Friday, December 15, 2017
Letters To The Editor

Friday's letters: Remember them at election time

House passes fiscal deal | Jan. 2

Remember them at election time

I trust that no one in Washington is taking any credit or satisfaction for this last-minute reprieve from the cliff.

The performance of Congress, the president and the media has been and will continue to be regarded as a study in juvenile bickering, blind party loyalty and despicable self-serving. And failing to consider the Hurricane Sandy aid bill was absolutely beyond comprehension.

Whether you are Republican, Democrat or independent, I urge you to keep these last weeks fresh in your memory at least until it's time to vote again in 2014. None of these "public servants" of either party deserve to be re-elected. The long-term damage they have done to this country will be felt for decades or perhaps longer.

Michael P. Catalano, Palm Harbor

Rubio's disaster aid vote | Jan. 2, letter

Clear bill of pork

A letter writer suggested that Sen. Marco Rubio's "no" vote on the Sandy aid bill was a reflection of Republican apathy and a me-first mentality. The truth is, the bill presented was loaded with unnecessary pork having nothing to do with hurricane relief. I view Rubio's action as one protecting the taxpayer and not as being uncaring and unfeeling.

I'm sure he would vote yes on an unadulterated bill intended for the purpose of helping hurricane victims.

Joan P. Comitos, Palm Harbor

Ready for light rail progress | Jan. 2, editorial

Light rail isn't only option

This editorial communicates a foregone conclusion that this is our only option for a regional transportation system. I agree that a modern transportation system for our region would be beneficial to residents and visitors alike, but light rail limits moving people between fixed locations — without serving the entire county. This would take years and cost billions.

We need a modern transportation system that is flexible, efficient and affordable. The county should consider leasing bus routes to private bus companies that run their buses on CNG fuel. This will allow competitive pricing, flexible routes, variable-sized vehicles and low environmental impact — all at no cost to taxpayers.

Bus lanes could be established. Passenger loading could be adjusted for countywide events and venues such as to beaches, museums, sports events and to and from taverns, reducing DUI on our roads.

If our leaders keep an open mind and use their imagination, this issue could be solved to benefit all.

Ken Gagliano, Clearwater

A regional approach

I lived in Baltimore when that city was contemplating a light rail system, which just happened to coincide with the need of building of a new baseball park for the Orioles. For me, it's deja vu all over again.

Build a ballpark for the Rays just north of Tampa and St. Petersburg. In phase one, both cities build a light rail system from their downtown/business centers to the park so they connect. In phase two, Tampa builds a connection to the airport and St. Petersburg to a hub on the Gulf Coast with trolleys servicing various beaches.

With this plan businesses connect, St. Petersburg can get to the airport, Tampa can get to the gulf beaches, and everyone gets the Rays.

Initial costs will be expensive, but in the long run worth it.

Paul Smith, Kenneth City

Stray bullet hits woman | Jan. 2

Trace bullets to owners

It seems that a simple solution to track errant bullets back to the owner would be to put numbers on all ammo and keep records on whom it was sold to. Of course, it would be a fight to overpower the NRA on this simple method to ensure responsibility.

Overall, crime rates are dropping because the perpetrators are finally realizing that with all the video surveillance bad deeds come with swift penalties.

James Teske, Tampa

Aim lower

If you simply must fire a gun in celebration, please have the good sense to fire it into the ground, not into the air. What goes up must come down; but not the other way around.

Jim Tight, Palm Harbor


New Year's nuisance

I think it is time to stop allowing fireworks in residential areas. First of all, what is the fun of lighting a little wrapped package of gunpower and having it go boom and doing it over and over? This New Year's Eve my neighborhood was loaded with loud bangs and booms. It keeps the elderly awake and scares the pets. Our cat was terrified all evening. I went out and the air was heavy with the smell of gunpowder. It was disgusting.

My question is: Why can't an isolated park or area away from homes be provided for these adults (still acting like children) to go and shoot off their fireworks until they are satisfied, and not be a bother to others?

