Plan cuts protections for Pinellas preserve Aug. 18, editorial
Let's keep preserve as a water source
I think your position on the Brooker Creek Preserve Management Plan is shortsighted. As you noted, this is a well field. It is smart that the Pinellas County Commission wants to plan ahead to do whatever is appropriate to develop and use the well field. Your shortsighted view is expressed in your comment that this is being done "even though Pinellas now gets nearly all its water from outside the county." The water sources now available to the county water system are often precarious, and the future might even be considered bleak at times. Whatever the county can do to be prepared should be applauded.
I hope that for the protection of residents that the county would seriously consider construction of a water system similar to Dunedin's, which is a reverse osmosis system. Perhaps Brooker Creek could provide the brackish water for such a plant.
Paul C. Blatt, Dunedin
Tropical Storm Fay
Unwise evacuation call
Once again our condescending elected officials have shown their total disdain for the intelligence of the citizens of Pinellas County. Just as all weather forecasters were predicting a storm path well away from our area they call for a mandatory evacuation of the barrier islands. What ever happened to common sense?
Every time they cry wolf like this it damages our tourist industry and creates a sense of complacency in the local population. Save the mandatory government intrusion for a Category 2 or above when we really need it. We can all watch the television weather just as well as the county people and make our own decisions. By all means, make early preparations for the special needs people, but leave the rest of us alone.
L.P. Keenan, St. Pete Beach
Fay is fickle | Aug. 19, story
Our readiness crews were not fickle, and our hats should be off to them. They were alert from the word "go," and we should be proud of them. I am sure they will use this exercise to fine-tune their rescue plans a little more.
Using an old seaman's adage: "You batten down the hatches well before the storm." Thanks!
Hartley Steeves, Tampa
I commend the St. Petersburg Times for noting on Monday which of the hurricane shelters accept pets. I am also glad there are shelters that do just that.
I have worked, while volunteering, with many animals that have been displaced due to natural disasters. Sometimes the problem has been due to human negligence, but often it happens because there were no places to bring cats, dogs and the like.
That shelters are more commonly allowing pets in, and that owners are aware of this, I feel, cuts down highly on the potential for repeats of past tragedies when animal lovers have been forced to evacuate suddenly. Again, thank you for addressing this critical issue.
Cailin Maynard, Clearwater
Violinist expresses exquisite intensity Aug. 18
I hope that violinist Maria Bachmann cut out and framed John Fleming's eloquent, intensely personal and appreciative review of her performance at the Museum of Fine Arts. It was a joy to read and reminded me that too many critics seem to think it their duty to tell readers how much better they know the music and how much better it could have been performed than the artist who performed it.
So, three rousing cheers for John Fleming, whose reviews invariably reflect his love of great music and don't — even when disappointed by a particular performance — demean the artist.
Joseph H. Francis, St. Petersburg