Sunday, May 20, 2018
Letters To The Editor

Friday's letters: Amendment 10 provides needed tax relief

Vote no on special property tax breaks | Oct. 8, editorial

Amendment provides tax relief

Amendment 10 on the Nov. 6 ballot would provide much-needed tax relief to Florida's small businesses and provide another economic development tool for local governments to help bring new jobs.

It would allow for Tangible Personal Property tax reduction in two ways — one mandated by the amendment and one at the discretion of local governments.

The amendment would allow local governments to provide temporary or permanent TPP tax relief to new and existing industries, which would encourage capital investment and promote job creation. This would be especially true in the areas of manufacturing and the state's qualified targeted industries — like biomedical technology and aerospace — that our state most wants to attract, as taxes often play a large role in location decisions.

Economic simulation modeling performed by Florida TaxWatch shows that exempting manufacturing and targeted industry businesses that are already in Florida would significantly increase private sector jobs and gross domestic product.

Amendment 10 would also provide significant tax relief for small business. If approved, one half of the 156,000 small businesses in Florida that pay the TPP tax will be relieved of that burden, as it would double the exemption from taxation to the first $50,000 of equipment owned.

Amendment 10 would improve our small business environment and promote job creation in Florida.

Pat Neal, chair, Vote Yes on 10, Lakewood Ranch

Tied up in knots | Oct. 22, commentary

Turn away from extremes

In this essay, Darryl Paulson describes accurately the state of politics in today's America. It should be read with an open mind by patriots of all political stripes. Especially telling is his quote of Lincoln's admonition that we could well destroy our political system from within, something that should strike fear in every heart.

Given current poll numbers, the winning candidate for president may not be accepted as legitimate by half of the country. We the electorate must act, and soon, to marginalize the political extremists on all sides and get back to negotiation and compromise to move our country forward.

Wayne Logsdon, Hernando

Race-based goals send wrong signal Oct. 22, editorial

Politicized education

Setting different goals for different groups exposes how the liberal nannies politicized the No Child Left Behind rules. The easy solution is that all students should game the system by identifying themselves as part of that group that receives the most favorable waiver. This puts them at the head of the line in high school, college and the workplace.

Jim Harkins, Sun City Center


Cooperate to stop crime

At what point did street credibility become more important in the black community than solving crimes? Countless times I've heard or read about individuals not cooperating with a police investigation because they don't want to be known as a "snitch." How will the crime be solved without the cooperation of witnesses? It likely will not.

The people in my social circle don't live by a street code but are hardworking, productive people in society. In my opinion, the individuals who must maintain some kind of street credibility have had run-ins with the police, have been incarcerated or lack the respect for such authority.

How can this change? First, let's pull up our pants, put a belt on and close the enormous gap between the black community and law enforcement. Educate people about parenting skills and social and community responsibilities.

I'm not ignorant of the fact that some of us have had negative experiences with law enforcement, but this doesn't have to stop us from gaining a foothold on the violence that plagues this city. Our black people are dying at an alarming rate, especially our young males who are overcrowding our prisons and graveyards.

Cooperation doesn't have to be a bad word. It's up to us.

Antionette Harris, St. Petersburg

Capital gains tax

Low rate stunts job growth

The low maximum tax rate of 15 percent on investments has likely hurt job creation, since investing in securities provides an immediate 10 to 20 percent revenue gain via the lower tax rate afforded unearned income versus earned. Why would anyone take aftertax dollars and invest in starting a business where profits are taxed at a rate as much as 20 percent higher than income earned by the same aftertax dollars that are invested in securities?

I believe the reduced tax rate on unearned income was likely implemented solely as a "thank-you" to Wall Street for the millions of dollars donated to politicians. As frequently happens, the legislation adopted had the unintended consequence of stunting job growth.