George Grodesky, Port Richey

Forge a Florida identity | Jan. 1, commentary

Protect the environment

As the titular head of a group of some 100 seniors who belong to our state chapter of the national nonprofit organization Great Old Broads for Wilderness, I confront daily the difficulties of diversity David Colburn considers in this article.

I doubt even a third of our group is made up of native Floridians, yet these older folks, including a number of snowbirds, have taken the time to learn and care about our natural environment and our issues, especially overdevelopment. We help with river, parks and coast cleanups. We bird-sit native summer nesters. We help rehab trails and generally support all attempts to maintain what's left of Florida.

Currently, we're helping to petition to resurrect the once-popular Florida Forever plan — organized by the Bob Graham Center for Public Service — that used a percentage of Florida document taxes to manage state-owned wilderness and park areas. Our current so-called leaders tossed that important responsibility.

It's time we check the identities of those running for office, state and local. If they don't know a native plant from a power plant, they have no place in our state.

JoAnn Valenti, Tampa


Friday’s letters: Put yourself in a business owner’s shoes

GOP plan favors owners | Dec. 11Perils of small business ownersI wonder if the author of this article has even a clue about owning a business. Businessmen — especially small business owners — risk it all. They risk their savings, their car, their...
Published: 12/13/17
Updated: 12/14/17

Thursday’s letters: Trump’s values hardly admirable

Finally, a president who cares | Dec. 13, letterTrump’s values hardly admirableThe letter writer is happy to have someone in the White House who "truly cares about our country’s business" and is "unafraid … of mentioning God and religious values....
Published: 12/13/17

Wednesday’s letters: Proposal would restore Florida Forever funding

Florida ForeverPlan boosts land protectionMost of us thought funding for land conservation in Florida would be restored when we voted the Water and Land Conservation Amendment (Amendment 1) into law in 2014. It passed easily, with 75 percent of voter...
Published: 12/11/17
Updated: 12/12/17

Tuesday’s letters: Writer should look to his own mistakes

Is anyone ever wrong anymore? | Dec. 8Writer should look to own errorsIn Mitch Daniels’ article about people who have been wrong, he finishes with the statement that our lives would be greatly improved with more people saying, "I was wrong."He mi...
Published: 12/08/17
Updated: 12/11/17

Monday’s letters: Don’t drill in Arctic refuge

Arctic National Wildlife RefugeStop plan to drill for oil in refugeOur nation faces yet another effort to open up the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge reserve to oil and gas drilling. Drilling in the Arctic simply doesn’t make sound financial sense. W...
Published: 12/08/17

Sunday’s letters: Tax bill puts U.S. on right course

The GOP’s regressive tax plans | Dec. 5, editorialTax bill puts U.S. on right courseThe Times is already crying wolf over the new tax cuts, claiming that the new laws "could" result an increase in the national debt of $1.5 trillion over the next ...
Published: 12/07/17

Pasco letters to the editor for Dec. 15

Re: Helping Others Fulfills our purpose here on Earth | Nov. 17 guest columnThe good doctor acknowledges a CreatorThank you for publishing Dr. Rao Musunuru’s guest column. As Congressman Gus Bilirakis said in the Congressional Record, this good d...
Published: 12/06/17
Updated: 12/13/17

Saturday’s letters: Don’t inject political money into churches

Tax billKeep political cash out of pulpitA provision buried in the 429-page House tax bill, Section 5201, nullifies the Johnson Amendment, which protects houses of worship from partisan politics by prohibiting them from endorsing or opposing politica...
Published: 12/06/17
Updated: 12/07/17

Friday’s letters: Most unpopular tax bill ever

Tax bill clears Senate | Dec. 3The most unpopular tax bill ever"Democracy dies in darkness" is the motto of the Washington Post. At 2 a.m. on the dark morning of Sunday, Dec. 3, 51 Republicans approved the most wildly unpopular tax bill in U.S. h...
Published: 12/06/17
Updated: 12/07/17

Thursday’s letters: Give your child the gift of reading

Fatherhood Involvement in Literacy CampaignGive your child the gift of readingPart of a successful game plan in sports is identifying plays that can put points on the scoreboard. Whether I was playing quarterback at Florida State or running the point...
Published: 12/05/17
Updated: 12/06/17