County must save creatively, not cut
The recent articles on Hernando's budget woes puts many things into perspective. It seems commissioners are putting the Hernando's jail before the law-abiding citizens. To consider shutting down parks or to stop road projects while increasing the funding for the jail is all but insulting.
Our commissioners in these tough times of budget restraints do not seem to be trying to keep county jobs, programs and parks. They seem to have the mind-set of big cuts with very little creativity. Here is an idea, take the budget you have and actually put some thought into how you can save instead of just cutting jobs, parks, libraries and other services.
Instead of closing 20 parks why not shut them down for two or three days a week or even just shorten the hours they are open each day? Use inmates to help maintain the park properties when the parks are closed.
Shorten library hours or have them open every other day. How about taking one of the many holidays that our local government has and make it unpaid leave?
Make it mandatory for all county employees to cut out one hour a week from their schedule. With 1,297 estimated full-time employees this could save a lot and really not put too much strain on employees by losing an hour a week.
Allow companies to sponsor parks and libraries on a monthly basis. Then set up a link on the county website to advertise the companies that are saving our parks. Allow multiple companies to sponsor each park at the same time, which will help generate more revenue.
Our county commissioners need to realize that cutting jobs in the long run is more detrimental to the county then the savings they are trying to accomplish now. When you eliminate jobs and benefits you eliminate consumers buying from local businesses. You increase the probability of foreclosures in which you lose tax revenue and eventually you lose families moving to other counties where you lose utilities and sales tax.
Our commissioners need to find ways to allow the entire county system to absorb the blow instead of just a few personnel along with our parks, libraries and schools. Our county commissioners are making double what our community average is and our parks and recreation supervisors are making well above the county average. Our leaders should be stepping up and taking some of the hits as well. Show the community that you to are in it with them and volunteer a pay reduction to help save jobs.
Daniel Blevins, Hernando Beach
Celebrate reason for Fourth of July
On this Fourth of July weekend, I would like to take this opportunity to remind everyone why we have a Fourth of July.
It was the independence of our nation from the tyranny of King George of England. It was the culmination of free, spirited and educated people that felt that they had the right to govern their newfound country. And they were a good group of people.
That spirit still lives today. America is as strong now, as it was in 1776. Yes, we have our problems, but so did they. And we will overcome, as they did. Our freedom comes from our men and women overseas who are keeping the American flag flying high.
During your barbecue, beach party or house party, please, think of those who are giving, or have given, to the rights we have. The men and women who are serving in other parts of the world to protect this country's freedom are to be commended for their service.
Please, on this Fourth of July, thank your military in some form of fashion. Fly your flag. Post a sign.
Tell the world that we are America, and we won't back down from anybody.
Dave Peregoy, Holiday