Dave O'Brien, Largo

Power company pillaging | Oct. 22, editorial

Call out the candidates

You asked: Who will speak up for Floridians? How about you? I am grateful for the reporting and editorials you have printed on this issue, but I have also been greatly dismayed by your recommendations for state office that make no mention of the candidates' positions on this issue.

Please put the questions to them — what are you going to do about the 2006 law allowing utilities to charge us indefinitely for a nuclear plant that will likely never be built? What are you going to do about the pathetic Public Service Commission, which the Legislature and governor have molded into what is more like the Utilities Service Commission?

Please publish an article with their responses to these questions. If they don't respond, then please rescind your recommendation. We need to know the candidates' stance. Will they represent the utilities, or will they represent the voters?

William Nye, Clearwater


Monday’s letters: Focusing on the mental state of shooters misses the point

Texas high school shooting | May 18Criminals, angry people kill peopleSchool shootings are a distinctly American phenomenon. But shootings by people with serious mental illness represent less than 1 percent of all yearly gun-related homicides in ...
Published: 05/19/18

Friday’s letters: Putnam and Publix, two P’s lose my nod

Publix pours cash to Putnam | May 17A pleasure to shop elsewhereMy family and I moved to Tampa in 1974, and have made Publix our favorite grocery store ever since. Forty-four years! That is why it makes me a little sad to have to say goodbye.Firs...
Published: 05/18/18

Saturday’s letters: For Florida to move forward, focus on a healthy and sustainable environment

Tampa’s future is bright | May 12Protect Florida, boost economyThis past year, Florida set another record-breaking year for tourism, welcoming more than 116 million visitors. While Florida boasts a unique quality of life and more than 1,300 miles...
Published: 05/16/18
Updated: 05/18/18

Sunday’s letters: What conservatives stand for

How can conservatism survive after Trump | May 13, Nickens columnhed#6324 I think it obvious that traditional conservatism was squeezed out of the 2016 campaign narrative and has become a niche thesis owned by a small group of intellectuals. A gr...
Published: 05/16/18
Updated: 05/18/18

Friday's letters: Putnam and Publix, two P's lose my nod

Publix pours cash to Putnam | May 17 A pleasure to shop elsewhere My family and I moved to Tampa in 1974, and have made Publix our favorite grocery store ever since. Forty-four years! That is why it makes me a little sad to have to say goodbye. F...
Published: 05/16/18
Updated: 05/18/18

Pasco Letters to the Editor for May 18

Re: Pasco panel okays Tampa Electric solar farm after five-hour meeting | April 9 storySolar farm offers many positivesThere has been much publicity regarding the proposed TECO Mountain View solar project slated for 350 acres in East Pasco that was r...
Published: 05/14/18

Thursday’s letters: Florida has arguably become the autonomous vehicle capital of North America

Autonomous vehicles in FloridaThe state for self-driving carsAlmost overnight, Florida has arguably become the autonomous vehicle capital of North America. In the last three months, Voyage, a self-driving taxi service, has begun service in the Villag...
Published: 05/12/18
Updated: 05/17/18

Wednesday’s letters: Florida’s Community Health Centers save $1.78 for every dollar spent

Florida’s Community Health CentersHealth centers are a great dealIf you gave someone a dollar and they gave you back $1.78, wouldn’t you consider that a fantastic deal? That’s the deal Florida’s Community Health Centers provide for the state’s citize...
Published: 05/12/18
Updated: 05/16/18

Monday’s letters: Good ideas to fix schools still require enough money

Another plan for faltering schools | May 9The right ideas, cash still neededThe administration of the Hillsborough County School District should be applauded for persistent efforts to find the right formula to improve educational results of stude...
Published: 05/09/18
Updated: 05/14/18

Saturday’s letters: Short-sighted prison cuts hurt society

Call to rethink prison cuts | May 10Short-sighted prison cuts hurt societyThe Florida Department of Corrections is dismantling successful substance abuse and re-entry treatment programs to fix a $28 million shortfall. The short-sighted action wi...
Published: 05/09/18
Updated: 05/11/18