litigation, everything would be on hold. Not so. Money talks. Owner Nickel Plate Properties has been allowed to do anything they want to with us and nobody stops them. We have had no police protection, no fire department cooperation. We were fenced in, with three of the four gates locked. The fire department even put its own locks on top of the owner's locks!
Nickel Plate called us into court in two groups. We lost both cases, so now we are in an appeal. At the second court appearance, the judge said as his opening remark, "I don't know why you folks are wasting my time. You have already been in front of another judge for the same thing. You think I am going to rule against him?"
We have been harassed, humiliated and completely frustrated. This is just another instance of older people getting in the way of big business. We have absolutely no say-so and no funds.
Jean Wood, president, Lakeside Mobile Homeowners Association, Clearwater
Board is correct on height of roof
I would like to commend the Pinellas County Board of Adjustment in taking the correct course of action concerning the roof height of the Palm Harbor Recreation and Parks Department's newly constructed recreation building. A 9-foot increase from the proposal to the finished roof height is more than a small error — more like a deliberate omission.
Additionally, I am appalled by the comments of John Meyer, chairman of the Palm Harbor Community Services Agency, that the Board of Adjustment is not mindful of taxpayer money being involved and unaware of the children who will be served by using this structure.
Is the Palm Harbor Community Services Agency mindful of how much taxpayer money is going to be needed now to rectify the problem that was created by Parks and Recreation director Rick Burton and the sloppy way that he oversaw this project?
Patrick Kroeger, Palm Harbor
On density, let Sand Key be
On Thursday the Clearwater City Council will decide if some city areas will get density increases for hotels.
The birth of the current density issue was the massive economic pendulum that swung from hotels to condos and now back to hotels.
It is important to remember that Sand Key and other areas that were never a part of the pendulum swinging are now being forced to take that role. The tax base on Sand Key has never changed. There has not been one single hotel or condo lost or switched to another use. In fact, Sand Key has remained a solid, dependable, high-yield tax base for the city.
So council members, do not force an area that was not a part of the problem to take on densities that will absolutely change the character of Sand Key and damage it forever, to the point that its tax base is not stable and reliable.
Todd Pressman, Palm Harbor
Re: Flashing badge at bar? Bad, story, April 10
Make officer pay for police escort
As a concerned citizen of Clearwater, I must know, did the taxpayers of Clearwater pay the costs of Clearwater police Officer James Phelps' police escort home from the Hard Rock Casino in Tampa on Oct. 2, 2007?
The city of Clearwater, like most municipalities, is under enormous pressure to reduce operating costs. Officer Phelps admits to intoxication and going through a difficult period in his life. I hope for his sake and the safety of the community that Mr. Phelps resolves his problems.
All of us make mistakes, but we should not expect the taxpayers of Clearwater to pay for those mistakes. It is only fair that Officer Phelps reimburse the taxpayers for the fuel, wear and tear on the police cruiser, and salaries of the officers assigned to his police escort.
Larry Lytle, Clearwater