Rethink alcohol sales editorial, Sept. 9
Consider the will of the people first
The writer of this editorial is absolutely correct when it is stated that "… we are concerned about the city's continued track of ignoring the result of the citizen-driven referendum 11 years ago in which 69 percent of the turnout rejected selling and consuming alcohol in Sims Park."
As one of the five New Port Richey residents who signed the letter expressing our intent to protest the then-passed ordinance that allowed for alcohol to be sold in city parks (the first step required by the City Charter to repeal an ordinance), I agree that the will of the voters appears to once again be forgotten.
It seems that the alcohol ordinance is revisited by council every few years. Thankfully, when it appears on the council agenda this paper reminds its readers, and city leaders, that New Port Richey's residents have already voiced their collective opposition to alcohol in city parks. Unfortunately, the ordinance has already been amended contrary to the will of those same voters.
I have mentioned several times during the past decade that if the City Council wishes to revisit this issue, then it should place it before voters on a citywide ballot. Until that time comes, and until it is definitively demonstrated that the will of the people has changed dramatically, the City Council should stop tinkering with the alcohol ban. Whatever the council's intentions may be, the will of the people should always come first.
I appreciate the editorialist continuing to shine a spotlight on this important subject. It is vital that New Port Richey remain a family friendly community in which the rule of law is respected. That respect should extend to the firm message voters sent when they rejected the plan to allow for alcohol in city parks. Before the council amends the ordinance any further, it should allow the people to once again speak on the subject. If the will of the city's residents has changed since the last referendum, then so be it. If not, then perhaps the message will finally sink in that the ordinance should be left alone.
Greg Giordano, New Port Richey
Let the tortoises save our homes
According to the Times, there is a state law requiring taxpayers to spend $1,000 each or (whatever it takes) to move the tortoises from a future public trash dump to a place of safety.
This same state provides no protection for families being evicted from their homes that are soon to become vacant, derelict, moldy housing and rat holes.
Maybe the state can so specify that these tortoises be relocated to these soon-to-be-vacant homes and the residents can watch over them as they eat the tall grass and weeds? This would make the properties protected areas and provide families with their original housing. This will also conserve water as those lawns will not be watered or mowed.
Tortoise tenders wanted. Natural habitat required.
Doug Adams, Spring Hill
Fight the power company fraud
I spoke with a state representative from Orange County recently who expressed concern regarding the cost recovery charges that Progress Energy and Florida Light & Power are charging their customers to build antiquated nuclear power plants here in Florida. Both companies are privately owned and operated corporations with stockholders, and enjoy a monopoly to provide power to their designated customers.
To date, Progress Energy has collected over $487 million from its customers and hasn't lifted a shovelful of dirt to show for it.
In 2006, the state Legislature passed the energy bill that designated numerous tax credits to those of us that chose to replace our appliances with energy efficient new ones.
As it turned out all those wonderful tax incentives and rebates were never funded, but the law was adopted with a provision that the power companies could charge customers for their behemoth, antiquated power plants with no accountability to the ratepayers.
Essentially, the state Legislature gave the power companies a license to steal and they are doing this with reckless abandon.
Realize, Progress Energy sells its power beyond our state's borders and we're paying for the make-believe construction costs. In fact, if you look at your bill, you can't even determine what you are paying each month for this never-to-be-built power plant!
The latest technology for nuclear energy is light years ahead of what they are charging us for. It is energy efficient, environmentally friendly and cost efficient.
Stop the madness and spread the word. Call your state representatives and senators now.
Suzan Franks, Hernando